Want to get a sense of what your callers feel like while they're waiting on hold?
Call your company's main telephone number and ask to be put on hold. Let the CSR or operator know you'll hang up when you're ready. Then, stay on hold for five minutes. (Use your phone's stopwatch to keep track of the time.)
After you hang up, consider these questions.
1) Did your time on hold feel like more or less than five minutes?
2) Which word or phrase would you use to describe your time on hold?
3) Did you hear anything on hold that caught your attention or that you'd want to learn more about?
4) Were there any topics you wanted to hear about on hold but didn't?
5) Did you hear any specific calls to action while on hold?
6) Did what you hear on hold create a positive impression of your company?
Based on your answers, how would you rate the on hold experience your company provides on a scale of 1 to 10?
Keep in mind there's a good chance you'll go into that experiment with the bias of a loyal employee. You also have knowledge of your company that many callers don't have. So, you might not notice if, while on hold, you didn't hear examples of how your team goes above and beyond to care for customers or provide unique added value. And since you already like your company, you may not care that the content on hold doesn't include compelling reasons to buy your product or trust your brand or call again. That's why you may want to consider asking a few impartial friends to call, hold and then answer the same six questions.
You can't see or hear your callers on hold, so they can be easy to forget. Some people even assume that once their phone system's self-contained 60-second loop of hold music is playing, their company's on hold experience is set in stone and they won't need to think about their callers on hold ever again.
But that approach doesn't consider frequent callers or those who hold for long periods.
Or your changing business and the evolving expectations of callers.
Or the countless chances you have to turn the negative of holding into an informative, enlightening, memorable, even entertaining experience that can make buying decisions easier for people.
Your callers on hold may not be your largest marketing audience, so they might not be your top priority, but they should never be ignored. When you entrust their experience - and your telephone brand - to us, you'll have a partner that's known for proactive content updating, caller-focused content and award-winning creativity.