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Category Archives: telephone on-hold messages

Should I Write My Own On-Hold Messages?

on-hold messageOwning a business takes a lot of work, and often a lot of money when starting up. If you’re like a lot of small business owners, you probably try to do as much in-house as possible, maybe even taking on a lot of tasks yourself. If you’re tempted to write and record your own telephone on-hold message for your business, you might reconsider. Continue reading

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On-Hold Messages – Still a Valid Form of Advertising

businessman on the phone, placed on-holdThe concept of on-hold messages has been around since the ’80s, and it has weathered a bad economy, changes in the telecommunication industry, and the emergence of social media and internet advertising. Yet on-hold messages and music is still very  widely used by businesses in the US and abroad.

Telecom has changed a lot in the past 20 years, with VOIP systems becoming more common. This often means that multi-location businesses share one central phone system. These systems created challenges for the on-hold industry – in the past each location had its own phone system and would be able to have its own customized on-hold recording. Now, all locations tend to share one recording. Continue reading

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On-Hold Messages Turns Wait-Time Into Marketing Opportunity

on-hold messagesNo one likes to be put on hold. When you have an important question, or you need service fast, being put on hold can be frustrating. The same is true for your customers. What makes matters worse is being on the other end of dead silence. “Did they hang up? Should I keep waiting?” Those questions should never enter the minds of your customers.

What if you could keep your customers engaged, entertained, and informed while simultaneously boosting sales? On-hold messages do just that.

When you think of marketing today, you might not consider the benefits of quality on-hold recordings. Even with newer, digitized forms of marketing that dominate the scene today, on-hold messages are still an innovative, and highly-effective marketing tool that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Here’s why you should think about adding on-hold messages to your marketing solutions:

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Dental On-Hold Messages, an Effective Marketing Tool

on-hold messagesAs much as you would like to be able to speak to each patient the moment they call, it’s not always possible, especially in a busy dental practice. All you can do is answer, acknowledge the patient, and ask them to please hold and you will be with them shortly. There is nothing worse for the patient than to be placed on hold and hear dead silence, or worse, static from a drifting radio signal.

The patient just gets more impatient by the moment and will often just hang-up and call back later. Some patients won’t even call back simply because it took a lot of courage for them to call in the first place because a visit to the dentist is the last thing they really want to schedule. Lost phone calls equal lost revenue!

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Digital On-Hold Player Sales Rise in 2010

USB Digital Player

USB Digital Player

2010 saw an increase in the number of telephone on-hold digital units sold by Watt Media, the first time in three years that we’ve seen such a trend.  Digital player sales increased each year since our inception in 1998, until 2008 when the economy started heading downward and sales in general began to stagnate.  In the three years that followed, sales of digital units flattened, with a gradual decline each year.  Then, in 2010, amazingly, sales of these digital units increased!  How do I explain this turn of events?

I think the biggest reason is, oddly enough, the advent of iPods and mp3 players and the concept that their ubiquity over the past few years has actually made it easier to sell digital players.  How so?  Several years ago, the digital player sale’s biggest enemy was the portable CD player.  We found ourselves trying to convince prospects that a digital player is better than the alternative, a “boom-box” portable CD player.  Since a boom-box was $50 or less, it was often a difficult sale.  Clients could pick up a boom box for very little and figured they could simply get another one if it broke or wore out.

Now, the alternative is no longer a boom box, since these portable CD players have become somewhat passé, but instead the alternative to a digital unit is now an mp3 player or iPod.  Since an iPod costs almost as much as a digital player, it just makes more sense to get the digital unit, which is made specifically for on-hold message purposes.  A cheap mp3 player won’t sound good and will not be able to repeat continuously for long periods of time, so isn’t even a plausible choice for on-hold purposes.

A second reason for the increase in digital player sales is the general upturn in the economy we’ve seen over the past year.  2010 saw an overall increase in revenue for Watt Media in all areas, one of which is these digital players.  (Watt Media offers Messager USB units, which use a USB “thumb” drive onto which the on-hold recording is uploaded)  Here’s hoping this trend continues!

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On-Hold Advertising Still a Choice of Businesses Despite Slow Economy

On-Hold Messages, also known as On-Hold Advertising, is still going strong despite a tough economy.  As a small business owner, it’s interesting to be able to have a close-up view of business trends and cycles in our economy, and sales in on-hold messages have increased steadily in the past few months.   I’ve seen more and more businesses start spending money and I am happy to report than on-hold messaging is still a strong candidate for a business’ marketing dollars. Continue reading

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Watt Media Telephone On-Hold Messages vs. Other Companies

There are some differences between the way we do things at Watt Media and the way other telephone on-hold companies do it.  I am often asked about this when we receive calls from prospects who’ve found us online and are shopping around.  Here are some simple differences:

1. We sell our digital player, which means you own it.  Many on-hold companies lease the player, which means you will end up paying two or three times what the unit is actually worth in the long run.  Others will provide you with the player, supposedly at no charge, but will charge you an upfront fee and call it something else.  There are some on-hold companies that will actually provide it at no charge, but this is because you don’t own the equipment, which means that if you ever cancel the service, you will need to return it and stop using the recordings in your possession.  I realize that getting a free player is attractive at first, as compared to paying a few hundreds of dollars for it, but our clients love the fact that they own their equipment, and will always be able to use it. Continue reading

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Review of Nel-Tech Messager USB On-Hold Unit

As part of the Technology Committee of OHMA (On-Hold Messaging Association), I was asked to review the Nel-Tech Labs Messager USB Digital on-hold unit.

Product Review: __Nel-tech Messager USB__

By Amir Watynski, Watt Media, Inc.



USB Drive – on-hold audio is stored on a standard USB Drive (provided), which is then inserted into the player. Drive remains in player.

: Continue reading

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Phone Systems with T1 Lines Pose New Challenge for On-Hold Messages

With the ubiquity of T1 lines and more offices going to phone systems with T1 lines, the question invariably comes up, “How will an on-hold system work with this new technology?” Many multi-location businesses and practices especially are switching to T1 lines, where there is one central phone system shared by multiple offices. Calls can be transferred from one office to another, making this type of system ideal in many cases. Continue reading

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OHMA Press Release

OHMA just issued this press release, which I am happy to post here:

“Business Calls Placed ‘On Hold’ Are a Point of Opportunity!”
States newly elected OHMA Chairman

Pete Turpel, the newly elected Chairman of OHMA, the On Hold Messaging Association, believes the phone is not going away and businesses are missing opportunity after opportunity by not talking to the consumer during their ‘hold time.’ Continue reading

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