While sales organizations have used dialing solutions for making outbound calls for years, some have been more effective at it than others. Solutions such as SpitFire Enterprise Predictive (SEP) offer the ability to begin a sales campaign with a pre-loaded list of numbers, quickly and automatically placing outbound calls and connecting the answered calls to available sales personnel. SEP monitors the call volume and time per call, intelligently adjusting its dial rate to minimize the time sales personnel spend waiting between conversations.
While using a dialer is a great idea – it allows salespeople to connect with more prospects per hour than manual dialing – it simply can’t be done in a vacuum for “dumb” cold-calling. Untargeted outbound calling will annoy prospects and generally waste a sales team’s time and a sales organization’s money.
For many companies, the combination of dialer technology and a properly designed customer relationship management (CRM) solution is the magic combination. By allowing a salesperson to collect, examine and absorb all possible information about a customer in advance of the dialed call, he or she is better prepared to present a sales pitch that will appeal to the prospect’s unique needs, raising the possibility that the call will ultimately result in a sale.
It’s critical to use outbound dialing and CRM together in the right way, however. CRM is not created equal, and many companies seeking to boost the success of their outbound campaigns are simply collecting the wrong information, according to sales expert Lisa Earle McLeod, writing recently for Forbes. The problem many companies have without an outbound campaign supported by CRM is that they focus on the wrong thing.
“They [sales organizations] tell salespeople to focus on the customer. Yet the CRM focused more on internal metrics and pipeline management,” writes McLeod, who notes that too many companies collect information in the CRM database that’s valuable to the company internally and not focused on the customer.
McLeod presents a hypothetical scenario:
“If you were the customer, which screen would you rather have a salesperson looking at before making a sales call on you? Who would you rather do business with, Salesperson A, who shows up thinking about his quota? Or Salesperson B, who is thinking about what matters to you, the customer?”
When beginning a targeted outbound campaign using a dialer, it’s critical to ensure that there is CRM integration with the dialing solution. But to truly boost the effectiveness of the campaign and not waste the functionality of the dialer, sales organizations should make sure that personnel are looking at the right information before the dialing begins.
Edited by Blaise McNamee