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16 May 2019
Should I Use My Mobile Phone For Business?
If you’re one of those people who feels they have to use their mobile (perhaps you travel or are onsite a lot) you definitely need to keep reading!
This is a complicated issue. In fact, it’s really two issues. The first is advertising your mobile phone number as a point of contact. The second is having your mobile connected to a “landline” number, for example call forwarding on your landline or a virtual number.
You can absolutely use your mobile phone for business, but the question is, should you?
There are three important ramifications to consider when asking should I use my mobile phone for business.
Less Professional Image
While sayings like “image is everything” might oversell the point, the importance of first impressions and image can’t be denied, especially in business. People will do business with you (or not as the case may be) based on their perception.
That’s the important bit: their perception, “the way in which something is regarded, understood, or interpreted.”
It’s not what you think, but what they think that matters. It doesn’t matter how good your product or service is, it doesn’t matter how hard you work or how much effort you put in, it doesn’t even matter what your prices are, if your potential customer doesn’t have the right perception of you and your business they won’t buy from you.
With that in mind, what perception does having a mobile phone number as one of your main contacts give to customers?
Similarly, what impression does “Hello? Look, I’m driving. I can’t hear what you’re saying. I’ll call you back.” give your customers?
You’re Always Available
And, I mean always! Mobile numbers are considered a direct line to someone in a way that landlines never are. For example, you’d think it was weird if
I told you I chose not to bring my mobile to work today. We expect people to always be carrying their phone, so we expect people to always be able
to answer them.
If you give customers your mobile number, you’re suggesting you will be available to them at all times of the day, no matter what you say your official hours are.
Worse than that is the dilemma you’ll face every time it rings. You’ll have to choose to answer at all hours of the day or send them to voicemail and risk losing their business (this is a topic we’ve covered a few times before).
There’s something to be said for the ease of whacking your mobile number on your website and being done with it, but it’s a silly thing to do. Especially when other solutions like virtual numbers are so easy and affordable.
The final problem with using your mobile for business, whether you share the number or redirect from a landline, is the technical hiccups. You want as
few points of failure in your business as possible; the less ways things can go wrong the better.
Using a mobile as your primary point of contact introduces lots of points of failure. Your mobile can be:
- Without signal
- Out of battery
- And sometimes they just stop working
The second part of this is that a mobile doesn’t give you any way to track your calls. As a business owner, you should know at all times how many calls come into your business, where they got your contact details from, what was said, and most importantly how many weren’t answered.
The call log on most mobiles simply isn’t fit for this purpose.
This isn’t to suggest you should never use your mobile for business. Like most things, there’s a time and place when it’s appropriate. The important thing is that you’re in control of that.
Using virtual numbers on your website, leaflets, and everywhere else will give you the reporting feature and professional image you need. They’re cheaper than a landline, easy to manage, and can be routed to any phone numbers you choose. They can often feed directly into your CRM as a bonus.
Ideally, you want a receptionist on hand as well to make sure every call gets answered while you get on with being the boss. And getting a receptionist is easier (and cheaper) than you think.
To get some help setting up virtual numbers and to find out more about our award-winning virtual receptionist service, give us a call on 01604 532 103 or email Hello@theofficegenie.co.uk.
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I had just about given up hope of finding a company to deal with our overflow of incoming calls. The companies I had used in the past were awful, one company couldn't even get our company name right. I wanted my clients to believe that whoever was on the end of the phone were actually sat in my offices. The Office Genie has given me just that, so much so that when my sister recently rang to speak to me, she thought we had taken on new staff.
The Office Genies are ever so helpful and really do feel like an extension of the Bristol Bifold team, they are much more than just a call answering service. I would happily recommend them to anyone thinking of using a service like this
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