We've talked a lot about congruency in recent blog posts; about how you need to make sure all the elements of your product and service live up to your brand and your ethos, so that everything sits well together. Here's a classic example to help you understand just how important it is ...
Did I just phone a call handling service and end up going to answerphone? I did, I did, I did!
This week, we had a potential client ring us up for some call handling. We were not the top of her list whem she searched Google (have made a note for Genie Jenny – we need to work on this) but what was most amazing was the fact that when she rang some of our competitors first, she reached their answerphones!
I know I've said it before, and I reckon we've all thought it before. If what you see about someone else's business isn't finished properly, or is inaccurate, it plants a seed of doubt in your mind about how well they will look after you and your work.
I am absolutely flabbergasted that anyone offering a call answering service would let their potential clients go through to a recorded message! It implies that when they are too busy, your calls would go through to an answerphone – and surely the reason you want to use a call handling service is because you don't want to be reliant on the aforementioned answerphone.
There are many reasons why you shouldn’t rely on an answerphone during business hours and we have laid them out in our ebook which you can get if you click here or you can sign up at the top right of this blog post.
I can’t imagine what my prospective client thought. I mean imagine you'd visited the website and been impressed by the service they had laid out for you. So you ring them up, ready and willing to give them a go ... and their call answering service is a recorded message. I think I'd feel a bit like Tweety Pie "I tawt I taw a puddy tat." I’d be straight back to the website to check that I wasn't losing my mind!
Nope, its definitely there "I DID I DID I DID!" I can completely understand why she moved onto the next company. I think if I was her though and I reached another answering machine I would begin to lose confidence in the whole idea! Fortunately for us, she moved onto us and was thrilled to reach a beautifully spoken, friendly and polite Genie!
The whole situation reminded me of a blog post I read recently from Rachel Elnaugh all about Virtual Assistants. For a business support agency not to be offering prospective clients an example of the kind of attention to detail in their own work as they would offer their clients seems to defeat the whole point as far as I am concerned.
So what do your customers experience when they reach your firm? Does your customer service reinforce the quality of your product or service? Do you have a good all round ethos that you carry through everything that you do? Do customers always hear a friendly voice at the other end of the line, or do they just get a bland answerphone message?
To find out more about how a VA or call handling service can help you with this, call me on +44 (0) 1604 529170 (guaranteed it won't go to answerphone during office hours!) or click here to ping over an email and I'll get right back to you.
I had a successful 20-year career as an office manager and personal assistant; however, my job was no longer focused on the customers and became all about the numbers. My customer-focused background began when I was 12 in my father's independent carpet showroom. I had a spell with Marks & Spencer before I moved into office-based jobs. I have worked as a training administrator, a PA and PA/office manager in a variety of industries from manufacturing to the IT education sector.
Meanwhile, my husband Ian, a successful Northampton based Master Decorator and owner of Rainbow Frost, was losing out on work due to missed phone calls. When he was busy, callers were getting his voicemail but weren't leaving messages. I knew how to fix that problem!
I quit my job and took on Ian as the first client of The Office Genie in November 2005. Word quickly spread with the second client coming on board just one week later. The majority of our clients since have come to us through word of mouth recommendations and networking referrals. Over the years, I have become well connected in Northampton and Milton Keynes.
Outside of work I enjoy swimming, roller skating, the theatre and my cats and dogs!
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