Predictive Dialer Featured Article

Ready to Start the Campaign?



Ready to Start the Campaign? The most important skill may just be, relaxing.
 
Everyone who has ever owned a phone answering machine knows that practice makes perfect. And SpitFire from OPC has built-in tools that make the recording process fairly straight forward and simple. For example, recording your sales message for use with your Predictive Dialer is a lot like doing a PodCast. The difference being that PodCasting is distributed when a user connects with a computer, your message is received whenever someone picks up the telephone.
 
Predictive Dialer voice broadcasting has been around a lot longer than any PodCast. Your Predictive Dialer will report your call statistics to you. Though your web server may tell you how many people downloaded your PodCast, you’ll never know how many people actually listened to it. Sort of like the sign at Mickey D’s--- "18 Billion served"-- but how many were actually eaten?
 
If you’re using OPC’s SpitFire Predictive Dialer, it has ListMaker’s built-in recording software code “WaveMaker” or if you prefer another type of high-end sound recording software, you may use SoundForge either way the basics will still be the same. You will record a message then move it into the Predictive Dialer.
A microphone is the very first device in the recording or sound reinforcement chain.
Its role in the capture of real-world, acoustic sounds are critical - without a properly placed and suitably chosen mic, no amount of professional equipment hanging off the back of it can improve an inadequate sound file. It is also important to remember that microphone design approaches vary widely, so the sound produced can also vary.
 
Purchase a microphone suited to the type of recording you will be doing, or get a combination microphone headset probably worn by agents in your call center.
 
Polar response patterns, a microphone's sensitivity to sound approaching the microphone from various angles, varies as well-- so selection and placement of a microphone for the desired sound becomes both an art and a technical exercise.
 
And don’t forget to add a good quality microphone stand, one that won’t shake and transfer noise through the stand from your desk--Best to talk to your musician friends for advice on a microphone or see if you can pick somebody’s brain at the local guitar shop or Starbuck’s for a solution.
 
It doesn’t have to be expensive to sound great. So before purchasing a microphone it is worth trying out several types.
 
A mic that makes one agent sound great can make another flat, distorted and in a tunnel, it can also be due to the microphone response. Most music stores carry several microphones to cater to all types of voices and room types' asking for advice may solve a few clarity problems and even provide an opportunity to try some out.
 
The local electronics chain may have a few, but they are usually in plastic formed containers and you may have to settle for one or go back and forth until you find a good one---Stay away from the $5 special, when dialing thousands of numbers.
 
Make sure the microphone has a durable Gold Plated 1/8 inch (3.5 mm) mini-stereo plug; this will make it easy to connect to SpitFire’s sound card. USB microphone headsets are also compatible with SpitFire.
 
You don’t need a $40,000 sound recording setup; SpitFire uses the most basic .wav file format, one that’s been around for some time.
 
The most important objective of your sound recording process is 'you'.
If you are selling to someone in California, do a little research on the type of vocabulary and accents being used there. Calling people within your own community is the best place to start. There is nothing worse than a robotic coined pitch, you should record as though you’re talking to your best friend, that sincerity will shine through and you will notice much higher response rates.
 
Observe TV Commercials, take notes, fire up the TiVo or the old VHS player and record a few commercials to see how others produce their audio. Make a few different versions of your message; test it out on co-workers, the spouse and the neighbors. There is no right or no wrong way to do it. I use a personal handheld recorder to take notes with, when ever I’m somewhere and hear a great audio recording of a sales message I whip out the recorder and take audio notes, or dictate my thoughts into it.
 
Some models of the Apple (News - Alert) iPod allow you to attach a microphone to the top and do voice notes or interviews like Griffin's iTalk iPod Voice Recorder. In my opinon it’s ok as a note taker, background noise could be less but some people are getting by with it doing podcasts.
 
Soon you will become addicted to doing your own recordings.
 
Save some of those great email sales messages you get online and use it for ideas on how to improve your sales message.
 
There will never be any perfect place to do the recordings, just software to help you correct it. When ever you are going to record make sure you can keep distracting ambient noise from affecting your recordings. SoundForge does an excellent job by having many tools to clean out the background noises like air conditioners, heaters, phones ringing and doors opening.
 
Test your campaigns messages by having SpitFire practice call your own numbers both on your regular land lines and cell phones. You may need to adjust your recording by using a technique called “Normalization”. This smoothes out the loudest and the softest parts of the recording so that when it’s broadcasted through the telephone line there is little or no distortion. Otherwise it may sound a little like its coming out of a can. You’ll know what to do once you practice a few times.
 
Sound recording programs allow you to cut and paste wave files together. You may need to record just one sentence at a time. It maybe easier to breathe, swallow and get ready to pronounce the next sentence using this method. Once you have assembled the individual recordings make sure you use your pro software to clip the sentences with no long gaps in between them. Also, you can adjust the sound to zero volume at the beginning and end making it easier to assemble, no one will know but you that you recorded the sentences separately.
 
If you’re too chicken to do the recording yourself, get someone else to do it. You may also do a formal written script for your voice over actor, or just jot some notes down and have him or her ad-lib it.
 
The great thing about software like WaveMaker is just have fun with it, take as many takes as needed to get it right. Save as many as you need-- cut out the bad stuff-- lower the volume on fumbles, and then test out the campaign. The best campaigns will sound like your best friend is leaving you a friendly warm message.
 
You will need to produce several other messages besides the main campaign one. Luckily most of these other recordings can be reused over for other Campaigns in the future.
 
Ready to Start the Campaign? Remember the most important skill may just be, relaxing.
 
If you have ever owned a phone answering machine you know that practice makes perfect when making a sound recording. I doubt anyone has ever got a perfect recording on the first try.
 
SpitFire's built-in tools make the recording process fairly straight forward and simple. The WaveMaker Software package includes software that makes it simple to record and edit basic audio content, then save it to .wav files for loading into your Predictive Dialer or AutoDialer.
 
OPC-Marketing also has professional in house recording and scripting. You may want to hire a professional voice talent to get started. This way you’ll see the length of the messages, the number of messages for a campaign, the type of Voice used and inflections (alterations in pitch or tone of the voice).
 
Lastly, relax and talk to me like I’m your best friend.
 
 

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What Are Related Definitions You Should Know?

Related definitions that you should know as you increase your understanding of predictive dialers include:

Dialer: generic term for any computer-driven device that places outbound calls and connects the answered calls to an agent or operator.

Agent: telephone professional to whom a predictive dialer sends the ready call.

Predictive Dialer: Predictive dialing was introduced for the purpose of increasing efficiency within calling centers. They are computer based system that automatically dial groups of telephone numbers, and then passes live calls to available agents. The SpitFire Enterprise dialer utilizes sophisticated algorithms to speed up and slow down the call rate based on, number of available agents, number of available lines, the campaign’s average call time and other statistical information.

Quick Connect: Quick Connect allows your agents to log in one-to-one with a phone line. This option is great for B2B purposes, especially when your agent needs to be on the phone line through the entire call.

Fixed Dialing: Fixed Dialing gives your call center manager the power to manually set the volume of calls. The software will then automatically dial a predetermined number of lines per agent. Fixed dialing is ideal for political campaigns, charity campaigns, and other situations drop call ratios are not a factor.

Auto dialer: makes thousands of calls screening for busy signals, no answers, fax machines while detecting answering machines/voicemail and delivers pre-recorded messages. SpitFireX Auto Dialer is a low cost solution for voice broadcasting.

How Do Predictive Dialers Work?

Predictive dialers use complex mathematical algorithms that calculate, in real time:

  1. the number of available agents
  2. the number of phone lines available
  3. the probability of reaching a human being at a specific number
  4. the time between calls required for optimum agent efficiency
  5. the length of typical agent/customer or
    debtor conversations
  6. the average length of time agents require to wrap up after a call

SpitFire Enterprise Predictive SEP is a fully blended call center solution that supports unlimited lines, agents, and campaigns. Its greatest strength is in its flexibility: multiple campaigns can be set up, viewed, and changed with the click of a button. With easy options for customization, data and dispositions can be catered to each campaign. In addition to our user-friendly interface, SEPhighlights full customer data and combines multiple campaigns on one screen. All the information your agents need is accessible at a glance, freeing their energy to focus on what matters: the calls.

Keep It Simple with SpitFire Fully Integrated Call Center Software

Our greatest priority is making your call center run smoothly, and we do that by developing software that is intuitive and easily integrated with your current systems. SEP works seamlessly with most CRM applications and long distance carriers, making it the simplest and most cost-effective solution for your call center.

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Benefits of Using a Predictive Dialer

  1. Manages the process of dialing tens of thousands of calls or tens of millions of calls in its lifetime.
  2. Detects the result of the call, as an example: no answer, busy, fax, bad number, answering machine without any presence of human expertise. Consequently saving time by only transferring calls which are voice connects to the agents locally or remotely.
  3. Using predictive dialer increases the productivity of the company by drastically increasing the time agents spend on the phone talking to actual customers or prospective clients.
  4. Predictive dialer users get the ability to organize and better manage the client information, no lost notes scribbled on pieces of paper. The database used by the dialer organizes the calling structure.
  5. The most significant task done by the predictive dialer is to predict, which means always making an effort to get a live call to the available agent with the shortest amount of wait time. This is achieved by self learning algorithms within the predictive dialer to increase or decrease the dial ratio per agent, logged into the system.
  6. Inbound call can be better dealt with by allowing the customers to wait on hold in an IVR system, or a way to leave a message they'd like a callback while the agent is busy talking with other customers.
  7. Most important benefit of a predictive dialer is it reduces expenses for your company over a period of time since you do not need to buy and deploy a complex and sometimes extremely expensive PBX system. Your company will experience return of investment (ROI) in a period of six to twelve months.
  8. A predictive dialing system can effortlessly fit into your companies existing infrastructure since it is software controlled.
  9. The call routing logic and the contact management is all included in one software package. Your call routing logic implemented as per your specifications. Since it is a software package it can easily be upgraded even if you are located remotely with the help of internet.
  10. Provides an added cost effective method of managing the client database by giving the user of the predictive system ability to rework your database on previous call results.

    Example:
    1. only redial records which were busy, no answers and answering machines
    2. Delete records which are bad numbers, disconnected numbers or operator intercepts
  11. Do a real time look up against the do not call database saving the predictive dialer user from accidentally calling people who have enrolled in the do National not call registry. This saves the company from lawsuits and others risks conforming to all legal statutes and FCC complaints.
  12. Provides progressive dialing capabilities like call blending which means handling inbound and outbound call at the same time.
  13. Provides ability to integrate call recording devices and call monitoring interfaces which helps call center supervisors to train agents and users and improve their customer support skills.
  14. Easy to setup and learn the predictive dialer logic and software tools.

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