There are two schools of thought about voicemail and both are valid.

One school of thought says not to leave voicemails — just keep calling until you reach a person. There are positives about this approach but one common negative: frustration. If you begin to think of reaching a prospect’s voicemail as a “bad” call that frustration will snowball. So pay attention to how you’re feeling and change tactics to before it’s too late: apply the other school of thought, which says heck yes leave voicemails! Here are some tips.

RadioVoicemail: Part Radio Ad, Part Verbal Postcard

Your voicemail messages have a lot in common with two other marketing tools: Radio ads and postcards.

Voicemail messages are part radio ad because they help increase name recognition. Voicemail also makes it easy to add some style, personality and ad-worthy information.

Voicemail is part verbal postcard because of message brevity and because the response rate for voicemail is about the same as the response rate for traditional mail.

Two Things to Do (at Least)

There are two very common mistakes people make when leaving voicemail messages. Mistake number one is failing to give the full and real reason for the call. You’re not calling to introduce yourself. You’re not calling to follow up on something you mailed to the prospect. You’re not calling to share information. You’re calling because you’d like the opportunity to see if your products or services would be a good fit for them — so say that.

Mistake number two is to use a wishy-washy call to action or a falsely-urgent call to action…or not using a call to action at all. Here is one of the most effective calls to action around: “Please call me back.” Simple as that.

Voicemail is a Great Marketing Tool

If you’ve got thousands of prospects to call, or a system that makes it very easy to call a prospect again, then you might want to skip voicemails. On the other hand, voicemail is a great marketing tool. Besides, you’ve already made the call. Why stop short of using the opportunity?