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Using Research and Customer Information to Maximize Business Potential

The cornerstone of any business is a loyal customer. That is why in September, our main focus has been on building strong customer relations using customer information supported by excellent service. The two simply go hand in hand. Starting in October, we will start a series, “Using Conference Calling to Define Service” building on that foundation. Conferencing can be a cost effective and simple way to facilitate this customer research and information gathering in order to provide the best in service.

Last week, we discussed the importance of excellent customer service in building loyal, repeat customers who makes referrals. Earlier in the month, we outlined ways to know your customer as well as steps to gather market intelligence. All the suggestions offered will help to serve your customer base. Ultimately, this customer knowledge can help your business reap tremendous benefits. We strongly emphasize that gathering this customer knowledge has to be a priority. It just doesn't happen! Outlined below are suggestions that will make this research a reality.

September 30, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Conference call, conference call moderator, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Customer service, Market Research, Marketplace Trends, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing, Webinars
Why excellent customer service is important

“Spontaneous service brings joy to both receiver and giver. Good customer service has to come from people who like people and enjoy being nice to them. It starts at the top.” (Neiman-Marcus)

We have all heard the phrase “The customer is always right”. The truth behind this famous slogan is recognizing that customers are the lifeline for any business. A successful company understands that excellent customer service is essential for a healthy business, creating new customers, keeping loyal customers, and developing referrals for future customers.

Why is excellent customer service important? Simply put, future business depends on it. The best in customer service can result in three positive outcomes:

September 23, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Business solutions, Conference call, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing service, Customer Service, Customer support, Listening skills, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing, Webinars
Tracking Results to Maximize Business Potential

The most successful organizations in the world are also those who apply the most rigor to reviewing results against plan and providing guidance and training to ensure plans are met. That which gets measured, gets done! Audio and web conferencing are great ways to perform these reviews with individuals and functional groups throughout your company in a way that provides uniform dissemination of information while eliminating the need for travel to accomplish these purposes. Some common areas where this could be applied include:



September 16, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Conference call, conference call moderator, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing service, Meetings, performance reviews, Strategic planning, timed agendas, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing, Webinars
We Build Relationships

Building a strong customer relationship is necessary for excellence in customer service. In order to build this foundation, it is essential to understand your customer's specific needs and business goals. This understanding will make the most of your customer relationships and allow you to provide them with the best service. It is equally important to know them on a friendly level, which will build trust and loyalty. This customer knowledge will guarantee a long lasting client relationship that will transition and grow as both of your businesses evolve.

Understanding how your customers are managing their business along with a knowledge of their future plans and goals will play an important role in building a strong relationship. Getting to know your client and their needs means that you need to be a step ahead of the game and know what will benefit them in the long run. This knowledge about your customer's business will help you put the right solutions in place for them, not only for the present but for the future. Knowing the direction a customer plans to take their business can make you an integral part of growing their business. This will also help to grow your business in order to maximize business potential!

September 8, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Business solutions, Conference call, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing service, Customer Service, Customer support, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing, Webinars
Gaining Market Insights to Maximize Business Potential

Gathering market information is an essential part of any business or organization - no business can work isolated from their industry, market, clients and partners. All businesses, regardless of size and type, have to continually maintain contact with their clients and business partners to keep current with relevant marketplace issues and trends.

The problem is businesses have time and resource limitations, impacting their ability (and willingness) to implement ongoing market intelligence/information programs. But businesses need to have a market intelligence program. The business environment and market factors evolve too quickly not to keep abreast with changes and trends.

September 2, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Conference call, conference call moderator, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing service, Market Intelligence, Market Research, Marketplace Trends, Meetings, timed agendas, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing, Webinars
Integrating New Technologies with Audio Conferencing

Audio conferencing in various forms has been around for a long time. There are few in the business world who have not participated in an audio conference at one time or another, whether it was a toll-free reservationless call, an operator assisted event call or an audio call in conjunction with a web conference or webinar. In fact audio conferencing has been around for so long it is sometimes considered old news compared to newer technologies such as web conferencing and the various forms of video conferencing (room-based video, desktop video, mobile video, etc.). It would be easy to assume that audio conferencing is a mature technology that has had no new developments for some time as everyone's attention has turned to flashier alternatives. That assumption is wrong!

August 26, 2014 | Categories: , , , , | Tags: Audio and Web Conferencing services, Communication, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing, Event management, Meetings, Mobile Conferencing, Technology, Timed Agendas, Two Rivers Conferencing
Maximize Your Organization's Potential with Weekly Staff Meetings

We all cringe at the thought of sitting through yet another weekly meeting in which we hash out the events of the seven days and discuss what each team member feels is top priority moving forward. These meetings can seem mundane and tiresome as can the time spent creating an agenda leading up to them. In “The Advantage” Patrick Lencioni addresses how to eliminate the fuss and capitalize on time to ensure your dreaded weekly meeting not only serves purpose, but makes it enjoyable.

According to Lencioni “there is no more valuable activity in any organization than the regular staff meeting of a leadership team.” He has designated weekly or bi-weekly meetings for tactical purposes. These meetings are to quickly create a real-time agenda and assess top priorities. The challenge is evaluating the importance of each priority brought up by team members while eliminating topic distractions.

August 5, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, communication, Conference call, conference call moderator, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing, Conferencing service, Meetings, timed agendas, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing
Maximize Your Organization's Potential with Daily Check-in Meetings

In his book “The Advantage — Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business” author Patrick Lencioni boldly states, “If someone were to offer me one single piece of evidence to evaluate the health of an organization, I would want to observe the leadership team during a meeting.” He then makes a compelling case for the use of daily check-in meetings where management teams briefly review schedules, events and issue alerts.

Lencioni advises the team get into the habit of gathering once a day, for no more than ten minutes, to clear the air about anything administrative that would be helpful to know. He further advises that there be no agendas and no resolution of issues, just an exchange of information. Two Rivers Conferencing's toll free reservationless conference services perfectly complements this healthy organization strategy!

July 22, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, communication, Conference call, conference call moderator, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing, Conferencing service, Meetings, timed agendas, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing
Best Practices to Improve Your Conference Calls

International business is exploding across all industries as new technology makes the world a smaller place. Although more international business opportunities exist than ever before, communicating effectively with parties in different countries can be a challenge. Different physical locations, different time zones and long travel durations combine to create strong barriers to communication. Audio and video conferencing are powerful ways for geographically distributed groups of people to collaborate effectively. They allow multiple participants to communicate as a group and create real time teamwork where it otherwise could not exist. They can also allow sharing of documents, drawings, spreadsheets and even full motion videos, which aid the communication process.

As significant as the benefits of international conferencing may be, challenges to effective communication do exist. Accents from non-native English speakers can be difficult to discern. Some words and phrases have different meanings in different countries which can lead to confusion. With that in mind here are some do's and don'ts for international audio/video conferencing:

July 15, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Conference call, conference call moderator, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing, Conferencing service, Meetings, timed agendas, Two Rivers Conferencing, web conferencing, Webinars
Best Practices to Improve Your Conference Calls

It is a challenge to connect professionals suspicious of sharing information with other professionals in the same industry — even though sharing expertise could benefit both parties. Conference calling technology provides an effective way to bridge this need for shared professional expertise. A real estate agent program provides a strong example of the benefits of sharing information at a distance using conference calling.

A sales representative from a large conference service provider (CSP) attended a real estate sales seminar hosted by an acknowledged industry expert on the best practices for achieving success in residential and commercial real estate. His seminars were attended by some of this country's most successful real estate agents. The sales representatives were told that surveys taken by the seminar's attendees indicated that the agents strongly valued the information obtained from the program's presentations and educational events. Surprisingly, the survey data showed attendees gave even greater value to the information shared among fellow sales agents during the many social and business networking events that occurred over the course of the three day conference seminar event.

July 8, 2014 | Categories: , , , , , , , , | Tags: Audio and web conferencing services, Audio conferencing, Conference call, Conference calls, Conference Service Provider, Conferencing, Conferencing service, Real Estate, Real Estate Sales, Two Rivers Conferencing
Future of Web Conferencing

Web conferencing is important for sharing information, effective collaboration and active communication. It is efficient and saves both time and money while bringing groups together from all over the world. An excellent collaboration tool for law firms, corporations and other organizations, web conferencing allows organizations to tap into expertise that is geographically dispersed. In the future think of web conferencing for increased interactivity, engagement and accessibility from any device (Smartphones and tablets), improving presentation tools, simplifying shared documents, and enhancing Q and A.

June 16, 2014 | Categories: , , , , | Tags: audio conferencing, cloud-based video conferencing services, conferencing service, mobile devices, mobility, smart devices, video conferencing, web conferencing, webinars
In the Know

While the users of web conferencing systems (WCS) are most concerned about how the system works to meet their communication needs, the IT group has an important interest in how well the system operates and the amount of effort required to maintain it. To find out more about IT requirements for a good system, several members of a small company IT department were asked about the important considerations for selecting a good WCS.

Meeting the important user requirements was the primary goal for the change in systems. The previous system did not provide a quality user experience, with audio issues and occasional delays initiating meetings. Network speed at each location impacted the quality of video and VoIP, so any new system would need to operate efficiently. High quality and reliability are at the very top of the requirements list. The top of mind considerations for a new WCS were the ease of configuration and set-up of the new system. There is a desire to have a system with easy administrative procedures to minimize the work for entering new users and modifying the user base. Having the capability to link directly to the company directory for system access maintenance is very useful.

June 11, 2014 | Categories: , , | Tags: ease of use, IT department, quality user experience, web conferencing, web conferencing systems
Web Conferencing Security

Web conferencing is a powerful way for geographically distributed groups of people to collaborate effectively. Not only does it allow participants to see each other onscreen if desired, it also allows sharing of documents, drawings, spreadsheets and even full motion videos. A picture is worth a thousand words and the ability to share the actual materials that are being discussed in the meeting is extremely effective. It is useful to show participants in onscreen windows because their expressions and gestures give context to their statements which could otherwise be misconstrued. Web conferencing is also commonly used to share desktops in order to demonstrate software for remote viewers, be they customers or colleagues.

June 3, 2014 | Categories: , , , | Tags: audio conferencing, conference host, conferencing service, online security, web conferencing, webinars
Webinar

Contacting participants after the webinar is important and it should be done within 24 hours. Create follow-up emails within this time period and, if possible, personalize them (for example, one way to personalize is to include an answer to a question a participant had). You should also follow up with those who registered but did not attend. Provide what you promised: for instance, slides, a link to the event recording and any other relevant material. You can further leverage the event by providing a link to the webinar recording on your web site, embed it in your blog, and incorporate it in your social media efforts. Invite attendees to follow you on social media.

You should critique the webinar for lessons learned and identify improvement areas for future webinars. Review any attendee feedback for ways to improve. Do a post-webinar evaluation with presenters to ID what worked and what didn't.

May 6, 2014 | Categories: , , | Tags: attendee feedback, follow-up emails, post-webinar evaluation, qualified leads, social media, webinar
Webinar

Registration for your webinar is complete. The date for the webinar is near, and any technical surprises on the day of the event will compromise the success of your webinar. You need to understand the technical restrictions of your web conferencing platform and be trained on the software. During the content planning phase, you should have communicated any restrictions to presenters so they understand the technical requirements regarding materials they will be using. You should have enough bandwidth to avoid buffering and presentation delays. You want to maximize the audio quality, following a few simple recommendations:

  • Use a handset if possible (otherwise a headset)
  • Don't use a speaker phone
  • Be on a landline, not a mobile phone
  • Consider background noise
  • When a speaker is not presenting, mute their lines
April 29, 2014 | Categories: , , | Tags: bandwidth, post-event survey, Q & A, technical requirements, webinar
Webinar

A Webinar is an online presentation and communication tool for your target audience. It is cost-effective and can be highly beneficial to your organization if properly planned. Benefits include:

  • Improves brand awareness
  • Builds loyalty
  • Identifies leads and generates demand
  • Drives web site traffic
  • Trains and educates
  • Increases credibility and reinforces position as an expert
  • Fosters collaboration
April 22, 2014 | Categories: , , | Tags: American Marketing Association, brand awareness, online presentation, target audience, web site traffic, webinars

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