Voicemails are either our best friend or worst enemy (or possibly a little bit of both). It’s a common occurrence in sales and it’s a critical selling skill to possess.
My suggestion is that instead of lamenting about how frustrating it is to reach people’s voicemail, why not commit to improving your voicemail skills.
Too many people overlook the importance of voicemail. One excuse I hear is, “People rarely listen to their voicemails, so why even leave one?” Also I have heard from voicemail recipients that they rarely listen to messages as they are often too long and boring.
Want to be able to leave superior voicemails every-time?
Start by Reading these 18 Tips:
Your voicemail should be broken into 3 parts. First is the greeting, the middle is the call to action and the third is your contact information.
If your goal is to get the phone call returned, don’t leave information that would allow the person to make up their mind. Add a call-to-action to your message by providing a key date or something of interest that will encourage the person to return the call. You have to create a reason for them to call you back.
Repeat your phone number twice. If the person can’t quickly write your number down, you’ve given them a perfect reason to not call back.
Avoid asking the person to call you back at a certain time. This provides them with an excuse not to call you.
Never state in the message that you will plan to call them back. This only gives the person an excuse to ignore your message. Your goal is to get them to call you back. Sure, you can still call them again the next day, but don’t say this in the voicemail.
Messages left on a Friday afternoon are the least likely to be returned. For most people, Monday mornings are very busy and, as a result, only high–priority activities will get their immediate attention.
Do not leave voicemail messages at odd hours of the night. Most voicemail systems offer a time stamp and the person hearing the message will immediately suspect you really did not want to talk to them.
The best hours to leave voicemail messages are from 6:45am to 8:00 am and from 4:30pm to 6:30 pm. Driven people are usually working during these time periods, and the person receiving your message could potentially view you as one, which is good.
Wisely use time zone changes to make as many calls as possible during the optimal voicemail periods listed in the previous tip.
Voicemail messages are an excellent way to introduce yourself to a person. Be personable, yet professional, and link your message to something of interest to the person you are calling (such as another person or event). The recipient may view your message as a waste of time if you have no purpose other than getting your name in front of them.
When leaving a message with multiple points, you must disclose how many you’ll be making. This will prevent the recipient from accidentally fast-forwarding or deleting it before it is completely heard.
If you can’t say it briefly, don’t say it at all. Voicemail is not “story time.” Leaving a long message is an invitation to have the entire message skipped. The optimal voicemail message is between 8 and 14 seconds.
When leaving your phone number, do not leave your website address as well. This will give the person an opportunity to make a decision about you without calling you back.
Leave a “P.S.” at the end of your message. The “P.S” should be a very quick, additional piece of information that will connect with the person.
Mention the person’s first name at least twice in the message, but don’t use their last name. As doing so comes across as very cold and impersonal.
When referring to a mutual acquaintance in your message make sure they think positively of that person. This is a great way of connecting with the recipient.
Never leave the same message twice. Doing so is an insult to the other person, as it implies they didn’t get your first one.
Practice voicemails by leaving them for yourself first on your voicemail. Then listen to the voicemails. If your voice does not have energy, you have zero chance. If your message sounds scripted, you have zero chance. Remember, your voicemail is you, so let you come through!
Voicemail doesn’t have to be your nemesis. I hope these 18 tips above help you to better your voicemail messages to your prospects and/ or clients.
I know what it’s like to struggle to leave voicemails that prospects/ clients will return. I would love to help you to overcome this struggle aswell.