The time it takes to dial out to a list varies drastically by location, time of day, length of recorded message, rate of pick up and transfer into the event, etc. Here are some reasonable expectations for dial out time for common list sizes:
- a dial out to a list of 100k should take 20 minutes or less
- a dial out to a list of 40k should take 10-15 minutes
- a dial out to a list of 5k should take 5-10 minutes
Since not everyone joins the call at once, we often get questions on how to organize the event.
Question: Can we start dialing out earlier than our scheduled time?
Answer: Yes, you can start dialing out 5 minutes early. The staff is able to log in up to 15 minutes prior to your scheduled event to get set up. Once the hosts and screeners are in place, you can ask the event specialist to begin the dial out 5 minutes prior to the scheduled event.
Question: How long after the dial out begins should we wait before starting?
Answer: Only a couple of minutes. Once the dial out is launched, the participants will receive a call, hear the Live Answer recording, and then be transferred to the event where they wait in music hold until you choose to start the event. Participants will drop off the call if they are left in music hold too long, so it is a good idea to turn music hold off and begin the event. It is worth noting the dial out really hits its stride about 3-5 minutes in, so at that point, you should start seeing participants join at a faster rate.
If you're concerned about not having enough people on the call initially, you can include a little more material in your introduction. (See the iTownHall Setup Instructions and Scripts for the moderator's introduction.) Another option is to have a couple of people call in early on the participant line with questions ready.
NOTE: The first 500 minutes of dial in participation is free, but after that, there is a charge. Speak with your account representative if you have questions about this.
Question: When is the best time to present our most important information so that it will reach the most people?
Answer: This depends greatly on how long the dial out lasts and how long your event will last. For an hour-long, 40k dialout, present this material about 15 minutes in. The average attendee duration is 13-14 minutes, so this will be close to the end of the dial out and before people start to drop off the call.