Answering the Phone

Step 1 – Opening Dialogue

When a customer calls, take control of the conversation so that you are leading it. Make sure that you get across everything you want to tell them about your services rather than it being a question and answering session where you never really get to tell them about how you can help them.

(Use an upbeat, friendly and welcoming tone of voice!)

Hello Company Name, X Speaking, How Can I Help You?

Customer. I’m going on a trip and I’d like to know more?

Hi I’m X, What’s your name?

Customer. Oh, I’m X

Hi X, what type of pets do you have?

Customer. I’ve one dog

Here you should get into a conversation about their pets – this is the time to build a relationship so they like and trust you. Ask them about their pets, their pets names, comment on how cute that breed is etc.

Step 2 – Talking About Your Service

Have you ever used a service like ours?

Note –  whether they have used a similar service before or not you always tell them about your service. Even if they have used a Pet Sitter before you want to explain what you do and how you do it.

Spend some time creating a short summary of what you can say for either a Pet Sitting or Dog Walking enquiry – you can tailor it for each call but you it should be something that builds value in your service and builds trust.

At the end of this section of the call you should have said enough about your business that the caller thinks ‘Yes, this is perfect for me!’

This is unique to your business but you should talk about

  • How you deliver service
  • How their pets will benefit
  • How you can help them and be there for them
  • How you will update them and keep their pets and home secure
  • What happens next

Don’t talk all the time about how great you are. This is about the customer and how you can facilitate them and make them feel like the best pet owner in the world.

Always Promote the EBOOK!

You should have an EBook you can send your customers which outlines everything you do in your business and some of your most FAQ’s.

For example, you could say: If you haven’t already I would recommend that you go to our website and download a copy of our Ebook, hiring a professional pet sitting and dog walking company, it’s going to give you a great insight into what we do, how we do it and what you can expect.

Do you have a visiting schedule in mind?

Our aim for every call is to get the person registered on our booking system and to give them a quote for our services. Once we have their email it makes it easier to follow up and they also get to see the booking system and pet profile section of our scheduling software.

Take details of the booking and get their email.

Make sure you have template emails to use to send out with additional information, blog posts, booking details etc. This will save you time and make sure you are giving every enquiry enough information to make a decision.

Closing the sale on the phone

Some people will be ready to book straight way. Still send them your quote and your follow up emails. It’s good to make sure everyone has plenty of information and it looks more professional if you have a process that you follow.

Step 3 – Follow Up

As soon as the call ends you should email over all the relevant information about your services.

The following day/later that day (depending on the time you received the call) you should follow up by phone – make sure you mention on your email that you will be calling to answer any questions they have.

Try to do this via phone rather than email if you can, as you can build trust a lot quicker on the phone.

Note – make sure you are tracking the leads and follow up on a spreadsheet or other kind of document.


Handling Objections

#1. How much does it cost?

Always offer to put together a quote.

What I’d like to do is put together a quotation using the dates you mentioned so that I can give you an accurate price. To give you a rough guide though it will work out at around X per day/visit.


#2. It’s too expensive

Price is probably one of the biggest objections you will get if you have not spent enough time on the initial call building the value in your services and most importantly building trust with the caller.

In this instance reiterate your services.

It’s entirely a personal choice if you want to offer discounts – it’s not something we do.

If someone is looking for a cheaper option, then we have a blog post that points them to these options that they can use. We also advise them to download our Ebook so that they know what questions to ask about the other services. (A lot of the time they come back!)


#3. I don’t have dates in mind yet that I am going away.

Most of the time people do know their dates – they just don’t want to commit to anything.

You can handle this by offering to give them a sample of a typical trip/weekend away.

We have some great options available to you. I’d like to give you a quote of a typical schedule. A typical schedule might consist of morning and evening visits, for example let’s say you’re away for the weekend leaving on Friday afternoon and returning Sunday afternoon. Then your schedule might begin on Friday evening and continue Saturday morning and evening with the last visit on Sunday morning and your anticipated return Sunday afternoon. Obviously, we can add more visits if you feel that your dog needs them or you would prefer that extra peace of mind.


#4. I need to talk to my partner

That’s great – is there anything that you think they would want to know so that I can give you the additional information now?

I would recommend that they download the Ebook, as this will help them understand what the service includes and how we operate.


#5. I’m not sure about letting someone into my home

Always empathise with the caller and tell them you understand how they feel.

Then reassure them about your hiring process, the type of people that work for you, how long you have been in business etc.

It can also be good to say that you have the perfect sitter(s) in mind from your team and you think they will be a great match for their needs. It makes them feel special and that the service is very personalised. (note – you don’t have to commit to one person from your team)


#6. I don’t think my dog/cat would like a stranger or my dog doesn’t like new people

Always tell them you understand.

Reassure them about your meet and greet process and tell them you work with lots of different animals with all different personalities, and that your staff have a great affinity with animals.

You can also mention different techniques you use to build trust with the pets.

For cats – always good to mention you will take the intro process slowly so you don’t stress out their cat.


#7. I’m only making an enquiry I will come back to you

Promote the EBook and try and get an email to send them on some more information for future reference.

Reassure them that you are here when they need you.

You don’t want to be too pushy and scare them off contacting you again.