How would you rate your telephone manner, seriously?

Are you:

~ Professional
~ Clear
~ Concise
~ Informative
~ Prompt

If not, you must certainly should!

This post may come off as bit of rant, apologies if it does, but I feel this topic is very important, particularly after the ‘god awful’ phone conversations my colleague, James and I had yesterday with some wedding professionals.

As {Wedding Planners}, as we do most days, we ring/ email around, on behalf of multiple clients, to get pricing, details and information from a whole host of wedding professionals. Yesterday, due to a number of upcoming American Weddings we have this autumn, we were ringing around a subset of a very large category of wedding professionals.

One of the first calls we made went a little something like this:

Phone rings…

Them: Hello!

Us: Hi there, this is James calling from The Wedding Expert, I…{rudely cut off}

Them: Are you trying to sell me adverting?!

Us: No, I’m ringing to inquire about availability and pricing for {insert company name here} for a wedding this autumn.

Them: Oh right, what do you want! { The demeanor of the person did not improve; despite us trying to give him business!}

Another returned our missed call like this: 

Phone rings, we answer.

Us: Hello, Blaithin speaking.

Them: Hi, I had a missed call from this number, but I think my sister may have answered it, but I’m not sure.

Us: Ok, can I ask where you are calling from?

Them: This is ‘Mick’. {The conversation, surprisingly, went downhill from there.}

It seems idiotically simply to state that these are not the way to deal with phone calls at all… but then everything is simple once you know how, and so, below are my suggestions {on one way} you can professionally, confidently and correctly deal with phone calls.

Answering a phone call to a bride or groom:

Calls should always be answered{within 3 rings} as:

Hello, {insert your name} speaking.

Of course if the phone number is only for {one sole} business and not also a personal number, you should answer.

Hello, {insert company name}, {insert your name} speaking.

If the phone number is a fixed land-line you should have lead or call inquiry sheets placed beside the phone at all times with a pen so that you can take notes and prompt yourself to ask important questions.

Returning a missed phone call to a bride or groom {without them having left a message}:

Ideally you should do so, when you have the time and focus to do so, with a pen & paper {lead or call inquiry sheet} to hand. You should begin your call like this.

Hi, this is { insert your full name} calling from {insert your company name}, I received a missed call from you a short while ago, mostly likely in connection with booking {insert relevant details here} for your wedding.

Don’t be of the assumption that you are the only band/ photographer/florist/etc they phoned that day; by calling and saying ‘I missed a call from you’ will mean nothing to them.

Giving specific details allows the conversation to progress quickly and professionally and gives a fantastic first impression of what it is like to deal with you.

Returning a missed phone call to a bride or groom {when a message has been left}:

Again, you should do so, when you have the time and focus to do so, with a pen & paper {lead or call inquiry sheet} to hand. You should begin your call like this.

Hi {insert their name}, this is {insert your name} returning your call from { insert company name}, is now a good time for your to talk about your wedding?

Never launch into a big chat about you, their wedding and your services. Always check they have the time to talk to you. If they don’t, ask them when it would be convenient for you to call again and end the call quickly and politely.

These tips will definitely get your started on the road to good telephone manners! Of course, if you have any questions, suggestions or ideas please do let me know in the comments below or email me at hello@theweddingexpert.ie!

 

Here’s to booking more brides!