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Direct Response Marketers' Blog

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Are Call Centers Losing Relevance?

  
  
  
Click to Call example on iPhone

Over the past decade the distinction between the virtual world and the brick-and-mortar world has blurred. This convergence has impacted how we choose, decide, and influence. The advent of mobility and social media has significantly changed business and consumer dynamics. This has bred a new species of consumers that seek instant gratification at the time, place, and channel of their choice.

Recent survey shows 78 percent of consumers do extensive online research evaluating each and every aspect of a product before picking up the phone. Phone calls come in at a crucial juncture of the buying cycle, providing a single window of opportunity to businesses to influence consumer decision. A person's experience on the phone is going to dictate your relationship, not just with one customer, but a much larger customer base. With the advent of social media word spreads faster and wider.

Multiple Contact Channels
Smartphones are radically transforming consumer behavior. Due to 24-hour connectivity consumers are embracing newer contact channels such as live chats, virtual agents, and FAQs, besides voice interactions. However this doesn’t mean customers are choosing these new channels instead of voice. Despite technological advancement virtual assistance has several glitches with accuracy in interactive voice response; Siri being a case in point ("Did you say Renton?" "No! I said Redmond.").

Click-to-Call Promotes Live Interaction
Far from killing call centers, technological advancement promotes live interactions. With the advent of smartphones, click-to-call has become more accessible, directly connecting the customer to the business. Why visit multiple website pages to see how late the store is open or when the sale is ending? It’s easier to simply click the hyperlink to call the business and get your questions answered.

You can also track what a customer was looking at in your FAQs before they called your 1-800 numbers. A unique click-call-number after each FAQ can directly connect the customer to the right people in the right department. This can save consumers lengthy hold time, voicemail, and multiple transfers, offering great customer experience.

How Organizations Respond?
Technological innovations are not only empowering customers, but businesses too. Customers expect consistent experience across all channels and organizations that can deliver across these multiple platforms will succeed. Online communication is impersonal but a phone conversation gives you a better chance of closing. Technological advancement will help innovate but never eliminate the need for skilled agents. Technology will in fact enable customer service to be better, faster, and more efficient.
















At the Convergence of Call Centers, New Technology and Phone Agents

  
  
  
Google+ Debate Results: Will Technology Kill the Call Center?

Recently, our friends as Software Advice sent us this Google+ Debate:  'Will Technology Kill the Call Center?' for our response.  To watch the full debate, click on the video below or read on for our takeaways from these insightful panelists.  

Superior Customer Experience through Call Distribution Technology

  
  
  
Superior Customer Experience through Call Distribution Technology

With the increasing influence of social media, a new breed of highly empowered customers is dominating the market place. These customers can build or ruin your brand reputation with a single status update. Today “customer satisfaction” is no longer an option, it is a necessary goal for your business to achieve. 

Take Ownership & Get Paid for of All Your Phone Calls

  
  
  
Direct Marketers, What if your tracking number facility masked every caller phone number with a number of their own and immediately updated the masked number to ring to the caller?

Stopping leaks is a challenge, not only in oil rigs, but also in your call center! It is a well accepted fact by per inquiry agencies selling leads to call centers; their call centers will get some free leads in the course of doing business. Free leads are calls that are not billable, most likely, because the calls were very brief and under the minimum billable call duration.

Using Algorithms to Route Calls to Call Centers

  
  
  
Call routing algorithms allow direct direct response and per inquiry agencies to route calls to call centers based on profit.

Call routing algorithms are the bedrocks of call center business that set apart the men from the boys.  The algorithms have long sought out the best performing call centers and their individual agents to take available calls. A lot of variables and research go into building algorithms that route calls to those most likely to close the sale. Cost control and improved customer experience are the prime motivators.

Using the Same Tracking Number Across Multiple Stations

  
  
  
afford better voice talent by cutting less spots

Tracking number organization and reporting for national campaigns can be extremely tricky and a strain on resources. It gets overwhelming because of its sheer geo spread, giving you endless logistical nightmares.  Besides, there is serious risk of your budget spinning out of control.

Why Phone and Toll Free Numbers are Still in High Demand

  
  
  
communication effectiveness begins on the phone

Communication Effectiveness. 

When Callbutton started 13 years ago the internet was still at its infancy, but had already become a part of everyone's daily life. It was around this time internet marketing was also gaining prominence and online lead generation companies started playing an important role. We would pitch "call tracking" to online lead generation companies and get blank stares, or responses like, "We're online. People email our clients. No one wants to call." We would counter that objection with a trial, and time and again prove the much-established fact: "For every emailed lead, your clients get 2 phone leads.”

Does Your Business Need Vanity Numbers?

  
  
  

Do you plan to create a radio advertisement or television ad?  Great! True 800 numbers, vanity numbers, and repeater numbers will work for you. 

The Many Benefits of Call Recording

  
  
  
Benefits of Call Recording

Direct Response marketing is highly focused on immediate response that determines success of a campaign and subsequently the Return on Investment (ROI). So every opportunity to track, measure and improve a campaign at the earliest possible stage is crucial. Having readily accessible recordings of inbound customer calls is an important tool for Direct Response marketers to determine the effectiveness of a campaign. From the beginning test phases of a campaign all the way through to the winding down stages, call recordings offer tools for both increasing revenues and decreasing costs.

Does Your Business Own It's Toll Free Numbers?

  
  
  
Use a call tracking provider to ensure you own your toll free numbers

Consumption of toll-free numbers exploded in the early 90’s after the FCC ordered the implementation of toll-free number portability.  From the 1960’s until enactment of toll-free portability, “toll-free” was synonymous with “800” as 800 was the only toll-free area code available.  But the increased competition created by toll-free portability drove prices for both toll-free numbers and their usage down significantly.  Lower costs increased demand dramatically, and more toll free numbers than were available in one area code were needed.  Probably no one predicted that this demand would continue for the next 20 years, but it has.  Today 888, 877, 866, and the latest release 855, are all valid toll-free area codes.  These area codes have been released over time as the adoption and usage of toll-free numbers continues to expand for a variety of purposes.

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