In this case, I’m looking for the best answering service possible…
As you know I record all phone calls for quality and training purposes but of course also for tracking and billing reasons.
So I’ve listened to A LOT OF CALLS over the years…
And some of them are truly AWFUL!
I’ll embed a few into this post so you can see what I mean.
The only thing I edited out is any personal information for obvious privacy reasons. Specific street addresses, full phone numbers, etc…
Other than that, they are completely unchanged, including…
All of the painfully large gaps of dead silence in between questions and answers…
The strong, sometimes totally unintelligible foreign accents
The quite frankly totally dumbass things these people are saying to homeowners calling in for help.
To note: I tried sorting some of this out as a professional, but they could/would not get their shit together, so unfortunately (for them) they got the axe and I’ve been sending leads to one of their competitors(who knew how to answer the damn phone properly and land jobs!) instead.
Absolutely painful to listen to I know!
The just show you, or rather, allow you to hear, how completely inadequate (being very kind there) these generic, bullshit answering services are for handling calls for a restoration company.
That’s why I’ve started a conversation with a company that’s been around a long time and comes highly recommended by various fellow marketers that I’ve grown to trust and respect over the years.
I’m planning on starting with a high quality company like this and make sure they can customize things as needed for maximum lead gen results in our focus industry specifically.
Here’s how the initial conversation started, just to give you an idea of how efficient and purposeful I am for restoration marketing clients.
And if you’re one of these guys using one of these nonsense services, hopefully this gives you the kick in the ass to stop, as it’s costing you jobs and taking money out of your pocket big time!
Had a few q’s…
My primary and more immediate interest in your service is for screening calls that I generate for clients in the water damage restoration industry specifically.
I record all phone calls, and I’ve listened to some absolute garbage answering services that some of these guys are using to accept calls after normal business hours, middle of the night emergency hours, or even for their main operating hours. It costs them jobs/money which costs me money as well by default.
Besides that…it’s also a matter of screening out spam/robocalls before they get to the client and wasting their time and screwing up my stats. I’ve started testing a simple IVR and that seems to really help squash a lot of that but still…
I’m trying to get a better handle on all of this for the best call flow and admin for billing etc too.
So can I provide a basic call answering script and an indexable/searchable FAQ sort of file that we can tweak over time?
There’s going to be some basic stuff to be able to answer quickly and reliably like if it’s an emergency, if it’s primary water damage vs a mold remediation situation, or storm damage…if the caller is the homeowner vs just a renter that can’t authorize the work, do they have insurance if so what kind, etc.
Am I getting seasoned people that have been doing this a while so they’re good at it?
And I mean no offense of course, but am I getting American native English speakers?
How are things charged…on a per minute basis? I’m sure you guys are aware more than most people of the crazy spam epidemic of robocalls and telemarketers etc. Are the charges rounded up to the nearest minute or anything per call or how would that work and add up fighting this incoming spam?
On a related note, are you integrated with the Nomorobo or similar service and/or internal blacklist to block these kinds of calls in the first place? And can you integrate a blacklist that I’ve been compiling for years of the same?
What’s your live transfer like? What is the caller id going to be when forwarding those calls to the client…one of your internal numbers or the actual callers number? Can you transfer to just one number or can you round robin things to multiple numbers etc?
With enough detail and training could they not just initially answer, screen, and transfer the call, but also perhaps set appointments?
Are you strictly for phone calls or do you also manage texts, emails, and live chat?
What’s your call recording situation? I already record all calls on my end for quality/training/billing purposes. I’m assuming you guys do too for similar reasons. My main concern there is not having two redundant disclaimers play for the caller.
How are things reported…is there a dashboard or something or an excel sheet sent with notes etc?
So that’s where we’re at with that guys…I’m eagerly waiting on a response to move things forward.