Using an Answering Service to Take Your Small Business to the Big Leagues
It’s a fact, in business you don’t have to be the big fish in the pond to look and act big! There can often be a certain amount of insecurity that many small businesses seem to exhibit that is centered around the very fact that they are a small, rather than large, business. This is totally unnecessary, as in many ways small businesses are better able to provide the kinds of hands on support and one-on-one interaction that larger companies just aren’t able to manage. However, there are also some advantages to being perceived as being able to offer the benefits of a larger company while retaining the personal touch offered from the best small businesses. Using an answering service is a great way to achieve this balance.
Many people who deal with larger companies are very familiar with answering services. When it is after hours or when the phone lines are already occupied, your call instead gets fielded by a professional answering service that will then relay your messages quickly and efficiently to the appropriate parties within the company that you were trying to reach.
An answering service gives your company a projected image that makes it look bigger and capable of handling everything that comes its way. If people are constantly getting bounced to voicemail when they call, it can make them get the sense that your operation isn’t equipped to handle its current workload. On the other hand, if they can call at any time, day or night, and be greeted by a professional, courteous person who will take their message and ensure that it gets to the appropriate party, it can make callers confident that their concerns are being addressed directly.
It pays to research an answering service before you hire them in order to make sure that you’re finding the best fit for your company. For one, be sure to ask if they have any familiarity with your particular industry, and don’t be afraid to ask for references. In many industries, such as law or healthcare, there are specific regulations and laws that concern client information, and if you work in those or similar fields, you want to work with an answering service with experience in that area.
It also is a good idea to find an answering service that takes a hands on approach and works with you to ensure that you’re projecting the image that you want when their callers answer the phone on your behalf. Little touches like developing a custom script and some boilerplate responses to common questions can help make sure that your clients and prospects always get treated in a way consistent with your brand and company values.
An answering service isn’t just about making your company look bigger. It’s about taking your business to the next level of customer service, and showing your clients or potential customers that doing business with you means always getting top-tier service.