I know we have all thought about it, some of us will have even planned and strategized as to when the best time to call your leads is? Anyone who has spent time calling people knows that it is a lottery, sometimes you get people and they are willing to talk and other times it just seems impossible to get anyone on the phone. Now this is not an exact science, and everyone is going to have different days. We all have days where sometimes there is not enough time to breath, and we all have days which could be……fuller, let’s say. We also have our own thoughts on when the best time to call someone would be, the general understanding is that late morning, lunch time, and early afternoon are the best times to call people.
According to research from The Lead Response Management Organziation that information is in fact wrong. The statistical and empirical evidence actually points to the opposite of that being true. They found the best time to call someone was between 8-9am and 4-6pm and the lunchtime period of 1-2pm being the worst time to try and reach someone.
When we start looking into this to understand why we can come up with some interesting observations. Let’s start with the 8-9am timeframe. Seeing as 9am is the accepted start of the work day in many countries it is a wonder why calling someone before the start of the day would be useful. There are a couple of reasons, one big one is that chances are if the person you are trying to talk to is a decision maker, they are important enough to have a gatekeeper. Gatekeepers are the guards between your sale and the person who can make the decision about it, they might be receptionist, secretaries or just people who man the phones. But their job is to limit access to the valuable people in the organization. Calling at this time increases the chances that the gatekeeper will not be in the office to guard your prized contact.
The other reason why this is a good time is because chances are that if your person is a key decision maker that means they are a go-getter, and these people tend to be very busy people. So once the work day officially begins at 9am there are rounds of meetings to attend, clients to see, presentations to give and many other numerous tasks that occupy your day. Most senior people get in early so they can take advantage of the peace and quiet in the office before the madness descends at 9am.
Now let’s look at the other end of the spectrum, the 4-6pm time slot. As this is towards the end of the day people usually do not schedule many meetings at this time. People are winding down and preparing to go home, so it is a great time to reach out to someone as you know they are sitting at their desk.
Although you make think lunchtime is a great time to speak to someone, there are lots of activities that people schedule during this time. As the only major break during the working day people use it to run errands and a lot of meetings take place over lunch. Also let us not forget the big one, people are eating lunch. Let’s be fair no one likes to be disturbed while eating lunch.
What day of the week is the best time to call?
This study also looked at what day of the week was the best to call someone. The study shows some very clear data on what is the best day of the week.
Wednesday and Thursday are the clear favorites when it comes to days of the week to be contacted on. Monday is consistently ranked as the worst day to call someone, which is understandable. Monday’s tend to be filled with review or preparation sessions for the upcoming week. I would also imagine people are not in the best of moods on a Monday compared to the rest of the week.
The single most important factor is reaching someone
It is clear that what time and day you call a person makes a difference in the likelihood of you being able to reach them. However there is one statistic that towers over them all in terms of your ability to speak to a person and that is response time.
The odds of calling to contacting a lead decreased by over 10 times in the first hour. That is an incredible statistic showing how fragile many leads are. The study realized that if the first hour was so important maybe they should then look how important that single first hour is.
The information here is literally mind blowing. The odds of speaking to a lead in the first 5 minutes versus 30 minutes drops 21 times. So the speed at which you respond to any lead is really the most important factor in determining if you will speak to that lead.
Most companies have a policy of calling back their leads between 24-48 hours after they have been raised. Doing so diminishes the chances of you even being able to speak to that person hugely.
If there is one thing to take away from this post, it’s that response time to leads is the most crucial factor in making sure your sales team closes more business.