Inbound Marketing

funnel spider Corporate marketing knows no bounds, respects no limits, does not and cannot cease expanding.

The latest frontier? Call centers, which are rapidly taking on the task practitioners call “inbound marketing”:

NEW YORK ( — Next time you’re on the line with a call center complaining about a product not working properly, don’t be surprised if you’re not rushed off the phone in record speed. The interactions between consumers and call center reps are evolving from hurried griping sessions to extended sales pitches and consultation meetings.

In fact, more and more marketers are looking to turn their call centers into revenue generating centers, according to a new study by Portrait Software, a provider of customer interaction optimization software. A number of factors are driving this shift but none more significant than the challenge of reaching consumers when a growing number of them are opting out of direct mail and email and opting into do-not-call lists. The study shows that 69% of large business-to-consumer marketers view their call centers as “business critical revenue generators.”

And, of course, the whole effort is being scientifically managed:

Portrait Interaction Optimizer is a packaged application that sits behind your existing systems to provide the most accurate, targeted sales, service and retention offer, for each individual customer, at the specific moment of interaction, whatever the channel. The decision of the “best-next-action” is performed in real-time, using an organization’s data, business rules and predictive analytics.

Portrait Interaction Optimizer enables customer data to be connected across siloed business units and disparate channels, without duplication, and multiple customer channels can be managed from a single view. Analytically driven recommendations take the guesswork out of interactions with contextual capability guiding live agents throughout the duration of the dialogue.

Apparently, endeavors like Nationwide Insurance are already using such methods “to sell more through inbound service conversations than we do through traditional outbound direct marketing.”

So, when the public-sector spies talk about TIA, they are merely hoping to acquire the beginnings of what our “private-sector” royalists already enjoy.

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