No Client is Too Small to need an Answering Service
September 18, 2018
Music teacher Kay Carter spends her summers providing private music lessons to elementary through high school students. She began offering the lessons to a few of her public school students who wanted to continue to work with her over the summer. By the second year, Kay realized tutoring could help her supplement her public school teacher’s salary while doing what she loved.
She printed flyers on her computer to advertise her services. She hung them on community bulletin boards and distributed them to church choirs. She even had them included as bag-stuffers in a local instrument repair shop. She doubled the number of regular students she had that summer, but she knew she could do better. By the time the school year started, Kay had a number of regular clients who continued their sessions one evening per week.
As the school year ended, Kay received several calls from former students who wanted to begin their summer sessions again. Kay wanted to give lessons full-time during the summer, if only she could fill her schedule. A friend suggested she hire an answering service to help her.
“An answering service,” Kay recalls, “seemed so far-fetched. I just teach music lessons out of my house. I didn’t really see a need for it.”
Fortunately Kay’s friend, an office manager, convinced her to try it. “I had no idea how many people I was missing,” Kay said.
“I missed calls if I went to the store or out to lunch. I just assumed people would leave a message. But they didn’t.
For me, it was just music lessons from my home.
“What I learned later was that though people liked the home atmosphere for the lessons, they expected someone to answer the phone like a business. I didn’t consider that when I started. Plus, I never interrupted a lesson to answer the phone. I just turned the ringer off and let it ring. That was another huge mistake.”
That third summer, Kay filled her schedule, in large part due to her answering service’s always-available, professional demeanor. She earned about a fourth of her year’s income during her summer “vacation” at her home.
“I would never have believed an answering service would have made such a difference. I have enough business now that I can limit my students to elementary-aged kids. I’ve enjoyed all my students, but the young kids have such an enthusiasm, especially when things start to click. I wish I’d used an answering service sooner. If it wasn’t for my friend’s insistence, I would have never gotten to this point.”
Janet Livingston is the president of Call Center Sales Pro, a premier sales and marketing service provider for the call center and telephone answering service industry. Contact Janet at email@example.com or 800-901-7706.
Peter Lyle DeHaan is a freelance writer from Southwest Michigan.
Use an Answering Service to Cover Sick Days
Unlike a vacation, which employees schedule in advance, no one plans a sick day—or at least most people don’t. In most cases a sick day is not a p...
What Is a Call Center?
If your business operates outside the call center industry, you may have trouble answering this question of “What is a call center?” But it’s an...
Implement an Agent Development Program
Call center agents, your public-facing staff, are key to your call center’s effectiveness and fuel the success of the overall organization. Successf...
Agent Success Starts With Great Training
In the call center arena, your frontline people are key to success. This starts on day one of their employment in their initial training. Here are som...
How Not to Sell Your Telephone Answering Service
There are some commonsense steps to take when selling your telephone answering service, just as there are when selling anything. Common key elements i...
Why You Should Consolidate Siloed Call Centers
It’s likely your hospital system has at least one call center, a centralized place that handles calls. This may be for a department, a building, the...
Use an Answering Service to Schedule Appointments
Some businesses and professionals live or die by the number of appointments they have each day. For them, an appointment is a billable moment. A full ...
Use an Answering Service to Cover Staff Meetings
It’s a dilemma. You want all of your staff to attend your staff meetings, but that leaves no one left to answer the phone when it rings. After all, ...