How many times have you seen a number pop up on your home phone or cellphone’s caller ID and seen that it was a long-distance number and decided not to answer it? If you’re like most people, you probably think, “I don’t know anyone from that area code,” and then disregard the call entirely. The call goes unanswered and you move on with your day.
Now, let’s turn the narrative around. What happens when the number that appears has a local area code? Does this change the story at all for you? Again, if you’re like most people, it makes a marked difference.
For most people, seeing a local area code associated with an unfamiliar phone number makes it more likely that they will pick up. If you work in a contact center or otherwise make calls for a living, you may wish that you had a way to call from different area codes so that you could always be “local” to the people you were trying to reach. That might increase the chances that they would actually answer, after all - but how could you possibly call from all over the country without hopping on a plane and making calls midair?
Enter: Local Presence Dialers
The answer is the utilization of local presence dialers. These tools allow contact centers and other businesses to use local numbers to contact consumers. It matches the consumer’s local area code or one within a specific geographic range close to the consumer to the entity calling, so their number shows up on caller ID and other technology as a local number. No additional work has to be done on the part of the company calling - no traveling, no arrangements made with businesses in other locations. It’s as simple as dial and wait for the other person to pick up the call!
The Big-Time Benefits of Local Numbers
What are the benefits of using a local presence dialer over calling traditionally? As we’ve already mentioned, consumers are more likely to pick up the phone - but why?
One of the first reasons consumers report picking up the phone for a seemingly-local number over one with an unfamiliar area code is a lack of memory on their part. They see a local number and wonder if it is someone they know, whose number they simply forgot to save to their contacts. It isn’t, of course, but that uncertainty is enough to give them a reason to pick up the phone.
Another reason they report being more likely to answer is because they feel that local numbers are more trustworthy. Regardless of where a person is from, people tend to be somewhat rooted in their surroundings. We trust the area we are from or where we reside more than the big, unfamiliar world beyond it. It only makes sense that we would be more trusting of a phone call from a local person than someone from miles away that we know without a second’s hesitation that we’ve never met.
Local Presence Dialing Over Phone Company Red Tape
You can see the obvious benefits of using local numbers to reach your prospects. But can’t you do the same thing by securing an unused number from the telephone company in that person’s area?
Technically, yes. You could do that. And it might even save you some money. But what it would cost you is time - and tons of it.
Securing a phone number from the phone company can take as much as several weeks in some circumstances. That is more than enough time for what started as a hot lead to go stone-cold. Time is money in the world of contact centers, and wasting time is equal to tossing cash in the trash. If you’re in the business of actually making money - and providing a great customer experience - that is simply too long to wait.
Strike while the iron is hot - and while a customer is still potentially interested - by using a local presence dialer. This technology allows your agents to make calls from anywhere, with access to local numbers everywhere. There’s no need to get the phone company involved and wait for weeks to hear back from them. Simply dial, wait, and get ready to wow your lead!
But Is It Legal?
There is a common misconception in the contact center industry that local presence dialers are illegal. While there are legal guidelines regarding their use, they are not illegal.
What is illegal is to use a number that is already in existence - such as the number of a person’s friend, loved one, place of business, or medical provider - to contact them. This is often referred to as “spoofing” a phone number and is both deceptive and dangerous. Under no circumstances is it acceptable to do this as a contact center.
However, using a local area code to make a connection with a consumer more likely is not illegal. All you are doing is using an available phone number - one not currently in use - to make calls. Put your mind at ease and put this technology to work in your center today!
Where to Get the Technology You Need for Local Dialing
Now that you know how much you stand to gain from the use of local presence dialers, you’re probably wondering where to get this software for your facility. There are numerous sources for local presence dialers, but not all are created equally. Your best bet is to go through a software solutions source that you already know and trust - one that can also help your business meet any other needs you may have.
ChaseData offers a wide range of software solutions - including dialers- to help streamline both the outbound and inbound contact center’s everyday operations. Give our experts a call today and let us help you find the perfect solution to your needs!