How to Record a Professional Voicemail Greeting

Learn how to record a professional voicemail greeting that leaves callers with a positive and professional impression of your business

How to Record a Professional Voicemail Greeting

When your staff are engaged with other customers or your business is closed for the day, understanding that a voicemail prompt could be your business's first impression on a caller is crucial. However, ideally, you should avoid calls going to voicemail, as research indicates that up to 80% of callers may hang up without leaving a message.

There are several reasons why callers might choose not to leave a voicemail, and understanding these can help in enhancing your communication strategies:

  1. Urgency and Instant Gratification: Many callers expect immediate responses and resolution when they call a business. If they reach a voicemail, they might feel that their issue won't be addressed promptly, leading them to hang up rather than leave a message.

  2. Privacy Concerns: Some callers may be reluctant to leave personal or sensitive information in a voicemail due to fears about security or privacy. They might prefer direct interaction to ensure that their information is handled confidentially.

  3. Uncertainty or Confusion: If your voicemail greeting is unclear or lacks specific instructions on what information the caller should leave, they might be unsure of how to proceed or what details to provide, resulting in them ending the call instead.

  4. Past Experience: If callers have left voicemails without receiving a timely callback, they might perceive voicemail as an ineffective way to communicate with your business. This can discourage them from leaving messages in future.

  5. Preference for Alternative Communication: With the rise of digital communication platforms like email, texting, online chat or social media, many prefer these methods over voicemail. They may find them quicker, more convenient, and more aligned with their everyday communication habits.

To mitigate these issues, consider providing multiple communication channels, crafting a clear and inviting voicemail message, and ensuring timely responses. Of course, the ideal solution would be to have someone available to answer your customers' calls whenever they need you most.

However, when voicemail is the only viable option, a well-crafted prompt will ensure callers have a positive and professional impression of your business.

Man recording a professional voicemail prompt

Here are our suggestions for creating a voicemail prompt that will tick all the boxes:

Clear and Concise Message

Your voicemail greeting should be brief and to the point. Start by stating your business name and confirming the caller has reached the right place. For example, "Hello, you've reached [Your Business Name]." This clarity reassures the caller that they have dialled correctly and sets the tone for the rest of the message.

Warm and Welcoming Tone

Using a friendly and professional tone in your voicemail greeting is crucial. A warm, welcoming tone makes callers feel valued and respected, enhancing their experience with your business. Smiling as you speak can naturally convey warmth in your voice.

Provide Instructions

Clearly state what information callers should leave in their messages. This guidance helps them understand the process and ensures you receive all necessary details. For example, "Please leave your name, phone number, and a brief message."

Avoid Jargon

Use simple, clear language and avoid technical jargon that might confuse callers. This ensures they are not overwhelmed by complex terms and can easily understand the message.

Include Business Hours

If applicable, mention your business hours or when callers can expect a return call. This sets clear expectations and shows that you respect the caller's time. For example, "Our business hours are Monday to Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM. We will return your call during these hours."

Professional Sign-Off

End your greeting with a professional sign-off to maintain the overall polished tone. An example could be, "Thank you for calling [Your Business Name]. Your call is important to us, and we will ensure we get back to you within [state timeframe customer should expect]."

Practice and Record

Practising your voicemail prompt before recording will contribute to creating a professional and welcoming impression for callers. It is crucial for several reasons:

  1. Clarity and Conciseness: Practicing helps you refine your message to ensure it is clear and concise. A well-articulated prompt directs callers effectively, making it easier for them to leave the necessary information.

  2. Professionalism: A rehearsed and smoothly delivered voicemail sounds more professional. It reflects well on your business, suggesting a high standard of operation and attention to detail.

  3. Confidence: Practice breeds confidence. A confident tone reassures callers they are dealing with a competent and reliable business, enhancing their trust and comfort in leaving a message.

  4. Error Minimisation: By practising, you can identify any potential errors or awkward phrasing in your script, allowing you to correct these before recording. This ensures the final message is error-free.

  5. Emotional Tone: Voicemail isn't just about what you say; it's also about how you say it. Practising helps you adjust your tone of voice to convey friendliness and approachability, encouraging callers to leave a message.

  6. Technical Familiarity: Practice sessions offer the opportunity to get comfortable with the recording technology and process. Familiarity prevents technical issues during the actual recording and helps achieve a high-quality audio result.

Regular Updates

Review and update your voicemail greeting regularly to reflect current information and maintain a professional image. This could be particularly important if your business hours, staffing, or services change.

Benefits of a Professional Voicemail Greeting

  1. Creates a Positive First Impression: A well-crafted voicemail greeting can significantly influence how callers perceive your business. It's not just a voicemail; it's your business's voice. It conveys professionalism and reliability, encouraging callers to leave a message rather than hang up.

  2. Enhances Caller Experience: A clear and friendly voicemail prompt helps callers feel valued and respected, improving their overall experience with your business.

  3. Ensures Clear Communication: Clear instructions on what information callers should leave help ensure you receive all necessary details, making follow-up more efficient. For example, if you ask callers to leave their name, phone number, and a brief message, you're more likely to get all the information you need to respond effectively.

  4. Sets Expectations: Mentioning your business hours or when callers can expect a return call sets clear expectations, which can improve caller satisfaction and reduce follow-up frustrations. For instance, if you mention that you will return calls within 24 hours, callers will know what to expect and will only feel the need to follow up after the communicated timescale.

  5. Reflects Current Information: Regularly updating your voicemail greeting ensures that callers receive accurate and current information about your business, maintaining your professional image.

Recording a professional voicemail greeting is a small but significant step in ensuring your business makes a positive first impression on every caller. Have you reviewed your voicemail greeting recently? Is it leaving the best possible impression on your callers?

Next Steps:

Evaluate Your Current Greeting

Take a moment to listen to your current voicemail greeting. Is it clear, concise, and professional? Does it provide all the necessary information for your callers?

Update and Improve

Use the guidelines provided in this blog post to update your greeting. Practice your script, record in a quiet environment, and maintain a warm and professional tone.

Seek Feedback

Ask a colleague or a trusted client to provide feedback on your new greeting. Sometimes, an external perspective can highlight areas for further improvement. For example, they might notice if your tone sounds too formal or the instructions could be clearer. Their feedback can help you make your voicemail greeting even better.

By taking these steps, you can ensure that your voicemail greeting reflects the professionalism and reliability of your business, leaving callers with a positive impression every time.

If you'd like to learn more about phone etiquette, please read our Phone Answering and Etiquette Guide which contains 31 tips for better, more productive calls and happier callers.

Stay tuned to our blog for more tips on enhancing your business communication. If you need further assistance with your call handling, consider exploring our professional telephone answering services. We're here to help you create the best possible experience for your customers.