Sound Communication: The Holdcom Blog

Why Do Companies Have Such Terrible Hold Music?

As I'm writing the post, I'm on the phone. Don't worry, I'm not ignoring someone who is talking to me, I'm on hold with tech support. It doesn't feel very supportive. The problem? I'm sitting here listening to the same 80s-sounding instrumental tracking looping over and over...and over. I'm humming along. I hate myself for it. Which leads to the question...

Why is bad hold music so prevalent?

  1. It's the norm. If a high standard isn't set, most businesses won't go beyond expectations.
  2. Customers can't tell decision makers. Although people frequently tweet their opinions of on hold programs, are complaints falling on deaf ears? If business decision makers don't know that their hold music is costing them business, how can the problem ever get fixed?
  3. Businesses underestimate the importance of the on hold experience. Why are clients calling you? Tech Support? Billing inquiries? Purchases? Whatever the reason, the way callers feel while waiting on hold can affect the conversation your tech or representative has with them later. If your hold music makes callers crabby, it will carry into the conversation. 

What can businesses do to change on hold content?

  1. Offer variety. If you're going to play only music on hold, offer more than one track. Even better, create a Message On Hold program with voice messages interspersed with music. This breaks up the monotony and lets you get important information across.
  2. Listen to Callers. If you hear callers complaining about your on hold content, listen, don't ignore them. If you hear positive feedback, make note of that, too. Your on hold messaging can be part of your overall customer satisfaction and client retention strategies. 
  3. Add recorded messages. Music On Hold is good...but adding messages to your on hold content is better. It's more interesting, breaks up endless loops of music, and can even make hold time seem shorter.

Above all else, if you know your callers and keep your on hold content up to date, you'll provide a telephone experience that is sure to please.

Is your hold music driving your customers crazy? Find out with a free VoiceGrader Analysis--Click Here to get started!

Tags: message on hold, tips, music