I was chatting to a friend a few weeks ago about my work and how I'd been enjoying recording lots of phone messages for different types of business. He told me his office had just had theirs refreshed - OMG YOU DIDN'T ASK ME TO DO IT, MATE I COULD HAVE DONE YOU A DEAL - by a lady in accounts, who didn't enjoy the experience in the slightest.
Let me say that it's absolutely fine to record them in house, lots of people do. However, taking the above example into consideration, it can produce less than optimal results.
The lady in accounts didn't want to do it and I dare say you can hear it in her voice.
I'm sure many of you have been on hold to your doctor's or similar and the messages have people talking in the background, printers firing, coughing and other such room ambience. Maybe I notice more than others because I record them regularly but it's important to consider the impression being given off to your customers.
Have a think about your current messages and how they sound:
Is the voice using the appropriate tone for the audience? It's no good using Happy Dave the hearse driver to record them for the funeral parlour.
If you were a customer of yours (that sounds odd), how would you like to be spoken to? It has to sound interested, engaged and personal.
Do the voice and message empathize with the caller? Understanding the need of the customer is very important.
Does it sound like you care? There's no point apologizing for the wait if it sounds like you're reading from notes on the back of your hand or looking out the window or playing another game of Solitaire.
Does the voice represent your brand well? 60-a-day Sue might sound cool with that sensual huskiness, but the new mum calling to see if the pram is in stock yet might think otherwise.
Just because you can't see the customer when you're recording these messages, doesn't mean you shouldn't consider them. First impressions are extremely important and when someone phones you, it’s an opportunity to communicate your brand.
Using a professional voice over artist for voicemails, on hold messages or IVR menu systems has several benefits:
It will better connect with the caller.
It gives you a professional image.
It suggests your care about every part of your business.
It shows attention to detail.
It gives the brand an identity.
Businesses across the whole spectrum don't have DIY recordings. I've worked with vets, sports organisations, locksmiths, recruitment consultants, sneeze screen manufacturers (how topical!), watch makers and a whole range of others.
Ultimately, as with every other part of your business, it's your decision, but hopefully the above points have given you food for thought. Biscuits preferably. Or crisps.
If you're still engaged (great pun there for phone fans) with the article by this point, take a listen to some phone message examples in my demo reel below.
And if you're still engaged, I'M SORRY TO KEEP YOU WAITING I WON'T BE TOO MUCH LONGER, drop me a line to discuss professional voicemail messages, IVR and on hold!
If you want a new answer message IMMEDIATELY or you simply don't want to talk to me, you can head over to the pre recorded voicemail greetings download page and buy one now!
Blimey, how many calls to action can one blog post have? Three, apparently... ...if all of the above words haven't sold you, read more words about the same thing in the form of a case study. A client of mine hired me to refresh their on hold messaging and they said I was professional AND charismatic. CHARISMATIC!