What the Heck Are You Saying in Your Voice Mail Message?
What’s Up With Your Business’ Voice Mail Message and Does it Suck?
Don’t you know that your voice mail message or ‘experience’ can make or break your first impression? It can also deter potential prospects or scare away clients and great referral partners or worse yet….DO NOTHING TO HELP YOU GROW YOUR BUSINESS!
I’ve been picking up the phone lately calling all kinds of people for follow up, feedback and to build relationships even deeper. Frankly the phone call is the ONLY thing that’s working in my marketing these days other than face-to-face connecting or speaking.
The problem is that 99.9% of small business owner’s voice mail messages SUCK! I had to say it that way because there is no other way to describe what I’ve been listening to. Seriously, many times I wanted to comment when the phone went ‘beep’ on your voice mail message on how you could fix it to really serve you instead of leaving the message I intended to leave. I figured though a few people would get mad at me critiquing them out of the blue and unsolicited like that (even though I make a habit of this in every day life); I thought I would refrain this time.
So, WHY is it so important to look at what you say in your voice mail message? – This could be the FIRST experience a prospect has with you or your company. – They may need more information about your services after finding you somewhere and could give up after listening if not professional. – It’s a great marketing tool! – It helps to automate your systems and processes to save you time. Here are some of the MISTAKES
I’ve seen just in the last month:
1. You don’t even say who you are or your company name.
2. Your number is a home number and you have ‘You’ve reached the home of Sue, Peter, David and Sally, etc.’
3. All you have is the phone number repeated saying ‘555-555-5555 is not available’ so no one even knows if they got the right number?!
4. You try to sound sensual (yes, I said sensual) or sexy (possibly to attract a guy, maybe you’re single???); not the place to do that
5. You don’t tell them what you want them to do. (‘Go to your website at www.___________ and get your free __________’ for example would be a good one)
6. This one’s not about voice mail but using home phone numbers for business…don’t you think it’s odd when you call someone for business purposes and their young teenage son or daughter answers?? Stop using that number, what kind of positioning do you think that’s sending to folks?
7. You record your voice mail message from your car on your cell phone and it’s all broken up and we can barely make out what you’re saying – duh?!
8. Leaving out of town messages on too long (Ok, I’m guilty of this sometimes, but not often!) Good thing I’m probably bringing this up in an article and not face-to-face with you huh?
How much of that are YOU doing currently? If not, great, you pass and you’re in the .01% of entrepreneurs who are utilizing your voice mail correctly and in an effective manner.
So, what can you do if these examples sound like you?
1. Get a separate business phone number
2. Record your message from home in a quiet setting from a land line
3. Listen to your message often and see what might be missing and tweak it
4. Add a call to action at the end, something easy yet everyone will want
5. Leave your website and/or email address for further information
6. Give them ‘next steps’ to take if you have something special they can enter into like a membership, free consult, etc. but set it up automatically if you can
7. Record a personal message, don’t use recorded messages; they are very impersonal
8. Try to stay away from lengthy phone trees with multiple options that confuse and anger many people
A couple extra notes:
1. Don’t have too many phone numbers on your card or people get confused as to where to contact you, one is generally enough. If you go out of town or can’t get to that for a day, try forwarding it to your cell and/or have your assistant go in and check voice mail a couple times a day. Or better yet, if you typically get a lot of phone calls each day, hire a company to be your ‘receptionist’ for you and they’ll screen your calls and forward those you want.
2. You may want to NOT give out your cell as a practice at some point in your business as you uplevel yourself for positioning sakes and to help guard/protect your time. By no means is doing this going to get you to the million dollar business but I guarantee if you DON’T CHANGE THIS one little aspect of your marketing you will never get there for sure!!!
This is just an example though of how easily you could be losing business without even being aware of it.
How many other ‘holes’ do you have in your business, your marketing, your systems and more that you aren’t even looking at?? How much could this be affecting your BOTTOM LINE? A lot! If you are too busy to pay attention to detail right now, and I know most of you probably are, then you want to make sure you’ve got someone else to ‘identify those holes’ and show you how to fix them in your business.
If you haven’t gotten someone (good) in to really analyze what you’re doing, how you’re doing it and help you plan for where you want to go recently…then it’s time for some housekeeping and some BUTT KICKING!
Source by Katrina Sawa