Do you own a small business? Or are you thinking about starting a home, small or mobile business? If so, identifying the right phone communication system for your business is key.
I am a serial entrepreneur who has started and built many successful companies. Many of my businesses were named to the Inc. 500/5000 Fastest Growing Companies list. Two of them, ABG Capital and VoiP Innovations were four time award winners. In fact VoIP Innovations is going for its fifth award this year. My companies were also awarded to the Pittsburgh Fastest Growing Companies award, the Best Places to work in Pittsburgh and the Best Places to work in Pennsylvania. I can assure you that I am not some sort of genius or guru. I just learned how to start, build and scale great companies and you can too!
As I mentioned earlier, one of the key components to being successful is a business phone system. Most startups and small or home businesses, typically use their personal mobile phones as their primary business phone. This means giving out your personal number to clients, vendors and other business contacts. This also means that you are most likely using your personal mobile phone number to advertise your business in ads, on the sides of vehicles and on business cards.
Not only does this make you look and feel like a startup, it makes separating your personal calls from your business calls very difficult. Some business owners use Google Voice and have found that this solution is more for residential use, not to mention that Google Voice will be going away soon. There has to be a better way!
So what is the answer? It’s simple, there are new communication companies that are virtualizing business communications for business owners like you. They are creating phone solutions that allows you to use your personal mobile phone for personal and business calls. These mobile phone apps sends all your business calls to your personal mobile phone, allowing you to easily distinguish your calls.
That’s not all, These communication phone apps, also allow you to send and receive text messages from your business number, as well as send automated text message replies to missed calls. This is a really cool feature! Imagine you are tied up with a client and you miss a call. Your caller will be directed to your business voicemail and will receive a pre-typed text message from your business number, pretty cool huh? This personalization will set you apart from your competitors and give you that big business feel.
Another very cool feature is a Virtual Assistant. A Virtual Assistant answers your calls and forwards them to the right departments or employee anywhere they might be. This type of call routing can be a huge benefit to your company, streamlining your business communications. The Virtual Assistant also has a built in auto attendant. An auto attendant is what we all have heard when we call a business; welcome to your company, for sales press 1, for billing press 2 for a company directory press 3. This feature allows you to route your calls to the right person or department or allows you to identify what the call is regarding.
Most business owners need the ability to conference with two or more people at the same time. Virtual phone systems provide you with your very own conference room for meetings. Having your very own phone conference room will project a professional image and allows you to have meetings with up to 50 people at a time.
Sometimes it is necessary to record calls. Whether it be for legal or security reasons or to simply provide notes about a particular call to another member of your team. This feature allows you to transcribed voicemails, sending you a transcribed version of your voicemail to any email. The transcription feature will also place a copy of your voicemail into your CRM (customer record management) system. This can be extremely helpful for tracking your communications with your customers.
Most virtual phone systems will allow you to add as many local or toll-free numbers as you want. This means each member of your team can have their own direct business number, conference room number and/or fax number. Set your business up with a main number, local or toll-free, as well a business fax number.
Tracking your advertising is another very cool way to use virtual numbers. Apply a number for each advertising source and you can better track your advertising dollars, see what’s working and what’s not.
These are just a few of the features that a virtual phone system can provide. I encourage you to look into one of these systems for your business today. They are really cost effective, typically only $20.00 per month per team member.
There is a new service provider called, Vocaly. I can not lie they are good and I am one of the owners:-) Vocaly is run by three seasoned telecom executives. We noticed a gap in the home, small and mobile workforce communications and filled those gaps with our service.
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Co-Founder and Managing Director