We connect with Marianne Withers from The Verity Centre to have a look at how effective outbound can be. We discuss everything from the importance of protecting the brand and training agents to building strong relationships with prospects.
The following article is adapted from the latest episode of the B2C Lead Gen Podcast. Be sure to check out the entire episode with links at the bottom.
You say a lot of brands have been put off doing outbound. What specifically do you think has put them off?
Marianne Withers: It’s the calls they get at home. We know the charity industry. I can’t remember exactly the date it happened but there was an incident in Bristol and that basically shut down most of the charity market. At the moment the charity market is starting to come out, but the compliance around it is a lot more now, which is really good.
There are some insurance companies out there. And I remember having a conversation with a couple them and they want to do it (outbound) but they are absolutely petrified. It’s the compliance, they’re saying no it’s too dangerous.
A lot of it is to do with perception.
Just to be clear, this is brands using outsourced centres to call people but it’s the perception that these people don’t want calls?
It’s not just brands outsourcing. It’s brands doing outbound themselves. It’s more about about the compliance side of it. And it’s about their concerns because of the type of calls they receive at home. I’m not saying their aren’t good centres out there. Yes, there are. But there is an awful lot of not good ones who aren’t compliant and all they do is burn through data. There’s no relationship building. There’s none of that.
And so you’ll have an insurance company where the FCA is on their necks all the time. So they just kind of step away from it because they are too concerned to actually do it.
Also, the conversations I have with them is actually - “It’s difficult isn’t it!”
To do outbound properly is a pure art form. The often don’t have the people in internally so they have to choose the right external people and get the right external partners. It’s a lot of work and you have to actually manage them.
I wanna look at things from the perspective of the brands. There is an a perception that external call centres can actuality harm the brand, right? How do you protect the brands you work with and ensure agents do that too?
One, it’s extremely important for our own brand image (The Verity Centre) and what people perceive of us. So I’m definitely going to protect everyone’s brand image too. It’s all about the type of people that you hire, the education you give, and the values you instil.
The people we’re bringing in to our company go through a vigorous interview, but it’s about finding out not just their capability and skills, but their ethos. And what they want to be and what they want to be part of. It’s about finding people who will really instil your brand, who are creative, who care and have soft souls.
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