In industries such as customer and technical support and sales, calls are often a reaction to pieces of information. This information might be in the form of an ad or a promotional drive. To gauge the effectiveness of these marketing initiatives, it has become necessary for businesses to identify the reason for the customer’s interest.
Why Call Tracking Matters
In certain industries—travel, for example—an agent will have more intelligent conversations with a prospective customer if they know exactly what the latter is interested in. If the customer was browsing a travel site’s tour packages section before placing a call to the advertised toll-free number, the sales representative can prepare the necessary script and may even have a tour package promo handy to present to the customer over the course of the call.
Call tracking also contributes greatly to customer analytics, or the use of statistics and data to identify and improve key aspects of the customer service life cycle. This removes the need to ask a customer how they found a product because the business already knows the specific channel that referred the customer to them through call tracking. This way, the interaction is tailored to the customer from the get-go.
It’s Not the Call, It’s What’s Before the Call
While the term implies that your call is being observed, there is actually no violation of privacy of the customer. Rather, the reason that triggered the customer to call is what’s being tracked. This could be anything from a news article to an ad billboard.
Traditionally, a good way to track customers is to set up a toll-free number that specifically caters to a product. These toll-free numbers actually get routed to a primary network of phones, but by knowing which toll-free number was dialed by the user, a business can keep track of certain key factors like the time of day a certain product promotion attracts the most attention or which local codes are showing more interest.
Advancements in Call and Customer Tracking
In recent years, the concept of keyword marketing in social media, like the ones employed by businesses on Twitter, can be used to look for potential customers. A seller might target persons using specific hashtags in social networks like Twitter or Instagram and give them a way to reach out to the business at their convenience.
Integration with CRMs also helps businesses track calls. Similar to the concept of toll-free numbers, a customer may be served any number from a pool of numbers that the business owns. The CRM will then be in charge of storing the call tracking data, among other customer information. Google uses a similar concept by forwarding any call to a business via their AdWords program. This way, a business is sure exactly which of their online ads are being accessed by users.