Voicemail: the Bane of Business Growth
Three Problems with Voicemail and the Seven Features to Boost Revenue.
Finding the right person to call can be time consuming. After wading through transfers, and "you need to call this number", you finally are at the right person and get… voicemail.
Of all calls that go to voicemail, how many lead to sales? A more pointed question: Of all the callers that failed to leave a message, how many of those lead to a sale. The answer is very likely – none.
The e-commerce industry wrestles with this concept. They call it shopping cart abandonment and the industry averages for abandoned carts range from 59.8% to 83%. In other words, most carts that are started do not end in a credit card being charged.
How much of your budget are your spending on acquiring new customers? Between Adwords, direct mail, radio and the time to keep up in social media, this can be a major investment.
Are you doing enough to ensure the calls that are being generated, end up as new customers?
Voicemail: The Bane of Business Growth.
Voicemail has three problems. By the time it takes to return a call:
- The caller may have gotten this answer elsewhere;
- The caller may no longer be interested; or
- A message may not have been left.
Faith Popcorn wrote her 1992 book The Popcorn Report coined the phrase cocooning. This is the trend for our society to build fortresses around ourselves and keep outside out. Its also what keeps people from answering the phone. In Popcorn’s book, trust is what breaks through the cocoon and initiates conversation.
Auto Attendants can help build trust on the initial call by presenting a strongly branded introduction that reinforces the message of your marketing efforts and allows callers calls to be answered on as many phones as are available.
Must Have Phone System Features for Inbound Sales Teams
If your phone system is a tool of your sales team and source to generate revenue, there are 7 features that are essential.
- Direct Inward Dial Number (DID). A sales DID is a unique phone number dedicated for your marketing and advertising efforts. It allows callers to be immediately directed to a branded message and then the sales team, who are equipped to handle the call.
- Multiple Auto Attendants. An Auto Attendant is the recorded greeting that says "Hello and welcome to Helia. Press 1 for Sales; 2 for…." Older phone systems allow for only one of these and that will be used for your main office number. Invest in a system that allows for multiple auto attendants and create one for each product line or marketing campaign.
- Automatic Call Distribution (ACD). This is a feature that until recently was available on call center phone systems. It allows sales people to remove themselves from receiving calls when not appropriate. The most important part is that ACD give you call statistics like abandoned calls, average call time, and hold times.
- Ring Groups with mobile. This is our favorite feature to implement. Ring groups allow us to send sales phone calls to the the entire sales team at once. The first person to answer the call, gets the call. If your phone system has a mobility option, these calls can be sent to the cell phones of your sales team as well. This way, they have the the opportunity to take the call while out of the office.
- Call Recording. Sales calls should all be recorded. For the cost of generating these calls and acquiring new customers, its essential that the calls are handling appropriately. Your sales manager can review the call and help improve objection handling and closing ratio.
- Voicemail-to-email. Forbid that a sales call should ever go to voicemail. If it does, its essential that its returned promptly. When a message is left, Voicemail-to-email sends an email out immediately that includes the message so that the call can be returned while the caller is still engaged.
- Real Time Intelligence. This is caller-id on growth hormones. Why rely on caller-id, when your phone system can pull LinkedIn, Facebook and contact list profiles. Be ready for the call with all the information you have available.
If you don’t have these features implemented, you’re loosing sales and revenue. Helia can help. We provide both phone system consulting and phone system customizations for companies here in western Canada.
Call our Specialist. He can be reached at: