Local Companies Are Trying To Make On-Hold Time Worthwhile
Posted July 4, 2001 9:12 a.m. EDT
RALEIGH — It can be so annoying to call a business for some help and be put on hold, but some companies are trying to make your on-hold time worthwhile.
When you call Foster's Restaurant in Raleigh, you will be greeted by a person at the restaurant or you will hear the voice of Kitty Kinnin. Kinnin is one of the many voices local businesses are enlisting to help turn precious hold time into a marketing opportunity.
Russ Reynolds of
says that all types of businesses are starting to use on-hold messages -- from restaurants to airlines to doctors' offices. Their goal is the same, to keep customers on the line. Studies show most people would rather hang up than listen to music or sit in silence.
"You have all these customers on hold, why not better inform them about who you are and what you're doing," he says. "If you try to sit for five seconds in silence, it's painful."
Just as painful can be an annoying sales pitch, so Reynolds recommends businesses use their on-hold message as an audio newsletter to promote their service. Foster's tempts callers with its menu.
"Hopefully, some of those customers that called in for different information might say, 'That place sounds good. Why don't we go out and give that place a try,'" says Curtis Floyd, manager of Foster's Restaurant.
Atlantic OnHold says that most of its productions are female voices, because studies show both men and women prefer to hear women.