The End of Voice Mail?

man-earphones-medFrom Destinationcrm.com “Companies are losing a lot of business opportunities because people are not leaving voice mail messages.”

Recent statistics from Forbes magazine show that 80 percent of callers sent to voicemail do not leave messages because they don’t think they’ll even be heard.

And yet, voice mail messages that are helpful reminders or actually solve problems CAN get returned. Maybe not with just one voice mail message or two or even three.

Do they need what you can provide?

Three voice mail messages I received last year from the same person were attention getters because I needed the service her company provided.  The messages were a week apart.  I did not return the calls until after the 3rd voice mail message.  But I’m glad I did.

Why 3 voice mail messages? 

Because the caller was pleasantly persistent.  (Very important.) 

The purpose of those three messages:

It was time to renew my AAA (American Automobile Association) membership.

Why didn’t I return the call the first time? Or the second time?   Procrastination on my part. (Some of YOUR prospects may also be procrastinators and will need to hear more than just one or two voice mail messages…just saying.) 

When I finally called back after listening to the 3rd voice mail message – and renewed the membership, I was sooo glad I did because a week later, this happened.

An Unexpected Problem

It was a scorching hot August day (100 degrees) in the middle of the afternoon.

I walked out of the grocery store holding two bags full of groceries…including my favorite chocolate ice cream.

But then … my car wouldn’t start.

Instead, there was a sad clicking sound.  Ugh.  Dead battery.

Worried about how fast the ice cream would melt, I phoned triple A and – wow – they were there in less than 10 minutes with the battery for my car!

At that moment I was grateful for the 3 voice mail reminders to renew the triple A membership.  Really grateful.

“If at first you don’t succeed…”

”Some of your prospects and clients could also be grateful for receiving multiple voice mail messages from you. You may be discouraged after not getting a call back after the 1st or 2nd voice mail message, but think about the example of success after I listened to 3 voice mail messages from the AAA, returned the third call and made the purchase. Whew.

You can leave an irresistible voice mail message

This is an excellent voice mail example from page 14 of Voice Mail Tips & Scripts –

“Hi Ann. Brian Kelly with XYZ Consulting Service at (his telephone number). I noticed you’ve been making some changes to your web site AnnBarr.com and I have some ideas about how to add a few elements to your site that would greatly increase traffic. We’ve done this for (person/firm in my industry who I might know) and they’ve achieved (important results). Let’s talk. My number Is (his phone number). I’ll try getting back to you as well.”

Important:  This message was not about his company. It was about my business and my desired results. That message definitely prompted a call back.

In Voice Mail Tips & Scripts, you’ll see 12 effective voice mail messages and much more, including:

  • The 5 steps in an effective voice mail message.
  • Step-by-step worksheets you can use to create your own unique voice mail message.
  • Find out how to avoid the biggest voice mail time wasters!
  • 12 proven successful scripts for different voice mail message situations.
  • Learn the tactful way to word your voice mail message to the prospect who did not return your first call . . . and your second call . . . and your third call.
  • Discover the six deadly voice mail mistakes that will get your call deleted!

Because Voice Mail Messages are Important:

When you see the description of this 33-page e-book here, the price is listed at $9.97, but today through Saturday, Feb. 10th, your cost is just $2.97.

“The best ROI in 18 years!”

“Ann, thank you for what I would consider the best ROI percentage that I have ever experienced in 18 years. I downloaded and read just three pages in your Voicemail Tips ebook -jotted down a short message to leave at a customer I have called four times in the last two weeks with no reply and she called me back the next day!”

Steve Sheffield, President. Southwest Office Systems, Vancouver, WA

Think about it:
When you leave a compelling voice mail message for a prospect, you may be solving a problem or communicating a solution for someone looking for exactly what you can provide.

If you’d like to receive creative marketing tips and helpful ideas in your inbox a few times a month, feel free to sign up for my newsletter.  Thanks for visiting!

Best Subject Line I’ve Seen and it Might Work for You

attention-grabbing-signFor your email to NOT be immediately deleted, your subject line needs to get attention and interest or curiosity.

Yesterday an interesting message came to me because I’m a customer of Vital Choice Seafood. They send emails once a week and I don’t usually read them unless there is something I want to order.

Emailing to customers can be challenging if you don’t want them to think:

“Oh, it’s her again. I don’t need to read this.”

But the subject line was so compelling I had to open and read the email.

This was the subject line:

Preferred Customer Alert

Wow! That immediately grabbed my attention because of the two specific positive power words:

“Preferred” and “Alert.”

Fact:

Marketing research has found that attention-getting positive power words motivate consumers to read emails and sales letters.

More positive power words you can use to attract attention:

Program, savings, exciting, convenient and excellent.  But not all in one sentence :)

There are other words that will increase sales, like these 7 words that made the sale by email.

And when you use these 4 words, your clients will love you.

Increasing Call-Back Rates

Students in my last e-Course said using specific positive power words in their voice mail messages have increased call-back rates. And who wouldn’t want to get more return calls after leaving hundreds of voice mail messages?

Boost Confidence and Increase Return Calls

If you have a co-worker or employee who is looking to boost confidence and increase sales, please forward this link because the next exclusive sales-building e-Course begins on Wednesday.

One-to-One Coaching & Sales Training

During this private one-to-one coaching I will work with you, personally, to provide positive motivation plus new marketing ideas and wording that can convince prospects to WANT to become your raving fans and paying customers.

Because I work directly with each person, class size is limited to 10 and there are just three spaces still available.

Send me a message if you would like more info about the course or want to register.

Here’s wishing you a cool and happy day!

Ann
P.S.: Your BTA Educational discount applies for this course.

The Word I Have Never Forgotten

WordsThatMatter_banner_blue-medA few years ago (more than a few years . . . actually more like a few decades+ ago) . . . on a beautiful sunny morning in early May, three of my high school classmates and I did something we should not have done.

We played hooky – skipped school. For the first time ever.

(The word I have never forgotten was spoken – later that day – by the principal of our school. A person I admired.)

It happened this way:

We were all seniors in high school.

Our classmate “Cookie” picked us up at home in the morning in her shiny new convertible, to drive us to school.

After a long, cold, snowy winter in Northern Virginia, this balmy day in May felt wonderful.

Why we thought we could get away with skipping school and that no one would notice, is a mystery. . .

. . . because we attended a small private Catholic high school taught by nuns. . . Sisters of the Holy Cross who wore those old-fashioned habits and could be very intimidating.

There were only 44 students in our senior class . . . and we thought we wouldn’t be missed?

One of our classmates (it may have been me) laughingly said “instead of going to school today, let’s drive to Glen Echo Park!”

Everyone agreed.

We were naïve.

We felt adventurous and joyful.

We drove to Glen Echo Park and had a great time.

Later that afternoon we decided to return to school, feeling guilty and realizing our parents would be worried if notified by the school.

We were in trouble.  Of course.

When it was my turn to face the principal – one to one – she said something that made me realize we had done something inconsiderate and thoughtless.

Sister Benjamin looked at me and said, softly: “Ann, I am disappointed in you.”

Wow. That was the worst (or best) word she could have used.

“Disappointed” is the word I have never forgotten.

I felt terrible when Sister Benjamin said this and I regretted what we had done.

Years later, the memory of that experience came back to me and the word “disappointed” stayed in my mind.

I realized the importance of words and how specific words can have a powerful effect.

This is why businesses hire me to write, ghost-write and edit important letters and emails.

Because . . .

. . . there are some words people love to hear

but . . .

. . . there are also wishy-washy words  never to say

and . . .

. . . specific words to avoid

plus . . .

. . . when you use these 4 words your clients will love you.

Wondering what words to use when you connect with clients?

I can help you.

Whether it is creating a flyer or writing an email or phoning a prospect or leaving a voice mail message, I can help you.

All of this is included in my e-Course.

Send me an email or use the Contact page and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours.

I would love to work with you!

Thanks for reading and being part of my Internet world.

-Ann

PS:  If you would like to subscribe to my weekly-ish e-newsletters, please sign up on this page.

6 Simple Tips to Get Your Calls Returned

Telephone-LondonThere is good news and bad news. First, the bad news. Recent marketing research has found that up to 40% of outbound calls made by salespeople end up in voice mail :(

After talking with hundreds of Weekly Sales Tips subscribers, I have learned that number is actually closer to 50% or 60%. And . . . most voice mail messages left by sales reps are not returned. (Very discouraging for salespeople.) This was especially true because of last winter’s fierce snowstorms resulting in traffic problems and empty offices.

Now the good news – yes there is good news!

We may need to dial more numbers, but we CAN get our calls returned. Read what Steve Sheffield in Vancouver, Washington wrote:

“I jotted down a short voice mail message to leave for a customer I have called 4 times in the last 2 weeks with no reply and she called me back the next day!

More about Steve’s voice mail success later.

Think about this: The first goal of a voice mail message is to get the call returned or, ultimately to result in a live conversation, so . .

. . . . Get Rid of Wimpy Words! Forget about leaving those wishy-washy messages like “please call me back if you have any questions.” Wimpy words with no call to action do not get results.

What action do you want them to take?

1.) Know what you want as a result of your voice mail message. 6 Simple Tips To Get Your Calls ReturnedWrite down in one sentence what action you want the listener to take.

2.) Organize your message so that you state the most important and attention-getting information first, since you may be cut off at any time. Include BENEFITS for the listener.

3.) Speak clearly and not too quickly. Pronounce your first and last name clearly, spelling your name if people may not recognize your name. The person you are calling could become annoyed if they have to spend time replaying the message because they could not understand it.

4.) State your telephone number twice: once at the beginning of your message – after your name and company name – and again at the end of the message. This makes it easier for the prospect to return your call.

5.) Be a name dropper. (This great tip is from urbachletter.com)

If somebody referred you, that person’s name should be one of the first things out of your mouth, even before you fully ID yourself: “Jane, I was referred to you by Barney Rubble. This is Fred …” Starting off this way will ensure your entire message will get listened to. If you don’t have a known person’s name to use, the next best thing is to reference an organization you have in common: “I’m also a member of the Bedrock Chamber of Commerce …”

6.) Prepare and rehearse your voice mail message. Reason: If you leave a bad message, you’re stuck with it, and . . . your voice message is being recorded and can be forwarded to others.

As promised, more about Steve Sheffield’s voice mail success:

“Ann, thank you for what I would consider the best ROI percentage that I have ever experienced in 18 years. I downloaded your books and read just 3 pages in your Voicemail Tips, jotted down a short message to leave for a customer I have called 4 times in the last 2 weeks with no reply and she called me back the next day!” – Steve Sheffield, Southwest Office Systems Vancouver, Washington