Although the internet is a relatively recent invention, it has become hugely important, not only in how people communicate with each other, but in how businesses communicate with customers and potential customers. Prior to the internet being heavily used for business, companies had four ways of connecting with customers: telemarketing and sales calling, mass mail marketing, door-to-door sales calls, and industry expos and conferences.
The internet has opened up a much broader spectrum of communication possibilities for businesses of all types. And, since business success depends on being able to communicate with customers and potential customers, let’s look at three affordable communication systems that are literally at your fingertips.
Cloud phone system
You’ve probably heard of “the cloud” as a place to store an abundance of photos or videos or as a place to host websites. But, RingCentral has harnessed the power of the cloud to create an all-inclusive internet phone system. This cloud-based internet phone system can do everything traditional business phone services offer and more. The service offers unlimited calling, videoconferencing, texting, mobility options (being able to use the service from your phone or tablet away from the office), and 24/7 customer support. The cloud phone service is simple to set up and use and comes with built-in security and reliability. What’s more? Internet-based phone services often end up being cheaper than landlines and PBX systems.
SMS/Text messaging systems
Most people with cell phones communicate regularly by text. The younger generations even prefer texting to calling. Texting (also known by its older name SMS or Short Messaging System) is a great and unobtrusive way to communicate with your clients and prospects. Since texts aren’t long, they only take a few seconds to read, and they can include a call-to-action that recipients can act on immediately. But how does a business begin texting effectively on a mass scale? Companies such as Plivo help businesses manage global text messaging infrastructure in their own websites and mobile apps. Plivo’s services allow for free incoming SMS, text message short codes, two-way texting between you and your recipients, and a personalized, branded sender ID so people know who the text is coming from up front. Many companies have built powerful messaging systems and you can too.
Teamwork and collaboration systems
In today’s web-connected world, it’s likely that you will have just as many people working for you outside of the office as you will inside the office – if not more. Thus, teamwork and collaboration is essential. But how can you rest assured that everyone is on the same page when members of your team can be anywhere – from across town to the other side of the globe? Companies like Huddle provide collaboration and project management software that helps businesses keep all of their employees and contractors in the loop. With services like Huddle, everyone can see what needs to be done and who is doing what from a simple, streamlined interface. Team members can communicate with each other until projects are complete.
These are just a few of the ways the internet is putting affordable communication systems at the fingertips of businesses both large and small.