We live in an age where people tweet to one another or message via Facebook, but some people still reach out via the phone. With all of the technology that has come up, some people have forgotten the lost art of answering a business call.
How you answer your phone can be just as important as any marketing strategy or campaign that you come up with. It is the first contact and first impression that potential clients get when they speak with you or anyone in your business.
Cathy Hernandez is the owner and operator of A&A Virtual Office, a locally owned answering, transcribing and administrative services firm that has been the front desk for many small businesses and entrepreneurs. Cathy is experienced and well versed in the art of the business call. She provided a few tips regarding answering a business call:
1) Be professional - you can't answer with "Waz uuuuup?" and a generic "Hello?" will have people asking if they dialed the right number. Callers should get a courteous, professional response, know who they have called and feel that they are dealing with a professional business. Remember first impressions count.
2) People like talking to people and not machines - we have all called an 800 number and started hitting "0" to get to a "live operator". An answering machine may be less expensive but could cost you business. If cost is an issue an answering service can provide that professional first contact for a fraction of the cost.
3) A missed call can mean missed business - if potential clients are calling you, they are also calling your competitors. A professional response to a call can go a long way to creating a good first impression, provide potential clients with answers to general questions they may have and set expectations as to signing up for services or purchasing products. If it's getting difficult to get to your calls, having someone take on that task may be a good idea. Again, an answering service is a cost effective option for small businesses or entrepreneurs.
A phone call may seem like a little thing, but it's the little things that can drive potential clients away. Providing a good first impression regardless of any channel that you interact with potential clients on can make your marketing campaign a success as opposed to lost dollars.