If you’re going to utilize voicemail for your small business, it’s important to create a greeting that is interesting and grabs your callers’ attention. It coaxes them into leaving a message. They feel compelled. A great voicemail greeting ensures your leads and other important contacts aren’t floating around in a spam email folder, wondering why you’re ignoring them.
Here are our secrets for creating a voicemail greeting your callers won’t be able to ignore.
Tell People Who You Are
It seems obvious, but it’s critical information. Leave it out, and you run the risk of the caller being confused and then hanging up. Yes, the caller dialed your number. Yet, if you don’t identify yourself or your business, you are going to lose the caller.
Keep It Short
This is more important now than ever before, as modern businesses provide so many channels of communication and support for their customers – many instantaneous, like self-support and chatbots. Try to keep your greeting under 30 seconds. You can actually write out your business voicemail script and practice it with a stopwatch if you’re concerned. (A trick we picked up from voice talent recording.)
Plan Out Your Greeting
If you want to create a dynamic voicemail that will drive people to leave messages, you need to avoid sounding like you’re stumbling over every other word. In order to make the right impression, write your voicemail greeting script and practice it. Commit that greeting to memory, and you’ll be able to speak with authority.
Whether you’re adding humor to your greeting, trying to be more unique, or including a special offer, you will want to keep your language positive. Using negative words can have an adverse effect on your customers or clients. Consider replacing anything that could have a negative connotation. “We’re not available at this time” could be replaced with “We’re fulfilling orders at the moment, but we can’t wait to talk to you”, for instance.
Watch Out for Background Noise
Nothing sounds less professional on a voicemail than background noise. Sirens, crying babies, coughing… extraneous noise is distracting and makes you sound unprofessional. Find a quiet room in your home or lock yourself in your office and record away.
The standard greeting – “I can’t answer the phone, so leave a message and I’ll call you back” – is so overused that callers almost don’t hear it any longer. Instead, try something that will entice the caller to stay on the line. Here are a couple of ideas:
- This is Sue with Smith Accounting. It makes my day that you called, but I’m buried in spreadsheets at the moment. Leave your name and number, and I will get back to you ASAP.
- Hi, there! You’ve reached Daryl with Bug Busters. Scream at the beep if there are roaches climbing your walls – we’re ready to be on the case. Don’t forget your name and number, too. We’ll be in touch within an hour.
- Need a taco party in a rush? Just want to chat? I’m Lourdes, owner of Mi Vida Taco truck, and I’m happy to help you. Leave your name and number and I’ll call you back before we close.
These examples are engaging, and tailored to each business; they don’t follow the typical voicemail format. Creative voicemails are also much more likely to drive a caller to listen all the way to the beep.
Throw in Some Humor
Humor is the glue that binds us all; if well delivered, a little bit of humor can make a great impression on a voicemail greeting. Say something humorous about your profession or why you missed the call – it’ll be a hit.
Smile When You Record
Voicemail can be so drab. Often when people are creating a voicemail greeting, it’s off the cuff and in a rush just so the task is done. One easy tweak: smile when you talk. It sounds so cliché, but it works.
Engage your caller by asking something above and beyond the standard voicemail information. This could be the beginning of your next conversation, and help to build rapport. Adding a little spice can help you connect with the caller even when you can’t physically take their call.
Change Your Greeting Often
You want your business to appear fresh. If you use your voicemail to share promotions or if you travel frequently, you should regularly update your greeting to reflect current information. Don’t ever let it go stale or sound outdated.
Creating an engaging voicemail greeting goes beyond the phone. Voicemail can be a dynamic tool if you utilize it to its fullest potential. If you use your greeting to engage with your callers, provide promotional information or just to entertain, people will be more inspired to stay on the line beyond the beep.