Whether you’re a small company using hosted PBX or an enterprise corporation with complex IVRs and call centers, your phone system is an essential part of your business technology. However, many businesses don’t recognize the true self-service marketing and customer service potential of this technology.
Unfortunately, that results in a missed opportunity to maximize the ROI of your phone system investment. From cost-effective marketing solutions to leveraging call features that improve customer service, here are a few ways you can tap into the full potential of your phone system.
Marketing to a Captive Audience
Studies show information on hold isn’t just tolerated, it’s preferred. In fact, callers who are given information while on-hold will remain on the line for up to 3 minutes longer than those waiting in silence. Businesses are wise to use this to their advantage. While callers are holding on the line, you have their undivided attention, which makes phone system greetings and on-hold messages the perfect vehicle for advertising your business to a captive audience.
Best of all, today’s hosted systems allow you to update messaging quickly and seamlessly, making it easy to cross-promote your products and services, announce upcoming events, and share some of the achievements and accolades that set your business apart.
While the number varies by industry, most companies spend a significant percentage of their annual budget on marketing expenses. Those marketing efforts and advertising dollars are aimed at driving customers to pick up the phone and call your business. While you have them on the line, your phone system can provide that added push for closing the sale.
According to Marketing Metrics, businesses have a 60-70% chance of selling to an existing customer, while the probability of selling to a new prospect is only 5-20%. When you take advantage of your phone system messaging capabilities to market to callers right before they speak to your live representative, it eliminates the gap between company advertising and consumer action. It also allows you to plug your services without resorting to aggressive sales tactics that turn customers off. Note: It’s best to reserve your marketing messages for the times when callers are already waiting on hold, rather than requiring them to listen to a marketing prompt before speaking with a live agent.
Improving the Caller Experience
Well-conceived call flow design is critical to the caller experience. Although today’s phone systems have the capabilities to manage sophisticated auto attendant organization, many businesses don’t take full advantage.
If you find that callers frequently leave voicemail messages for the wrong extension or notice requests being routed to an incorrect party or department, you may want to re-examine your call flow chart. When used correctly, your multi-level IVR can accommodate intricate phone trees routing calls across multiple locations based on your instructions.
The complexities of your phone system should be balanced by using a unified, professional voice across all caller touchpoints. This helps create a seamless experience for the caller regardless of their inquiry or which department you route them to.
It’s also good practice to provide callers with an alternative to waiting in the queue by offering the option of leaving a message, directing them to your client portal online, or asking them if they would like a call back without losing their place in line. To create the best caller experience be sure to familiarize yourself with phone greeting best practices.
Education & Information
Managing expectations is the foundation of a positive customer service experience. The best way to manage customer expectations is through education and communication. Your auto attendant or virtual receptionist is an efficient tool for sharing the information callers need before they speak to a live agent.
What do callers inquire about? What do you wish they knew about your business? Your phone system can be configured to share everything: your company hours, directions, information on your brand, or where to learn more about your services online.
Creating menu options that address common inquiries not only puts the information your callers are looking for right at their fingertips, but it also allows your business to handle a higher call volume and tend to more customer concerns without the need for a live representative.
Seasonal & Holiday Updates
Fun and functional seasonal and holiday updates add value to your business phone system in several ways. Do you have extended summer hours? Are you closed in observance of President’s Day? Does your business run a Labor Day promotion? Do holiday sales make up a large portion of your annual revenue?
Updating your call handler greetings, prompts, and on-hold messages seasonally allows you to share timely and relevant information, then seamlessly change it back when the holiday is over.
If you really want to engage your callers and capture their attention, don’t forget about holiday music! Working with a professional business recording provider gives you access to a library of pre-licensed holiday music. Easily add some festive cheer to the background of your on-hold recordings, transfer messages, and even voicemail greetings.
Phone system recording providers not only take care of the music licensing on your behalf, but they give you access to a library of professional voice talents so you can select the perfect voice to represent your business personality.
Put Your Phone System to Work
When you utilize the features and functions of your phone system to support your marketing and customer service efforts, you tap into a powerful business tool and maximize the return on your technology investment. It not only provides your callers with a more intuitive and seamless experience, but it can also increase your bottom line. Create the outstanding customer experience you want by automating the call flow of your Mitel phone system.
Source: by the experts at Mitel, Sept. 2018