Why Your Phone System Matters
Everyone knows the importance of making a great first impression — while a fine wine has the luxury of getting better with age, if you get off on the wrong foot with a customer, it can create a strong negative impression that is difficult to overcome.
The Psychology of First Impressions
According to an article published in Forbes magazine, the average human brain is capable of consciously processing around 40 pieces of data, or bits, per second — a small amount when you consider much of that is taken up with the basics of moving, acting, talking, etc. On an unconscious level, our minds are far more active, processing an estimated 11 million bits a second.
These unconscious processes play a large role in how we respond to others. Mirroring a person’s emotional state and interest level, we form an immediate impression based on triggers we may not even be aware of.
As it turns out, being quick to judge has an evolutionary advantage. We are programmed to make instantaneous assumptions about someone or something for our own safety. This helps us identify threats and take steps to protect ourselves. While it’s true our capacity for emotional intelligence has evolved — we can, after all, change our opinion or grow to love people or things over time — these primal responses are still extremely powerful, particularly in brief interactions where “repairing the rupture” isn’t a luxury.
All this is to say that creating a positive first impression is an essential component of marketing your business — when you get off on the right foot with a customer, you’re far more likely to gain their confidence, make the sale and even build a lifelong relationship.
First Impressions on the Phone
For a large number of customers, the first direct contact they’ll have with your business is over the phone. Whether brought there by advertising, by a referral, or by your website, that phone call will play a key role in the initial impression they form of your business. Of course, a phone call isn’t the same as a face-to-face meeting, and as a result there are a few unique considerations to bear in mind:
- Your voice plays a larger role. Over the phone, a caller can’t process body language. As a result, they will be more sensitive to subtle things such as your choice of words and the inflection in your voice.
- Accessibility matters. A customer’s impression of you is formed even before you pick up the phone. Having to wait on hold or having their call unanswered can make a caller feel unimportant, as if they aren’t worth your time.
- Information is key. For a prospective customer, phone calls are almost always information-gathering exercises. If a caller receives prompt, accurate answers to their questions, it instills confidence in your organization.
How a Business Phone System Can Help
There’s a lot to take in when dealing with a customer over the phone. If your organization receives a large volume of calls, there are several ways a business phone system can help. A customized phone system can:
- Play a professional greeting that makes incoming callers feel valued and prioritized
- Decrease time spent on hold
- Provide answers to frequently asked questions, thus reducing the number of incoming calls and filtering out nuisance callers who take up staff time
- Automatically direct callers to the correct department, where they are more likely to receive answers to their questions
A business phone system both frees up your staff and creates a more positive and professional first impression when customers first call in. To learn more about how to make a good first impression on the phone, or to find out how our services can benefit your business, contact AccessDirect today.