“For anyone who is new to handling business calls, the service is brilliant and much more affordable than running a call centre”

Dawn is the owner of A Taste of Devon, a food and drink guide supporting the Devon region. Her business is based on traditional countryside values – supporting and promoting local farmers and fantastic local produce, small businesses and the local community. A passionate food connoisseur having spent her whole life developing recipes (including a stint on BBC 1’s Masterchef where she was given high praise for her take on a traditional Devon Squab Pie!), Dawn launched the business in June 2014 with her business partner and already has plenty of incoming calls to deal with.

Although the guide itself is aimed at consumers, my day to day contact is with local businesses, events and marketing companies as I’m constantly updating the website with the latest food related news and information. This means I need to be reachable throughout the day so I can build relationships which are obviously critical in the early days of my business.

My launch advertising has mainly been through social media, word-of-mouth recommendations and people calling me directly via the website. I initially considered outsourcing my calls to a call centre but in reality no one can sell your business better than you, especially when you are just getting started, so I decided to look at virtual phone services instead.

I found everreach through Google and after researching the market found that the price was extremely affordable compared to other similar providers. It looked nice and simple to use and I thought it would give me the flexibility I needed to manage and answer my calls whenever I was out and about.

Being a business focused specifically on the Devon region, it was really important to me that I appeared friendly and relevant to the local community. As a result I decided to choose a virtual business number with a local area code (01271). This also meant I didn’t have to use my personal mobile number in the public domain which gave me more privacy and control over who can call me and when I want to take calls.

The process of setting up my call forwarding was easy and it is great to have a permanent record of who has called me throughout the working day.

For anyone who is setting up their own business and is new to handling business calls, I’ve found it to be a brilliant and more affordable way to manage calls than running a call centre.