Industry reports have historically emphasized the importance of calling prospects at certain “optimal times” (e.g. 10 a.m. or 2 p.m.) when they are more likely to pick up the phone. However, Velocify’s newest research, “When to Call Sales Leads,” reveals that calling at the so-called optimal times results in miniscule improvements compared with a strategy based on following up quickly with a new lead and then following up at strategic intervals.
“We felt it was important to use the massive amount of sales data we’ve collected to bust the industry myth that calling at a specific time of day is the best way to boost contact and conversion rates,” said Velocify CEO and President Nick Hedges. “Priority and status should determine the best time to call prospects that express interest; strategy should not be dictated by overly broad statistics and a clock on the wall.”
“This new research validates what we see in our business every day,” said Dan Hansen, President at MedPro Waste Disposal. “Responding to new leads fast, and leveraging a sequence-based approach to follow-up using Velocify, has been a perfect formula for success. In fact, we saw a 20 percent increase in revenue in the first year using Velocify by mapping out and following our ideal sequenced-based sales process with every prospect.”
Key findings in the new report include:
- The difference in contact rates between the “worst” time of day to call a prospect and the “best” time of day to call is only 2.6 percentage points.
- Speed-to-call is the most important factor in determining whether you contact and convert an interested prospect.
- Using an optimal call sequence approach can more than double your call success rate.
- A call sequence approach is much more practical and easier to implement than a time-of-day approach.
How Call Sequence & Time of Day Strategies Measure Up
To accurately gauge the effectiveness of different outreach strategies, Velocify looked at millions of lead records and phone calls across hundreds of client databases, including business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) companies across a wide variety of industries, to evaluate the success rate of different call times.
In examining average contact rates based on when calls were made within a 12-hour window, Velocify discovered the difference between the “best” time to call and the “worst” time to call only reached 2.6 percent. But when comparing average contact and conversion rates based on time between initial prospect interest and the first call, the report found enormous performance differences.
In fact, prospects that received a call within one minute of their initial inquiry were 391 percent more likely to convert than those called any time after that, according to Velocify research. The findings show that although 2 p.m. was the best time to call someone in general, if you receive a new inquiry at 3 p.m., waiting nearly 24 hours to call back would drastically reduce your chances of conversion.
In addition, the report found that making up to six follow-up calls in strategic intervals improved contact and conversion rates by much greater margins than scheduling calls for the optimal time of day. Using the optimal call sequence strategy (i.e. sequencing call attempts relative to the time the prospect shows initial interest) led to an overall improvement in contact rates of 110 percent, compared to a seven percent boost that results from a time-of-day approach.