Voice Messaging Best Practices

Well-crafted voice messages convert more prospects into long-term revenue-generating customers. Use this best practice list to create engaging voice message to convert more leads.

Create Positive Touch Points & Make a Customer for Life

Creating a successful voice message requires:

  • Planning

  • Using industry best practices

  • Keeping a record of successful strategies

  • Fixing what’s not working

  • Doing more of what is working

Voice messages provide a touchpoint that can promote your brand when done well or damage your brand if done badly. Below is a comprehensive list of voice messaging best practices that will help you create great voice messages that will increase callbacks, conversions, sales, and support a positive brand image.

1. Define the Goal of the Voice Message

Understanding the type of voice message you are creating is the key to crafting a message that converts. Write your message to support the goal of the voice message. The following are examples of three message types with each showing a tactic and a goal.

Voice Messaging Goals

Use these examples as a starting point to come up with your own.

As you design your messages, think carefully about where the prospect is within the sales funnel and how your message will generate an action to move the prospect through the sales funnel.

Key Points for Messages

Your message:

  • Should entice & intrigue your prospect

  • Should move the lead forward in the sales funnel

  • Should not pitch your sale in your message

Keep in mind that your voice messages are like a little resume that entices your lead to call—your message is not the place for complex details, logistics, or selling anything. When following voice messaging best practices, remember to keep the messages simple and focused on the goal.

2. Be Specific

Messages should be specific and provide a reason or context for the voice message. If you are creating a voice message related to a lead form, your message should reference that you are calling them back because they completed the lead form. If you are making follow-up calls to prospects that recently downloaded a PDF or signed up for your newsletter, your voice message should mention that. In some circumstances, using day- or season-specific messages can be a good strategy.

3. Practice

When making your voice message, practice the script until it becomes natural. Next, get feedback and make the necessary changes. Record your message and ask for feedback again, make changes until you are satisfied with your message.

4. Personality

Your voice message must be interesting—with just a bit more work you can craft an appealing message. The right tone, cadence, and authority will make or break your message. When reading your script, follow these guidelines.

Tone: Your tone should be compelling, straightforward & personable. The message should be authoritative and positive. Be creative—a boring message isn’t going to encourage your prospect to connect with you.

Speed & Cadence: To create an authentic message requires a balance of enthusiasm without sounding over-excited. Start your message with your normal cadence and progressively slow the cadence as you go. Don’t increase the pitch of your voice. Use a normal or slightly lower pitch to create a sense of confidence and authenticity.

Fresh Messages: It is good practice to keep your voice message fresh. When your prospect hears fresh messages, it increases the human connection and improves the chances the prospect will complete the goal you intended.

Remember not to use jargon nor a fake tone of excitement.

5. Always Leave a Message

Following voice messaging best practices, you should always leave a message. There are two main reasons for this. First, if you don’t leave a message it says your call wasn’t very important. Second, If you continue calling without leaving a message, the prospect will soon identify your number as spam, and your chances of connecting with your prospect diminish greatly.

6. The Right Duration

Keep your voice messages to a duration that makes sense for the message type.

For example, a voice message to a lead that did not answer should be between 17–30 seconds. A 5-second voice message might be skipped and it’s unlikely that someone is not going to listen to a long message over 30 seconds.

7. Make the Customer Feel Welcome

Your greeting should be specific. Specific wording will help make the customer feel special. Nobody wants to listen to another generic message.

For example, if you're creating a lead generation message as a response to a prospect downloading a PDF on the legalities of international shipping, your message should mention that you are following up because they download the PDF on the legalities of international shipping.

Another example, if your business has a seasonal ebb and flow around a holiday like Valentine’s Day, your voice message to new prospects could prompt them to order by a specific date to take advantage of Valentine’s Day special pricing.

8. Try Speaking Their Language

Offering multilingual options can be a challenge. But if you have the opportunity to create greetings and messages that target the users’ language, you will have the opportunity to access niche markets and increase your conversions.

9. Leave Your Direct Telephone Number

It’s important to leave the number you want the prospect to use when returning your call. There is debate over leaving your number once or twice, however. We prefer to leave our telephone number twice. This helps the prospect write it down accurately. When reading your phone number—say the number is a different way the second time.

For example: "Call me back at 8-7-7-9-7-7-8-0-8-0. Again, that is 8-7-7-9-77-80-80."

10. Calling at the Best Time of Day

Despite your prospect’s best intention to call you back, calling your prospect when they are focusing on important business it’s quite likely your message is going to be forgotten. To avoid this, try programming your calls when your prospect is less busy.

As a general rule, prospects are going to be busier in the first part of their workday and less open to sales calls. If you can program follow-up calls after lunch and through the end of the workday your success rates will generally be better.

TIP: If you are working with a list, try segmenting your prospects by time zone, program your follow-up calls with your East Coast prospects first, and your West Coast prospect later.

11. Emotions & Creating a Story Gap

Your prospect has sought you out—they have a problem and you have a solution. The distance from where your prospect is now with their problem and where you are taking them with your solution is called the “story gap”. A good story gap has stress which can be solved when the prospect selects your solution or clicks the buy button.

Your voice message should create a quick story gap that creates a bit of stress. Your prospect will be naturally motivated to close the story gap buying or engaging in your product or service,

So, how do you create a story gap? First, identify the core fear of your prospect. Their fear could be as simple as spending a lot of money on ads with poor sales.

Second, identify where your solution is taking them. This might be a positive ROI on their online marketing campaigns—specifically ‘200% increased ROI over 9 months”.

Now combine their fear with the solution and you have a story gap. Putting it all together your voice message might look something like this.

"Hello, Julie. This is Andy from ClicktoCart. I'm following up because you downloaded our guide 7 Ways to Improve Your Campaign Conversions. This is our most popular guide filled with great marketing advice so you don’t lose your shirt on marketing campaigns that lose money.

This guide has tips that have, on average, helped companies get an increase of 200% on their ad spend in just 9 months.

I have time this Thursday or Friday to meet with you. We can chat and see how we can increase your profits in 2021. You can reach me on my direct number— it’s 999-112-2334.

Thank you for your time and have a great day.

OH! And here’s my direct line one more time—it’s 999-11-22-33-4"

12. Have a Follow-Up Plan

Another common strategy is to say that you will be calling them back later. This is not a strategy we frequently use, however it is powerful.

Letting your prospect know you are going to continue to reach out shows you believe in what you are offering, it shows integrity when you keep your word and actually follow up. Also—when the prospect knows you will be following up, that might be enough to call you back or take your call the next time.

13. Call to Action & Closing

The call to action is critical and ties back to the goal of the voice message. You need to clearly state what you want so your prospect knows the expectations and next steps. Here are a few examples:

CTA for a lead generation voice message: To get started, you can call me on my direct number—it’s 999-112-2334.

CTA for an appointment: If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment call us at—999-112-2334.

CTA for a warm lead: Look out for our email with the service & pricing information.

Thank Your Prospect

Courtesy and politeness is appreciated—thank the prospect for their time.

End With Your Phone Number

End your voice message with your phone number.

Avoid Sounding Desperate or Pushy:

"Call me at your earliest convenience,"

“Call me back when you get the chance.” "I'm really looking forward to hearing from you."

Experiment with Phrases Like:

"Have a great day."

"Talk to you soon,"

"Thanks for your time,"

14. Sense of Emergency

Give your prospect a reason to call back. Adding a sense of emergency is one tactic that can help increase urgency and increase the response to your voice message. Giving a specific time frame for calling you back is a common strategy. If your product or business model permits, another tactic is offering a free trial, discount, or access to premium content.

15. Evaluate What’s Working

Some voice messages will have higher conversion rates than others. In order to make improvements, you'll need to keep track of the variables for analysis later.

Here are examples of tests you can run on your voice messages:

  • Test the same voice message to see if the response rate is better in the morning or in the afternoon. If the voice message performs better in the afternoon, try programming your follow-ups in that time period.

  • Test a voice message using the same voice and same text and just change the offer or one element of the message. If one of the variations performs better, switch to that version.

  • Test a voice message that differs in duration. Try one variation with a 20-second message and another at 30 seconds using a similar message. If you have a clear winner, switch to the winning message.

Don't settle for one test—continue testing and keep improving your messaging and conversions.

Creating a successful voice messages

Refer to this list of voice messaging best practices when crafting your voice messages. Well written voice messages will create happy new customers and leave prospects wanting to do business with you.