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What does your business sound like when no one answers the phone?

I called a business today whose line was busy. I could tell that they had voice mail from the phone company. It said “Hi this is ______ Real Estate. We’re sorry we can‘t answer the call. Please leave a message and we’ll call you back.” I recognized the voice; it was recorded by the office assistant. She’s a nice person in her 20’s and very pleasant to meet. Her recording is hard to hear and sounds melancholy. Not the image I think the owner wants to portray.
 
I have always encouraged our clients to use a professional to record their outgoing greetings. Male or female is fine. Make a statement with your message that you are in business. This is not your home answering machine. People will be evaluating your business when they hear this message.
 
If you only have one outgoing greeting, make it count! Make it brief but include information the caller may want (fax number, web address, store hours).
 
If you have a service that provides a schedule for different greetings then the sky’s the limit! This will allow you to tailor your greetings to the callers needs. Day greetings can be brief and assure the caller that you will return the call shortly. After hours greetings can have your hours so they will know when to expect your return call.
 
The greetings need to be clear. Have them done by someone who has a good voice, speaks clearly and distinctly. Spend a few dollars to have it done if necessary.
 
Think about the image your caller will get when you don’t answer the phone. Call your business and listen to the message, then ask yourself is this the image I want to portray? Then ask yourself if you were calling your business for the first time would this message encourage me to want to do business here?”
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The kicker with the call to the real estate office…there was no room left in the voice mailbox!! ARGHHHHH!!
 

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