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1 Minute to Make a Great Impression –

How to create powerful voicemail messages


Leaving a message on someone’s voice mail need not be a dreaded experience. In our over planned, hectic world, voice mail has become as important a communication tool as e-mail. The trick is not to dread it and stumble through your 30 – 60 seconds, but have a well-written blurb in front of you, read easily and well. Here are some tips on how you can leave a message that will motivate the listener to return your call.


Determine the goal of your call

Voice mail’s primary goal is to accomplish one thing: Have the person call you back!

You don’t use it to sell, close a deal, convince people you are the one they need, or overload them with information about your product or service.

Your secondary goal is to decide how much information you need to leave in order to achieve that call back.


Write out what you plan to say

·        Brevity is key here. Use keywords, power words, descriptive words. 

·        Eliminate all fluff phrases like “Hi, how are you” or “just wanted to touch base with you”. These things say nothing and just waste precious time.

·        Talk benefits, or mention something that will wet their curiosity and make them want to talk to you.

·        Don’t be presumptuous by saying “I’m the best for your project” or cute “Talking to me will make your day”.

·        If some one referred you, mention that up front.

·        Don’t say “please call me back”. It’s a waste of your precious seconds. It’s redundant…the whole purpose of voicemail is to have them call you back!

·        If the call is in reference to something project related and you haven’t been able to discuss it with the individual, do indicate the importance having a conversation, but don’t let your voice sound desperate, or whiney and definitely never abusive! Just mention, “we really need to discuss this, please get back to me before…”


Start with saying your name, your company and your phone # slowly and distinctly

Nothing, yes nothing, is a bigger turnoff than the listener not knowing who left the message!


Compress it into 30 seconds

After you name etc, say anything important first. Try to fit your message into no longer than 60 seconds, because you never know how long a machine is set to record.


Read it before you make the call

You want to sound natural. You don’t want to rush through it. Rehearse, and be sure to speak clearly. Mumbled messaged will never be returned.

Be upbeat. Don’t sound needy or pushy. Read it with a smile! And think positively, that they WILL return the call.


End by mentioning with you name and your phone # again

There is nothing more irritating than having to replay the entire message to note down the return phone #. End your message with it and your name and your chances of getting a return call soar.


Voice mail is more like your elevator pitch. Short, to the point, only here you do not have the luxury of the listener seeing you or being able to repeat yourself. You’ve got 30 seconds, 1 minute at most, to convince the listener to return your call. So remember, it’s not just about words, it’s also about how you deliver them!


At a loss for words? Let the Leona, the Word Wizard, help you craft your message, helping you to enchant your reader and motivate them to action. For a Fr*ee needs analysis call NOW 908-241-5874 or beyond-words@att.net

                                                                               c 2009 Leona M Seufert