Professional Voicemail Examples
What Is a Voicemail Greeting?
There is no avoiding it, life can occasionally prevent you from being able to pick up your phone.
You may also not always want to pick up the phone when you do not recognize the number, or the number is withheld.
This is where a professional voicemail greeting is essential for giving the right impression and information; encouraging the caller to leave you a message, and informing you of what you may have missed.
Why Is a Profressional Voicemail Greeting Important?
Voicemails are not just important within the corporate world but are valuable to self-employed individuals and job seekers.
A voicemail may be the first interaction a new contact has with you. Therefore, you will want to make a great first impression.
When you meet somebody for the first time in person, you can judge and interpret them on their gestures, body language, facial expressions and voice. However this isn't so easy over the phone.
To help a new contact understand you and your message on a voicemail greeting, your choice of words and tone takes on real and crucial significance.
If you can communicate professionalism and personality with a recorded message, you are building a positive image of yourself and your business that the caller can keep in their mind.
Apart from gaining a good impression of you, a clear and professional voicemail greeting is essential for negating any possible concerns the caller may have that you are the correct person to speak to, and will give them the information they need to leave you an effective message in return.
Key Tips When Recording Your Voicemail Greeting
You might be surprised at how many people record a well-worded voicemail greeting without ensuring those carefully chosen words are spoken clearly.
Speaking clearly negates any confusion or any need for the caller to question themselves.
Remember to include your natural inflections and intonation to sound warm, welcoming and interested.
A monotone voicemail message will not only be difficult to understand, but it will also potentially lose your caller’s interest quickly.
Keep Your Message Short and Concise (10–30 Seconds)
Make sure to remind your caller to leave their name, number and the details of why they are calling, so you can ring them back professionally and constructively.
If your caller has left you a detailed message with their query, it enables you to get straight down to business when you reply.
However, do not waste the caller’s time. They may hang up if they are forced to listen to a needlessly lengthy and uninteresting voicemail greeting.
Speak Slowly and Do Not Rush
Do not rush your greeting – this may leave the caller feeling like they are also being hurried.
When you slow down your speech, you are giving the caller time to acknowledge the information that you are giving. Therefore, breathe naturally.
Your tone will not sound welcoming or easy to listen to if the caller is side-tracked by listening to you sounding out of breath, which could be distracting, and at worst, slightly distressing.
Smile as You Talk
Smiling while you talk makes your voice sound warmer and more friendly.
This is because when you smile, your vocal cords are being stretched differently, requiring different muscles and giving your voice a distinct tone.
Reassure the Caller They Have Reached the Right Person
When someone dials a new number, they may consider if they have got it wrong, especially when it rings through and reaches voicemail.
It is, therefore, kind and polite to reassure them that they have reached the right person by stating your name or company name at the start of the message.
Thank the Caller and Apologize for Missing the Call
It is courteous to acknowledge the effort the caller has made to try to connect with you over the phone.
Remember to offer your apologies for not being available to answer their call and to sound genuine.
Include an Alternative Contact if Appropriate
Sometimes the caller will not want to leave a message on voicemail or would prefer to contact you via alternative means.
For example, if you have an alternative method of contact, you can leave the details of it here.
Those alternative contact details could be a different contact number or email address.
Practice and Record Multiple Takes of Your Voicemail Greeting
Take your time and ensure your message is as good as it can be.
Do not be afraid to delete and re-record your message until you get it right.
Write down your message before you record it. When reading it back, ask yourself:
- Does it make sense?
- Does it contain the right information?
- Is it grammatically correct?
- Is it clear?
- Is it positive and polite?
Get a Second Opinion
When recording multiple times, it is easy for your judgment to become clouded.
This is when a second opinion can be very valuable.
Ensure that whoever you ask for a second opinion is not unnecessarily biased and can be relied upon to give you an honest opinion.
Professional Voicemail Examples to Use in the Workplace:
Here are some great examples to help you compose your own professional voicemail message:
Hello. This is Fiona. Thanks for calling. I'm sorry that I’m not able to take your call at the moment. However, if you would like to leave me your name, phone number and a message, I’ll make sure to get back to you as soon as I can.
If you are a self-employed business, it is especially important to sound friendly and welcoming.
Your caller may have other competitors in mind; however, a polite and open-sounding voicemail may sway them in your direction.
Remember to include your name and the name of your business separately so the caller can name you when leaving a message and in any subsequent communication.
If you are the sole employee of your business and your business communication generally makes that clear, it is fine to refer to yourself in the first person.
Also, remember your company identity and branding – you can afford to be less formal with your greeting if you are a company that is known for a more quirky, outgoing approach.
Hi. This is Hayley at Clever Cakes. Thanks for calling. I'm sorry that I’m not able to take your call at the moment. However, if you would like to leave me a message including your name and phone number, I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. Looking forward to talking to you soon.
Business With Lead Generation
For a business that deals in lead generation, every single contact counts. You never know if the next call on your phone might be a high-quality lead.
Therefore, keeping your voicemail as attractive to a potential lead as possible is vital.
Record a voicemail that is as unique as your business, and add a human touch when creating the message. Encourage your caller to leave a message describing what their needs are.
This leaves you time to consider your follow-up call in the most judicious way.
Hello, I’m Lucy Smith, the sales manager at Brilliant Books. Unfortunately, I can’t pick up the phone right now. However, I would love to speak with you at my next opportunity. Please leave me your name, phone number and some details about your reason for phoning. Thanks so much, looking forward to speaking with you shortly.
Business With Alternative Contact Person
Sometimes you may be working for a business where contacts can get their query dealt with by another employee if you are not available.
In these cases, it is important to clearly state this and make it as easy as possible for the caller to note the alternative contact details.
There is nothing more frustrating than being given an alternative contact number and then not having enough time to note the details.
Hello, this is the voicemail for Gemma Bode at Marvellous Marketing. Thank you for calling, I’m sorry I’m not available to pick up the phone right now. Please leave your contact information, and I will call you back at my earliest available opportunity. Alternatively, if you need to speak with someone more speedily, please contact Anne Bloggs at 07000100023, that’s 07000100023.
If you are recording a voicemail for customer service, it is important to make your voicemail sound like it is part of a collective enterprise.
As a customer service representative , you need to be as helpful as possible to your customer – even if you cannot speak to them in real time.
With this in mind, you can leave some helpful suggestions within your voicemail recording; for example, the opening hours of the business and the FAQs section to the company website.
Make sure you make this as clear as possible and consider repeating the website address so that they have time to note it down if needed.
Hello, you’ve reached the customer support department at Sugar Sweets. We’re very sorry, but we can’t get to the phone right now. We may be able to answer your query within the FAQs section of our website at www.sugarsweets.com .
Alternatively, if you would like to leave your name, number and the reason that you are contacting us, we will make sure that the right representative gets back to you as soon as possible. Our website address again is www.sugarsweets.com . Thank you.
If you are on vacation/out of the office , be sure to record a special message to let people know when you left and when you are expected back.
Hello. You have reached the office of Gemma Klein. I am now away from my desk from 1st January until the 7th January. Please leave me your name and phone number and I will respond as soon as I am back. If this is an urgent situation or you require assistance before my return date, please contact my assistant Sarah Jones on 01234567890. Thank you.
What Not to Do
Avoid too many promises – Avoid promises you can not keep – in this case, dates and timeframes for when you will 'definitely' return calls.
Avoid background noise – Make sure you record somewhere as quiet as possible so that the caller can fully concentrate on your voice and there are no embarrassing mishaps.
Avoid any confusing nicknames – Introducing yourself by the name you are most commonly known as and give your full name if the callers aren't likely to know you personally.
Don't use humor – When recording a voicemail message, it is tempting to create an amusing message. However, even if your voicemail is for both personal and professional use, inappropriate humor could cause the caller to form a negative impression of you.
A voicemail greeting may seem like a small, almost insignificant detail, but it may be the difference between a caller giving you a chance or hanging up on you forever.