04-05-2011 12:49 PM - edited 04-05-2011 12:53 PM
Can anyone suggest a good way that I can keep track of each time that I attempt to contact a new sales lead but don't reach them? As you might imagine, I make around 150 such calls a day, and creating (and then subsequently clearing) a new activity for each of those calls is a bit too cumbersome and time consuming for calls where I don't actually reach the person I need to speak to. That actually takes more time than it does to complete the call, if I don't get the prospect on the phone.
I do create a single call activity when I first create the contact from my lead sheet, and if I don't catch them on the first try, then I keep recheduling that same call until (if ever) I reach them. But the problem is that doesn't give me any indication of when or how often I've tried to reach them already. That information will help me decide how easy/difficult they are to reach in general, as well as when to try a different means of reaching them.
The closest I've come to a solution is to create a date/time field for "last call attempt" that I manually fill in each time I try to call them, and allow that field to update the history when ever it's changed. Now, if I could automate that process with a button that inputs the current date and time, that would probably get the job done for me pretty elegantly. (Even better if it could update a counter that tracks the number of calls since my last successful contact with them, but that's just icing on the cake ...)
Anyone have any suggestions or alternatives for what I'm trying to do?
04-05-2011 06:04 PM
Hi Rockin982 and welcome to the ACT Forum.
I spend a lot of time thinking on things just like this. So, what I did was to create a new activity and a set of results. The reason I had to create a new activity is because you can't add different results to the default activities..
I created ".call" <= that is dot call. The reason I used this is because when I look at the history, it looks so much like the regular call history.
Then for results I added the following:
LVM = left Voice Message
DNLVM - Did Not leave voice message
LM = Left message (because I reached someone woiuld could take a message)
DNLM = Did not leave a message (because I reached a message taker but didn't want to leave a message)
Sent eMail instead
I have changed my mind over the past couple of years about leaving a voice message. I used to leave a voice message on all calls, but now I do not leave a VM unless there is a good reason. Going back to my list of results, if I see DNLVM for several times in a row, it will cause me to think of a different approach or LVM.
Next, I always use the follow up button. Both the "Regarding" and "Details" can be automatically carried forward. I only have to select the date, as I use "timeless" for all calls.
Hope this helped and good luck using ACT.
04-05-2011 07:12 PM
A very common dilemma. I leave the originally scheduled call un-cleared until I finally reach the person, or die trying. I do have Auto-rollover set on calls, so if I didn't reach them, it doesn't get cleared and thus it rolls over to the next day, and the next day.
I do, however, Record History for each time that I attempt to call them - that's a quick one. And like the other reply here, I usually use the ILVM type codes.
04-06-2011 07:25 AM
Ok, so I ended up creating a "Quick Call" activity, which defaults to a "call attempted" result (since 95% of the time I don't leave a message at all) but also includes a result option for "left VM" or "left message" as well as the stock completed/not completed options. I set it to a zero minute duration with no alarm, and I generate it as I'm dialing the prospect's number - no options within the activity dialog have to be changed. Then as soon as I hang up, I clear the activity - in the case that I didn't reach the prospect and didn't leave a message, I don't have to change any options at all in the clearing dialog, which is simple enough.
Now what will actually make this REALLY work for me is if there is a way that I can then have it update a field similar to the "last attempt/reach field" which I can view from the contacts list view. This way I can easily see who I haven't contacted in a while, or who is particularly difficult to reach without having to look up all the histories one-by-one. Is this possible?
04-07-2011 03:40 AM
That's the beauty of leaving the uncompleted call uncleared and doing a "Record History, Call, Left Message" whenever you leave a message - it updates the Call Attempted field for you.
04-07-2011 08:10 AM
Thanks, Kevin ... Now that I understand exactly what you do, it makes perfect sense, and I think it does the best job of accomplishing all my goals. Great suggestion!
04-08-2011 08:44 AM
Now one more question:
Since you're leaving the calls uncleared and using history updates for calls that don't reach the target, which view do you use to sort through your daily calls - the task view, or the contact view?
The contact view can be set up to show the last attempt and last reached, but doesn't show you who you have open tasks for (initial calls, follow ups scheduled during last contact, etc)
The task view shows you all the scheduled calls, but won't display contact view information (i.e. last attempted/reached) and I don't see a way to get that information at the task level, especially if you're not updating the call task until you actaulyl reach them.
So how do you navigate through your calls during the day and quickly see who you have and haven't reached that day?
04-08-2011 10:29 AM