top of page

Honest telephone messages

A few weeks back I posted on Linkedin asking people what annoyed them most about being on hold.

I'm sure we've all been there - desperate to get one of those gold-dust-like doctor's appointments and you get told to wait.

For ages.

But what is it about that on-hold experience that winds people up?

Well, here's a few of the answers...

  • Repeating yourself to different departments

  • An out of date on hold message (eg. "...these unprecedented times...")

  • Being told to go online instead

  • Clichéd messages (eg. "...your call is important to us...")

  • Frequent interruptions to the music when on hold, with repetitive messaging

  • Being disconnected

Needless to say, people were quite angry in the comments!

A subtitle containing the word "Dave!"

And as you can see, it's not always keeping people on hold too long that's the problem.

The discussion moved on to how people would feel if the on-hold message was more honest.

We're all thinking this sort of thing, if my call was really that important, I wouldn't be on hold for 13 minutes! If you employed more people... etc etc.

So, why not just tell us the real reasons?!

This script is based on that - people's pain points with being put on-hold.

Oh, there's a small bit of swearing. But just for emphasis, of course.

How would you feel if you heard something like this?

Would you laugh? Would it put you in a better mood? Would it annoy you even more?

It could be revolutionary! Or it could backfire big time. As always, and quite obviously, it depends a great deal on the brand and its audience.

At the very least, it would stand out amongst a sea of boring on hold telephone messages.

Let me know what you think in the comments on the original post or get in touch if you'd like something similar to the message in the video.

Come on, it will be fun!


For an affordable telephone message solution, please visit the pre-recorded message shop. Lots of immediately downloadable files for a fiver. A quick way to make your voicemails more professional!


Thanks for subscribing!

Martin Whiskin voiceover artist talking into a Rode NT1-a microphone
bottom of page