7 Challenges in Writing Outbound IVR Scripts

Everyone agrees that a good first impression is key to starting a relationship off on the right foot.  Today with all the channels available for customer communications be it email, social media, text or instant message, or voice, the window of opportunity is mere seconds before we delete, click away or hang up. Outbound or proactive messages can increase sales transactions, reduce inbound call volumes, increase customer self-service, or when warranted, connect customers to customer service representatives in your contact center.

Organizations today still rely on outbound interactive voice response (IVR) or automated voice messaging (AVM) to proactively communicate with their customers through all stages of the customer lifecycle. But there are many pitfalls in writing a script. See below seven common challenges for writing an outbound customer script.

Over-Writing or Formal Writing – We simply don’t need to use too many words.  Short, declarative sentences work best. Communicate like a human, not a term paper.Steer clear of too much legalese language too. Even lawyers hate listening to this on the phone.

  1. Treating customers like non-customers – Make sure the list of you are calling has accurate data. Don’t spend time and resources trying to re-sell a product or service to your customer if they already utilize it. Especially for current customers, it’s not a positive experience as it shows you don’t have a solid database of information.
  2. Too many contact points – Pick a call to action and go with it.   Don’t list every solitary contact point, toll-free phone number, website URL, email address, otherwise the listener won’t go to any of them. If the goal is to drive traffic to your IVR, then just supply the IVR number.
  3. No offer, or wrong offer – A good offer always works in outbound IVR.  Experiment with different offers to come up with the best ahead of time and then launch en masse.
  4. No priority queue – When using outbound IVR, remember YOU are calling THEM.   Don’t make them wait in your inbound queue to speak to an agent.  They should go to the head of the line.
  5. Repeating the entire “live agent” script – Live is not the same as pre-recorded. Don’t insult the customer by pretending it is.  Get to the point, quickly and respectfully.
  6. Opt-In/Permissions – Make sure you are adhering to compliant messaging regulations. Capturing and maintaining express consent and contact preferences not only assures compliance, but shows your customer you are listing to their communications preferences.

Improve your response rates using voice messaging as a substitute for, or a supplement to, your traditional customer contact methods. Outbound IVR cost-effectively increase revenue, enhance customer service and retention, and reduce inbound calls to your contact center by proactively communicating with customers.

Learn more about sending timely and relevant customer communications in our webinar OnDemand, Got Cloud? Embracing the Move to Proactive Customer Communications.