A valuable tool for your outbound campaigns, an automatic dialer drives communication between agents and customers and helps create more revenue generating opportunities. But just reaching potential customers is not enough. You also want to facilitate positive, productive interactions between agents and customers. Read on for some automatic dialer best practices tips to achieve your business goals.
Choose the Right Dialing Mode
Automatic dialers were created to serve one primary business need: decrease agent idle time and ensure more of their time is spent on the phone with customers. You also want to make sure that these calls are a positive, productive experience for both the agent and your customer.
Predictive (Direct) Dialing is the most effective dialing mode when it comes to minimizing agent idle time. A predictive dialer works by dialing multiple numbers from a call list at once and connecting your agent to first call answered. Based on the average time it takes for an agent to wrap up a call, a predictive dialer will begin calling numbers from the list again when it thinks the agent is about to become available.
Though predictive dialing is effective for maximizing agent efficiency, it is not unusual to reach customers before an agent is available to speak with them. When this occurs, a customer answers their phone and is met with silence until an agent is available. By the time an agent jumps on the call, they are starting off the conversation with an annoyed customer (if the customer is even still on the line). On top of that, strict telecommunication laws may make you vulnerable to serious financial penalty if your use of the predictive dialer is considered abuse under the TCPA.
Predictive dialing is most practical when your call list is made of leads that have already expressed interest in being contacted about your products or services, or the purpose of your call is to deliver alerts or appointment reminders. Predictive dialing should only be used when you have at least 10 agents in a queue.
Note: Abusing predictive dialing by calling unsolicited numbers, generating random numbers, or delivering mass automated messages without prior contact to a number can be subject to legal recourse and financial penalty. AVOXI recommends using Power (Reverse) Dialing to help ensure you are using the auto dialer in compliance with the TCPA.
Power (Reverse) Dialing, the most popular dialing mode with the AVOXI customers, cuts back on agent idle time while also ensuring that there is always an agent ready when a customer answers their phone. If you have CRM integration with customer information, you may also use Preview (Reverse Preview) Dialing to display customer information to an agent before the customer answers the call, giving the agents a better idea of who they are connecting and their history with the company.
Though Power Dialing will not blast through call lists as quickly as Predictive Dialing, it is the recommended dialing mode for the majority of campaigns as it increases agent efficiency while also minimizing the risk of financial penalty.
Maintain Quality Call Lists
A high-quality call list is as good as gold when it comes to successful outbound campaigns. Call lists that are too small, or too crowded with unqualified leads, waste your agents’ valuable time and cost you money.
Your call lists should be updated constantly, removing unproductive numbers and adding new ones. Keep in mind that a clean database is directly linked to the effectiveness of your outbound campaign.
Use Call Scripts
When using an automatic dialer, agents will be quickly transitioning from one call to another. Though this can increase efficiency, it can be overwhelming for your agents if they do not have a call process for communicating with the customers they connect with.
Call scripting makes it easy for your agents to communicate effectively with a variety of customers and is useful for maintaining call quality standards for your customers. You don’t necessarily have to enforce a word-for-word script for your agents, but it is always helpful for them to have a reference point during fast-paced outbound campaign times.
Set Specific Campaign Parameters
You want to make the majority of your calls when your customers are most likely to answer. Be thoughtful about the type of customers on your campaigns call list and set your call parameters accordingly. Some examples could include:
• People are generally harder to reach during the weekend or after normal business hours.
• If the majority of your call lists are made up of business professionals working in an office, they may be harder to reach on Monday mornings as this is a common time for weekly meetings.
• During many months of the year, parents are less likely to answer at their home in the early part of the morning or mid-afternoons as they take their kids to and from school
Pro Tip: Make sure you are aware of what time zones most the numbers in your call list belong and schedule your campaign hours accordingly. Setting a campaign rule to automatically retry numbers that don’t connect the same day is common, but make sure your follow up calls don’t occur at inappropriate hours of the day.
Keep Agent Desktops Clear of Distractions
The purpose of an automatic dialer is to cut down on an agent’s idle time. Maintaining an organized work area helps maximize this benefit by eliminating distractions. This includes removing or silencing unnecessary alerts, such as messaging apps on the computer and personal cell phones. In a contact center with many agents, little distractions quickly add up to a great deal of lost talk time, and by extension lost revenue potential.
Learn More: Automatic Dialers
Have more questions about automatic dialer best practices, or want to learn more about how auto dialers work? Contact an AVOXI VoIP specialist, or explore the related articles below: