May 23, 2013 Leave a comment
They call me the call blitz queen. More accurately, some of my clients call me the call blitz queen. My husband calls me Honey, and my friends call me Samantha, or occasionally Mantha. But I digress! Call Blitz Queen is a crown I wear proudly.
What’s a call blitz you ask?
A call blitz is a focused full day of calling on prospects and/or customers as part of a sales program. It has a specific offer, targeted list and short-term goal(s). It differs from any other day in a call center/sales office by its intensity and focus.
Be a momentum trigger
Why do a call blitz? There is a lot of science to selling. But there is just as much emotion. Call blitz campaigns are about stirring up emotion, taking an ordinary week and making it extraordinary. It should be viewed as a momentum trigger.
The six ingredient recipe for a full-proof call blitz
- Instant gratification – Sales people are human beings which means they are motivated by games. In order to create intensity you need to create incentives that are tangible and achievable on the same day. For complex products perhaps you measure new names added to the database, client referrals you secured, demonstrations booked, or quotes distributed. Make sure your prizes are visually in front of the team, and there are multiple ways to win throughout the day. If you only have one or two “master” prizes energy will ebb and flow throughout the day. Set first, most, best and team goals with prizes that scale in value accordingly. And don’t forget money is always appreciated but not a good call blitz incentive. Instead give out tickets to a big game, look for unusual experiences like a luxury car rental or gift certificate to a hot restaurant. Good sales people can buy what they want but they love the thrill of the hunt.
- Compelling offer – It’s not enough for your sales team to have a good reason (aka prizes) for achieving above normal goals. You must give them an offer that clients will find compelling. Special pricing, new product introductions and bundles work well.
- The right list – You can build the most effective offer and put great prizes in front of sales and still fail. Call blitz campaigns only work when you have a targeted, warm list of prospects to call.
- Shake up the environment – A call blitz day should not feel like any other day. Shake up teams, set out lunch and breakfast, bring in an afternoon ice cream treat! Skip the bagels and pizza and focus on high protein/energy foods that are going to boost energy. Visually track performance and make some noise. One client even had everyone dress up – Halloween in May, why not?
- Teamwork – Individual incentives drive activity, but you also want to evoke team work. Give both team & individual prizes to keep the energy high and the spirit of cooperation in full swing. Eat breakfast and lunch together. Kick off with a bang in the morning. And re-energize post-lunch with a surprise contest or two.
- Cheerleader/Executive sponsor – Just like any good performance you need a facilitator to keep energy up, congratulate the success and coax non-performers to play the game. It’s most effective if the facilitator is not the sales manager. While they play a role, call blitz efforts work best when the reps feel pressure to perform above normal.
Call blitz campaigns can be incredibly effective, but there are common mistakes you must avoid to optimize their value.
- There is too much of a good thing – Call blitz campaigns work because of their intensity and focus. They are great ways to kick off momentum around a new theme or offer. The biggest mistake organizations make is hosting call blitz’s too frequently. While there is no magic number of days required between call blitzes I generally find 8-10 week breaks are optimal.
- Go big or go home – If you don’t have all six ingredients for your call blitz don’t do one. The worst thing you can do is get everybody jazzed for a momentum trigger than it feel like any other day. Call blitz are emotional stimulants you must hit all the hot spots to be effective.
- Avoid setting the wrong goals – Call blitz campaigns work when you set aggressive but achievable goals. If no one believes they can meet the goals no one will try. Another common mistake is setting long-term goals as a way to measure and reward participants. Without instant gratification, call blitz efforts fall flat.