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About Dale

Dale Limes, MAS, is Senior Vice President of Sales for HALO Branded Solutions. He is an industry veteran of 27 years, a frequent trainer at industry events, and consults with distributors at every level to help increase sales and efficiency. Dale and HALO are committed to helping industry salespeople by openly sharing top producer sales secrets for professional betterment of our industry.

Ask the Accountant

Harriet Gatter
Do I Have to Collect Sales Tax for Out-of-state Sales?
Oct 2, 2015

Question: Do I have to collect sales tax for out-of-state sales? It depends, and it's complicated. State governments would like...

Jeff's Rant

Jeff Solomon, MAS
What Can We Learn from The Artist Formerly Known as Prince?
Oct 1, 2015

Since I recently wrote a commentary titled 'Are You Too Old To Rock,' I thought I would share another thought from the...

Kiwi's Coaching Corner

Paul  Kiewiet
So What's Holding You Back?
Sep 24, 2015

Are you afraid to fail? Or are you afraid to get started because you might fail? The late TV preacher...

Lights, Camera, Promotion!

Brittany Hahn
The Mayor of Funkytown
Sep 23, 2015

Each Power Box has its own personality. Power Box 1 is really into dubstep music. He raves hard all weekend long. On...

Not So Technically Speaking

Dale Denham
Think About What You Just Did
Sep 22, 2015

My son did something wrong, and I want him to learn so he doesn't repeat the same mistake. I hear...

Million Dollar Mindset with Greg Muzzillo

Greg Muzzillo
11 Keys to Great Success in Life and Business: Key 5: Find Great Mentors
Sep 16, 2015

The most amazing thing I have found about massively successful people is that they both credit other people who mentored...

Guest Blogs

Guest Contributor
Ask the Accountant
Jul 24, 2015

Question: I am starting out as an ad specialty distributor. Is it better to set up my books on a...

Selling Smarter

Rosalie Marcus
Gotta Love These Supplier Best Practices
Sep 1, 2015

I’ve been in the promotional products industry for more than 25 years, both selling products and programs, and coaching and...

Be Bold, Be Different, Be Memorable

Rick Greene, MAS
A Cycle Of Engagement
Jun 10, 2015

In 2015, the journey of the promotional products professional in shifting prospects to clients is more challenging than ever. With...

Beyond Words

Rebecca Kollmann, MAS+
Swing All the Way Through
Apr 20, 2015

From time to time, I’ve written about a situation involving one of my kids, and after observing something recently, it’s...

Compliance Chat

Jeff Jacobs
The Exact Cause Was Never Determined
Apr 3, 2015

If you read what normally is in this space, you've seen a lot about the protocol it takes to manufacture...

Quick Thoughts by Cliff Quicksell, MAS

Cliff Quicksell, MAS
Measure the ROI at Trade Shows (Using the Right Mix of Creative and Promotional Products)
Dec 30, 2014

Every year more and more products are being introduced into the market, and after a while it all looks the...

Editor's Notes

Nichole Stella
The Perfect Match
Mar 5, 2013

The Super Bowl has also become the Ad Bowl, where brands duke it out to see who has the funniest,...


Kyle Richardson
The Best Laid Plans
Jul 11, 2014

Why it's always smart to keep a planner with your schedule and important documents, and why it's never smart to...

Promotional Fashionista

Colleen McKenna
5 Soccer Promotions for After the World Cup
Jul 1, 2014

Studies show that Americans prefer soccer to NASCAR. Here are five items to sell to soccer fans....

Mike's Blog

Michael Cornnell
Interview with Jason Black, CEO of Top Distributor Boundless Network
May 19, 2014

Ranking #19 on the Top 50 List, Black shares his thoughts on the future of the industry and what has...

The Hot Button

Mary Ellen Sokalski, MAS
"How It's Made" Can Make You More
Jun 11, 2014

The show "How Its Made" is celebrating its 22nd season on television. How can we be a hit, season after season,...

Be Dazzled

Elise Hacking Carr
Got Control Issues?
May 14, 2014

Does chaos define you? How you respond to certain situations says a lot about your character. Here are five quotes...

Big Picture Promo

Matt Kaspari, CAS
Meeting Clients Where They Are
Oct 24, 2013

Promotional marketing is at its best when it empowers a client’s brand, meets his or her objectives and fits within...

My Two Cents

Rick Brenner
For Promotional Product Sales, Protect Your Client's Brand
Jun 3, 2013

Whether you are selling to a global brand like Nike or to your local YMCA, no single asset is more...

The Sales Challenge

Bill Farquharson
Think and Succeed
May 29, 2012

What would happen if you woke up in the morning and your first thought was, "I am never going to...

Creating More Purposeful Sales Conversations

Lisa Leitch, CSP, MAS
Under 100 Days to Achieve 2011 Goals
Oct 20, 2011

It's hard to believe, but there are fewer than 100 days left to achieve 2011 goals! Are you on track...

Your Voice Mail Message May Be Sending the Wrong Message


Unfortunately, we can't always be available each time a client or new prospect calls needing our services. In today's environment, when we do get a call it usually means they need something quickly, or it could even be regarding a problem on an existing order.

In your absence, what does a caller hear? Does your voice mail message give each caller a sense that you are professional, enthusiastic and eager to get right back to them... or does it leave them wondering when you will get the message and if in fact you will ever call them back?

Understanding that we are not exclusive to all of our clients, have you considered how much business you might be losing each year due to a weak voice mail message?

What if your client called the next available distributor because you were not available and you had a lousy voice mail message?

Maybe it is time to call yourself!

Over the weekend, take some time to evaluate your voice mail message on your cell phone and office phone system.

Call yourself, let it ring and count the rings. Does it pick up on the second ring? It should! If you make your clients wait four rings they may not want to wait that long to leave a message. Think about it... what message are you sending if you make them wait?

Test several ways to answer your phone and select the way that best reflects your selling style.

Here are a few good examples:

Hello, this is (first name, last name), I am not able to take your call personally at this time, but if you would like to leave a message, I will get back to you as soon as possible. Thanks for calling. Goodbye!

Hello, this is (first name, last name), with (your company name) your call is very important to me so please leave a brief message and I will call you back as soon as possible. Goodbye.

Hello, this is (first name, last name), I am out of the office at this time but you can leave a message or try me on my cell phone... 555-555-1212. Thank you!

Hello, this is (first name, last name), I am not available to take your call at this time so please leave a message and I will return your call at my earliest convenience. Goodbye.

Our point is... you need to be completely satisfied with what you hear when your voice mail message picks up.

Make sure it sounds as professional as possible, and has that sense of urgency to respond to their call.

Here are a few do's and don'ts regarding voice mail etiquette:


  • Keep your message short, upbeat, and professional.
  • Forward the call to your cell phone if possible.
  • If you can't forward the call, make sure the caller knows you will get back to them as soon as possible.
  • Leave your cell number as a secondary option.
  • Be natural and friendly in your tone and content.
  • Thank them for the call.


  • Be cute or funny.
  • Have music playing in the background.
  • Sound as though you are too busy to take the call.
  • Say you will get back to them within 24 hours.... that is not good enough if you want the order.
  • Make a commercial out of your message, keep it short!
  • Forget to thank the caller for the opportunity to service them.

Just as first impressions in person are important, the professionalism of voice mail messages should be as well. Review your message, think about what your clients and prospects would want to hear, and see that your message matches their expectations.

Best of Success!

Dale Limes, MAS, is Senior Vice President of Sales for HALO Branded Solutions. He is an industry veteran of 27 years, a frequent trainer at industry events, and consults with distributors at every level to help increase sales and efficiency.


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