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How to Leave a Great Voicemail

A great voicemail is one that invokes a call back or response. Voicemails that have high response rates are those that are delivered with a clear, concise, and compelling message. In general, most experts in the sales and recruiting realms can agree on these 6 basic constructs of a great voicemail.

  1. Always have your goal in mind. You want to leave a voice message that gets your prospect to return your call. It is important to remain focused on that. You do not need to sell them in the voicemail. Leaving too much information in a voice message will allow them to make a decision on your product before they talk to you.
  2. Keep the voice message clear, concise, and deliver it at a good cadence. People listen to voice messages that are between 10-30 seconds in length. Any longer or shorter than that you risk being deleted before delivery. In general, a good voice message should include your name, the reason you are calling, the benefit for the person to call you back, your contact information at least twice, and a promise for follow-up.
  3. Always repeat your number twice. This allows the person you are calling the opportunity to write your number down without having to relisten to the entire message again.
  4. Be mindful of the times you are leaving your messages, the times of day you leave a message and the days of the week you leave a message can greatly affect your call back rate. The best times to leave messages for businesses are between 6:45 – 9 am and 4-6pm Tuesday thru Thursday. Monday’s are usually busy and as a result decrease your call back rate and Friday afternoons everyone is thinking about the weekend.
  5. Craft a well worded voice message, practice it, and choose a delivery service that allows you to prerecord your message to ensure it is perfect. This will allow you to avoid using space filling words like um, uh, and like. You can also edit out words that sound weak like may, might, or could. The more confident you sound the more compelling your voicemail message will be.
  6. Have a good close. Never close your voice message with please call me back or call me back when you can. Choose closing like call or text me tomorrow, talk to you soon, thank you for your time.

Ninety-seven percent of calls received from an unknown caller will go to voicemail. Crafting a great voicemail will give you the opportunity to initiate contact with those 97% of people you would have otherwise never have reached. Take your time. As you try different messages, track which ones have greater response rates and use that information to further improve your message.

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