Toll free numbers can be great for businesses. It conveys the message that you’re serious about your company. They can give the illusion that you’re a larger company than you really are.
*cough* No, I’m not sitting at my dining room table; I don’t know what you’re talking about. *cough*
And, on the rare occasion that a customer has an issue, they know that they can call and get a hold of someone. That can mean so much in today’s automated age.
800 numbers have their drawbacks, too. When I was teenager/young adult, I worked for a small company that had a toll free number. We would have customers call in regularly, as this was back in the olden days, before everyone had email. My, how far we’ve come in 10 years!
Anyway. Most people would call in, do their business, and go about the rest of their day. There were a few that would call in every day or two to check on their orders. Some were lonely, some were simply impatient. And then there was Julie.
Julie used to call in almost every single day. She was a middle-aged woman – early 50s, I’d guess – that was a puppy nanny. Yes – she watched a puppy for a wealthy family. She would call in to place an order the beginning of the week, and have a list of questions about tons of products. I’d answer her questions. She would decide which items she wanted to order. Sometimes, we could get this done in one call. Sometimes it took a couple calls. It always took at least an hour. After placing her order, Julie would call in every day or two to check on it.
This cycle would repeat every week to 10 days. Over the countless hours (months? Years??) spent on the phone, I learned a lot about Julie. It’s strange how the memory of some people stick with you throughout the years
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