Set Your Company Apart With a Great Telephone Greeting

Photo by Jeff Moriartys

A well-crafted telephone greeting is an easy way to show callers you care. We’re talking say-a-few-extra-words-and-impress-new-clients easy. A potential customer is likely to make first contact with your business over the phone, and the first words they hear on that initial call can set your company apart from competitors.

Let’s say you’re looking for a plumber. During the first call of your search, you’re met with a gruff, two-word greeting: “Bob’s Plumbing.” You ask a few questions and move on to your next prospective plumber. This time, there’s no answer — you reach voicemail, and hang up before the beep. Finally, you’re met with a greeting that gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling: “Good morning! Thank you for calling Jim’s Plumbing. How may I help you today?” Turns out Jim’s got what you need plumbing-wise, and his friendly greeting has shown he cares about customer service. Your search ends there, and Jim gains a new client in you. Well done, Jim!

If, like Bob’s Plumbing, your company greeting needs a revamp, here are three key elements to include:

  1. A warm introduction. Begin your company’s greeting with a welcoming “Hello,” or “Thank you for calling.” If most of your callers are in the same time zone, try adding “Good morning/afternoon.” Better yet, combine two or three of these friendly options in your greeting. A little courtesy goes a long way!
  2. Your company name. “Hello” is a great way to begin a greeting, but falls flat on its own. Usually, a greeting of “Hello” leads to a first-time caller to say something like “Hi! Is this ABC Company?” Instead of making callers do the work, reassure them by including your company name in your greeting.
  3. An offer of assistance. Let callers know you’re eager to lend a hand by ending your greeting with a helpful question. “How may I help you?” and “How may I assist you?” are rock solid. If your receptionist is routing calls rather than answering questions, try “How may I direct your call?” If there’s a question you need to ask of every caller, a greeting is the perfect place to ask it! (“May I have your account number please?”) A helpful question is the ideal end to a great greeting. Want to add even more warmth? Encourage your phone answering team to introduce themselves when greeting callers.

When spoken with a smile, these three easy pieces combine to create a stand-out greeting: “Good morning! Thank you for calling Ruby Receptionists. This is Phoebe. How may I help you today?” Your company will be head and shoulders above the plain “Hello” crowd when you begin every call with a great greeting!

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