As a freelancer, you have to constantly pitch to prospective customers, get new leads, widen your network, and ensure that the payments come on time. Using your personal number for all these business-related calls could be problematic. A virtual phone number is the right solution.
Businesses know why they should shift to a virtual phone number. But according to a survey, around 77 percent of freelancers in the country use their private numbers for business calls. This can make them look unprofessional and unreliable. A virtual phone number or a second-line app can change all that and give immediate and compelling benefits.
Unlike other numbers, you don’t have to wait for long to get a virtual phone number as a freelancer. There is no hardware to be installed and you don’t have to wait for days for your number to be operational. You download the software and your number is active.
Now you’ve got a new number that you can use exclusively for business. If you opt for a second-line app, you won’t have to buy any additional devices. You’ll be able to receive calls on your laptop, tablet or smartphone. Since they aren’t tied to any device, this makes a virtual phone number the ideal communication tool for remote work.
As a freelancer, you have to share your number with everyone. In all likelihood, you include that in your pitch presentation, website, social media, business card etc. This means you won’t have any control over who can access your number.
In an age of spam and robocalls, that’s asking for trouble. The last thing you want is to be interrupted by such a call when you’re working or talking to a potential client.
With a virtual phone number, your personal number wouldn’t be shared with anyone. You’ll also have access to analytics and call logs that tell you who had called or messaged you. This gives you more control over your phone calls.
A phone call or an email would be the primary channel of communication for a freelancer. But there’s a world of difference between the two. When you write to a client, you’ll act professionally. You’ll address them with respect, state your name and sign off with the necessary links.
Unfortunately, freelancers don’t have the same etiquette for phone calls and messages. When you share your private number, you’re conveying that you don’t have the required resources to handle a business. But with a virtual phone number, you’ll be able to tell your clients that it’s your business number.
With a second-line app, you’ll also be able to set up a professional voicemail. Chalkboard, for example, would let you create auto-reply messages for missed calls. As a freelancer, missing a call means missing a business lead.
Get a virtual phone number and you don’t have to buy a new smartphone or an additional SIM. You don’t have to use a business answering service, which is also an expensive proposition for freelancers. Importantly, you won’t be locked into a long-term contract and pay for services you don’t use.
When you get a virtual phone number or a second-line app, you get to choose from several subscription plans. You only have to pay for what you use and can move up as your business needs expand.
The life of a freelancer is a life of uncertainty. Without an office or team member for assistance, everything falls on your shoulders. One of the easiest ways to organise and optimise your business life is by getting a virtual phone number or a second-line app dedicated to work.