By Emily Faracca – On
It could be argued that the most effective agencies have embraced limitless communication with each other and their clients.
Some people think as far as office phones (or phones in general) go, there isn’t much to improve upon. You might call upon the newest version of the iPhone or Android as proof that phones have become more modern, but if we’re being honest, who uses their cellphone to make calls anymore? I’m talking actual phones - the ones that will hopefully never go out of style in business communication. So, you might suggest that technology like Skype or Slack is the more modern version of the phone. If your business is in New York, you can easily see and speak to someone in Tokyo in real time. Guess what? That’s VoIP!
What is VoIP?
VoIP is technology that allows you to make and receive calls over the Internet instead of phone lines. In other words, VoIP takes analog audio signals and turns them into digital data that can be transmitted over the Internet. As long as you have a reliable internet connection, you can ditch your PBX (old school) phones for VoIP.
If you’re reading this, you might be a marketing agency. But you could really be anyone who relies on outbound communication to do their job. If you fall into this box, keep in mind the quality of those conversations will speak volumes about your business. A dropped call or a conference call that lags? That might equal a lost account.
But maybe you don’t experience those interruptions. So why fix it if it isn’t broken? You definitely already have access to VoIP in the form of freeware like Skype and Slack, even if your office phones aren’t necessarily using that technology. You might ask, “If I can Skype conference call anytime, why would I need to switch my desk phones, too?” If you keep reading, you’ll find out exactly why.
VoIP is Extremely Cost Effective
In general, the most expensive component of a phone bill is the minutes – especially for a PBX system, and especially if your calls are long distance.
For a marketing agency, your budget and margins are best served on the actual content you are producing, right? And even though local brand partnerships are ideal, you want your reach to extend as far as possible, don’t you? There is no reason to limit your communication because of cost. In a typical B2B or B2C marketing agencies, your software is your people.
Because VoIP turns your voice into data transmitted over broadband, the cost is reduced significantly and long distance calls are unlimited. You’re looking at $0.015 per minute to start using Arbeit Voice.
VoIP is Customizable
As an agency, your primary function may be marketing and advertising, but depending on your size, you probably still have departments - Graphic Design, Account Handling, etc. - making incoming call handling a need. If you are large enough, you may hire someone to meet this need.
But if you are smaller, chances are separate departments is a goal you are working towards. If you haven’t grown to the point of departments yet, you may have not hired someone to meet this need. But - you still need to direct calls. There is a simple solution, and it’s called Advanced Call Flows.
This is an included feature in many VoIP softwares. This is because VoIP does it all, and the best VoIP providers offer a desktop interface that you can manipulate using a keyboard and mouse instead of dealing with comprehensive manuals and complex routines that accompany your desk phone. We’ll use Arbeit Voice, a top cloud-based VoIP provider, as an example of how a user interface can completely streamline the efficiency of your agency’s call handling.
Using the advanced call flow feature on Arbeit Voice, you’ll see something like this:
Those little black boxes are drag and drop elements that you can easily arrange to fit your needs. You can also customize what your customer experiences as soon as the call connects. Basically, this means endless customization, exactly as you see fit.
VoIP Goes With You
Meetings with clients, photoshoots, studio recordings, tradeshows and conferences will most likely keep you in and out of the office regularly. Your desk phone will ring either way.
The solution for this is mobile service. What we don’t mean is trying to keep track of two separate sets of minutes and two separate phone bills. We mean true mobile integration, and it’s something that’s included in Arbeit Voice.
Arbeit Voice will activate and manage mobile phones through a Mobile Portal, allowing you the freedom to make and receive calls from either your desk phone or the integrated cellphone. You’ll receive the same features, you’ll have the ability to record phone calls, you’ll experience the same crystal clear call quality - all on the mobile device. This is because calls to the mobile device are native, not over-the-top. There’s a lot of technicality involved in this, but basically all you need to know is you’ll only receive one phone bill per month and the latest name brand mobile phones will be completely integrated into your desk phone.
Even if you’re not leaving the office to meet with a clients in person, you’re still communicating with them frequently. Long distance clients? No problem. PBX minutes will typically cost you extra to talk long distance. Not so with VoIP.
You can manage one or multiple conferences in unison on the Arbeit Voice interface. You’ll assign a conference bridge, phone number and pin. Once these elements are confirmed, you can schedule your conference immediately.
Users can initiate and end conferences on demand, view all conference activity for all live participants, and manage microphones. This occurs on a globally optimized network.
You want to empower every single person on your team, no matter how big your agency is. That’s why with VoIP on Arbeit Voice, every single one of your SIP owners will have access to a user portal, providing all of their personalized communication needs in one place.
Your team can view their corporate contacts, manage voicemails and faxes, see registered devices (i.e. mobile) and more. They can modify their incoming call handling settings such as call forwarding and simultaneous ringing across devices.
Your marketing strategy relies on your ability to communicate with your clients efficiently and agreeably. Any interruption to those conversations will be a disservice to your integrity. VoIP is the contact software of the future. Arbeit Voice is a great way to be welcomed into the future - their customer support is unparallelled. Click here to learn more about how you can usher you agency into the next wave of communication.