4 Steps to Optimise Your Post Enquiry Call Process
Sharing the secret sauce…
Did you know that Social Garden offers a call concierge service for customers and has 10 full-time agents based in Melbourne?
Our team of call concierge agents has hustled hard over the years to perfect the secret sauce to maximise conversion on that first call when a new lead comes in, and being the nice people we are, we wanted to share some of these tips with you.
In this article we will cover four key optimisations to make to your own sales process run like the well-oiled conversion machine it can be, covering:
- Conversion Optimisation
- Integrations & Documentation
- Process & Framework
- Scripting & Language
The quick win to optimise conversion.
If you take only one thing from this article let it be this… speed to call is the biggest lever you can pull to increase your conversion rate on a new enquiry.
Your leads can be broadly broken down to two channels: direct sales enquiries and marketing generated enquiries. Both channels are going to deliver some really high intent leads ready to buy now, as well as some leads that may not convert into sales for over six months, and so there are some key guidelines to follow to allow you to establish priorities and optimise your conversion across the board.
Direct Sales Enquiries
If you receive a direct sales enquiry, most likely through your own website, no time is too soon to call that lead back… and you definitely want to do this within an hour of the lead coming through. Even better… do it within 30 minutes.
If you’re working through a backlog of leads through you are better off prioritising leads that have come through most recently. Your fresh leads will be in the right mindset to have a conversation with your sales team, and are more likely at that moment in time to answer your call. It is worth taking the risk on the decaying leads, as the payoff in calling your fresh leads quickly is far greater.
Marketing Generated Enquiries
If a prospect has been generated through advertising, it is likely that they have taken part in a “Value Exchange,” whereby they have supplied personal details in exchange for a project or product brochure or similar. In this case, you need to give them a short window of time to review the information downloaded.
Our data from over 100,000 calls shows that the ‘sweet spot’ is making the first call between 20-40 minutes. This gives the prospect enough time to digest the information they have requested, and is soon enough to ensure that your brand is still front of mind
In both of the above scenarios remember this: when a prospect enters your CRM, you can guarantee that they have also landed in the CRM of at least a handful of your competitors. You’re in a race to connect with, qualify and build rapport with the lead… now is not the time to lose your competitive edge.
Sort out your setup.
So, if speed to call is a defining factor of success you need to ensure that your tech stack, KPIs and internal processes are set up to allow your sales team to action that first call quickly and efficiently.
First things first… Integrations
When transitioning a lead through from an online enquiry to an offline phone call, you need to know with confidence that the lead is hitting your CRM efficiently and instantly. As a business you want to ask yourself:
- How long does it take a new online lead to enter your CRM?
- Are sales alerts set up to notify your sales team when a new lead is assigned to them?
- Would it make more sense to have SMS notifications in place for your team?
- Are their CRM processes in place to monitor the speed to first call on a new lead? And do you have reporting in place to manage this?
It is worth remembering that each audience group is going to respond slightly differently through this process – and you need to find the magic formula for your own customer and product. This is where you want to let data lead your processes (for those more familiar with the Garden, you’ll know that we let data drive EVERYTHING!).
As a business, you want to be recording:
- Time to first contact
- The volume of call attempts made against each lead
- Average talk time by channel, agent and call outcome
- Connection rate by channel and audience segment
- Conversion rate by agent, channel and audience segment
- Downstream sales conversion (this can be done retrospectively at the end of each month)
By aggregating this data, you’ll find the sweet spot in the number of call attempts required, and optimum speed to call for your own customers.
Once this documentation is established you should seriously consider including speed to call alongside conversion as a KPI.
Establish a framework… and follow it.
Consistency is king when it comes to understanding your data and isolating the weaknesses in your call conversion. Once you’ve made that first call attempt, if you haven’t managed to connect with the prospect have a plan in place to increase your chances of connection over the next 48 hours.
Do you have a typically younger audience for your product or service? If so, try following the first call attempt with an SMS to introduce yourself.
Your second call attempt should be made later in the same day that the enquiry came through. If your initial call attempt was in the evening, try giving the prospect a second call first thing the following morning.
Do you have a high income professional audience? Why not try calling on the hour, when there is a higher chance they will be between meetings. Or if possible, earlier in the morning – you want to catch them just before the working day starts.
No answer on the 2nd attempt? Give it one more go… you want to be careful not to come across as too pushy and give the prospect a negative perception of your brand. This 3rd attempt ideally should be made at the same time that the initial enquiry came through – if they enquired with you at 5pm, it’s likely that this is a good time for them to be thinking about and discussing your product.
And if you’ve had no success after 3 call attempts, leave a friendly voicemail to explain who you are and why you’re getting in touch with them. Perhaps set yourself a reminder to try again in 3-5 days time.
Have the right conversations.
It is important to understand the channel that your new leads are coming from. If they have submitted an appointment request you can take a very different approach to someone who has entered the CRM through your marketing activity.
Let’s focus here on marketing generated leads.
People don’t want to be sold to and they don’t want to be surveyed!
If you have lead generation activity running through social channels and Google, it is likely that these leads have either enquired on a “Find Out More” CTA or have left their details in exchange for a product or project brochure. In their mind they have not made a “sales enquiry” – they’re just interested in learning more about your product and if it will be the right fit for them.
Through this call you have four key goals:
- Support the prospect by identifying their wants and needs to help guide them towards the right product (yours).
- Profile the lead to understand what type of buyer they are, what type of product they are looking for and what budget they’re working to.
- Qualify the lead to understand their level of intent (and how you should prioritise them).
- Book the next step in the sales process… either a direct conversion with your sales team or a display suite appointment.
How you can tailor your language to support these goals:
- Avoid language like “following up on your sales enquiry” instead, you’re calling “to find out what you’re looking for, and if we can find the right fit for you”
- Find out their goals and why – you want to identify the underlying emotional triggers and how your product can solve this
- Don’t survey the lead… you need to earn the right to ask them questions by building rapport
- Once you have earned that right, and only then, make sure you’re asking intent based questions – what is their land status/timeline to purchase/do they need help with finance or are their finances in place?
- Sell the benefit of the next step… what would they get out of a visit to the display suite? What value can you offer them through the sales experience?
Now go get ‘em!
By refining these four key steps to success, you’ll not only avoid wastage of your precious marketing budget, but you’ll also find yourself having rewarding and enjoyable conversations with prospects and ultimately a greater conversion rate to sale.
If you would rather outsource the call qualification process, the team at Social Garden are here for you – our call centre service can easily bolt on to your lead generation campaigns, just get in touch here!