Promoting Power Dialer Love (and Predictive Dialer Hate)


As a vendor that specializes in dialer technology and software for sales teams, we get asked this question a lot—”Why won’t you sell / why are you biased against predictive dialers?”

The honest answer is that we don’t want to be part of the telemarketing crowd that calls you at dinner time and makes you say, “No, I don’t want that!” seven times before they finally hang up.

We want to work with professional inside sales people who happen to sell remotely, not telemarketers.  It’s a specific choice we made.

Our biggest source of clients is those who come to us looking for a predictive dialer software to call their business to consumer (B2C) leads.  The first question we ask them is, “How much are you paying for your leads and can you afford to burn many of them?”

They always say “I pay a lot. And no, of course not – I don’t want to burn them… what do you mean?”

Then we point them to the FCC web pages with legislation against predictive dialers and the high annoyance they have caused over the years that have resulted in laws being passed.  We show them that Predictive Dialers annoy and burn as many as 3% of their leads EVERY TIME THEY ARE CALLED.  If you multiply that by the 7 to 12 times it takes to call a lead before you make contact, they are probably annoying about 1/3 to 1/2 of their list over time!

We were going down the path many years ago to be the first to integrate a predictive dialer into our hosted lead management CRM solution but we decided not to.  We just plain didn’t want to be involved with that annoyance.  Life is too short.

The next question is, “Well, do you have at least 8 to 10 reps on the phone calling at the same time so a predictive dialer is effective?”

Most people don’t realize that this is the minimum requirement for predictive dialing to even work.

Predictive dialing software uses a computer algorithm to dial many more lines than you have callers in order to look for people who answer the calls just as a rep becomes available to take a call.  They guess, and some of the time they guess right.  But some of the time they guess wrong and the person answer the call and there isn’t a rep there waiting to talk to them.  The most galling of all is when a recording comes and says, “Please wait for the next available rep,” and you think, “Why should I wait for you, you called me?” And you hang up.  That is called an abandoned call.  If you are paying for leads then you can not afford for this to happen… ever!

It’s no fun.

The third question is, “Are you calling business or is your sale a complex sale that requires more than one call?” In other words, it is telesales or inside sales, not telemarketing with a one-call script.

Many are under the mistaken understanding that a predictive dialer will work for calling businesses.  Predictive dialers don’t work for businesses where you have to navigate a phone system or a receptionist.

We like making business-to-business (B2B), and more complex B2C situation calls, where we aren’t telemarketing reps calling at dinner time.

A power dialer lets the rep call one record at a time and never pauses, or makes a person wait.  It never abandons a call.  It doesn’t call blindly, it calls using the intelligence of the rep.

Then we chose to optimize the dialer as much as possible by providing all kinds of ‘power tools’ that were only a single click away for the rep to dramatically increase their productivity and lessen their hassles.  Things like the ability to leave a pre-recorded voicemail in your own voice, at the click of a button.  Or sending emails or faxes from a library of pre-defined templates without taking any time at all.

Sure, we don’t make quite as many calls as a predictive dialer, but our net results are better—much, much better.

That is why we hate predictive dialers and love power dialers for B2B and complex B2C sales situations.

Happy dialing!

Author: Ken Krogue |
Summary of Ken Krogue’s Forbes articles

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