Businesses often forget to think about how they sound to their customers and prospects. They take care to create a great product backed by a top-notch website, but leave the voicemail greeting to
a bored receptionist, HR person, or a marketing intern. Just recently I called a business and was greeted with a monotone singsong (the name if the company has been changed to protect the
“Thank you for calling the XYZ Company, we aim to be your choice for ABC. If you know your party’s extension, please press it now…”
The greeting did not leave the impression of a warm hug. Instead it left the impression that a phone call is an intrusion. In my previous incarnation as an inside salesperson, the voice was the only way to actually make a connection. Even when reading from a script, I always made sure to internalize the copy and try to connect with my prospect – usually smiling as I read.
Telemarketers – at least those that call landlines – are guilty of this monotone voice as well – as are those taking phone surveys. How many times have I heard some variation of: “Hello, Mr. Vayan-cout, my name is Clara and I can save you money on your pressure washing needs?” Thanks, Clara, but I rent.
As a voice actor, I understand that it is important to make a good first connection with those who call you. Here are some tips:
1. Have a live person answer the phone
2. Smile when you record your voicemail greeting
3. Hire a voiceover talent to record your greeting for you – it doesn’t have to be me
4. Imagine the person you are talking to is a good friend who needs your help
You can listen to this audioblog post at the above link, and hear how I might reimagine the phone greeting.