In-Focus On-Hold published an interesting article recently on the differences between Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).  The primary difference is simple to distinguish – no hyperactivity with those dealing with ADD.  A person with Attention Deficit Disorder isn’t hyperactive or impulsive, but shows symptoms of inattention or easy distractibility.

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Callers placed on hold are similar to those who are dealing with ADD. They are easily distracted, paying little attention to your on hold music and messaging.  Can you blame them?  I mean, have you heard some of the programs out there?  They are built to specifications that can only be described as the clinical definition of boring.  These on hold programs lack the essential ingredient necessary to hold the attention of the caller. In order to create a program that will harness the power of your captive audience, you need FOCUS.

F – FRAME your messaging from the caller’s point of view.

‘You’ is a powerful and intimate word. ‘We’ is more sterile and distant.  Tell your callers you care about them simply by designing the content of your message around them and their needs.  Not you and your pedigree.

O – ONE is the loneliest number.

Except when it comes to on hold advertising. Remember, you are speaking to one caller at a time. Help them engage with your on hold advertising by sticking to one topic per message. The more items you discuss, the more you diffuse the power of your message.  One thing at a time!

C – CONVERSATONAL approach rather than corporate rhetoric.

TLA’s (Three Letter Acronyms) make you sound cool when you are talking with other insider nerds. But, that approach comes off as elitist when attempting to connect with your callers.

U – URGENT, but not high pressure.

Create a sense of urgency with a call to action. This will provide your callers with something to do with the information you’ve just shared with them.  Knowledge is not power. Application of knowledge is the true definition of power. 

S – SURPRISE them with your content.

Tell your callers something they don’t know in a way they don’t expect. Predictable questions and predicable responses is a recipe for boredom ripped from the headlines of ADD Weekly. Hold their attention by being unpredictable.   Use humor, an inspirational story, or a ukulele.  Shake it up a little. C’mon – not only can your callers handle it, they need it to draw them in to the message you’re communicating.

A person diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder is commonly treated with stimulants, which improves their ability to complete assigned tasks and function at a higher level.  Mental stimulation is also a successful strategy for achieving similar results with your on-hold advertising program.  It is to your advantage to create content for your callers that is worthy of their limited time and their attention.

That is why you need to put US on hold. 

I’d like to say that at Woodstock Media Group, focus is our middle name. Clearly, you can see that ‘media’ is our middle name, but FOCUS is what we do when designing your on-hold advertising program.

Creating successful on-hold advertising comes down to the ability to FOCUS.  We take the time to FRAME your content from the caller’s point of view.  We encourage you to address ONE thing at a time with each message and take a CONVERSATIONAL approach to help you connect with each caller. We craft messages that are URGENT with a call to action, and then SURPRISE your callers with a little creativity to help them engage in the content.

After all, you never know the next time a ukulele can impact a post about on-hold advertising.

Tom McTee, Super-Genius

Tom McTee