Back to Posts

Increase Cold Call Connection Rates with A/B Call Testing

5 min read
Updated Aug. 25, 2021
Published Oct. 2, 2017

A/B testing for sales emails has become pretty standard in most sales processes. Whether your reps test different subject lines or compare the use of GIFs versus plain text, testing confirms which messages generate the best responses from your prospects.

But today’s salespeople shouldn’t be restricted to A/B testing email alone. They should be able to test and optimize every channel of their sales process, including their phone calls.

Phone steps are another important piece of your team’s sales process that can also suffer from low engagement. So, rather than accepting mediocre call connection rates, wouldn’t it make sense to use A/B testing to increase your call engagement?

There are some variables with your rep’s calls that are inside their control and some that are outside of it — e.g., the prospect’s personality or the messaging used. But by manipulating one variable at a time, you can determine a cause and effect relationship that can increase in conversion rates. So let’s look into how you can A/B test your sales rep’s calls by controlling specific variables and glean valuable results.

Control Your Messaging

When your sales reps hop on phone calls, there are a number of ways they can carry on the conversation. But how can you find patterns in their call behavior with inconsistent or random messaging? To test your rep’s calls you need to minimize the number of messaging variables by providing them with call scripts.

Similar to how you adjust templates when A/B testing emails, your call scripts will have similar messaging, with minor tweaks to prove which messages perform best. For clarify with your testing, you should issue two scripts at a time and specify what variable is being tested. One example is to try different introductory questions like a yes or no question versus and open-ended questions:

  • Did I catch you at a bad time?
  • How are you currently accomplishing x?

While individual reps can A/B test their own scripts this way, you can also test your call scripts across the entire team. Divide your sales reps into two teams and assign script A to team 1 and script B to team 2. The team approach will provide a consistent use of each script — and a larger pool of data to analyze.

Review the Data

Implementing call script to your team is only the first step of A/B testing your calls. In order to make conclusions about the scripts you put in place, you have to evaluate the data.

While you can spend time gathering data from individual reps, modern technology has made call data very simple to pull together using your sales engagement platform or CRM.

Platforms like Salesloft offer robust dialer analytics make it easy to prove call test success based on the positive conversation ratio. When your reps make their calls, they will log each call with a specific disposition and sentiment. The call sentiments will determine the positive conversation ratio. Calls labeled with the sentiments, “Meeting scheduled,” “Timeline 6–12 months,” or “Interested” are considered calls that push your sale forward and increase your positive conversation ratio. When you compare positive conversation ratios between different call scripts on an individual rep or team level, you can clearly see which call script has received the best response.

Test Your Voicemails Too

Call testing doesn’t have to be specifically reserved for live calls. You can also run tests on the voicemails that your reps leave prospects. Just like with your calls, you can build scripted messages to test how well the message is received. Salesloft even allows you to pre-record voicemail messages that you can drop into the call, which minimizes variables and makes for very simple execution.

The trick to voicemails is keeping a low number of messages in the rotation. You can script voicemails to cater to specific personality types versus company role. Or you can try a detailed message versus something short and sweet.

How can you prove a voicemail is working? By attributing the voicemail to a response. Be sure to instruct your reps to leave a call to action, whether it’s requesting a call back or replying to an email. Successful voicemails will increase the response rates to those messages.

By A/B testing your reps calls, you can identify what messages your prospects respond to. The important thing to remember is that just because you’re seeing success with messages this month, doesn’t mean the same messages will work forever. Once your team has call testing methods in place, continue to test alternative messages. It can make the difference between becoming stagnant and consistently improving your sales team.

Download your copy of the free report today and start turning every discovery call into a highly qualified opportunity.

The Discovery Call Benchmark Report