The impression you make as a small business speaks volumes about you and your team.

It also helps set the stage for future business (or lack thereof). Earning trust and respect in a crowded market starts by putting your best foot forward – and for many businesses, that starts with a professional answering service.

A better first impression – especially when a prospect is calling you for the first time – will help you lay the foundation for a long-term business relationship. If a prospect is treated right the first time, whether it’s in person, over the phone or online, they are going to come back again and again.

Making the Right Phone Impression

Thanks to the information available online about common problems and solutions, your prospects may have completed a lot of research before they call your company.

For example, they might be very aware of the type of project they need completed by your construction company and are calling to get more information about how a construction answering service works. The phone call they make is placed at a critical point in their decision-making process. They need to be assisted quickly, and competently, in order for them to feel comfortable taking the next step with you.

In addition to a quick pickup, your business line should feature a live receptionist. Even if you’re large enough to need a multi-extension system, a live receptionist can bring the warmth, friendliness and connection that can make all the difference with your prospects. The live receptionist can help your caller transfer to the right extension, or they can help them with minor customer service problems.

How an Answering Service Can Help

If you don’t have an on-site receptionist, or your administrative team is overwhelmed with taking calls, an answering service could be a great solution. You can make sure that all calls are handled professionally and, as a result, make the most of your first impression opportunity.

A virtual receptionist can step in and handle your call volume so your staff can get back to what it does best. Although the receptionist will be offsite, he or she can help create that essential first impression for your prospects. You’ll work closely with the answering service to develop a script for the virtual receptionist to use to help prospects get what they need. With your guidance, they can even be instructed on handling basic customer service issues so that your callers get help even faster.

Using an answering service to handle prospect calls can help you establish a great first impression – -something we all know gives us but one chance. You’ll meet (and likely exceed) your prospects’ expectations and lay the foundation for repeat business in the future. In short, using a professional answering service can be one of the best ways to put your best foot forward.