Calls are important to service businesses since they are a key way that prospective customers make contact to schedule an appointment. As the parent company of multiple home services brands spanning the globe, Authority Brands needed a way to evaluate call performance for all their brands and locations. Amie Spence, the Director of Call Center Operations for Authority Brands, explains, “It just became more and more challenging for us to get a consistent view of how our marketing campaigns, call centers, and internal and vendor partners were performing. More importantly, we needed a view into how we were providing service to our customer.”
With internal and external call centers serving multiple brands, Spence and team needed a consistent way to evaluate how their call centers handle each call. Since calls come from national ad campaigns, it is also important to understand the impact of those campaigns so the marketing team can optimize results. Like most franchisors, Authority Brands depends on maintaining a healthy relationship with their franchisees and a great experience for customers. To accomplish this, calls need to be routed effectively to the right franchisee in the right location so that each franchise location receives calls from customers in their local area looking for the service they provide.
Several Authority Brands franchises including Mr. Sparky Electric, One Hour Heating and Air Conditioning and Benjamin Franklin Plumbing were customers of Marchex prior to being acquired, so the Authority Brands Operations Team knew what kind of opportunities and data insights could be gleaned from the Marchex call tracking platform. To gain call tracking functionality and insights on a single platform, Spence turned to Marchex. “We had a long history and a very good working relationship, and we know that the best data insights come from the actual phone lines.”
Some of Authority Brands’ franchises were already using call tracking and call recording, but the desire was to get all the data in one place. Authority Brands worked closely with the Marchex team to develop a solution that addresses several challenges of a multi-brand, multi‑location business. The solution streamlines call operations, measures advertising campaigns for optimization and provides deep insights into caller intent and outcomes to understand and optimize every call opportunity.
“It’s much easier if you know that your lines are in that one platform and the calls are recorded and measured and dispositioned in a more consistent way.”
Director of Call Center Operations
Authority Brandsn Site
Streamlined call operations
On the operations side, the Marchex team customized a solution for Authority Brands with multiple built-in tools, allowing them to route calls effectively with IVRs, Zip Routing and Broadcast Messaging. IVRs, or Interactive Voice Response menus, and Zip Routing, can help route calls to the right location and the right service in a timely manner. Authority Brands also uses the Broadcast Messaging feature, which is a pre-recorded automated message used for reminders to schedule annual maintenance appointments.
“For any of our customers on maintenance agreements, we utilize Broadcast Messaging as a way to reach out to them and get them scheduled. It really helps us contact multiple customers with minimal staff, and in turn the customer can easily press a button to schedule an appointment,” says Spence. “The platform allows us to strategically schedule these calls to run at certain times of day where there are higher contact rates or more staff available to take calls.”
Marketing performance improvement
The Authority Brands marketing team also uses call tracking numbers to measure their marketing campaigns that are designed to drive calls. By understanding which channels deliver the highest volume of traffic, campaigns can be optimized to prefer high performing channels. Advertising budget can also be redeployed toward ads that drive high‑value calls.
In addition, the marketing team uses Advanced Call Demographics, a feature that enriches call data with other customer information for better understanding of callers. This data is incorporated into marketing and advertising campaigns to better target customers and boost campaign results. Call tracking and the recordings support all steps in the customer acquisition process from driving calls to routing them efficiently and finally to closing the sale and learning from the opportunity.
Several key features of the Marchex platform help Authority Brands achieve a highly efficient sales process. To begin with, calls are screened and assigned a disposition that reflects the intent of the call. For Authority Brands, dispositions can include labels like “appointment booked,” “maintenance,” or “customer concern.” Looking at these dispositions holistically can help pinpoint common objections or highlight key business activity. Looking at the disposition in the context of the call can provide relevant information for future interactions.
Authority Brands takes their call monitoring a step further and uses Sales Rescue, a solution based on real-time alerts regarding calls with negative dispositions such as “appointment not booked” or “price objection.” These particular calls are reviewed immediately and routed to an assigned salesperson to determine next steps. Oftentimes, reaching back out to the customer within a few minutes of the negative call can provide a second chance to save the sale.
With the Marchex platform, Authority Brands is able to measure ROI from calls coming from marketing campaigns, find missed opportunities, and coach their call center teams to improve the customer experience. When a call goes unanswered or an appointment isn’t booked on an initial call, Spence and team can easily review the call, find out why an opportunity was missed, and save some of the opportunities that would have otherwise be lost to a competitor.
The Marchex Platform helps Authority Brands improve the customer experience, for both their franchisees, and in turn, their franchisees’ customers. By efficiently routing calls to the right franchisee and saving multiple calls that would have otherwise resulted in a missed opportunity, Authority Brands increased their call conversion rates by over 3%. A conversion for Authority Brands is an appointment set, and more appointments equals more revenue earned. The platform also provides coaching opportunities for call center staff so they can apply call handling best practices and book more appointments, also resulting in increased revenue. In addition, building out customer profiles using Advanced Call Demographics has enabled the marketing team to create better target audiences and optimize their marketing campaigns more successfully.
As a franchisor of multiple brands, Authority Brands can review all their call data in one place with a top-down view of how all their franchisees’ calls are performing. Having a single platform has allowed them to effectively evaluate call performance across multiple brands and locations, improving their call center operations as a whole. “It’s about quality,” says Spence. “It goes above and beyond just the call data. For myself and my team on the call center operations side, it gives us easy access to those call recordings so we can listen to that full script, understand the full customer experience, and adjust or update scripting as needed. We use the really good calls to train and coach new hires or other call takers that may need some help or examples. The recordings tell the story, so it’s important for us to be able to do that quality control and make sure that our brand is protected too.”