Today, email, live chat, and social media might seem like the mainstream medium for sales. However, phone calls are still one of the most preferred means of communication for customers. Although chat-bots and automated emails make communication easier, they don’t hold a candle to the personal effect that a phone conversation can bring. To make a big sale, there needs to be a human touch—or in this case, a voice.
Phone calls—the cornerstone of sales!
Once you establish contact with a lead, a phone call is a great way to start the sales cycle on a high note. Brevet reports that 80% of sales require five follow-up phone calls after a meeting, yet 44% of sales reps give up after just one follow-up. Since people are so used to receiving auto-generated emails everyday, a personalized phone call is now a breath of fresh air—a standout tactic that provides a memorable experience.
Phone calls are definitely not ideal for every conversation; email and IM should suffice for quick exchanges. But when it comes to having a long and detailed discussion, phone calls are the way to go. Despite the consistent advancement in communication, good old-fashioned phone calls managed to stay in style—but not without a few upgrades, the most notable being the advent of cloud telephone systems. Phone calls can now be made without a phone, how about that?
What’s the deal with cloud telephony?
Lately, every service is moving into the cloud in some way, and telephone services are no exception to this trend. How does cloud telephony compare to a conventional telephone system? It’s more flexible, feature-rich, convenient, and scalable than a landline routing system. When integrated with a CRM, a cloud telephone service can revamp sales calls for the better.
➤ Sales made personal
One big upgrade with cloud telephony is the ability to integrate with CRM data. When you dial a sales call, everything you need to know about the lead will appear on the screen: their name, designation, deal status, notes from previous interactions, links to their social media, and anything else you find useful. This helps you craft a killer opening line, make a pitch that resonates with them, and secures the deal with a personal touch.
➤ Call logs are digital
Say goodbye to manually logging phone calls by hand or in a spreadsheet. Your cloud telephony software automatically logs every call and transcript, preserving them in a digital format. Now, anyone in the company can have access to every detail about each call, even if the salesperson associated with the call or lead is no longer with them. These transcripts can also help you to better map every customer’s journey in your CRM.
➤ Easier to manage calls
You can make calls, forward calls to other departments, record calls, switch between calls, hold calls, and much more, all with just a few clicks. No need to mash buttons on a telephone or squint your eyes to read off a tiny screen. Your call logs are all digital, and analytics can help you understand the quality of the call and the quality of the lead. You can easily create detailed reports for quality assessment, which helps you manage calls better in the long run.
➤ Talk to leads wherever you are
You don’t have to be at your office phone to make or take calls. Every incoming and outgoing call is mapped to your account, so you can contact people from any device you’re logged into. You can talk to leads over your smartphone, home phone, laptop, or tablet. For salespeople who need to stay mobile, cloud phone service can be a life saver. VoIP makes it easy to make sales calls on the go, wherever you need to be.
➤ Scale up or down as you see fit
When using a cloud-based telephone system, there’s little need for on-site equipment. Since minimal hardware is involved, scaling your sales team is easier than ever. You can bring new salespeople online with just a few clicks, without wasting space. Salespeople can make phone calls from their laptops, so a landline isn’t required. If you want to scale back down a bit, you can just remove a few accounts and voilà—no telephones get left in the basement to collect dust.
➤ Cut down on expenses
Cloud telephone services are priced cheaper than a conventional telephone network. There are minimal physical hardware expenses, no installation charges, no upfront fee, and no maintenance or repair expenses, as it’s mostly done on the server side. Usually, businesses see an average savings of 50 to 70 percent once they switch to VoIP. These services usually come in a pay-as-you-go subscription model, which is a blessing for businesses working with a tight budget.
New technology can often be overwhelming, especially when it challenges what we’re comfortable with. Although cloud-based telephone services have been around longer than Facebook, some businesses are still on the fence about it. Brevet reports that 92% of all customer interactions happen over the phone, which is mind-blowing considering the number of channels we have for communication now.
If you’re looking for a cloud telephone service that integrates seamlessly with CRM, SoftwareAdvice is a good place to start. However, make sure you’re using a CRM that complements and fully realizes the benefits that a cloud telephony service can bring to the table. If you need help with that, check out Business News Daily’s roundup on CRM software in 2018.