Customer journeys come in many forms and have multiple destinations. And it is getting more and more common to automate them to save time and human resources. But automation requires that the travel plans are in place. We give you some good examples of which journeys you can invite your customers to go on.
We must admit. We find this topic interesting because we in Adversus have created a tool that automates customer journeys in contact centers – which is why this blog post mainly focuses on customer journeys related to telemarketing activities.
But we also use this opportunity to talk about customer journeys in general, so this article, hopefully, can inspire people who are not working with telemarketing.
Many of our customers are doing cold canvas selling. Our own sales department is also well experienced in cold canvas, so we know how demanding it is to start a sales process and follow it through.
Our products often appeal to companies with specific needs where our salespeople must subsequently come up with presentations on how we can support these needs. Therefore, more conversations and follow-up
meetings are often required throughout the process. This is where automated journeys come into the picture, as it becomes easier to do follow-ups with the right timing by dragging the process into an automated flow.
How is a good customer journey defined?
A journey is nothing without a traveler.
Your job is to persuade the traveler to go on this journey and make sure it will be an experience to remember. Make sure they don't remember it as their holiday in Greece where they got eaten by bed bugs at a shitty hotel. Instead, make them remember the holiday of their dreams.
Some prefer relaxation on white sandy beaches, excellent food, and top-notch service 24/7. Others prefer plenty of fresh air and hiking in the mountains, even on a rainy day. So, defining what a dream vacation contains can be a struggle because everybody has their own perception about what they find pleasant.
So why am I talking about different types of vacation? I will go straight to the point. Or at least try.
It is not irrelevant which kind of journey you are trying to sell. Neither is the destination. It isn't enjoyable ending up in the mountains if you expected white sandy beaches as far as your eye can see. Or end up on the sandy beach during winter when all you need is sunshine.
When the experience you provide doesn't live up to the expectations, you'll probably end up with a dissatisfied customer calling your support AFTER leaving a one-star review on trust pilot. That is both time-consuming and damaging for your business.
You need to have all expectations aligned right from the start before the journey even begins, which means you will have to ask yourself a hell of a lot of questions to get aligned with your target group.
What are their pains? Their desires? And how can you fulfill their wishes? The traveler's needs and expectations should always be prioritized upon your own needs to earn money.
After asking yourself those questions, you will probably end up with even more questions because you will notice that not all customers are on the same page, and you need to work with different target groups. Their pains and desires are different from one another.
A dream vacation for one person could be the worst nightmare for another. Take me, for example. Never force me to spend the holidays in an all-inclusive hotel!
Get to know your customers' pains, desires, and dreams.
Find out how you can fulfill those needs and divide the customers into different target groups.
Adapt your product to your customers' needs. Consider making special offers designed for your customers. If you have more than one product, categorize your products and allocate them to your target groups.
You are selling telephony subscriptions, and you already have some data on existing customers you can use in the selling process. This could, for example, be statistical data on how much telephony different target groups are using based on gender, age, geography, etc.
Combining this knowledge with market analysis, you'll have a good starting point in your sales process because you have uncovered your customers' wishes and know how to fulfill them. Then it's just a matter of segmenting and starting building campaigns based on customer profiles.
If your data indicates that a specific customer profile uses more telephony than the average, you should consider selling the big package to this profile. And vice versa. If a customer profile uses less telephony, you should sell the light package. The best way is to build customized campaigns for each target group. If necessary, consider making special offers, and promote those offers to, e.g., the group that is hardest to reach.
You can also use data from former customers. Extract data from the ones you know opted out because the product was too expensive. If you at some point get a cheaper solution to offer, you'll have a chance to win them back.
Your next step is to create different selling points and different journeys. And that is where automation comes into the picture.
The automated journey
The whole concept behind automated journeys is to create different actions based on triggers and, based on that, define the next destination. What happens on this destination will then become what determines the next step and what will happen next.
One may argue that automating journeys can make it an impersonal experience. And there is some truth to it. If your customer only is met by answering machines and automated emails, the chances of them churning get higher.
On the other hand, when automating your journey, you get the opportunity not only to plan one single trip. You can arrange several trips simultaneously with different starting points and unlimited destinations. And you can make your travelers change paths during the journey as many times as they prefer, so the final destination can change on the way.
Where and when. Those are the two essential factors in a journey.
Perhaps some are more willing to buy a product at a specific time of the day, week, or month. And some are more easily converted into customers if you target – or retarget them on the right platform(s). The combination of both is the key to higher conversion. This part of the journey is impossible without a data-driven approach.
Utilizing data and activating it by setting up automation rules makes it much easier to execute your sales strategy based on time and place. And your chances of having satisfied customers get higher because you will guide them in the right direction based on not assumptions but their own actions.
Make sure to evaluate regularly. People's needs are changing all the time.
Know the right timing and where to target. Map it out and make a plan.
Make sure you stick to the plan. Utilize your knowledge about 'where and when' by setting up automated actions based on your findings. This way, Follow up on your activities. Evaluate, adjust and adapt.
What is Adversus Journeys?
Adversus Journeys is a tool in our software solution that enables you to create different actions based on triggers to use your leads optimally. Use Journeys to take your traveler on both long and short trips through the sales process. How you use it is totally up to you.
By setting up automation flows, you have the opportunity to manage your leads in an intelligent and compliant way – and there are countless ways of doing it. For example, you can define whenever it's time to reach out, do a follow-up, put a lead on hold for a while, erase expired leads, and so on.
Journeys is also a tool that allows you to reuse leads with ease - and in the best way. Many call centers use their leads only once, but sometimes reusing them can be beneficial. For example, you can call interested customers back if an offer that would suit them perfectly appears or just reach out once more after a few months.
Simply put, a Journey in Adversus is created like this:
Choose which campaign(s) to make a Journey on
Select the triggers/filters to which the Journey responds
Select the actions to be performed based on triggers/filters
The Adversus Journeys hacks
Next up, we will give some examples of using Adversus Journeys to better your business.
1# Reuse of "not interested" leads after a specific period
Create a Journey that resets all leads marked as 'not interested' after a certain period.
Choose the campaign(s) from which you want to reuse leads, filter out the leads marked as "Not interested," and put them on pause for the desired period, e.g., after six months. When the pause ends, the leads are reset and can be called again.
To increase the possibility of reaching leads that are most likely to respond positively on a redial, you can choose only to recycle leads marked as "Not interested" and a specific sub-status. If the status is "Not now," the lead will be paused and reset, but if the status is "Never," the lead will be disabled from the campaign. This can be advantageous if you are running low on leads and need a backup campaign.
2# Add leads with "Max Call Attempt" to a new campaign
Add leads that have reached "Max Call Attempt" on one campaign to a new campaign. As in the previous example, this is also a way to make a backup campaign you can use whenever you don't have more fresh leads to call.
3# Send an email to a customer a few hours before the scheduled call time
Send an SMS automatically to the customer a few hours before a scheduled call. This way, you remind the customer of the follow-up call. Use merge tags to personalize your outreach.
4# Create specific sales campaigns for your agents based on a joint campaign
Add leads to an individual sales campaign based on previous sales. This is especially relevant for call centers, where you have many sellers on a single campaign and want each agent to subsequently sell to the same customers from their own sales campaign. It can also be used if the agent needs to do a follow-up.
Practically, leads that are closed as "Success" and last contacted by your agent "Jack" will be added to "Jack Sales Campaign" and will be callable again after a period of your choosing.
5# Send an SMS the first time you called a subject, and they didn't pick up the phone
Automatically send an SMS or email to the customer if you don't get in touch with them after your first call attempt.
This can be useful when the customer has stated that they wish to be contacted. Remember to provide information about how the customer can reach you in your SMS or email. Or inform about when you will try to make the next call attempt.
6# Close a lead with a specific status when the lead has expired
If you want to close leads with a specific status, which could be "Unqualified", you can decide how many days should pass before a lead expires. This can be useful if you pay your lead provider based on how many leads you've closed in a given period.
7# Speed up leads that open an email the first time
This is useful if you want to reach out to leads that did not pick up the phone and have the "Automatic redial" status.
Typically, you will set a certain amount of time between "auto redial", so that your leads are in quarantine for a while before they are callable again. However, you can also speed up the leads so that the "quarantine" ends the moment they open the email you sent after your failed attempt to reach them by phone.
8# Update scheduled contact time based on when an email is opened for the first time
As in the previous example, you have sent an email. In this case, you want to make an appointment for a follow-up call.
If the customer opens the email and shows interest, it's wise to get in touch with the customer as soon as possible. Receive a notification instantly when it's time to follow up. It is a good idea to add a note telling the agent that this call is coming up because the lead has opened an email.