Leaving a professional and engaging voicemail can increase your chances of getting a call back. It’s an opportunity to get your name out there again and show your prospects that you care about their success. However, many sales reps fumble over their voicemails. Whether they ramble or speed through their contact info, sales professionals should stay mindful of common pitfalls when leaving messages.

Erin Rodrigue, a HubSpot staff writer, has put together a list of seven common voicemail mistakes. We highlight her findings in this issue of Promotional Consultant Today.

1. Leaving a voicemail as your first touchpoint. When you leave a voicemail for prospective buyers, always warm them up first with an email or LinkedIn message. This way you have a conversation-starter when you get on the phone. You can refer to your email or message in your voicemail so you have material to talk about.

2. Using the same old closing. Rodrigue says it’s often tempting to close voicemails with the usual, “Hope we can talk soon” or “I’ll follow up on X date.” However, it’s better to give an action item for the prospect, like inviting them to look out for an email. Say something like, “Let me know what you think about the email I just sent and if it’s worth a quick chat.”

3. Getting too salesy. Another common voicemail mistake is using your message to pitch aggressively. You want to get their business, but you first need to develop a relationship. Think of a voicemail as a resume that can help you get the interview, not the job, Rodrigue says.

4. Not creating any urgency. Even the most professional voicemails may not get a call back. In these situations, you might just need to create a sense of urgency. Give your prospects a reason to pick up the phone. Instead of saying, “Please call when you get a moment,” you could say something like, “I can get you X number of free products if we get the ball rolling by Friday.”

5. Winging your message. When you hear the beep, you should have a general idea of what you want to say. You don’t need to recite a script word-for-word, Rodrigue says, but you should have a good idea of what you want to get across. Being prepared can also prevent you from rambling.

6. Avoiding the double dial. Sometimes people have their phone on vibrate or do not disturb and your call goes straight to voicemail. If you’re unprepared for this, don’t be afraid to call back. If you get the prospect on the second call, you can begin your conversation. And if you get their voicemail again, you’ll be ready for it.

7. Sweating the small stuff. Maybe you hiccup while leaving a voicemail or your office fire alarm goes off. Some interruptions are unpredictable, Rodrigue says, so don’t let them bother you.

Every voicemail is another touchpoint with your clients and prospects. Make the most of those 20-30 seconds by making your message as crisp and concise as possible and avoiding the pitfalls above.
Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Erin Rodrigue is a junior staff writer for HubSpot’s Marketing and Sales blogs.