Have you ever tried calling a company only to be disappointed that no one picked up? Or have you been directed to a confusing and lengthy voicemail? It can be pretty frustrating as a customer. But if this describes your own business, chances are, you’ve lost potential customers.

Although answering calls immediately is considered your best approach, it’s not always possible, and this is where voicemail plays an important role. It provides a sense of security and assurance for customers — they’ll know they’ve contacted the right number, and feel that their concerns will be addressed. From your business’ perspective, voicemail allows you to offer an engagement opportunity when you can’t answer, and helps you determine which calls to prioritize.

It’s crucial to create a voicemail that entices customers to leave a message. Turn your missed calls into opportunities with our top three must-follow voicemail tips:

Align your voicemail with your brand. Your voicemail is an opportunity to make a good first impression of your brand, so be consistent with the image and tone that you want to convey to customers. Remember that voicemails are part of every customer’s journey. Think about your customer — what would you say to them? How would you talk, and what words would you use? You know your business best, so create your voicemail as if you’re speaking directly to a customer. With your customer in mind, decide whether to use a professional or more casual greeting. If you have a younger audience, feel free to add a little humor to capture attention.

Make it short and informative. Customers are busy and have limited attention spans for voicemails, so keep them as brief as possible. Ideal length ranges from 20 to 25 seconds. Use this time wisely, and be informative. Voicemails should have the following essentials: a greeting, basic business information, the reason why you’re unable to take the call, a request for information, and an invitation to leave a message.

Avoid greetings that are short but not meaningful, such as: “This is [company name], please leave a message after the beep.”

Instead, make one that provides all necessary information, such as: “Hello! You’ve reached [name] of [company name]. I’m currently out of the office. Please leave your name, contact details and a short message after the beep, and I’ll get back to you as soon as I’m available.”

Always end your voicemail with an assurance that you received the message and will return the call as soon as you can. By doing so your customers will feel valued and acknowledged.

Keep it updated. Are you going on vacation? Does your business have new hours? Updating your voicemail doesn’t take a lot of time, can save your customers confusion, and helps manage expectations. If you update on a regular basis, your greeting will feel more personal to customers — they’ll feel that their calls are more important.

Updating your voicemail doesn’t have to be complicated. Here’s an example: “Hi, this is [name] of [company] name. I’m currently away from the office until [date] for [reason]. Please leave a short message with your name and number and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Thank you.” Of course, don’t forget to change it again once you return to the office!

Having trouble coming up with a message? Below are some ideas to get you started. They’re generic, so use them as a jumping off point, and customize based on your business’s ideal customer:

“You have reached [your company]. All of our agents are currently assisting other customers. Please leave a message with your name and number, we’ll return your call within two business hours. Thanks for calling.”

 

“Hi, this is [your name] of [your company]. We are currently closed. Our normal operating hours are [schedule]. Please leave a message with your contact details and I will return your call when the office reopens. Thanks!”

 

“Hey there, you’ve reached the voicemail of [your name] at [your company]. I’m currently out of the office. Please leave your name, contact details and a short message after the tone. If you need immediate assistance, please contact [name] at [number or email, if applicable].”

In many cases, a voicemail will be the first step in your customer’s journey. Follow our top three tips to connect with your customers, and start that journey with a great first impression.

Want to get more calls to your business? Get in touch today!