With the holidays fast approaching, most business owners throughout Canada will be busier than ever with all those extra shoppers. And then there are those types of businesses that don’t necessarily see the spike in sales that come along with the holiday shopping season. Owners of such businesses tend to keep their hours the same and, just like many of the rest of us, plan on long, exciting, fun-filled holiday vacations. Sound like you?
If that’s the case, allow us to wish you a wonderful holiday vacation well in advance. Just a reminder – we still have several weeks to go until it’s here! However, it’s very important to communicate to your client base when you will and when you won’t be available to speak to them. At MeloTel, we have a 24/7 emergency contact policy. So we guarantee our clients that, in emergency situations, someone can always be reached by dialing 1-888-MELOTEL.
But, just like many other businesses across Canada, there will be times when voice messages will need to be left by callers. When the time comes to enjoy your holiday vacation, be sure that your outgoing voice greetings clearly communicate the status of your availability. Sounds easy enough, doesn’t it? But, there are some things to make sure you don’t forget when recording these messages. Here are five suggestions.
1. Reveal the dates of your absence. Generally speaking, communicating that you’re “not available right now” is adequate. But during a vacation layoff, it’s important to let your callers know the dates between which you will be out of the office. Be specific. Include in your outgoing message the date that you will be leaving the office and the date that you will be returning. However, you may also want to add the date that you will be available to return the call if it isn’t necessarily the date of your return to work.
2. If necessary, provide the reason for your absence. It’s important to note that this isn’t always necessary. Of course, there will be times when you’re out of the office for personal reasons. During the holiday season, however, you may simply want to state that your company is observing the holidays and that you wish your callers all of the joys that the season tends to bring. This helps to communicate your brand’s “personal side”.
3. Provide alternative contacts. Depending on your type of business, there may be “emergency situations” that arise for your customers as well. If so, you’ll want to list the alternative contacts that your clients may be able to call. That way, a customer with an urgent request won’t be left in the dark. If necessary, provide the phone number and e-mail address to the person handling your emergency calls during your vacation.
4. Suggest an alternate mode of communication. You may be too busy enjoying the holidays to take the various calls that still come into your business. However, you may decide that you don’t want to completely take a vacation from your duties as business owner. If so, consider leaving your e-mail address as an alternate way for your customers to contact you. That way, you’ll be able to return messages at your leisure and without the worry of a long conversation.
5. Be clear and concise. One of the biggest mistakes that people make when leaving outgoing messages is that they are not clear. They list phone numbers too quickly, they mumble or sound too quiet to be heard clearly. This is why utilizing the work of professionals to handle your telephone systems is the best bet. Out of Office Options are among the many great Telephone Features offered by MeloTel. For more information, give us a call at 1-888-MELOTEL today!