Many of MeloTel’s clients are the type of company owners who conduct a lot of business over the phone. As a result, they make great use of our VoIP-based Commercial Phone Services, knowing that being able to maintain crystal clear communication over the phone is a key ingredient to their business’ success. That being said, it’s also of vital importance to employ talented customer service representatives.
Part of the talent that comes with being an excellent phone rep is the ability to effectively communicate with people without seeing them face-to-face. Lacking body language, facial expressions and physical gestures, a phone rep still needs to be able to build a rapport and gain the confidence of the customer he/she is speaking to over the phone. It’s a harder thing to pull off than you may expect. So what techniques are necessary to do so?
Here are five ways to make your company a pleasure to call:
1. Put a smile on your face before taking the call. This wouldn’t be the first time we’ve recommended the all-important smile while speaking on the phone. We mentioned earlier that facial expressions can’t be seen during a phone conversation – but they can still be heard! Believe it or not, smiling has a big influence on the tone of your voice. It will help you to sound a lot more pleasant and friendly.
2. Don’t eat the receiver. Have you ever been to a local concert and noticed that the young up-and-coming performer was holding the microphone a bit too close to his/her mouth? This generally provides a distorted sound. The same can be said if your mouth is too close to the receiver of your phone. To sound as clear as possible, you’ll want to put a small distance between your mouth and the phone – approximately two fingers of space is a good bet.
3. Remember that it’s not a race. Sure, customers enjoy receiving expedient customer service. But there’s never really a good reason to rush through your calls. So, slow it down and pace yourself. Speaking too quickly, as if you’re in a race to finish your call, may only serve to improperly address the needs of the caller. Be sure to speak in a clear tone, enunciate your words and speak slow enough to ensure that you’re being understood.
4. Avoid interruptions. Not only is interrupting your caller bound to create a sense of tension that is counterproductive to the business relationship, but it’s also liable to limit the amount of correct information you receive in order to do your job right the first time. Adequately addressing customer inquiries is done through active listening. Be sure to listen attentively to ensure that you know exactly what needs to be done in order to resolve your customers’ issues.
5. Address the caller by name. Is referring to a caller as “sir” or “ma’am” polite enough a gesture? Perhaps, in some cases, it is. But, if you’re really looking to provide top-level customer service, be sure to address the caller by name. Depending on your business type, you may want to confirm whether or not a first name basis is appropriate. Your customers will appreciate the personal touch you give your interactions.
For more information on our Commercial Phone Services, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 1-888-MELOTEL or use the “Live Chat Support” feature on our website!