We all know that sending interactive messages or voice/text alerts to consumers is significantly more cost effective than sending numerous notification letters through the mail. So how can companies maintain their contact rate metrics and increase response rates in their existing campaign strategies? Design a strategy that includes channel blending as your secret sauce.
As we look at the different channels available for your outbound contact strategy, companies are seeing the following response rates:
- Direct mail response rates are in the low single digits.
- Emails have higher open rates at around 20% according to the DMA.
- Predictive dialer calls utilizing live agents offer response rates that range from high single digits to 25%.
- Interactive Voice Messaging (IVM) and Automated Voice Messaging (AVM) with right party validation can improve right party contact rates 35% – 55%, or more in some cases.
- SMS open rates are over 98%.
With a blended channel escalation strategy, any consumer who answers an IVR call and does not respond can be immediately called back as a Predictive or Preview call with a different caller ID, perhaps a local phone number. We know the consumer is home because he/she just answered, and now you drive them right to your agents. Plus, if you have implemented a strategy where you garner consent from the consumer, you can add mobile voice or SMS to the blended campaign strategy. The US is 104.6% mobile phone penetrated, with 31.6% homes being wireless only. Knowing the consumer’s preferred channel to communicate can not only allow you to communicate at the exact time you want, but may also be the difference between capturing a payment or not.
Channel blending escalation is the secret sauce for existing strategies that have lost some efficacy. It is a simple, cost effective solution that will improve overall response rates and increase agent productivity. In the challenging and dynamic consumer engagement environment, it is critical to stay flexible and consider all your options. We encourage you to test a blended strategy and see the lift in contact response rates for yourselves!
By: Matt Edmunds