As marketers, we read, think, and talk a lot about Web presence—whether social media, content marketing, search, or other digital medium—and we put a lot of time and effort into perfecting our brand's image, messaging, and positioning. As we should. However, when was the last time you considered "phone presence" during your branding refresh exercises and marketing brainstorms?
Traditional telephony may not be one of the first agenda items that come to mind in a content planning meeting, but perhaps it should be. More than half of consumers still prefer to pick up the phone and talk to a person when they decide to interact with a business, according to Actionable Research's June 2014 survey of consumers in the US and seven other countries. That's huge!
Also, although soaring smartphone penetration makes apps a viable channel, many consumers still find it more convenient to use their mobile phone to talk with an agent than to peck out their contact information and questions on screen, the Actionable Research survey finds.
So, why is it that so many marketers tend to overlook the branding opportunities in voice communications? Is it simply because telephony is not the hot, new craze that gets all the buzz these days? Are traditional voice communications lacking PR to advocate for this older channel?
Regardless of the reason, phone presence can be as important as a business's Web and mobile presence for expressing a brand and attracting customers.
Phone presence can be particularly critical for small businesses that are just getting established and forming a brand identity.
Marketers should have the following three considerations in mind when they're developing their communications strategy for the voice channel.
1. Pick the right phone numbers for your business