When I try repeatedly to reach a vendor and get the “merry go round” treatment generated by a very well-meaning computer program that may or may not have been programmed correctly, I finally give up and call their competitor who has a human (trained and knowledgeable) to see if I can give them my money. Please realize that if you institute a “cost savings” product that ends up costing your business you may need to reconsider the wisdom of such a system.

I recently tried about four times to get through the “wall” of a company that had contacted me. It kept advising me to punch # or * or 0 but I simply could not get to a human. First of all, the person who called me left a different number than the one that showed on my phone. Secondly, the person rapidly mumbled the phone number one time and their connection (probably Internet based to save money) had static on the line and all the numbers did not come through clearly. After playing and replaying the message I tried different variations until I got the right numbers. Of course, their voice mail clicked in and we played phone tag until we were able to speak. In the meantime, I sent two emails affirming my number which I repeated twice, very slowly on their voice mail. So much for technology?

The point that I hope to get across is that we should make it easy for a potential or current customer to give us their business (think money $$$) by making it easier for them to reach us, not harder. I remember one prospective customer who asked me if I had an answering service as my primary contact. I told him that we only used our answering service as a backup and that I would be giving him my direct number as well as a special code to give to the answering service that gave him a “priority” status. My answer was what he wanted to hear since he was terminating a larger company that took 3-5 days to respond to his calls. He gave me a large account simply because he knew he could reach me if he needed to request services or had a concern. I seldom heard from him and he never used the priority code to reach me because I made it a point of keeping in touch with him.

Can your customers and prospects reach you to give you money?

Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean…

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.