Valuable marketing opportunities, on hold.
It goes without saying that no business wants a customer to wait on hold any longer than is absolutely necessary. But, almost as long as there have been commercial phone systems, we have had the infamous “hold” button.
Broadcasting music and other messages over the line to callers on hold originally started because of an accident. In 1962, factory owner and entrepreneur, Alfred Levy, discovered that radio broadcast signals were being transmitted into the phone system’s hold line through a loose wire connecting with a metal girder on his building. With a little creativity, Levy managed to perfect the process and patent his “Music on Hold” system. For all the technological advancements, it still functions pretty much the way it did originally.
From there on, businesses struggled with what kind of music or messaging to play over the line, ranging from local radio to pre-recorded sales and marketing messages. Even the most basic of commercial phone systems allow for some type of hold broadcast but many businesses fail to take advantage of the opportunity to educate, inform and convert potential customers.
Music on hold, integrated with strategic messaging, can provide a great advertising vehicle to promote specials, inform customers of updates or changes, educate customers about your value propositions, or drive them to your website. And, like any other marketing activity, the effort should be strategic and measurable.
Your hold messaging should be consistent with your current marketing message, light, informative and include a call to action (CTA). You can use CTAs such as, “(offer) … ask your customer service representative when your call resumes,” or, “Visit our website, Bobs Lawn Service dot com, to sign up.” Whatever you decide as your message, get to the point in a hurry.
Be brief, be bright, and be gone, that’s what salespeople always say – and they’re right. When crafting your messages, keep them to 15 seconds or less. Along those lines, your first impulse will be to make a lot of different messages and have them rotate. But really, 3 or 4 unique messages are more than enough. You need a little repetition if the caller is going to be expected to remember anything they heard and act on it.
Products / Services: “Our weather can turn from swimsuit to sweater, overnight! Purchase our $99 fall furnace check today and get a free carbon monoxide detector.”
Company History/Credibility: “For more than 30 years, Jack’s Carpet has provided the Dayton area with the highest quality and service in the industry. Ask about our anniversary specials.”
Core Values: “Quality, innovation, and value are what you can expect because they are the heart of our business.”
Most people immediately want to record the messages on their own, using someone within the company, often the owner, as the voice artist but that may not be the best option. If at all possible you should have your messages professional recorded and mastered, using a professional voiceover actor, so there is good audio quality and diction throughout.
There are many companies operating that do nothing but create hold message content, from crafting the message to full production. If you work with a marketing firm, talk to them first – they’re going to have a connection or may be able to produce it in-house.
Contact GLD Enterprises Communications, Ltd. at 937-902-4857, or Click Here for more information on developing hold marketing audio material.