Whether you acquire new customers via outbound telemarketing, inbound sales and customer support, direct mail, the Internet or other direct response channels, contact center excellence is the foundation of most direct response marketing and customer contact initiatives today. For a direct response campaign to succeed, everything has to click: effective direct mail pieces and DRTV ads must drive calls to a contact center that has the sales savvy, tools, training and quality assurance processes necessary to convert inquiries to new customers, and then support the new customer base with world-class inbound customer service.
What benefits exist for a company if their carefully designed mail pieces or DRTV ads drive inbound calls to a call center that lacks the sales savvy, tools, training or quality assurance processes necessary to convert those inquiries to sales? The sharpest marketers today know that their companies must elevate their ROI by assessing contact center interactions and agent performance, applying segmentation and other analytics to that information and developing more efficient sales and customer retention strategies.
Finding a true direct response process outsourcing partner such as 1 2 1 Direct Response is critical to the success of marketing campaigns. Such a partner enables the sharpest marketers to elevate the return on marketing dollars invested by taking information gathered through contact center interactions and applying segmentation and other analytics to that information to develop more efficient sales and customer retention strategies.
1 2 1 Direct Response specializes in delivering the highest quality inbound and outbound contact center services, along with daily direct mail and fulfillment capabilities as well as response and database analytics that help clients understand what their customers want and how to get the most response out of their marketing investments.
Direct response marketers have been on the leading edge of the business process outsourcing (BPO) trend since the first mass direct mailers outsourced their printing processes. Many marketing organizations outsource discrete processes such as:
' Outbound telesales, research, renewal, cross-sell and upsell functions;
' Inbound sales and service center functions;
' Database building, management and analytics;
' Printing; and
' Letter, mail shop and literature fulfillment functions.
With increasing frequency, outsourcers are turning to organizations such as 1 2 1 Direct Response that have have leveraged all of the aforementioned complete arsenal of direct marketing processes to increase marketing return on investment. By allowing a full-service direct response services provider to deliver a suite of capabilities as a true marketing partner, the marketer benefits through increased marketing efficiencies.
A Case In Point
1 2 1 Direct Response has been providing contact center services to the cable industry for over 10 years. We help our cable clients acquire new customers, upsell and cross-sell new services to existing customers, collect delinquent payments and provide customer care support.
An industry leading cable services provider engaged 1 2 1 Direct Response to survey newly installed customers to determine satisfaction with the installation process, assist in the initial usage of the cable product and ensure that the client had received the proper user manuals and fulfillment materials. For those clients who needed additional fulfillment materials, 1 2 1 Direct Response was able to ship those packages the next day from its own mailing and fulfillment operations.
Our cable client determined that the survey and follow-up fulfillment process reduced customer churn so significantly that the results more than pay for the survey process.
Integrating Contact Center, Direct Mail And Analytical Solutions
To Get Results
Contact Center Excellence
1 2 1 Direct Response has been a contact center outsource services provider for nearly 20 years. By specializing in selling via the phone, 1 2 1 helps its clients raise funds, sell goods and services, service existing customers and reduce customer attrition. Whether via outbound, inbound, or blended agent contact, clients are assisted in accomplishing the following:
' Developing award-winning training programs;
' Hiring, motivating and retaining efficient and effective phone representatives;
' Implementing smart and efficient list management and dialing strategies;
' Designing and implementing advanced quality assurance policies and procedures;
' Providing teleservices compliance leadership and guidance; and
' Enjoying client service that goes beyond excellent by providing creative ideas for continual program improvement and creativity.
Direct Mail And Fulfillment Services
Many direct response marketing clients benefit from 1 2 1's ability to deliver daily mailing and fulfillment capabilities. This involves sending out sales confirmations, donation pledge fulfillment kits, literature, or other materials that were requested by customers during their phone contact with 1 2 1.
Creative Analytical Solutions
1 2 1 Direct Response helps its clients mine their prospect and customer files for more revenue by segmenting and analyzing their data files. With close to 20 years of direct marketing experience, 1 2 1 can test and analyze results, helping clients to uncover hidden opportunities, reduce customer churn, and cross-sell and upsell new products to existing customers.
Getting Marketing Results
For companies that require excellence in direct response results, whether that excellence is limited to finding the right contact center outsourcing partner or seeing the benefit of a partner that can enhance contact center activities with creative marketing analytics and direct mail fulfillment functions, 1 2 1 Direct Response guarantees that its performance will get the optimal results.
For more information, visit www.results.121directresponse.com/, 1 2 1 Direct Response’s TMCnet channel at www.tmcnet.com/channels/contact-center-services/ or the company’s Web site at www.121directresponse.com.
|Companies Offer Mediocre Customer Service At Their Own Peril
By Tracey E. Schelmetic, Editorial Director, Customer Inter@ction Solutions
A recent survey of 2,048 adults conducted by Harris Interactive indicated that 96 percent of Americans had had a bad customer service experience in the previous year. In terms of broad, anecdotal statistics, that's pretty much everybody. But it's just minor annoyance these customers are experiencing, isn't it? Just how bad is this bad customer service?
Forty percent of respondents indicated they would rather go to the dentist than experience a bad customer service session. (If this were an audio commentary, I'd cue the sound of an old-fashioned, low-speed dentist's drill right now.) That's bad. Additionally, 80 percent of respondents said they had stopped doing business with an organization because of a poor customer service experience.
Yet many companies continue to blithely offer the kind of slap-dash customer service and BPO processes that arise from trying to do it themselves. The Home Depot model may be great for yard work or re-grouting the bathroom tile, but when a company's very existence is on the line because of bad customer service, doing it yourself doesn't cut it.
The usage rates of outsourced customer care have waxed and waned over the years. When many companies fall on leaner times, the first thing many of these organizations do is try to 'save money' by bringing their call center and BPO functions in-house. This, of course, becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, and loss of customers is blamed on that initial business downturn, not the free-fall in the quality of customer service that results when these processes are taken out of professional hands and put into the hands of amateurs who do not count quality customer service provision and back-office efficiency as their core competencies.
During times of hardship, companies ought to be outsourcing more, and not less, to services providers. The kinds of efficiencies due to economies of scale, quality boosts and increased upsell and cross-sell skills that come from handing more processes to professionals is akin to the mysterious results that occur when you increase the amount taken out of your gross paycheck for your 401k plan and it actually boosts the amount of your take-home pay.
Otherwise, you're sending your customers out for unnecessary dental work...without novocaine. CIS
The author may be contacted at [email protected].