As a plumbing or HVAC contractor, you want appointment requests pouring in one after another. You want a steady stream of customers requesting jobs that require minimal man hours. Unfortunately, even if your phone rings off the hook, not every inbound call is worth your time. In fact, some calls have nothing to do with a job at all, which is aggravating.
Does this sound familiar? “Yes, I’m very happy with my internet service provider, thank you,” “No, I’m not interested in hearing about your line of copiers.”
Not all calls are created equal — this much is clear. What isn’t clear is the world of call tracking and analytics, and how it can help your business sort through calls. What exactly is call tracking? Are all services the same?
Before you can determine whether or not call tracking is a fit, you understandably want more information. Well, simply put, call tracking connects the dots between your marketing efforts and potential customers who call your business.
In the not too distant past, marketing efforts seemed akin to burning money. Dollars went out the door to pay for print ads, leaflets and direct mailers. It was anybody’s guess whether or not these efforts worked and which produced leads. There simply weren’t effective ways to review marketing ROI.
These days though, marketing for your business is no longer a crapshoot. Call tracking has completely changed the game. It’s a good thing too, because according to Duke University, marketing budgets everywhere are expected to increase between 57% among B2C companies over the next year.
Did your business spend money on a PPC (payperclick) campaign? Did your guys work hard on website content in order to improve SEO (search engine optimization)? Call tracking can illuminate whether or not these efforts yielded results.
Call review lowdown
You may be saying, “Hey, that’s neat, I’m listening. But is that all call tracking can do?”
Call origin is just the first layer of insight. Call tracking also helps you nail down service appointments and determine when to followup on a prospect. In order to help your business on these two fronts, phone conversations must be recorded and analyzed.
There are different ways to analyze the content of a call: services can either use an automated system or a team of human reviewers. The end goal is the same.
A critical factor at play here is understanding the nuance of human speech. It’s actually quite difficult; slang and colloquialisms pervade. Automated call review systems have a particularly tough time determining the intent of a human call.
For example, say someone calls about a broken AC unit, and inquires about the availability of an HVAC business to repair the said unit. After asking some questions, the customer feels confident about hiring the contractor and says, “Well Randy, I feel pretty good about y’all’s ability to fix the issue. Let’s talk about getting someone out here pronto.”
This could pose a problem for an automated system. There is a noticeable absence of words such as “appointment,” “schedule” and “job” in this dialogue. Also, there is no conventional discussion of time. The customer’s interest in hiring Randy’s HVAC business will be lost on the computer.
Human reviewers don’t get tripped up in these cases. It takes more work to build a large network of skilled human reviewers, but the quality is worth it. Humans are as sophisticated as it gets when it comes to judging emotion, tone and intent.
Call tracking has a place in your marketing strategy, if you’re looking to better understand lead origin and improve the way your business handles phone calls. Choose a service that suits your business needs and can deliver on expectations.
Ross Wingo is a Content Marketer for Service Hook.