There was an interesting article last Sunday by William Taylor in the Business section of The New York Times entitled “Your Call Should Be Important to Us, but It’s Not.” It addresses the problem encountered by many callers when they telephone some of the largest corporations – sometimes referred to as voicemail hell. Thanks to Larry Bodine for posting on this article recently.
The reason I picked up on this issue is that I actually spoke to the head of a 10- lawyer firm a couple of years ago in my neck of the woods that doesn’t have a live person answer their phone. Not only would you have to go to a directory to get the extension of the person you wanted to reach (if you even knew a lawyer’s name), but when you get the managing partner’s extension, NO ONE answers his extension either. His message states that he will return your call during a couple of time periods during the day. How kind of him. What dumb legal marketing by him. I suggested strongly to him – free of charge – that he have a live person answer his phone. As of today, he still doesn’t.
It gets worse, the voicemail says what their office hours are, when they are closed for lunch, and what to do if you want their mailing address, fax number, a lawyers extension (if you know it) or how to reach the firm’s directory. After all that, it does tell you how to reach the receptionist. Who would want to at that point?
I know I don’t need to say it, but surely no smart lawyer marketer would allow such a practice at their firm.
P.S. Taylor’s article tells us about a Paul English who was go aggravated by the practice that he created a blog with the steps (including some unpublished codes) on how to get around voicemail hell and actually get a human person in a whole bunch of major corporations. It is DEFINITELY worth your time to look at It just might save you some aggravation one day.