One of the top questions (and concerns) we hear from companies focuses on inbound call center performance. And this performance is generally measured by conversion - either capturing a qualified lead, setting an appointment or closing a sale.
While there is much discussion these days on the impact of online efforts, the fact remains that an inbound call center will have a dramatic affect on actual sales. Inbound call centers with live operators will always convert higher than web, despite perhaps only accounting for 25% of the actual response. Today it is almost a given that any up front response from a campaign will break out to 25% of respondents calling and 75% going directly to the web.
So while web trumps phones in terms of response, call centers can easily account for 50% of lead capture or even directly closed sales. So if you are utilizing a call center component, this order ratio cannot be ignored.
Let's take a look at the big five considerations when either selecting a call center or managing an active center for your campaign.
# 5) Direct Category Experience
While most call centers will tell you they can handle any type of campaign, the fact is category experience matters. If your call center has never sold to Seniors, for example, then you can anticipate issues, as this consumer requires a distinct type of inbound call handling. Every category is unique, and working with a call center with documented experience in the category is essential,
#4) Sales vs. Customer Service
If you are selling via inbound, then you need experienced sales representatives on your program, plain and simple. Trying to retrofit a customer service oriented call center to sales rarely works.
Call bursting is exactly that - a burst or influx of inbound calls all occurring within a few minutes of a commercial airing, an email drop, etc. You'll need to understand your call center's capacity and overflow mechanisms to handle such bursts.
Live media is running and you determine you need to revise your inbound script immediatley. How quickly can this be done?
Data of course is the key to everything. Every call center is different, and many times they will want to dictate what data you receive. You need to know what data is available, and data that moves you toward success.
So, while call response is beginning to pale in comparison to web traffic, ultimately more sales or leads will occur on an inbound call with a live operator. This conversion volume means revenue, thus call center optimization is absolutely essential for long term success.
Writing a Creative Brief