Our team at PhoneBurner ran a landmark survey of U.S.-based sales managers, directors, VPs, and C-suite executives to discover the true cost and detrimental effects of incorrect spam and scam flags on outbound sales calls. The full results were compiled into our Spam and Scam Call Economic Impact Report.
We started the survey with some basic questions:
- Have you received a call marked spam or scam?
- When you receive a call marked spam or scam, do you answer it?
The goal of these initial questions was to gauge the scope of the spam and scam call flagging issue from the call recipient side. The results were:
- 93% have received a call marked spam or scam
- 76% will not answer calls marked spam or scam
These are important data points because they can help businesses who rely on the phone as their primary form of communication understand the severity of having their outbound calls unfairly flagged spam or scam.
These businesses are trying to remind medical patients of important appointments, provide auto insurance quotes to a parent looking to buy their daughter her first car, or follow up with an unemployed job seeker waiting for "that special call."
Understandably, if their calls aren’t being answered, revenue is lost. And, every month, roughly 33% of all outbound calls are flagged as spam or scam.
To put that in perspective: if you made 20 million phone calls last month, that means 6 million of your legitimate calls could have been flagged. How much revenue would that cost your business?
Perhaps the better question: what are you supposed to do about it?
Below, we’ve rounded up some strategies that you can use to foster a growth mindset at your company that can help keep revenue trending in the right direction. It’s helpful for companies who are both facing imminent revenue loss as a result of spam or scam call flags, or for those who simply want to try something new.
Let’s get after it.
Revenue Loss Due to Spam and Scam Call Flags
Before we jump into the tactics, let’s quickly recap some of the data from our Spam and Scam Call Economic Impact Report around lost revenue. We asked our survey respondents how much revenue has been lost at their company as a result:
Lost revenue ranges from less than $5,000 all the way up to $1,000,000. There were 19% of our respondents who either didn’t report lost revenue or were unsure how much they’ve lost.
What’s more, the sentiment from our survey respondents is that small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) feel the pain of lost revenue much more than their larger counterparts.
This is a twofold issue. First, there’s the incorrect spam and scam flags that hurt legitimate, American businesses. Second, there’s a growth trajectory for revenue that’s disrupted by the incorrect flags.
The solution is twofold as well. You have to deliver a one-two knockout punch—with a jab and then a cross.
First, you have to deal with spam and scam call flags that hurt your business. Second, you have to maintain a growth trajectory, even when times are tough.
The Jab: Mitigate Your Spam and Scam Flag Risk
In our Spam and Scam Call Economic Impact Report, 31% of respondents said they aren’t confident that their company can proactively protect their phone numbers from being flagged. A further 35% don’t think management at their company knows what to do if they are incorrectly flagged.
That’s why we compiled various resources that will illustrate the full scope of the issue and help you fight back against incorrect spam and scam call flags. Here’s a quick rundown of our eight top strategies you can use:
- Register Your Numbers on Free Caller Registry
- Be Rigorous with Your Lead Providers
- Use Dialing Best Practices
- Call at the Best Time of Day
- Remediate False Spam Flags
- Monitor Your Numbers
- Build Reputation, Don’t Buy & Get Rid of Numbers
- Brand Your Calls
This is a very abbreviated look at some powerhouse tactics. I highly encourage you to dig into the following resources for the full-blown rundown on how to fight back against spam and scam call flags:
The Cross: Implement New Growth Tactics
To fight back against unfair spam and scam call flags, you have to follow your jab with a hefty cross. If you really want to protect your revenue and your most valuable asset—your people—you have to focus on growth.
Admittedly, it can be difficult to focus on growth if you’re already facing revenue loss. However, I would also argue that a growth mindset is never more crucial than at the moment when you’re forced to downsize.
If that’s your situation, the key to success is to focus on growth in fiscally responsible, scalable, and sustainable ways. It’s not a “growth at all costs” frame, but rather “smart and highly targeted growth.”
You can use the tactics below to help focus your growth efforts on the right areas that will net a solid ROI relative to the amount of time and staff energy you put into it. Even if you’re not facing revenue loss, these are still helpful tactics to bake into your sales strategy.
Maximize Lead Value
Leads are hard assets for your business, and they’re expensive. If your company pays for lead lists from vendors, you’re directly spending money to acquire new leads.
If your sales teams and outbound reps are self-prospecting leads or marketing supplies your team with leads, you’re still paying for them. It’s indirect as you’re paying the employees who source leads for you.
Either way, there’s an investment of time, energy, and money for workable leads. That investment is supposed to net a positive ROI. Leads are closed and turn into revenue for your business.
But if they’re not successfully converting, you’re in trouble. That’s lost revenue on the opportunity, but also lost revenue on your initial investment to procure the lead.
You have to maximize your lead value and ensure that what you pay for is being worked smartly and thoroughly. Make sure your reps:
- Do their due diligence on leads before ever getting in contact
- Use the phone in conjunction with email and SMS
- Follow up consistently and professionally
- Leverage content to grab attention
- Crush their cold call scripts, sales voicemail scripts, or any other scripts
Don’t rush through your lead lists just so you can say you’ve called them all. Take your time, be smart about your approach, and put together a robust strategy that gets someone to answer the phone.
Track Quality of Conversations
Maximizing lead value and getting someone to answer the phone is great. But you have to keep them talking once you get them to pick up.
The good news here is that we analyzed data in our annual Sales Calls Statistics Report and found the average minutes a prospect spent on a call with outbound reps. Since 2019, it’s increased year over year:
In other words, this trend tells us that the quality of phone conversations has improved. This is a crucial, key metric to track if you’re looking to maintain a growth mindset and recover lost revenue due to spam and scam call flags.
The amount of time someone spends on the phone with your reps doesn’t guarantee another booked meeting, set demo, or closed-won deal. However, it gives you opportunities to move prospects further into the sales cycle.
Make Trusted and Identifiable Calls
Only 24% of our survey respondents say they pick up the phone when a spam or scam likely flagged call comes through. That leaves 76% who will not touch the phone if they see “spam” or “scam” on their phone's caller ID.
Let’s say you make 100 calls a day, and you’re unfairly marked spam or scam. That means potentially two-thirds of your call volume is purposefully not being picked up.
It’s not surprising, then, that 54% of our respondents have noticed sales metrics, like answer rates, decline. The question is: what are you supposed to do about it?
Brand your calls with Branded Caller ID (BCID) solutions. This is what will make your calls trusted and identifiable to the public.
At this point in time, BCID is not just a nice-to-have feature. It’s an absolute necessity.
What’s really interesting is that 65% of our survey respondents are aware of BCID solutions. Yet, 41% don’t use them at all in their place of work. This despite the fact that 73% say that BCID solutions would make their job easier.
The issue here is that, while sales professionals and outbound teams are aware of BCID solutions and how much they could benefit from them, they may not know how to start using them. PhoneBurner makes it easy for any team to start using BCID solutions right away.
There’s a strong need and urgency to have calls be trusted and identifiable. Make sure you’re ahead of the curve on this one to get your calls answered and recover lost revenue.
Keep Cultivating Your Growth Mindset
Watch any professional boxer, and you’ll immediately notice the importance of a one-two, jab-cross combination. It opens opportunities to beat their opponents and keeps a fighter grounded in the face of incoming punches.
In the context of this blog post though, the metaphor is most poignant when you consider how a jab-cross combo can save a fighter when they’re on the ropes. In those moments when they’re stumbling and about to hit the ground, a well-executed combo can get them right back into the fight.
Use the jab-cross combo here—mitigating spam and scam call flags and implementing new growth tactics—to keep your company in the fight. Recover or safeguard your revenue, and protect the people in your organization, who are the most valuable assets you have.
If you’re curious to learn how PhoneBurner can help keep you in the fight, and ultimately get you the championship belt, sign up for a free trial today.