Wednesday, December 12, 2007

VoIP-CRM Systems The customer is always right.

VoIP-News has an article written by Cindy Waxer today about how CRM can be improved by VoIP’s low cost of implementation, increased productivity, and efficiency.

Cisco Systems INC. decided to join forces with Microsoft, using their Cisco Unified CRM Connector with Microsoft's Dynamics CRM 3.0 software. A Cisco IP phone now can be used with Microsoft’s CRM system, creating a three dimensional customer relationship management atmosphere. Other companies are also getting in on the action such as Contactual INC.

Leading to the CRM VoIP integration is VoIP’s ability to easily be remotely hosted and managed. The cost for a business to put together a CRM–VoIP solution is around $ 50,000- making it highly plausible for small businesses with small IT staffs.

Businesses are creating scalability using automated preview dialing with list management, call distribution, status reporting & calling scripts. Inbound screen pop-ups id incoming calls and customer info. Users can dial straight from records with Click-to-dial, and record activity. " They posses a cool quotient," according to Paul Greenberg, author of CRM at the Speed of Light.

However, VoIP Quality is a concern for businesses. Dropped calls, poor quality, and downtime can occur. Overall though, VoIP can add to the CRM experience.

I think that VoIP can greatly augment a CRM system. CRM is extremely important these days in a sea of services. Consumers have a hyper-choice of vendors to pick from, and a well organized and run CRM system can be all the difference. First impressions are especially critical with new customers. Companies only get to make one, and it’s usually always the most important. Fast response time and an aura of care will differentiate a company from competitors.

Average Call Duration (ACD) & Average Service Ratio (ASR) are always a concern. It's important to maintain the right relationships with VoIP providers to get the best VoIP quality as we do here.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Michigan VoIP the Mystery of VoIP Suppliers Keyword Searches

I’ve often been perplexed as to the reason why Michigan VoIP is so highly ranked (13 on my Wordtracker {KEI analysis= most searched/least competitive Search Engine Optimization} (SEO) keywords. Recently, I stumbled upon Tom Keating’s Michigan VoIP blog entry from his VoIP & Gadgets Blog. Tom used Overture for his research and came up with similar results, finding Michigan VoIP as number 20 on his VoIP related keywords lists. It even beat out VoIP traffic and Asterisk VoIP # 21 and 22 respectively, according to Tom. Maybe people want a local VoIP provider? But why isn’t any other local VoIP term found on our VoIP Service Keyword lists? Keating says that there are countless foreign immigrants who live in Michigan who may want to call home utilizing the cost benefits of VoIP suppliers. There are more than 160,000 Hispanics in Michigan according to Tom’s research of a 1990 census. Also more than 150,000 of Greek decent and more than 100,000 of Arab decent. The question is, why aren’t mosaic melting pot cites like New York City or Los Angeles showing up under VoIP suppliers then?

I couldn’t dig up anything but an interesting reply to Tom’s blog by username Alex brought in some new insights

  1. Someone asked in a blog why anyone would Google for "Michigan voip", so every blog visitor started Googling for "michigan voip" to see what comes up.

This could definitely lead to Michigan VoIP being indexed more. That is people are finding out about people writing about the Michigan VoIP phenomenon and then Googling more. I don’t think that this would entirely solve the problem however, and this defiantly doesn’t reach the initial source, but may be combined with other theories.

  1. Because of the nice "Michigan Telephone, VoIP and Broadband" website, It works like this: "You know... there is this nice site about VoIP... don't remember the address... but it had to do with VoIP and there was something about Michigan..."

This could be a cause for the Michigan VoIP occurrence with VoIP Solution Keywords, but it would take a lottttt of resources like this to make Michigan VoIP such a popular search term.

  1. Because of the E911 lawsuit in Michigan against Vonage and/or the E911 surcharge VoIP users have to pay in Michigan.

This could be helping Michigan VoIP, but a lot of the searches that I did for Michigan VoIP E911 lawsuit found the case, but didn’t have Michigan VoIP in that precise syntax sequence. Michigan and VoIP were often spread out throughout the text.

So the mystery still remains about Michigan VoIP. Any ideas?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

VoIP Globalization

Intele-Card News (subscription required) has an interesting article written by J. Scott Hamilton about the Globalization of VoIP. It says that the large amount of emigrant communities are allowing prepaid VoIP to grow. VoIP is attractive in countries outside of the U.S. A call from the U.S to Mexico only saves the caller 5 cents compared with a Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). On the other hand, a call from Mexico to the U.S would save the caller 48 cents. However, tapping into this market has its downside. There are technical issues that can occur and regulations that must be followed. The local VoIP market is saturated, but In-Call advertising, which is next generation advertising that is placed within calls without being garish (and is highly effective) looks to be a promising way to break through the clutter. VoodooVox is a company that offers such features. For more information visit Intele-Card News.

Here at GRNVoIP we’re often dealing with technical issues that need to be resolved. Our staff is always working hard to keep the termination running smoothly. VoIP regulation can be a disaster for business. Look at the hard times Bangladesh has gone through in establishing VoIP call centers/ Businesses.

It’s great to see companies like VoodooVox thinking up new ways to earn revenue through In-Call Advertising. Especially advertising that isn’t annoying and grabs people’s attention. Advertising revenues are growing every year and people are getting more and more creative about where to place advertising such as putting ads in computer network’s SSID’s. It’s definitely an exciting market to keep track of. For example, look at Google Adwords, earning Google billions of dollars and helping companies get the word out with Adsense. Advertising whether we like them or not is evolving at a swift pace and finding new ways to reach its target audience. In inundated markets and with tough international regulations, it can be a companies’ best bet for profit margins.

~ Dilbert~

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Sun Microsystems "Back In Black"

First off, Excuse me for diving right into this blog, I believe proper introductions are needed. This Blog is a compilation of GRNVoIP, staff thoughts about the VoIP industry and other events happening in related fields. You can call me the VoIPMan. I’m 22 years old, yes 22 and a VoIP Biz enthusiast. I come from a family of 7, and live in an apartment in NJ with my fiance Shannon. I commute to New York City via train. I like technology, the arts, (movies, music, films, writing, philosophy, books) history/world events, the environment , and to dabble in some other stuff here and there. I will be writing mostly about VoIP and related industries as described above, and will be throwing in as much of my personal insights as possible. Pardon me if I go off on tangents, I’m a big fan of abstraction.

So, Xchange Magazine, has an uplifting article about Sun Microsystems INC, written by Paula Bernier (subscription required) .The once giant in the Silicon Valley is making a comeback with their new CEO Jonathan Schwartz. He led a restructuring effort that cut headcount, consolidated real estate holdings, and lowered spending. Sun’s UltraSparc T2 chip (lowering power consumption), and Project Blackbox (mobile data center solution) will become available soon, and ready to boost profits. Sun’s Java technology is still holding strong and is synonymous with Sun in its Nasdaq stock ticker. Sun also maintains a close relationship with Google. Google is including Sun’s StarOffice suite, which is similar to Microsoft office but is open source like Solegy’s opensourcesip . Open Source applications are free to the public and can be developed by anyone. Which of course, is why they are so popular. You can read the full article in October’s Xchange Magazine.

I think that it’s great to see companies like Sun back in action. Innovative thinking is critical to surviving in a fast paced sector like technology. It’s important to keep up with news such as this (and exciting). In our business, we are always striving to emulate this model of cutting edge awareness.

Vonage Sued By Sunrocket's Asset Holding Company

With the shutdown of SunRocket last month, other Voip companies started to offer packages aimed at SunRocket’s former customers. Now SunRocket’s asset holding company Sherwood Partners, is suing Vonage for allegedly using SunRocket’s customer list without consent. SunRocket said that its customer list is "one of its single most valuable remaining assets," and that Vonage's useage of the list has led to "immediate and irreparable harm and injury." Vonage thinks otherwise and said it got the list from a marketing company. If Vonage is guilty of using the list, the ruling will compromise other Voip companies’ agreements with Sunrocket as well.

I find it incredible that Sunrocket has "risen from the dead," so to speak, (well not really, because the plaintiff in this case is the asset holding company) to sue Vonage. They're doing so in order to hold on to what leverage they possibly can. This case should be used to remind business owners that even with the "death" of a company, the rules still apply. Vonage could be finding itself down a whole lot of money if they lose the case (amongst other lawsuits).

It's crucial for employees or bosses to think their actions through. In todays business world, we are often rushed into making brash decisions. I think that everyone can use a little "jimmney cricket" telling them to slow down, and that the wise tortoise often wins the race over the crass hair. I'm not saying that employees or bosses should move too slowly, but they need to be careful, especially when working for a company like Vonage that is in the public eye, and consequentially "ripe for the pickins," in "sue me" America.

In my writing, I often find myself scared to publish anything, for lack of better terms. Usually, I overcome this fear with a few edits and a walk around the office, or maybe some sleep (hard to come by) if i'm at home, or get some coffee. Many people for instance, including those who really should know, don't understand copyright laws. Even if something isn't marked as copy-written, if it's created by someone else, it technically has a copyright. You can't copy this work, or else you can be fined or prosecuted. If someone is looking for content to add for a project, or something such as a website, they should look into other methods such as: creating original material, syndication, copyleft, donated material, ask for permission, or material in the public domain ( most of the government's material is included). And of course anything written before the year 1924 can be copied. This includes images as well (for you designers out there).

Patents last for 20 years usually, and they give inventors a heads up in the market with their product, service, or unique process. Someone else can come along and add a new feature, but can’t copy the invention. If the patent is dishonored, the offender can be subject to a civil lawsuit.

Lesson learned, be careful when you make business decisions or else you'll end up like Vonage.