The fastest way for a prospect to express an interest in a business’s offering is by picking up the phone and giving them a call. Most marketing collateral including the website display a phone number. Even effective lead generation avenues like Google Adwords have an option to include a phone number.
Data shows that inbound calls convert 10-15 times more than online leads. According to the recent Google reports, over 70% of users use the Click to call button. This makes inbound calls very crucial for any marketing strategy.
In this article, we’ll take a deep dive look at inbound calls as a lead generation channel and ways companies are utilising it. But first let’s look at the advantages of using phone numbers for inbound lead generation.
Phone numbers for Inbound Lead Generation
Apart from the fact that calls are one of the faster ways to reach out to a company; there are several other reasons why you should consider using a phone number as a CTA –
1. With mobile users on the rise, calls are a perfect way to connect with a business.
2. 76% of marketers want their marketing campaigns to drive more phone calls. Calls also help to uncover a lot of insights like :
- Top customer questions
- The conversations can be utilised for better messaging and buyer’s experience
4 Different ways you can use inbound calls for lead generation
Here are the different ways in which businesses use inbound calls for effective lead generation –
1. Website Lead Generation
I know it can be overwhelming for customers to reach a company for any product queries. While contact forms and a chatbot can get questions answered, a powerful way is to call the company directly.
It also helps in removing a lot of friction if otherwise. We’ve been using lead generation numbers on our website for the past three years now. And it has been crucial in getting some quality leads. Here are some learnings –
- Use automation to streamline the communication – Automation can greatly help in streamlining the conversations, especially when you’re short of resources.
- Make it personalized using IVR – Adding a greeting and an IVR helps in two things – providing a personalized experience and in understanding a few requirements upfront before assigning an agent.
- Click 2 Call – Make sure to add a click 2 call button on your website, especially on your mobile site. This makes it easier for customers to call you.
- Smart Routing – The choices made by the user on IVR can used to route the calls to the right agent. This results faster response times and increases agent productivity.
2. Outdoor Advertising
Outdoor Advertising is still a very powerful way to increase brand awareness. Many enterprises and SMEs use it to increase awareness about their products. Usually, the CTA for these ads is the company’s website, a location, etc. But have you tried adding a contact number too?
You can actually place virtual numbers on the ads to drive direct sales. The conversion rate through these leads are relatively high, mostly because of two reasons – there’s no friction (when you compare it to a signup form or emails) and it’s more personal. Apart from calls, virtual numbers bring a few more advantages to the table :
- Handle high volumes After spending thousands of dollars on outdoor advertisements, the last thing you would want is to miss leads because your existing telephony platform isn’t able to handle multiple calls. Using virtual numbers, you’ll be track and manage all the leads. Call queuing helps you in handling multiple calls even when you have a limited number of agents.
- Calculate Marketing ROI for multiple ads
Let’s face it, there’s no direct way of measuring the ROI of outdoor advertising. A lot of results are based on assumptions which might not be correct. Using an inbound virtual number can help you in understanding the exact ROI of a campaign. You’ll know the exact number of leads driven by each campaign.
Virtual numbers also allow you to monitor the ROI separately using a different virtual number. You can easily assign a different virtual number for each campaign. While the call can eventually land on the same number, using a unique virtual number will help you in understanding the performance of each campaign separately.
3. Google Ads
With mobile users on the rise, calls are one of the fastest ways to connect with businesses. In 2015, Google introduced “Pay Per Call” using which you can run “Call-only ads” or include the call extension to standard ads. Below are few “Call-only” ad examples:
Are you looking to get started with call ads? Here are a few best practices to follow-
- Make sure to set up call conversion tracking before getting started with call extensions. Adwords call tracking data is not the best.
- Utilize a virtual number for your campaigns. This will help you in effectively managing and tracking all the conversations.
- Using a tool like CallRail, you can track the user behavior of the caller, including their web sessions.
- Schedule the ads during business hours to get the maximum engagement
- Connect the customers with a real agent asap, people hate waiting.
- Call-only Ads are more effective on mobile.
4. Re-engagement Campaigns
Customer Retention is crucial in today’s age. It’s a hundred times easier than acquiring new customers. Customers churn because of various reasons and most of the times, companies don’t have a clue about the reason.
Re-engagement campaigns are very effective, especially to nurture churned customers and cold leads. If you have a large database of email addresses, you can create the email campaign with a CTA as a phone call too. This will help you in understanding the customers on a personal level.
Apart from this, using virtual numbers will help you in tracking the effectiveness of your campaign. Calls as a channel are super effective for reaching out, especially when you haven’t utilised the channel before.
Why Virtual Numbers?
Virtual Numbers are phone numbers with superpowers. Apart from tracking and call recording, you can set custom call flows to give the caller a personalized experience. However, you’ll need a cloud telephony platform to achieve any of that. Most platforms make it very easy to buy, assign and track virtual numbers.
Here are a few examples of how virtual numbers are perfect for inbound calls.
For example, if a company doesn’t provide a 24×7 service, an automated message can play informing them about the business hours. You can also buy local numbers of different countries (even when you don’t have a local presence) to make it easy for customers to reach you.
Calls can really make a difference to your business, right from solving customer enquiries to lead generation. It is probably one of the fastest way customers can reach a company. It removes any friction which comes with any other channel. Hence I strongly recommend you to try inbound calls, irrespective of the type of business.
However, not all the strategies mentioned above might be a good fit for your business. You’ll need to experiment in order to find the right one. In case you have implemented calls in your marketing strategies, let us know the results in the comments section.