You spend a lot of money and time letting people know about your store. Be ready for the phone calls you receive from all that promotion. Handle that first call right and you can gain a good customer. Handle it wrong, and you’ll never get another chance.
The phone number of your store is printed on your labels, advertising, yellow pages, website, and business cards. You have spent thousands of dollars promoting the phone number of your shop in hopes that someone would call. And when that call comes, it is must be handled properly or all that money is wasted. The phone call is the opportunity you have been waiting for.
“Do you do framing?” “How much is framing?” “Do you carry pictures?” These questions by phone can try the patience of any employee; they may as well as about the origins of the earth because the answers are complex. But they must be handled properly.
Each call is an opportunity to show the utmost courtesy and expertise to a client. A phone call may be the first contact a potential customer has ever had with your shop. An abrupt reply will cancel any business this person may have brought to your shop.
Old customers do not make this phone call. It is the brand new ones that are fearful of how much it will cost, how long it will take, or if you have what they want. These questions are asked often enough and they are very important — so prepare your answers. Type a list and place it by your phones. If your advertising is working, most shops will get at least one phone call a day and maybe five or six on Saturdays!
The Phone Call—Opportunity of a Lifetime
Here is an example of phone call script between a Frame Shop and a Potential Customer.
FS: Good morning, Kistler Custom Framing.
PC: Hi, I was just wondering—do you do custom framing?
FS: Yes, Ma’am, we do.
PC: Do you frame portraits of dogs on canvas?
FS: Oh...yes we do.
PC: The dog is white.
FS: We have many moulding styles that will compliment the portrait.
PC: How much would it cost?
FS: It depends on the size and type of framing you would like.
PC: Well, it’s not very large. Actually, it’s kind of small. Well, because the man who sold me the picture...blah, blah, blah.
FS: Well, we can frame most any size, and we offer several types of glass, and hundreds of mat colors and moulding choices. We also stock some frames that are already made.
PC: Well, how much do you think it will cost?
FS: Our frames generally cost from about $70 to several hundred, and we also have many photo frames for around $20. I’m sure we can find something you’ll love. We are open every day from 10 to 6 and Thursdays until nine. We accept all major credit cards, and you only need to leave a deposit when you place an order. When you come in ask for me; my name is Vivian.
Quote a Price?
No, not me. I would not quote a price over the phone. That “simple piece of fabric” turns out to be a antique silk batik. The 16”x20” turns out to be the opening, not the outside dimension. The simple black frame turns out to be a hand-rubbed finish with a 24k gold leaf lip. But, I would give a “ballpark” price to help people take the first step and come into the shop.