The Dreaded Voicemail

23 Oct

phoneYou have followed our Guide to Collection Letters and taken prompt action in calling your slow paying client. In an attempt to follow-up on a past-due invoice you unfortunately hit the dreaded voicemail. What do you do? The call script is designed for having a call and unfortunately that is not going to happen today. What do you say to the secretary screening calls or the dreaded beep at the other end of the line?

Don’t panic. The same professional person that you were planning to be on a call should be the person you are on the voicemail message. The number one guideline, if you remember nothing more from this post, is:

Do not discuss the debt in your voicemail message.

Mentioning the debt in question or making a threat is simply not appropriate and not essential for the voicemail message. Instead, reference the invoice number and have them call you back to discuss it further. Most likely once they look up the invoice number they will know why you are calling. Or, they may even recognize your name on their caller ID and that is why they are not picking up the phone. Whatever the case may be, keep it professional.

Sample Call Script

phone callHere is a sample script of what to say:

Hello (insert name). My name is (insert name) from (insert company name) and I am calling about invoice number (insert number). Please call me at your earliest convenience at (insert phone number) to discuss the invoice. Thank you, and have a great rest of your day!

It is as simple as that. Once you have left a message, document the call and the action that was taken in your client record. If you continue to only reach the client’s voicemail, after several failed attempts:

What to Do

  1. Send a collection letter. There could be a reason the client is not receiving or responding to your messages via phone.
  2. Verify that you are calling the right person. For more information on that, visit one of our recent blog posts here:
  3. Follow the Guide to Collection Letters for best practice timelines and sample call scripts.

One Reply to “The Dreaded Voicemail”

  1. I’m impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do
    I come across a blog that’s both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head.
    The problem is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about.
    Now i’m very happy that I came across this in my search for something concerning this.

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