Perfecting Service Management

Issue #91

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Join Craig Bailey for Seminar in Malaysia
If you are considering embarking on the journey to becoming customer centric, join Customer Centricity president Craig Bailey as he delivers a 2-day seminar entitled Customer Centricity - Leveraging the Voice of the Customer to Maximize Business Results on 17-18 April, 2006, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The seminar, organized in conjunction with Global Intelligence Networks, will cover strategic and tactical approaches to becoming customer centric. Stay tuned for more details.

Is There a Governor on Your Telemarketing Program?
by Craig Bailey

In this article, we complete the discussion of "governors" – limiting factors – on Telemarketing programs. In our previous issue, we explored governors in the areas of Product/Market and People/Structure. We finish here looking at the categories of Process and Technology.

Process

Limiting factor: Measuring what you don't want

We've all heard the phrase: "You get what you measure." The bottom-line metrics for a Telemarketing Program include:

·  Number of qualified leads generated

·  Sales Accept / reject ratio

·  Revenue contribution

·  Profiling and nurturing effectiveness

Measuring things such as number of dials per day and talk time are NOT conducive to generating the kinds of behaviors you'd want to experience.

Limiting factor: Leads passed into the dark abyss

One of the most frustrating and demoralizing scenarios for a Telemarketing rep is to invest a great deal of time and energy in developing a relationship with a prospect, handing the lead off to Sales and not knowing what happened. Did I route the lead to the appropriate contact? Did the opportunity close? Did I provide the information necessary to facilitate closing the deal? How much revenue was generated? In a nutshell, how did I contribute to the company's success? And, in what ways could I improve on a go-forward basis?

To address this, you need to have in place a closed loop lead management process which is bolstered by technology (a subject we will address later in this article). Key aspects of a lead management process include:

  • Clear, objective definition of what a hot, warm or cold lead is.
  • Routing rules – who (what organization) to send the lead to and under what circumstances.
  • Feedback loop where the receiving party confirms receipt, provides closure (lost opportunity, converted to pipeline and/or customer, revenue generated, etc.) and indicates what worked and opportunities for improvement.

Technology

Limiting factor: Technology that causes reps to perform unnatural acts

Technology is covered last in this article for good reason. Until ALL of the above items are addressed, you should not think about technology. That is, technology is an enabler to facilitate streamlining of your business practices. Too often we see technology thrown into the business before the above items are worked out. This results in Telemarketing reps:

  • Writing down notes on paper (forms or a blank sheet) during the call. Then, when the call is over updating "their" system.
  • Using multiple systems to manage their leads.

To be clear, we are not suggesting that you need to spend millions of dollars on a new CRM system. In fact, you've probably already invested in one that isn't providing the bang for the buck you desire. What we are suggesting is that you clearly nail down your business practices and THEN AND ONLY THEN will you have the basis to define clear requirements for automation.

Limiting factor: Lack of central repository integrated with rest of the organization

Building on the above, not only do you want reps to leverage technology that facilitates the defined process, but you also want them connected with the rest of the organization. Has this ever happened to one of your Telemarketing reps…They call on a prospect in their database and after a few minutes of dialog they learn that your company has already provided a proposal that is on its third round of revision (pencil sharpening) and the prospect is visiting your HQ office tomorrow? It takes an expert Telemarketing rep to recover from that one without blowing the entire deal. This scenario should NEVER happen, and can easily be prevented.

In Closing

Is your firm happy with the revenue it is achieving? Does your Sales team consistently exceed quota? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then you should ensure that a governor remains on your Telemarketing program. For most companies this is simply not the case.

If you suspect there are governing factors on your Telemarketing Program, give us a call. We'd be happy to discuss our Assessment methodology which provides our customers a pragmatic road-map to create a finely tuned lead generation machine. In fact, our assessments typically result in providing this extremely valuable input within 10-15 days of "go." So, what are you waiting for?

Contents

+ Telemarketing Governor
+ Recommended Reading
 


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Read Full Article in CRM Today
The complete article Is there a Governor on your Telemarketing Program? by Craig Bailey has been published in CRM Today magazine. Go ahead and check it out!

Recommended Reading
Building on the importance of a closed loop lead management process, discussed in this issue's lead article Is there a Governor on your Telemarketing Program, we recommend CRM Magazine article When a Lead Isn't a Lead and What to Do About It by Dan McDade. The article presents a lead management framework that stresses lead quality rather than quantity, thereby allowing sales to focus its efforts on high-value prospects.


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