Inside sales struggle to improve their prospect connect scores, since these are existingly been used as metrics to study rep performance. But does merely getting connected with your prospect cut it? Inside sales reps should focus on connecting with the right decision maker of the account, than wrestling in a maze with infinite call transfers to finally get lost in the voicemail abyss.
Using low quality prospect lists to carry out phone based inside sales campaigns can be a major productivity killer. Simply connecting with random name from the list is not real connectivity if the that person is not the right person to target. It’s critical that inside sales reps have all the basic groundwork done and dusted before starting a campaign. Going into a call armed with information makes a world of difference from working off more qualified information which increases the odds in your favor.
Here are a few ways that can improve your odds in connecting with your prospect:-
Get Direct Phone Line Extensions of Decision Makers:
This might seem as a herculean task to perform, since decision makers of organizations are very discreet on how they disclose contact information. But with a few tricks up your sleeve, you just might be able to get your hands on them.
Bypassing the gatekeeper is the major advantage in getting direct phone lines, and it can be done with the help of Sales Intelligence tools (paid data sources), and there is one trick Steve Richards of Vorsight follows, where you can punch in **6 when you reach a voicemail. It says “enter last name, followed by pound sign.” Put in the last name and it spits the extension number at you. Now that you have that magic 10 digit direct dial number, once we dial that, we have a much high probability of having a live conversation with the senior executive.
Identify the Best Time to Call:
Sort your account data by location and time-zones, and identify the best time and day of week to call prospects. Inside sales reps are required to know when to reach their prospects, as to best suit their time window of convenience. Studies have shown that contact rates from 4 to 6 pm are higher than other time windows. Wednesdays and Thursdays have proved to be more favorable to sales reps than any other day.
Build Targeted Prospect List:
While building lists, identify target decision makers based on job profiles and responsibilities rather than by titles. This will ensure that you are connecting with the right person in the company and won’t have to spend time navigating trying to find the right person to speak to. Try to gather account intelligence on the target prospects on previous interactions made by people from the same company. Leveraging references can help you in passing through gatekeepers.
Identify Alternate Decision Makers/Contacts:
Try to gather information on alternate decision makers in the account, especially if you are working on large accounts, where there would be multiple decision makers. Having access to such information, will provide you with a Plan B for an alternate path into the same company. Even by adding influencers to the account will help you in getting “hard to reach” decision makers.
Mask Caller IDs to Local IDs:
How many times have you answered a call from “a blocked number”, “an international number”, and “a toll-free number”. The senior executives would also go through the same thoughts. These numbers are red flagged, and the chances of decision makers answering such calls are really slim. A local caller ID on the other hand has shown to be 17% to 193% more effective in getting people answer. With a Local Presence Dialer like Local Connect, reps are able to mask the original caller ID with a local caller ID, which has proved to increase connect rates dramatically.
While it is impossible to guarantee that your prospects will answer your calls, it is important to ensure that all factors that can be controlled are set up to the best possible level.