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5 min read

Are Misleading Call Intent Labels Costing Your Business?

Unraveling the Complexities of Call Categorization for Transparent Communications
Written by
Sarah Blantz, Marketing Coordinator
Mary Gonzalez, Brand & Content Manager
Published on
August 29, 2023

Call Intent Labeling

Imagine you’re a healthcare provider whose calls are being mislabeled as “Unknown,” leading to distrust, ignored calls, and missed opportunities to provide essential care. Or perhaps you work for an airline trying to inform passengers of a last-minute flight change, but the calls are being tagged as “Telemarketing,” resulting in confusion, missed flights, and upset customers who may end up switching airlines to one they think will be more trustworthy or reliable. Though different than reputation-based labels like “Spam” and “Scam,” they have one major thing in common: they can happen to anyone.

Call intent labeling is more than a technical term in today’s telecom space; it’s a critical component that defines the way calls are categorized, such as “Healthcare,” “Nonprofit,” or “Account Services.” While the concept may seem clear-cut, the reality is fraught with inconsistency and misunderstanding. It’s an issue that goes beyond reputation management and branded calling, affecting every organization that relies on transparent and efficient communication.  

Here is a list of the most commonly applied call intent labels that can be seen across the various carriers and devices:

  • Healthcare
  • Telemarketing
  • Account Services
  • Public Services
  • Survey
  • Nonprofit/Charity
  • Customer Service
  • Political
  • Debt Collection
  • Unknown
  • Private

The Complexities of Call Intent Display

Call intent labeling can serve as a vital guide, enabling end-users to discern the nature of incoming communications, differentiating genuine interactions from potential spam or unwanted phone calls. While this particular labeling system intends to provide transparency into the nature of the call, it’s not uniformly applied across the industry.

The Variability of Carrier-Based Call Intent Labeling

Different carriers may interpret and display these labels in numerous ways, adding a layer of complexity to an already intricate process. Generally, carriers default to specific call intents but with some free call filtering services, consumers may only see labels like “Healthcare” or “Public Service” when a display name is not available. Other call intents may not appear at all.  

When premium call filtering services are deployed, the situation evolves, displaying a broader spectrum of labels like “Telemarketing,” “Survey,” or “Nonprofit” when the display name is absent. These variations among carriers highlight the unique challenges of call intent labeling, transcending the capabilities of standard solutions.

The Nuances of CNAM

CNAM, or Caller ID Name, operates through a network of databases maintained by different telecommunications providers and carriers. When a call is made, the terminating service provider queries its proprietary database to retrieve the name associated with the caller’s number. That information is then displayed on the recipient's phone screen.  

CNAM seems simple enough, but the process is rife with roadblocks that can lead to inconsistencies and confounding delays. CNAM’s effectiveness varies because it’s more complicated than updating a name; it involves navigating a web of providers who control the information, technical considerations, and potential risks in multiple CNAM databases.  

The CNAM displayed is vulnerable to discrepancies as wireless carriers use a combination of crowd-sourced data from 3rd party analytics companies and multiple databases, to record the CNAM. About 8 CNAM Database providers, some carrier-run, others independent, maintain these records, but not all are equally updated, used, or maintained. Plus, service providers may subscribe to one or more of them.  

This decentralized infrastructure can lead to inaccuracies and issues with accessibility of data and lack of input and control directly from the brand to multiple database providers. The chaotic nature of CNAM can have real-world implications for trust, communication, and even business success. When there is no display name associated with the number, a general call intent may be applied by the carrier, and you may not know what call intent you’re being labeled with.

The Limitations of Traditional Call Monitoring  

Traditional call monitoring systems, built on principles and practices that may have once been groundbreaking, now reveal themselves as constrained by their own design. Like a machine unable to learn new languages, they speak in tones that may no longer resonate with the dynamic nuances of a world that refuses to stand still.

Traditional systems suffer from a lack of adaptability with their inflexible frameworks, meaning they often fail to offer tailored solutions for specific business demands. These systems provide limited insights into call intent labeling, leaving businesses uninformed while operating reactively rather than proactively. Inconsistencies in brand representation across carriers and technological barriers make it even harder to know how your calls are actually being labeled, leading many to over-invest in multiple testing devices.  

Overall, these models lack the depth of partnership needed, exposing a sizable gap in traditional monitoring that claims to be in real-time.

Experience a 360 View for Call Intent Labeling Visibility  

Today’s telecom arena demands more than traditional solutions. It requires an approach rooted in expertise, innovation, and unwavering commitment to solving the real challenges that businesses face every day. Numeracle’s end-to-end Entity Identity Management (EIM) Platform represents a radical departure from conventional methods, offering a suite of solutions that respond not only to present challenges but anticipate future needs.  

Spot-Check for Labels while Controlling Brand Delivery
Number Check

On-demand visual confirmation of call identity, including real screenshots of live calls across all major carriers. This tool allows you to spot-check registered numbers at will, offering unique insights into call intent labeling when it's most critical. By bridging the gap between differing labels, Number Check ensures that your messages reach their intended audience with clarity and accuracy, empowering users with more than just monitoring.

Smart Branding  

Numeracle's Smart Branding solution redefines the management of call intent by enabling intelligent, customized branding choices so you control exactly what’s being delivered on call screens, without having to manage updating your CNAM in multiple databases. Instead, brand the calls that make the most sense to brand; not all calls or numbers need to be branded or have explicit caller information. Rather than an all-in approach, which can lead to high costs, our strategic method allows you to start small and iteratively refine your approach while comparing branded and non-branded campaigns to make informed decisions. This allows for strategic enhancement of your branding efforts without a complete overhaul or prohibitive costs, adding value precisely where it matters most.

An Expert Team of Advocates

If you deal in an industry that is particularly vulnerable to improper labeling, whether it be a “Scam Likely” label or “Telemarketing” label, Numeracle offers unparalleled expertise in the field. Our dedicated Client Engagement Team, all with a past working in the call center space, works closely with you to consult you on best dialing practices to help you further avoid any improper labels. While we’re able to actively protect 99.77% of a clients’ phone numbers registered to our platform from reputation-based labeling, if any improper “Scam” or “Spam” labels do appear, we proactively remediate them on your behalf, and we can provide full visibility into how your calls are being delivered and displayed to consumers. For incorrect intent-based labeling that doesn’t accurately match the intent of your calls, we can also help you through the process of changing the category displayed to a more appropriate category that most accurately matches the content of your calls.  

In a market crowded with similar solutions, standing out requires a personalized, hands-on approach that truly aligns with your needs. At Numeracle, we've seamlessly blended innovation and customization. Our recent webinar, "Excellence in Customer Care: The Numeracle Difference," showcased how this unique combination empowers clients to harness tailored solutions for success. If you're dealing with improper spam or call intent labels, our team is here to provide the expertise and customized solutions you need.

Get Started Today

With years of industry-leading success, our team understands the difficulties involved with managing your number reputation.  

If you’re reading this, you’re already on the path to identifying the reputation management solution best suited for your business. Knowing there’s much to unpack here, our team is available to offer personalized recommendations via one-on-one free consultations of your current dialing landscape and labeling situation. Contact us today to schedule a free assessment and regain control of your call delivery.  

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