With thousands of calls handled daily, it can be challenging to manage an inbound or outbound call center. Most call center managers often have their hands full with little time to research new call center campaigns.
Despite this challenge, the demands for higher contact center performance continue to increase.
In 2020, success is defined as business results—not talk time. To prove your team’s value, you need to deliver more leads, more sales, and more revenue through the phone.
A campaign, in this sense, means a series of focused activities with defined milestones to improve sales or customer service.
For a sales-driven campaign, these strategies help your team generate significant results by following up with leads. For service-focused campaigns, use campaigns to focus on meeting customer satisfaction, revenue, or retention objectives.
In this guide, we’ve compiled the best campaigns to increase the performance of your call center. Let’s jump in.
- What is a Call Center Campaign?
- Outbound Call Center Campaigns
- Inbound Call Center Campaigns
What is a Call Center Campaign?
A call center campaign is an effort by your team to improve business results by proactively calling contacts or conducting an advertising blitz to drive calls. From there, you can segment the calls by region, prospect or customer type, or goal.
Businesses follow call center best practices to meet key business goals, such as qualifying prospects, closing more sales, or providing customer service.
Let’s say you do outbound sales calls for a local home improvement business.
A strategic call center campaign could be to focus on area codes with recent bad weather conditions. Strong winds can often cause roof damage, so residents in that area are more likely to need those services. Likewise, past customers would be valuable opportunities to gather referrals and be willing to author a friendly customer review.
Unlike regular call center operations, these campaigns have specific definitions for success, metrics, and a defined conclusion. Many call centers rely upon a remote office phone system to route calls to employees automatically.
Why Are Call Center Campaigns Important?
Most call center managers want to stay relevant to their clients. They like being innovative, data-driven, and proactive.
Not all call center agents share the same ambition. A bold, new call center campaign allows your agents to flourish and try different approaches to engage customers and leads. Crushing past goals is a powerful motivator for all employees.
Engaged call center employees are 850% more likely to stay than disengaged employees, according to research conducted by McKinsey & Co. Even better, they are more than three times as likely to resolve customer issues.
Above all, never lose sight of the human element to make each campaign and touchpoint successful.
“One thing that companies can’t lose sight of is the importance of the human element, which can be improved in areas such as call center services.”
Harley Manning, VP & Research Director at Forrester
Outbound Call Center Campaigns
Outbound calling campaigns tend to focus on selling to a segment of prospects or leads. You can narrow your lists using many factors. Some examples are location, economic status, previous interactions with your company, and more.
However, there is incredible value in conducting a customer outreach campaign to gather real, actionable feedback about the customer experience.
The best approach depends on the business goals and how well they line up with the capabilities of the team and infrastructure.
Best Practices for Outbound Call Center Campaigns
Once you’ve decided to run an outbound call center campaign, here are some best practices to keep in mind:
- Determine your objectives and make sure every staff member understands them.
- Audit leads and phone numbers to avoid wasting time, money, and effort.
- Track your call dispositions to make sure you’re meeting your goals on critical metrics.
- Maintain a cadence of reporting campaign performance for clients and stakeholders.
If you keep these tips in mind, you have a much better shot executing campaigns for your call center.
1) Outbound Cold Lead Outreach
Cold lead campaigns focus on outbound sales calls to cold prospects or leads.
Cold leads are people that have not had any previous interaction with your business. They don’t know who you are, but they do meet specific criteria and are within your target market.
While the method for cold lead generation varies, most companies buy phone numbers lists of likely prospects —people in a specific geographical area, with a specific job title, in a specific income bracket, etc. They might even be provided by conferences and tradeshows.
Before you start, make sure that your cold leads are of high quality. If your product’s target market consists of homeowners, consider validating the data with public property records. After all, calling renters will only waste time and money. Maintain these updated lead records within a sales pipeline CRM.
2) Outbound Warm Lead Qualification
Warm lead campaigns focus on qualifying warm prospects for potential sales opportunities. People who have already interacted with your marketing campaigns are considered warm leads. They may have subscribed to your blog, downloaded a report, or requested a product demo.
As a sales conversation, they should be aware of your brand and solutions. They may have outdated information about your products and services, and it’s possible their needs and budget have changed.
Review the lead’s interest and document new information they provide in your CRM, so your senior sales professionals are set up for success.
Instead of trying to close the sale, focus your call center campaign on confirming their contact info, needs, and identify any potential obstacles.
3) Outbound Customer Referrals
A customer referral campaign with a focus on existing, satisfied customers.
The goal is not to sell, but instead to gather an idea of your customer base’s impression of your products. Use the right customer satisfaction survey questions for more in-depth insight. This outbound campaign can reduce churn and escalate small issues before they harm the relationship.
A customer survey campaign can also be an opportunity to offer upgrades or try to upsell existing customers. A customer might let your agents know that they aren’t happy with their current plan or product. Plan ahead with scripts and specific deals to pitch.
With the right strategy, you can generate more referrals with even more potential upsell opportunities.
Inbound Call Center Campaigns
Inbound campaigns help you improve how your agents handle incoming calls. Instead of focusing on sales, most inbound campaigns concentrate on improving customer service. You can segment and focus on specific customer levels.
Best Practices for Inbound Call Center Campaigns
Inbound call centers operate differently than outbound ones. Since there is no dialing, you’re primarily dealing with existing customers.
- Use automatic call distribution, so each agent handles appropriate calls.
- Communicate the strategy to set your team up for success.
- Use your call center software to track call volume in real-time for workforce management.
- Show off campaign progress in the call center to motivate your employees.
By applying these best practices, your inbound campaigns will be more successful.
4) Customer Service Campaigns
Customer service campaigns focus on resolving inbound questions and concerns from customers. To help your agents serve customers effectively, classify different queues based on key segments of your customers.
You could focus on high-value customers who pay more or customers who have been with you for a long time. The longer a customer has been using your company, the more likely they will be willing to share their candid feedback.
The goal behind this call center campaign should always be to provide superior customer service. To achieve this, focus on these metrics:
- Low wait times
- First-call resolution rates
- Low abandon rates
- Customer satisfaction and retention
That’s the road to a happier customer. If sending automated surveys after each call, you can use these to measure the helpfulness of your call center.
5) Technical Support Campaigns
Unlike general customer service, tech support includes more complex scenarios. Instead of focusing only on surface-level metrics, work to improve underlying processes. The underlying call center infrastructure and call routing make a big difference.
Consider training your teams in a tiered fashion. This strategy improves the performance of your customer service team.
Tier one can handle most “how-to” and basic questions. The second tier can handle more sophisticated questions that require a higher degree of capability and skill.
Instead of measuring metrics like call time, first-time-resolutions is essential. If technical support is unable to fix your customer’s issues, your competitors will.
6) Inbound Sales Campaigns
Inbound sales campaigns focus on selling to interested buyers that call your company. If your company advertises on the radio, TV, or other mass media, you could experience spikes of response from prospects.
Most businesses advertise on Google by means of pay-per-click (PPC) advertising as part of their marketing campaigns. Many slap a phone number on there without further planning.
Using DNIS, you can track the phone number someone calls, so you can prioritize the call for live agents. This means you can close more deals and capture more of the market. It makes no sense to advertise your business phone number, but not track the response of the campaigns.
You need experienced sales agents operating the phones to achieve a healthy ROI. Plan an inbound sales campaign complete with scripts, special offers, and clear objectives. Consider additional training so your sales team can overcome objections and close the sale.
Inbound sales campaigns go hand in hand with most marketing campaigns. If you can’t close the interested buyers, the marketing and advertising dollars go to waste. An example of a great inbound sales campaign would be a telethon where a media blitz reaches people to pick up the phone to donate to a nonprofit.
Useful Call Center Software Features
Below, we’ve listed essential features that can help take your campaign to the next level. Unlike typical internet phone service, call center features are specifically crafted for higher volume activities. As you scale, your call center software scales with you.
- Automatic Call Distributor (ACD) – The ACD efficiently distributes calls to available agents. Smart routing policies make sure every call reaches the right agent.
- Call Forwarding – Call forwarding lets agents transfer calls with the click of a button. Seamless forwarding is vital if your call center relies on senior agents to close deals.
- Call Monitoring – Call monitoring allows experienced agents to monitor trainee calls. The caller cannot hear the monitor during the call.
- Call Recording – With call recording, you can keep a digital record of all phone conversations. It’s an excellent tool for training new staff and for quality control.
- Call Queue – Call queues let customers wait their turn, even if all agents are on calls. Even if all lines are busy, you don’t want to hit customers with the busy signal and force them to re-dial.
- Contact List – Digital contact lists make it easy for your reps to keep track of their calls. They help streamline the calling process and provide a reliable record for supervisors.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) – A CRM helps you keep track of all customer interactions. A reliable sales pipeline CRM is essential to succeed with follow-up.
- Dialed Number Identification Service (DNIS) – DNIS functions like reverse Caller ID, so your VoIP system can identify the number someone dialed to reach an agent. This is useful for tracking inbound calling campaign performance.
- Interactive Voice Response (IVR) -With IVR, callers can interact with your phone system through recordings and the dial pad. Set up your IVR to ensure incoming calls reach the right department.
What Is the Best Solution to Run Call Center Campaigns?
Don’t these call center campaigns inspire you to grow? No matter your layout, you can increase your performance. For a manager of a call center or a business leader, it can be stressful.
If your phone system is not easy to configure or to add agents, you might be ready to overhaul it. An efficient call campaign has the right infrastructure.
You need strong inbound capabilities. You need even better outbound calling capabilities. You despise slow and unreliable tools that slow your team down. Nextiva’s VoIP call center solution has all the features your contact center needs. Use it to take it to the next level.
See what Nextiva’s VoIP call center can do for you.
Joe Manna is a content marketing manager for Nextiva who obsesses over the Oxford comma, embraces the em dash, and thrives on authoring compelling content to drive people to take action. His expertise helps companies large and small attract traffic and convert more customers.