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Docker partners with AWS to smooth container deployments

Zdnet Linux and open source - Fri, 07/10/2020 - 00:43
While you could always use Docker containers on Amazon Web Services, using Docker's tools to deploy containers to AWS was tricker. Until now.
Categories: , Open Source Voip

Resellers: Building Your Customer Base

DigiumBlogs - Thu, 07/09/2020 - 20:01

For most small to medium- sized businesses (SMBs), the continuous search for new customers is essential to meet or exceed growth targets. As a reseller, the extent of available prospecting options for your business is often influenced by the size of the organization, and whether there are dedicated resources for new customer acquisition. Larger organizations typically have the human capital and the budget to invest in multiple avenues for finding new customers. Regardless of company size, one factor is particularly applicable to all organizations.

It’s extremely important for any business owner to understand and properly manage customer acquisition costs. For example, it is less expensive to keep existing customers as a means to maintain current or incremental levels of revenue, but acquiring new customers is imperative if you want to achieve significant growth. When it comes to finding prospects (and customers) that are ready and willing to purchase, there are many options available, with varying impact on your customer acquisition cost.

It’s often a no-brainer to start by focusing on retention. As a source of revenue, returning customers should be the least costly (and easiest) form of maintaining and possibly growing revenue. In SaaS models, retention is key, of course. But for any type of business, such as resellers who focus on managed services, the sales process for adding on additional products and services is often met with less resistance. The customer has already purchased at least once, and research proves their experience with a business will determine if they return.

Great products and excellent customer service, during and after the sale, are paramount to the customer experience. But you still need new customer growth. Let’s take a look at some new customer acquisition strategies:

The Power of Reputation: Word of Mouth & Referrals

If you are doing a good job with retention efforts, then referrals from existing customers could be the least expensive option for new customer recruitment. Referrals require little effort if you have a strong history of quality product/service offerings, a solid reputation for solution implementation, and excellent customer service. Attracting customers, targeting business opportunities, and finding work or new business is one of the top challenges among U.S. small business owners, and for many, word of mouth referrals are often one of the best sources of revenue after returning customers.

There are standalone solutions that help you develop, promote, and manage a more complex referral system- but small businesses looking for a simple route can promote referral opportunities on their website, in email campaigns, or by just picking the phone and making the ask. It’s worth noting that referral programs are usually more successful if your existing customer is rewarded with some incentive, such as a future discount or cash.

Staying Visible: Social Media

A more recent prospecting tool available to savvy resellers is the use of social media, sometimes referred to as social selling. If done correctly, it can have a huge effect on spreading the word about your business and in actual lead generation. With the rapid rise of business-specific social media activities and the increasing audience acceptance of the approach, use of social media is only expected to continue rising. Plus, there are pay-to-play options available, such as sponsoring a post to make it display in target audience feeds, placing low-cost ads, and more. Every platform is unique!

In addition to (and sometimes within) the traditional social media sites, there are online communities and topic-specific groups (such as LinkedIn Groups) that provide incredible access to your target audiences. Participating in these social communities can be another valuable asset for reaching buyers. These also sometimes have pay-to-play options, but even if you choose not to put lead gen dollars to these paid options, it is still a good (no cost) avenue for finding and conversing with potential prospects and demonstrating your knowledge as an expert in your field.

Getting Active in the Local Chamber of Commerce

Another time-tested avenue for promoting your business is participating in or sponsoring local events. The first step is to join and become active in your local Chamber of Commerce. Many prospects will use the Chamber to network with other members for peer referrals in an effort to validate a business’ integrity. Many local chambers hold networking events, host committees you can volunteer on and have other events that provide great opportunities to meet and greet your future prospects. Chamber-related events will require a bit more time and effort, but the more involved a business is, the more fruitful the outcome can be with finding prospects.

Taking Advantage of List Purchase Services

If you have trouble building your own list of prospects, a proven method for finding potential prospects is to buy targeted lists that match your ideal customer profile. There are many agencies that provide such services, and the lists can usually be filtered and regionalized with great effect. There are several methods of marketing activities that can be implemented with these lists from email campaigns, cold calling, and traditional card or brochure mailers. Obviously, these prospects are very cold and may or may not be currently seeking the solution you offer. While the effectiveness of the activities vary, pre-purchased lists (price typically based on the number of contacts you buy) can provide a significant return on investment. Keep in mind: the quality of the vendor and their lists should be researched and validated.

Networking at Trade Shows and Conferences

Whether regional or national, trade shows can still be an effective method for evangelizing your products and services to a large audience. Participation can range from only having a booth for displaying products and services to participating in the additional sponsored events or speaking opportunities offered. Participating in trade shows can end up being one of the most expensive and time consuming activities, but it does allow you face-to-face interaction with potential prospects. Ensuring you have seasoned employees available for the event, especially with some shows being multi-day events, is imperative but may be a trade-off that isn’t worth the effort depending on your staffing level.

Prospecting new customers can be done in several different ways, each of which involves a varied amount of time and money. If you have the available budget, you may also choose to hire third-party marketing firms to assist with prospecting activities, from campaign development to managing online pay-per-click programs (such as Google AdWords). The comfort level lies solely on business stakeholders and their willingness to be involved in prospecting.

Curious about how Sangoma supports its partner network with marketing, leads, and deal registration? Learn more about the Sangoma Partner Program!

The post Resellers: Building Your Customer Base appeared first on Sangoma.

Categories: , Blogs, Open Source Voip

Setting up a private satellite Wi-Fi network is now cheaper and easier than ever

zdnet news - Thu, 07/09/2020 - 15:03
Pressures put on the cellular networks during this time of pandemic has resulted in some looking to space for more reliable communications. And it's never been easier to put together a private satellite network.

Setting up a private satellite Wi-Fi network is now cheaper and easier than ever

zdnet all blogs - Thu, 07/09/2020 - 15:03
Pressures put on the cellular networks during this time of pandemic has resulted in some looking to space for more reliable communications. And it's never been easier to put together a private satellite network.
Categories: Blogs

Google open sources trademarks with the Open Usage Commons

Zdnet Linux and open source - Thu, 07/09/2020 - 00:09
In a somewhat confusing move, Google is placing three of its open-source projects' trademarks under its new Open Usage Commons.
Categories: , Open Source Voip

SUSE to acquire Rancher Labs

Zdnet Linux and open source - Wed, 07/08/2020 - 21:53
SUSE takes a big step forward in Kubernetes by acquiring container-management power Rancher Labs.
Categories: , Open Source Voip

Data Traffic Trends and the (WiFi) Impact on Enterprise Communications

DigiumBlogs - Tue, 07/07/2020 - 20:58

Around this time of the year, I usually read the Cisco Annual Internet Report to see if there is anything interesting relating to the business communications market.  And there are usually a few good nuggets. This year, one of the things that stood out the most is something that also stood out last year – that Public WiFi Hotpots are going to be almost everywhere. And that the average WiFi connection speed will triple to 91.6 Mpbs in 2023 as compared to 2018.

All this will have a profound impact on your business, because it means you’ll have more people coming to our business, either via phone call, website, social media, or video via WiFi.  So you better be ready.

And if the last few months taught us anything, it means you’ll have to adapt to mobility. But this not just adapt to it for a while, but to embrace it. So even when this pandemic is over, it means employees working anywhere, anytime, and customers and prospecting coming to you via all kinds of means from all kinds of places. And it likely means even more video.

Been on too many video collaboration (Sangoma Meet) calls lately? Get ready for more. Been on video calls in a nice shirt and shorts? Get ready for more. Been on Sangoma Meet calls with 40 people? Get ready for more.

Ultimately, it means you cannot ignore using a UC system. It means your business phone system better have a mobile / smartphone / tablet capable UC client that can handle voice, presence, collaboration and video.   

As I wrote last year around this time… “make sure your business phone system supports mobility”.  Little did I know what that really meant.

Sangoma, in case you didn’t know, supports mobility.

The post Data Traffic Trends and the (WiFi) Impact on Enterprise Communications appeared first on Sangoma.

Categories: , Blogs, Open Source Voip

Is it OK to use your browser’s built-in password manager?

zdnet news - Tue, 07/07/2020 - 17:56
Every major browser on every platform includes built-in password management features. Is it safe to use these tools? More importantly, is it smart?

Is it OK to use your browser’s built-in password manager?

zdnet all blogs - Tue, 07/07/2020 - 17:56
Every major browser on every platform includes built-in password management features. Is it safe to use these tools? More importantly, is it smart?
Categories: Blogs

Home router warning: They're riddled with known flaws and run ancient, unpatched Linux

zdnet news - Mon, 07/06/2020 - 18:46
And there are no routers in the study from the Fraunhofer Institute without known security flaws.

Home router warning: They're riddled with known flaws and run ancient, unpatched Linux

zdnet all blogs - Mon, 07/06/2020 - 18:46
And there are no routers in the study from the Fraunhofer Institute without known security flaws.
Categories: Blogs

The main beneficiaries of artificial intelligence success are IT departments themselves

Zdnet Service oriented architecture - Sat, 07/04/2020 - 21:51
Survey finds majority of companies with AI projects reporting positive results. IT leaders see potential for security analytics and predictive intelligence to improve their delivery of tech services.

United Airlines made a painful statement that may appall business travelers

zdnet news - Sat, 07/04/2020 - 17:00
As United opens up flights to China -- some of which may be patronized by Apple and other tech company executives -- its leadership offers a scoffing tone.

United Airlines made a painful statement that may appall business travelers

zdnet all blogs - Sat, 07/04/2020 - 17:00
As United opens up flights to China -- some of which may be patronized by Apple and other tech company executives -- its leadership offers a scoffing tone.
Categories: Blogs

5 iPhone security settings you should check right now

zdnet news - Sat, 07/04/2020 - 14:00
Take a few minutes this weekend to turn your iPhone into a digital fortress.

5 iPhone security settings you should check right now

zdnet all blogs - Sat, 07/04/2020 - 14:00
Take a few minutes this weekend to turn your iPhone into a digital fortress.
Categories: Blogs

Malwarebytes

zdnet news - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 10:04
Malwarebytes 4 is smarter, faster, and lighter than ever before. Our new Malwarebytes Katana detection engine finds more threats, in...

Malwarebytes

zdnet all blogs - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 10:04
Malwarebytes 4 is smarter, faster, and lighter than ever before. Our new Malwarebytes Katana detection engine finds more threats, in...
Categories: Blogs

I wish I'd found this iPhone accessory years ago

zdnet news - Thu, 07/02/2020 - 15:49
This small, cheap accessory means I'm no longer frustrated with the iPhone I bought.

I wish I'd found this iPhone accessory years ago

zdnet all blogs - Thu, 07/02/2020 - 15:49
This small, cheap accessory means I'm no longer frustrated with the iPhone I bought.
Categories: Blogs

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