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It’s time to stop thinking about your hold messaging as a basic or unproductive communication tool. Flip your mindset and start thinking about on-hold messaging as on hold marketing, and allow a whole new world of advertising opportunities to open up for you. 

What Is On Hold Marketing?

Many businesses use an on-hold messaging system that includes only basic scripting. Those systems are designed solely to:

  • Greet
  • Help and direct  
  • Thank

Many businesses use this tool solely to occupy the time of callers while they wait for a representative. This of course, is better than nothing. (Without hold messaging, callers left in silence are likely to hang up and never call back.)

But, hold messaging systems can do so much more than provide a distraction for waiting callers.

Hold messaging systems can also:

  • Promote
  • Advertise
  • Sell

On hold advertising can turn your phone system into an unpaid salesperson who can connect directly with some of the most engaged customers your business has — people who have called your business.

People who call your business are highly engaged prospects. They are an extremely hot lead who is already familiar with your brand and interested in doing business with you.

On hold marketing allows you to take advantage of those hot prospects.

You can capitalize on the opportunity of having an engaged prospect right in front of you by sharing strategic marketing messages.

What Can You Do With On Hold Marketing?

On hold marketing is the perfect place to upsell, cross-sell, and promote. To advertise through your messaging, you can use the following tactics.  

Provide facts that lead into product introductions. Educated customers are quicker to make decisions and more confident in their purchases. Use your on hold messaging to provide them with information that helps them see why they can benefit from your products or services.  

“Did you know that tire rotations make your tires last longer? Ask our sales team about our tire rotation services that extend the life of your new tires.”

Show customers how you can solve their problems. Customers don’t always know what product or service will solve their problem. Explain to them how your offerings can help by starting with a bit of information that addresses their problem and then provides a solution.

“Have you noticed it getting hotter and hotter in your car? You could have a clogged cabin air filter. Ask our technician to check during your next service.”

Highlight the value of packages and complimentary services or products. If a customer is already interested in purchasing a product or service, they may also be interested in offerings that support their primary purchase. So, tell callers how they can get more bang for their buck by introducing packages that offer discounts.

“When you come in for an oil change, add a car wash for only $10 — that’s $20 off our normally priced car wash service.”

Introduce lesser known offerings. Customer may not be familiar with your entire business, especially if they are calling about one specific service or product. If your business is known for one primary offering, use your hold messaging to introduce audiences to items they may not know about.

“You know us at the best auto parts store in Tampa — but did you know that we’re also amazing auto detailers? Ask a representative how you can get a coupon for $10 off your first detailing service.”

Stress the urgency of time-sensitive offers. Customers that call your location are usually only a step or two away from doing business with you. Guide them to make that purchasing decision now by offering them time-sensitive offers that urge them to act fast.

“Don’t forget. If you add on a car wash while scheduling your oil change, you can get $15 off. Schedule now and save later.”

Best Practices for On Hold Marketing

When you start using these on hold advertising ideas, be sure to follow the best practices for writing your scripts:  

Avoid repeating yourself.

Use this list of on hold marketing ideas to develop a script that is long enough that it will not repeat itself during a customer call.

Write a script for your on-hold message that is double the length of time that an average caller waits on hold. That will ensure that calling customers are not presented with the same messaging over and over during their wait.

Update all time-sensitive messages before they expire.

Hold messaging is the perfect place to promote upcoming events, new promotions, and time sensitive offers. But if you use these timely messages, you must also create a schedule for updating your hold message. Sharing messages about events or sales that have passed makes a business look both untrustworthy and inefficient.

We recommend that you update your hold message at least four times a year. But, you may need to make changes more than that if your messaging includes time-sensitive offers or seasonal content.

Don’t use on hold marketing as a replacement for a live person.

While hold messaging is a great placeholder to guide and engage callers while they wait for a live representative, it should never be considered as a full replacement.

Develop hold messages so they serve your callers, promote your offerings, and help customers find the information they need. But never use it to completely cut out the live element of your customer calling experience. Callers still want the option to talk to live representatives.

Unleash On Hold Marketing Opportunities

On hold marketing is a smart and effective way to communicate and sell to callers who are already engaged with your business. So, what are you waiting for?

Stop missing out on opportunities and learn more about the power of marketing with on hold messaging by grabbing our free ebook.

The 16-page guide shares the opportunities that are on the line each time a customer calls your business — and exposes the expensive mistakes that could be driving business away one caller at a time.