Yesterday my dad sent me an email and said I needed to watch this video he just saw. I clicked the link and it directed me over to the Think Big Work Small blog which is developed to help real estate agents. The video was discussing the importance of answering the phone. You can watch the video here. They called 23 different real estate agents around Syracuse, NY just to see how many it would take to answer the phone. The one that did answer hung up on them the minute they said hello. If you are like me, you were shocked to see this. Especially after so many sites make these claims of “We’re #1” and “We deliver the best customer service” yada yada…
Before you start branding your business as “We’re #1” or “I’m busy with other clients, but your call is important” you need to first figure out what you want your business model to look like. If you want your clients to talk to you through services like Twitter, Facebook and text messaging, then you need to make that clear on your contact pages. Add statements that say “if you need a quick response or assistance, the best way to contact me is at:” That way clients learn quickly that this is your preferred method. If they do not like using those forms of communication, then they know to move onto another business that will communicate with them in the ways they like.
Will you lose business? Possibly, but you could also pick up some clients that think the same way you do. The one thing you will accomplish is the ability to work with the types of clients you want and have targeted in your business model. For us here at 210 Consulting, we are pretty open to any means. Both Jason & myself are constantly on just about every social media platform there is. Our contact number is listed on the site, and you can email us too if you prefer.
Call me back please!
Even though technology continues to change the ways we do business, the telephone is still one of the most effective ways to communicate for our business. Every day I spend at least twice as much time on the phone with clients as I do emailing, or sending direct messages on Twitter & Facebook. Why? Because when on the phone I can answer any & all questions that person might have. When I just reply to an email, that doesn’t always happen. Maybe the reason you despise the phone so much is that you can’t stand dealing with the difficult phone calls. If that’s the case, read 5 tips to handling difficult calls. You might find something valuable in it.
Whatever means of communication you prefer, the same principles hold true. When a consumer contacts you, they expect responses. And they expect them to come quickly. If it is taking more than 24 hours to respond you run a very high risk of losing them. If this is the case, then you need to either hire an assistant to deal with your incoming messages from consumers.
One of the ways we gain new clients several new clients that write rave reviews about us without us even asking, is because we deliver fast and reliable service. Normally when someone emails me, they get a response within 2 hours. On busy days that might go as high as 12. One thing though I rarely do is leave my office at night with stuff sitting in my inbox or phone calls not returned from the day.
So, how many times would I need to call your business before you answered?