Toll Free Numbers
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In answer to the question of whether or not you should spend the money to have a toll free number, the answer is YES! I have had my 800 number, 1-800-FGLEECK for years. The largest monthly bill I can ever remember was around $150.
Here is why I think you should invest in one. First, the cost is minimal given what can happen as a result. Let me give you two examples. A year and a half after I gave a speech for a company, I got a call from someone who had been at the event. They remembered my last name and remembered that my toll free number was related to my name.
Tough to forget a fairly weird last name like Gleeck. The lady who called had moved from one company (where she heard me speak) to another one. She called 1-800-FGLEECK and I had a speaking engagement for $3500. That should pay the cost of the 800 number for a few years! Get a toll-free number and you will, on occasion, have something similar happen to you.
The other reason why I like having a toll-free number is peoples’ perceptions. Even though everyone knows that having an 800/888/877 number is fairly cheap, they still expect a true professional to have one. Having a toll-free number will impress only your friends and relatives, but it is mandatory to your clients to look like you are “for real.”
The number of toll free numbers is dwindling fast. I am glad that I have an 800 number and not an 888 or 877. It shows a certain amount of longevity. If you want a particular 800 number, call it.
You may be able to “acquire” the number for a fee from the current owner. If this is too expensive, get some kind of a toll free number, regardless of which one it is.
Make sure to talk to Matt Stracner at Zirvo Communications to get the best rates on 800 numbers and standard long distance. His number is 800-447-9476. Tell him I sent you.