We’ve all been there: someone puts your call on hold, or you’re stuck in a call center’s queue, and suddenly you’re hearing that dreaded music. Why, oh why is it always light classical… can’t they use something more interesting? The answer to that question is more nuanced than you may think.
The Role of Music on Hold
First, let’s talk about why it’s important to have music on hold in the first place. Suppose you’re that caller that got put on hold or into a queue, and you heard absolutely nothing. How would you know that you haven’t been disconnected? 90% of callers in this situation will hang up within 40 seconds… and I can’t say I blame them. Waiting is hard enough, but waiting in silence – while also wondering if you just got hung up on – is just brutal.
On-hold music can also serve another purpose: it’s an effective tool for marketing your business. Did you know that 20% of callers have purchased additional products based on the offers they heard while on hold? Imagine the impact that could have on your business!
OK, But Why Is It Always Classical?
There are a couple of reasons why music on hold tends to be full of innocuous instrumentals. Pop music is just that – popular, and callers’ ideas of what’s popular and what isn’t can vary wildly. Sure, your younger callers would be thrilled to hear a little Ed Sheeran on the line, but your older callers might roll their eyes (I’m just thinking out loud here). Instrumental genres like classical or light jazz are something we can all agree are tolerable for a short wait, even if they’re not our personal favorites.
Another reason that you might not consider is copyright protection. In the U.S. and most other countries, copyright law does not allow you to use copyrighted music in your phone system without a proper usage license. If you did decide to use that Ed Sheeran song as your on-hold music, you’d have to shell out a lot of money to get it licensed. For most businesses, that level of expense won’t be the best use of your valuable resources. It’s much more cost-effective to use music that’s royalty-free or in the public domain. Fortunately, there are plenty of vendors out there who will provide this type of music at a very reasonable cost; and some will even do a custom voiceover on top of that music track.
How to Change Your Music on Hold in UCx
Once you’ve settled on the type of on-hold music you want for your business, it’s easy to update it if you’re a UCx customer. There are four steps:
- Make sure your music file meets our specifications. (We suggest using Audacity, which is free and easy to use.)
- Upload the file to your Announcement Repository.
- Log in to the UCx Web Portal at ucx.telepacific.com with your admin credentials.
- On the Profile – Basic menu, select Announcement Repository.
- Click Add.
- In the Name text box, enter a name that will be used to identify your new music.
- Click Choose File and select the music file on your computer.
- Click OK to save your changes.
- Use the Music/Video on Hold menu to specify which file to use for your on-hold music.
- Click Services on the left menu, then select Music/Video on Hold in the Basic column.
- If applicable, select Edit next to the Group or Department name.
- Click the radio button next to Custom Music/Video File, then select your newly uploaded file in the drop-down list.
- Click OK to save your changes.
- With the file uploaded and all changes saved, your next caller will hear your fantastic new on-hold music.
And that’s all there is to it!
Have you changed the on-hold music for your business lately? If so, what was it about the music you chose that made it perfect? (Yeah, that was another Ed Sheeran joke…)
About the Author
Stacey Kendall is a Product Marketing Manager at TPx Communications. Her role is focused on marketing for TPx’s suite of Communications & Collaboration offerings, including the UCx Hosted Unified Communications Service and SmartVoice SIP Trunking. Stacey holds a bachelor’s degree in Marketing with a specialization in Information Technology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She resides in the greater Boston area.