An excellent teleseminar by the Information Marketing Association (www.info-marketing.org) discussed their criteria for “Simple Ways to Get Better Results from Your Customer Phone Calls.” Here are the main points:
- There’s no substitute for training in “best practices” for customer phone calls.
- Identify the most frequently asked questions and have a script for each one of them. Consider putting together a workshop among your employees to help draft these questions and responses. Record either live or practiced phone calls for training purposes. If you do the former, make sure to have a notice on the phone call that it may be recorded. Recording equipment is relatively inexpensive: Get a $15 telephone adapter at RadioShack with a $35 Olympus recorder and you’re set.
- Record these scripts on a CD so that employees can listen to them.
- Create scripts for both inbound and outbound phone calls.
- Consider ancillary opportunities with phone calls: Obtaining testimonials, referrals, or upsells.
- Engage in “mystery shopping” to make sure that your employees are following the scripts they’ve been handed.