I wasn’t totally aware of this until the past six months, [large company here] began publishing their vanity customer service number on emails sent to clients from their billing department. Instead of putting an old-fashioned numeric phone number, they saw fit to put their vanity number, alone, at the bottom. It was like 1-866-[large company here]
My toll free number is one digit away from [large company here]. So at every [large company here] billing cycle, my phone rings off the hook. Folks have misdialed the vanity number. I calmly explain the situation and then I hear how little the customers like those vanity numbers….. “Why the hell don’t they just put the numbers on there.” … excellent point.
So, I thought I’d publish this handy guide to vanity numbers. I’m open to comments as always.
Radio Ad: Vanity Alone
Email Signature : Numeric
Voice Mails: Numeric, then Vanity
TV Ads: Numeric, then vanity
Podcast: Vanity, then numeric
Biz Card: Numeric
So, use your vanity when people are likely not to have the ability to write things down right away and need to commit your number to memory. Use numeric when they can visually reference the number. And use both, in an appropriate order, when you’re not entirely sure.