We did a huge overhaul of our marketing this spring. The hardest part was trying to figure out what to change first. After some good hard thinking, I decided the place to start was with the phones.
A3 Environmental Consultants started with one person working as a 1099 contractor. The logical choice for our founder phones was to use her cell phone. This minimized costs and maximized customer experience because the boss lady was answering the phone. As we grew, we added consultants who are always in the field. This made the cell phone solution still make sense because if you needed to reach someone, wherever they are, you could. We continued to grow and some cracks started developing in the way we utilized cell phones for our business.
Downside of personal cell phones at work:
- It’s impossible to transfer a phone call.
- It makes you look small.
- It blurs the work life / home life distinction and wears on employees.
- The company winds up paying for the cellphone for the employee causing carrier hassles, stipend hassles, payroll hassles.
- The phone number becomes the brand and it follows employees when they leave the company.
- You can’t control your company image very well.
- It encourages employees to play on the internet with their phones and productivity suffers.
Upside of personal cell phones at work:
- Staff having their cell phone bill paid for by the company is an appreciated perk.
- You can reach your employees anywhere, anytime.
In my estimation, the worst two flaws of using cellphones as work phones are; employees can walk off with your customers because the main point of contact is their personal cell phone and you can’t transfer phone calls leading to a poor customer service experience.
At a certain point, cell phones as primary business phones doesn’t scale anymore and something needs to be done.
I’ll start with what we picked as a solution. Sangoma / Digium VOIP phones. No, I’m not getting anything for pitching their products. They were the best fit for what we do.
Stick with me and I’ll tell you why. I’m planning to post my marketing concepts on weekends only.