The Future of Call Tracking: Conversation Analytics

Nearly $70 billion in marketing was spent in the U.S. just four short years ago, according to BIA/Kelsey, to generate phone calls. That’s a LOT of cash. Fast-forward to 2016: Because of the smartphone’s explosive popularity and the increase in click-to-call interests, that number is only going to continue to grow. Perhaps it’s time to introduce the benefits of call tracking.

Call tracking is like Google Analytics for the phone – the idea is to determine which online ads, keywords and campaigns generate phone calls and which ones don’t, and this is accomplished by assigning unique phone numbers to specific pieces of marketing, online sources, keywords or campaigns. This data is important for businesses big and small – and the marketing agencies that represent them – because without it, ROI (Return on Investment) calculations are incorrect and incomplete.

Okay, so call tracking is important but what’s beyond this? The future of call tracking holds something more powerful.

Did you know that nearly 420 billion words are spoken each day on phone calls between businesses and customers? That’s a LOT of words and a lot of data. So what we have to start doing is mining that data and doing something with it. Analyzing these words and pulling out useful information is the future of call tracking.

Marketers “in the know” often say it this way: “Call tracking is so 1998…! We should be demanding more from the internal tracking.”

Let’s break it down like this:

Basic call tracking: Call tracking provides call source data, call duration, call recordings and occasional keyword data while also providing businesses and agencies with data about which campaigns, ads and keywords generate calls and which don’t. And while this is great, it’s not nearly enough.

Traditional call tracking + conversation analytics: The industry now combines traditional call tracking metrics with in-depth analysis about what happens during the conversation itself. This is truly BIG DATA.

What does all this mean for the future of digital marketing agencies? Ultimately, call tracking gives businesses and agencies the data they need to make better marketing and sales decisions. Without the data that call tracking provides, marketers are driving with a substantial blind spot. But call tracking software is innovating and this means that businesses – local and national, large and small – have even more data to make better decisions.

Marketing is about accurate metrics, and unless you’re using call tracking software, your metrics are incomplete.