First impressions matter – not least when your customers call you. But if you're not there to respond, what do they hear then? Hopefully, a professional welcome message. Here's how to do it!
The importance of using a welcome message in your PBX
A welcome message is the recording that plays when someone calls your company, hears opening hours, and gets different choices so they can be directed to the right agent. A welcome message is easy to take for granted, but it is more important than many think. It not only gives the person calling your PBX phone system important information, such as opening hours, but also signals how you are (or at least appear) as a company. Don't underestimate the first impression!
A large company can seem disingenuous if the recorded welcome message is noisy, impersonal, or has incorrect information. Conversely, a small business can appear more prominent and professional with a thoughtful and pleasant message.
Even worse is if you have no welcome message at all. Then, customers may doubt whether they called the right number. The risk is that customers call another company, and you have lost business. Here are eight tips to avoid that from happening, and to help you record the absolute best welcome message.
8 tips for a great welcome message:
1. Preparations before recording
Plan in advance what you're going to say. It will not only make the message clearer, but you will save time as the risk of retakes is reduced. Write a script you can return to if you get unsure or lose the thread.
The message must be clear, and you must use simple words. Don't use complicated terms and assume that everyone listening will immediately understand and know what choices to make. Also, try to keep it short. One trick is to read your script out loud. You then notice if it feels natural and easy, and you can time how long it takes to read aloud and thus see if it feels too long.
2. Take inspiration from others
You shouldn't copy what others are doing, of course, but taking inspiration from others is a good idea. Listening to other companies' welcome messages can be especially interesting with companies operating in the same industry. What works? Is there anything that stands out, like how they express themselves, how the message feels, or how the menu is set up?
3. Customise to your target group
If you have internal buyer personas or voice and tone guides, it's time to use them now because the goal is to tailor the message to your target group as best as possible. What do your customers want to hear first? The store's opening hours or the URL to your website? Which parts are most relevant to the target group to highlight in the message?
4. Don't forget the opening hours
For many, opening hours are a given part of a welcome message and something many customers request. You want to present the opening hours clearly, so the caller knows when your PBX is closed. Also, don't forget holidays; if you wish, you can adjust the greeting message seasonally and, for example, have a unique message for Christmas and another during summer.
5. Keep this in mind when you record
For the message to get across, there are three things the person reading the message has to think about: speak loudly, clearly, and slowly. It must never feel rushed, and there is a risk that important information will be missed if it goes too fast.
6. Weigh in the room
For the best possible quality, you should record the greeting message in an acoustically treated room such as a professional studio. If you don't have that option, at least make sure to exclude as much disturbing noise as possible from the surroundings. You don't want a colleague's ringtone or the coffee maker ruining a good recording.
7. Are any changes needed?
Listen to the message when you're done. Was it good? Did you sound natural? Do you hear any disturbing background noises? If you're not happy, record again until you feel satisfied. Also, ask someone else to listen and give you feedback.
8. Consider different languages
For all international companies, you should be available in the most important languages for your customers. But even those who run a smaller business can have a lot to gain from not forgetting potential customers from different countries. If you serve different languages, record a message that helps direct callers to the right queues. For instance: “For English, press 1. For Swedish, press 2.
That's it. Now you hopefully have all the information you need to record a professional welcome message. With Telavox, it's super-easy to record your own welcome message – and much more. Discover just how intuitive your company communication can be with everything in one interface. Take a look at our product demo, or try it out for yourself!