An autodialer is an electronic device that can automatically dial telephone numbers to communicate between any two points in the telephone, mobile phone and pager networks. In layman’s terms they are the calls that we daily encounter from companies marketing their product and services. An increase in such calls is the reason why just in a small span of approximately five years the telemarketing industry has witnessed a major turnover.
We often get a phone call from telesales persons describing a product or services in such an appealing a way that we actually feel like giving it a try. A bigger example of autodialing are election campaigns, wherein marketing agents of a minister calls person to person to describe their party’s’ agenda and plan.
This practice still prevails largely even though it has taken a different shape. Now the manual calling from work staffs has been replaced by automated messages. These messages are pre-recorded in the required format and are set to perform in a specific way. This technology is known as Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS/IVR System). This voice based computer technology has flourished and contributed a lot in the field of marketing and advertising.
If the companies feel that telemarketing is synonymous to Web Voice based (WV, IVRS etc) then they are right. The technology has been embedded in the field. That is why it is apparently hard not to correlate marketing over phone with IVRS and Autodialers.
How did Autodialers come into the picture?
As the era of telemarketing got a strong hold of its roots and made itself a popular strategy worldwide, modernization in existing trends was quite inevitable. First came the voice and web based recorded messages through IVR and Computer Telephony Integration (CTI) and then came Autodialers for more ease.
Placing a separate call for separate individual for the same message was considered as time consuming and a waste of resources. Innovation came in the name of Autodialers. Through Autodialers in IVRS the call recipients’ data could be extracted from a source computer. Then a phone call with a recorded message would be placed automatically to an infinite number of people at same time.
This modern application has its clientele in both public and private industry application. Healthcare, Telecommunication, Banking, Education, Real Estate, Media, Corporate, Clinical and pharmaceutical Industry are a few to be named amongst the far stretched business domains.
The other noticeable domains of IVR in Autodialers are in emergency and disaster management. Autodialers are set to generate indefinite calls at the time of crises, to immediately call multiple recipients. The pre-recorded IVR messages are formulated to direct the recipients about the situation and how to deal with it. For example if a building is blazing with fire, then an Autodialer would promptly reach people in the building and detail them about the severity and location of the fire. They are further informed about the location of fire extinguishers and how they can be used. If the situation is grim enough then the autodialers can also inform the residents to evacuate the building guide them about exit gateways.
Election Campaigns and Advertising Campaigns exploit the Autodialers technology largely to spread their message to the masses in minimum span of time. That is why we often receive calls in the minister’s voice communicating the party’s message for elections. All, thanks to Autodialers and IVRS technology!
Autodialers are not just confined to IVR based phone calls but are also utilized with Autodialers messages. Few of the aspects on which Autodialers works are:
* Autodialers Alerts and Notification.
* Autodialers Messages (SMS).
* IVR based phone calls.
* Inbound calls.
An Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS) places itself in Autodialers for delivery of recorded messages. Autodialers are an application that helps in releasing and delivering these messages to the community for which they are meant. The model below will help you understand how Autodialers, IVR and computer technology integrates together to produce desired results:
Computer IVR Phone calls merged with CTI (Computer Telephony Integration)
This model is somewhat similar to the call center technology (CCT). Here phone applications are integrated with computers. Then the computer is used with its headset to make calls. The recipients that are to be called are compiled in a defined pattern, and then the entire data is assimilated and handed over to Autodialers. Here, IVR through Autodialers use the data generated to efficiently reach the call recipients in a quick span of time.
The Autodialers are applied for the following nature of functions:
Incoming Calls: Autodialers can receive incoming calls on customer care numbers round the clock, automatically. Through the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) technology callers can help themselves through recorded messages and by pushing the telephone numbers as prompted by messages in accordance to their requirements. The surprising factor of this self-service nature of the Autodialers is that the caller can help himself in retaining the information he needs without actually having to talk to the staff. For example if one wants to know the tariffs of phone services he may as well call up on a customer care number of that service provider. By merely pushing numbers as directed by IVR generated messages, the caller would be able to get all the plan rates and value added services he wants.
Outgoing Calls: The basic function of an Autodialer is without doubt to tele-call targeted people of the client for dispensing information amongst them. Autodialers can also be used to propagate messages among large volumes of recipients through a single phone call. It does so by integrating all the data for making a phone calls (using IVR technology).
Bulk Messages: Short Message Service (SMS) is unfailingly a remarkable tactic to reach people without disturbing them. Keeping in view the profile of the mass clients demarcates the gentry who would prefer SMS’s to a phone call. A formulated message is then sent to these people in form of bulk messaging through Autodialers databases.
More out of IVRS Autodialers
Other than the conventional usage of Autodialers and IVRS for receiving and making calls it is being used for further management also. The Autodialers once set for operation may have cases of no response on calls by some of the targeted call recipients. Hence Autodialers are programmed in a way to take an account of those call sand call the non-responsive recipients back again after some time. Thus rescheduling calls for no answer condition is a virtual benefit with Autodialers mechanism.
Autodialers keep a track of the tasks accomplished by generating a report on the work progress. Thus administrators can keep a check on the messages delivered and the targeted audience to whom they were delivered. Ease of use and automated reports of IVRS autodialers enhance the efficiency of work staff with regards to their targets and deadlines.
Autodialers are now also projected to record messages in form of suggestion; a step that would bring the complain box system to an end. Though this mechanism is in its’ infant stage, however, it promises a lot. It will tremendously give a relief to customers in delivering their suggestion and views. It would also help those individuals who otherwise don’t have time to come and drop their message in person at the company premises. For companies, feedback is no doubt very crucial for development of effective future strategies. Thus an Autodialer opens channels for two-way communication, thereby contributing to the success of both counterparts.
Undoubtedly, Autodialers combined with Interactive Voice Response Systems (IVRS) can be devices that can enable delivery of messages to an indefinite number of people in lesser time, without out-of-budget investment in communications resources and infrastructure.
So far IVR autodialers have proven themselves to be quite effective for telemarketing, helping businesses gain a wider reach. The industry has felt the major boom in telemarketing, which IVR Autodialers has curbed effectively with spontaneous results.