The title says top tips so you expect that whatever i have to say should be basic information and everyone who handles a phone for public relations or official reasons should be aware of it.
Allow me burst some bubbles but it isn’t totally applicable to everyone. I had an encounter and I am irked that someone who is assigned to handle a PR related issue can actually ignore very basic tips.
I am even more irked that the establishment didn’t think it necessary to perhaps train this individual or assign a more reliable candidate.
On Saturday morning, my phone rang while I was fixing breakfast. I answered the call and:
Caller: Hello Good morning, Am I speaking with Mr. Ola?
Me: Hi Good morning, you have called a wrong number. I am not a Mr. and Ola isn’t my name.
I went about my morning chores after the call. I figured there was no need to bother as people mix up numbers sometimes.
However, this is one mistake that should be avoided if the call is for official reasons.
First basic tip:
- NEVER MIX UP YOUR CLIENT’S PHONE NUMBER.
How embarrassing can this be? This caller clearly mixed up the numbers he had and even gave me a name and sex change entirely.
Now this might seem like a pardonable mistake but what if it was a really important business conversation and you then start off by mentioning a competitors name.
This is really basic, but then again people still make errors. Cross check the phone number and name you have and try to avoid a mix up. It is a bad first impression.
About lunch time, this number starts to call me again. I decided to ignore because I was not ready to repeat the whole ‘ I am not the person you want’ conversation. My phone kept ringing… once, twice, thrice…and three more times. You can imagine how uncomfortable I had become.
This bring me to the second basic tip
- NEVER HOUND YOUR CLIENT’S WITH CONSTANT CALLS.
As basic as this sounds, not everyone knows it is uncomfortable to call a number repeatedly. Especially if you have had a previous conversation and the intention is to follow up.
If your call is not answered, the best thing to do is send a text message and ask for the best time to call or just drop the remaining information you missed out in a text.
I had obviously become uncomfortable so I answered the call the 7th time it rang. Guess what? It was the representative of a Public relations team in the church i have been attending.
He introduced himself and apologised for mixing up my name earlier….then went on to make a third, fourth and fifth blunder.
Caller: we did not see you in church last week. Was there a problem?
Me: Problem? I was in church last week Sunday.
Caller: Oh! I am sorry madam. Incoherent words…come this Sunday…Incoherent words….Thank you madam..
Third basic tip
- YOU MUST HAVE THE CORRECT FACTS ABOUT YOUR CLIENT’S.
Apparently, this PR representative accused me of not being in church last week sunday when I actually attended. He was not sure about his claim, he only spoke based on his assumption.
This is not good for the image of any establishment. You must have clear facts about your client. Skip the details you are not sure of or just ask for confirmation.
Fourth basic tip.
- REHEARSE YOUR CONVERSATION BEFORE YOU CALL THE CLIENT.
This is so explanatory. You have an idea to pitch, you intend to sell your ideas to a person, why then are you incoherent. The reason is lack of preparation.
So, Dear caller was only trying to persuade me to keep attending church (which i found unnecessary because I already know the importance) but if I was to make a decision based on my conversation with him, then he failed woefully.
Preparation and planning is important if you intend to pitch an idea. If you have done a job for several years, you still have to prepare for each client you intend to cater to. Being overly confident can be disappointing.
The fifth tip is obviously a no brainer…but well, not everyone knows that.
- YOU MUST KNOW HOW TO SPEAK FLUENTLY
Nobody will take you seriously if you mix up your tenses during an official phone conversation. You will leave your client wondering if he or she made a good choice. We are human so errors are permissible but it should not be consistent.
The need to write this post came up after my phone conversation with the Public Relations Representative on Saturday. It got me wondering and my thoughts make up this post.
Share your thoughts Lovelies
Have you had any ‘not so good’ encounter with a customer service or public relations Representative?
I will love to read from you
Love, Peace and Cupcakes