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Tuesday, 20 June 2017 09:37

The Best Time to Prospect…Is When You Don’t Have To

The Best Time to Prospect…Is When You Don’t Have To

Prospecting for sales is a process, an ongoing process.  Many sales people get caught in a trap of filling the sales pipeline only to watch it dry up at the most inopportune time.  Typically, as the pipeline fills we begin to concentrate on closing activities versus prospecting activities.  This creates a roller coaster effect when 30 – 90 days later we suffer from depriving our prospecting activity.

Jeb Blount, author of Fanatical Prospecting says “the more you prospect, the luckier you get”.  Top sales people spend as much as 80 percent of their time on prospecting and qualifying activities. 

Here are some tips primarily highlighted from Blount’s book:

$1·         Never stop prospecting!  You must continually replace attraction in your sales pipeline.  When you don’t think you need to prospect, or don’t think you have time to prospect; that’s when you should be prospecting.

$1·         Don’t rely on one channel for prospecting and don’t rely on the channel you feel generates the least amount of resistance and rejection.  Telephone is often the most effective, but most despised.

$1·         Keep in mind the four objectives to prospecting

o   Set an appointment

o   Gather information and qualify

o   Close a sale

o   Build Familiarity

$1·         Organize your prospects, calling those that you think are most likely to buy first.

GAD can help you organize and implement a well thought out prospecting strategy to keep qualified leads in front of your team.   Don’t wait, your success depends on it.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017 09:33

New Name List Acquisition Got You Down?

New Name List Acquisition Got You Down?

Every day audience development professionals struggle with acquiring effective list sources.  Without a question, the most important part of any telemarketing campaign is the list.  The more targeted the list, the better the response.  It has been proven time and time again, that if you have an outstanding list, you can survive with an average product and offer.

Here are some tips to identifying better quality lists: 

$1·         Don’t be afraid to fail.  You must test to find new sources.  Every source you test is not going to be a winner.

$1·         Negotiate.  Negotiate with your list vendor.  Ask for the unthinkable, you might be surprised what they are willing to offer.  Recently we have negotiated free testing of data, net name arrangements, and replacement or credit of bad data.  You never know if you are not willing to ask.

$1·         Stop calling the same list sources expecting a different result.  In fact, unless they are providing you with some data that is drastically updated you can expect over time the performance will decline.  Think of it this way: the first time you use a responsive list you harvest the lowest hanging fruit.  Without updates to the list generating more lower hanging fruit, you will need a taller ladder.

$1·         To the best extent possible utilize inbound functions to build your own list.  While this strategy does not promote quantity, it affords quality.

$1·         Ask your telemarketing vendor to assist you in sourcing a new list.  Sometimes having a second set of eyes reviewing list possibilities generates different results.  List providers are constantly reaching out to telemarketing venders to promote their services.  In two recent cases GAD identified new list sources that produced considerable cost savings for clientele.

Tuesday, 02 May 2017 13:39

GAD Signs Two New Subscription Product Marketers

Subscription marketing companies continue to see unprecedented growth.  Subscription business sales have grown substantially and faster than two key public benchmarks —S&P 500 sales and U.S. retail sales. The Subscription Economy Index (SEI) has grown nine times faster than S&P 500 sales over the past five years (15.1% versus 1.7%) and four times faster than US retail sales (15.1% versus 3.6%).

GAD has signed with two new product subscription marketers to engage in outbound calling for cancellation reactivation.  While the cost of re-activating a subscriber is almost identical to generating a new subscriber, a reactivated subscriber has a longer life expectancy on average; generating more lifetime value.  Email provides a least cost means of reactivating a subscriber, the conversion was low; resulting in many subscribers left unengaged. 

Through multiple levels of testing, optimum call timing was identified increasing the response rates by 20% of the baseline.

A reinvestment into reactivation of unsubscribed members through outbound telemarketing yielded a ROI of 2 – 3 times higher than replacing attrition with newly acquired customers.  

Friday, 28 April 2017 13:47

May Calling Restrictions

Calling Restricitons for May

May 4th: Rhode Island Independence Day

- Rhode Island

May 22nd: National Patriots Day

- Canada (Quebec only)

May 22nd: Victoria Day

- Canada (All provinces except New Brunswick and Nova Scotia)

May 29th: Memorial Day

- Alabama
- Louisiana
- Mississippi
- Rhode Island
- Utah

Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:22

Apps to Drive Productivity

Apps to Drive Productivity

There are thousands of apps out there designed to increase productivity.  Some do an excellent job of increasing workflow and efficiencies; others become a distraction.  Here are a few of my favorite apps:

An extraordinarily powerful tool for notes.  I have used both Microsoft Note as well as Evernote.  Evernote has a clean, crisp presentation and is extremely easy to use.  The “Basic” plan is free and includes 60MB of uploads per month.  However, for only $34.99/year you can upgrade to the “Plus” plan which includes 1GB of uploads as well as the ability to forward emails into Evernote.  The search functionality is powerful allowing you to quickly locate notes with keywords.  The “Premium” version even goes as far to allow you search text inside of PDF documents, Office documents, and scanned business cards.  I have just ordered a stylus for my tablet and plan to begin using my tablet to take written notes into Evernote.  While I have not fully gone “paperless” this application has helped me to clear a considerable amount of clutter from my desk.

Bannanatag is a great application if you’re involved in sales.  While a “read receipt” request in your mail client can be ignored, Bannanatag integrates with your mail client to insert a tag inside emails to track opens.  Ever send a sales email off and wonder “did they even read that”?  You don’t have to wonder anymore.  This application is not a smartphone application, but an application installed within Outlook or Gmail.  For $10/Month you will receive 100 tags per day.  I also receive a report when someone opens an older email.  On many occasions, I will get a notification that a prospect re-opened a sales email that I sent months ago.  What a better time to reach out, you’re top of mind.

Todolist is a simple, yet very effective application to manage your tasks.  It works across all of your devices, so I can add a task from any of my devices and it syncs.  This is very powerful tool when you have an idea or a simple task needs to be quickly noted and you are away from your desk.  When you finalize the task you simply check it off the list.  Email reminders are sent to you periodically alerting you of “overdue” tasks.  The only problem, it doesn’t “do” the task for you and I find that they begin to pile up in the application – overdue.  Eventually you need to clear them out as something completed, or decide it no longer takes a priority.

-J. Graven

Saturday, 25 March 2017 16:55

4 Ideas for Outbound Telemarketing - Pest Control

I live on the edge of town and unlike my concrete dwelling neighbors, deal with mice, spiders and the occasional snake (they’re there for the mice I suppose).  I have two pest control companies I use on occasion.  I am not an extremely loyal customer to either of these two exterminators, but nonetheless a customer.  To be honest, if I needed one of them right now, I am not sure who I would call.  Most likely the one whose phone number I can locate the fastest.  Both show up on time,  both have done a satisfactory job, and both have done absolutely nothing to earn my repeat business.  It takes more than timely and satisfactory service.  You must WOW me. 

I want to be courted by my providers.  I am the girl waiting to be called on a Friday night for a date, but no one calls.  I don’t receive marketing email and no one follows up after their visit to make sure that my problems have been solved.  No attempt is made to move me to a quarterly maintenance schedule.  Nothing but complacency on their part.  Much like the Cheap Trick song: “I want you to want me.”    

Here are four ideas to leverage outbound telemarketing and put an end to the complacency:

$1.       Build and maintain a customer database.  If you don’t have one, start now.  You can leverage a direct marketing company to help you cleanse this database for future marketing efforts.

$2.       Create a campaign to call past customers (those like me who haven’t heard from you in a while, nor have you heard from me).  Give me a reason to act with your company – a good deal and a proactive attitude would earn my business right now.

$3.       Business 2 Business lead generation.  Look at your newly formed and cleaned customer database.  Who are your biggest commercial clients?  What industries are they in?  Use this analysis to build a list of businesses to contact with a lead generation effort.

$4.       Did you solve your customer’s problem?  Are they happy with your service?  Look at engaging with a satisfaction measurement survey to build confidence with your customers as well as gain valuable feedback.  See more here:


Saturday, 25 March 2017 16:43

Customer Satisfaction Measurement

Theodore Levit, who is credited with coining the term “globalization”, says: from a practical viewpoint, the primary goal of an organization has to be customer retention.  This simplistic statement highlights the fact that customer loyalty is the foundation of any successful company.  In order to achieve customer loyalty, a company must understand and maintain their customers’ satisfaction.  

Today it is more important than ever to develop and foster a “Customer Satisfaction Measurement” (CSM) program. Maintaining and strengthening relationships with existing customers is a critical strategic weapon that can bring increased market share and increased profits. Graven Austin and Drake designs CSM programs which include an ongoing customer satisfaction survey customized for each client.  The data collected from thoroughly planned CSM program can help your organization manage customer loyalty from a Macro, as well as a Micro level.

At the Macro level you will be provided with measurement that is necessary to identify and implement changes within company processes and systems.  These changes will have long and lasting effects on your customer loyalty.

At the Micro level your Account Team will be given the opportunity to connect with customers that respond unfavorably to your product or service.  Instead of focusing on modifying processes and systems, the focus is on addressing a specific customer’s concern.  This allows your team to correct the problem, gain goodwill from your customer, as well as provide important feedback directly to management.  There are many ways GAD can communicate these “at-risk” customers to you:

  • Trigger Emails (Immediate) – Emails sent to a distribution list triggered by the customer’s response to satisfaction survey questions.
  • Trigger Reports (Daily) –Reports identifying at-risk customers.
  • Trigger Recordings – Since we record each survey with the respondents permission, you have the ability to hear first-hand how the customer responded to the survey.  Our system can distribute these recordings when certain triggers are activated indicating that the customer is “at-risk”.
Tuesday, 29 November 2016 11:26

Text Message Marketing

Our company does not engage with text message marketing.  Texting is such a personal form of communication that many find it a violation of their “personal domain”.  One might even argue that it is more intrusive than a phone call.  While our company does not provide texting services, and personally I rarely use text as a communication for external clients and potential clients; many of our clients have an interest in pursuing marketing via text messaging. 

Because text messaging falls under some of the same rules as telephone, I am familiar with the regulation.  I always advise extreme caution to these clients.  In the spirit of education I have provided a link to the FCC Enforcement Advisory HERE.  If you are considering gaining opt-in, make sure you include telephone calls to mobile phones in addition to texts.  This will provide you with the ability to call using an ATDS.

Stay compliant and stay happy!

Wednesday, 29 June 2016 22:16

Visiting Southern Colorado

Colorado Springs is a great place to live and work – it’s no wonder we hang our hats in the shadow of Pikes Peak. Over the years we have found many of our client’s vacation in the area and we are always asked for recommendations. We thought it might be fun to compile a list of some of our favorites for our friends who are visiting the area.


Looking for something healthy while absorbing the beautiful views of Manitou Springs? Visit Adam’s Mountain Café. If you venture out for breakfast, try the Orange Almond French Toast!

Pizzeria Rustica in Old Colorado City is a great place to grab a wood-fired pizza

For the microbrew aficionado don’t pass up a trip to Phantom Canyon Brewery in downtown Colorado Springs.

If you want to transport yourself to London for a pint of Guinness, try the Golden Bee at the Broadmoor.


There are many ways to enjoy the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains, most of which are budget friendly!

Garden of the Gods

The Garden of the Gods is the most visited attraction in the Pikes Peak region. Garden of the Gods offers breathtaking views of red rock formations, as well as natural scenery, rock climbing, hiking trails, and much more.

Pikes Peak

Pikes Peak is the highest summit of the Rocky Mountains reaching 14,115 feet. The mountain offers sightseeing in addition to miles of hiking and biking trails, and three reservoirs that provide ample opportunities to catch fish.

United States Olympic Training Center

The Olympic Training Center is a training center for the U.S. Olympic Committee and Olympic Training Center programs.The Center brings in 130,000 visitors a year, and guided tours are given year-round.

Old Colorado City

This town is filled with an abundance of history, shops, and mouthwatering restaurants. Old Colorado City provides museums, rock climbing, horseback riding, and water parks. .

Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo

The rodeo has been a tradition for more than 70 years, promising significant excitement and traditional events guaranteed to please the whole family.

Helen Hunt Falls

A great hike that takes you to the face of Helen Hunt Falls. The hiking trails are dog friendly (with a leash) and have picnic areas around and near the site.

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