Let’s face it, nobody likes leaving voicemail. However, voicemail is a fact of life and your voicemail greeting can very much affect how callers perceive you. A good voicemail greeting can make a big difference whether it’s your personal or your business number. Is it formal and monotonous? Upbeat? Strange or funky?
Here are some tips on recording the voicemail greeting that’s (almost) as good as if you had picked up:
1. Keep it short, relaxed, and informative
No one wants to listen through a long speech with too many details that you’re never going to remember. But don’t rush – be concise and relaxed when you’re recording your greeting. It helps to cut the amount of detail, speak slowly and clearly, and try to keep it under 30 seconds.
Conversely, don’t forget the important details! Make sure you tell callers your name and business name (if applicable) so they know who they’ve reached. If privacy is a concern you can use your phone number instead of your name.
2. Be Genuine
It doesn’t matter if your caller is your potential next date or your potential next customer, your voicemail should authentically represent you and/or your brand. Yes, it should be your voice. No, it shouldn’t be wildly different from what you’re like to listen to in person.
3. Keep the background noise down
You might have initially set up your voicemail in a hurry when you first got your phone, or when you were starting your business. This might have had lots of background noise, like traffic, a noisy air conditioner, or a distracting echo. It’s a good idea to change that. Just like when trying to make a good first impression, your voicemail should come across clear, easy to understand, composed, and deliberate, not rushed or sloppy.
To record the best sounding greeting, find a quiet space with neutral acoustics (no echoes), record using the phone’s microphone (not the speakerphone or headset) for best sound quality, and don’t be afraid to make several recordings to get it right.
4. Smile and be personable
Smiling isn’t just for appearances – the act of smiling while you speak creates a subtle change in your tone of voice and speech. Even if you’re not consciously aware of it, your brain picks up when it ‘hears’ smiling in another person’s voice.
Similarly, it’s been shown people respond more positively to speech that is personable, meaning it rises and falls in tone to show enthusiasm. Speaking in a flat monotone can have the opposite effect: you want people to feel good about leaving a message, not that they were lucky to have missed you.
5. Make sure it’s up-to-date
Try to change your greeting on a regular basis. If you’re out of the office or away on vacation and outside cellular coverage, tell your callers so they know when to expect to hear back from you. If you’re a business don’t forget to mention changes to hours, holiday closures, or special seasonal information.
These tips can help make your voicemail greeting more effective and help your callers by providing more information and respecting their time. Hushed offers free voicemail with a custom greeting with every number so there’s no excuse to not have the perfect voicemail greeting!
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