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800 Numbers - Should I get one?

MelissaMelissa subscriber Posts: 7
I`ve been weighing whether or not I want to get a vanity 800 number for my business.  I`ve seen services out there like Got V Mail which seem like they`d be nice to have, but I`m not sure I really *need* something of the sort.
The reason I`ve considered getting one is that I live in the Bay Area where a phone call to a city that seems "next door" is sometimes not a free call (though, in most cases, it isn`t terribly expensive either) and there is the possibility that I might have a few (but probably not a whole lot) of potential clients from outside of the area, but I think it will be very rare.  And, of course, I just think it would be cool to be able to tell somebody to just call 800-WINSOME (actually not available, but there are ones that would work) or something.
On the other hand, I really don`t wish to expend $$ on something that isn`t "revenue generating" and I`m just not sure that a wedding and event consulting business who isn`t specializing in or marketing destination celebrations really needs such a thing....
So, here`s my question - Under what circumstances would it be a necessity or a good idea to have an 800 number?  Also, do you think it`s worth it in my situation?
Thanks in advance for all the great advice I will no doubt receive. 


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    misterwicks2006misterwicks2006 subscriber Posts: 11
    Hi, I have a 888 number attached to my personal phone and it costs $1.50 monthly + .10 cents per minute. These services(800 toll free etc.) are easily available on the internet and they might require that you switch long distance. I was very happy to switch my long distance because the local phone company can no longer threaten me with disconnect. Plus, the new long distance is cheaper state to state - by the way, the internet has phone cards for long distance at very low prices!! You never actually get the card, just a number to connect(eg. .02 cent per minute in U.S. - and great foreign calling too!). Just remember that those services could be monitored by international committee on terrorism. O.k.
    On determining whether the 800 is justified - let me clue you in on my opinion - try the toll free number for a month (say $20.) and see how you feel about things afterwards. Unless you run a big ad. in Wall Street Journal(which i don`t recommend - you will be flooded with responses $$) you will have a gut feeling whether the new service is justified(and how you should modifty things). A quick way to quantify your expense is to use pencil and paper and strike a mark whenever you think that a call was money in the bank. Have fun!! 
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    MelissaMelissa subscriber Posts: 7
    Hi, I have a 888 number attached to my personal phone and it costs $1.50 monthly + .10 cents per minute. These services(800 toll free etc.) are easily available on the internet and they might require that you switch long distance.
    Thanks for your response.  Could you elaborate on which provider you are using and whether or not you`re happy with their service?
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    MsEditorMsEditor subscriber Posts: 0
    I see from your blog that your have a Web site coming in July. It would probably be a good idea for you to go ahead and get a 1-800 number once the site goes live. They are pretty cheap these days, and you never know how many potential clients from outside of the area you`re missing.
    Our company Web site has drawn customers in areas where we are doing absolutely no marketing. These customers called our toll-free number posted on the site to reach us. Also, from what I`ve read, having a toll-free number boosts your company`s credibility.
    Kimberly J.
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    misterwicks2006misterwicks2006 subscriber Posts: 11
    MeLissa - Re: the long distance i use is: CogniState - they have several websites for different kinds of service (International etc.), I`ve been using them for several years - the billing seperate from local and service is outstanding (online and call-in) - you can search with Google.com (make sure you choose the correct service that applies for your needs - mine is State-to-State featured), easy to switch and swing back if you should need another carrier!! Never a problem.
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    googleguygoogleguy subscriber Posts: 47 Bronze Level Member
    Hi MeLissa,
    Our company uses e voice receptionist. We received a toll free #, custom greeting and 3 extensions. They actually record the greeting with a professional voice over person.
    If anyone leaves a voicemail, it goes right to my email inbox, which is great since it is connected to my Blackberry.
    The service costs us $29.95 a month and we get 1000 minutes per month. I believe they are still offering a 30 day free trial. Here is a link to their site:

    http://www.evoicereceptionist.com/evoic ... ionistHome

    Good Luck!

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