Text Messaging Marketing
Vernon recalled the day text messaging marketing came knocking at the door. Vernon was absolutely perplexed about the advertising budget. So much money had been spent on the campaign that the boss noticed and told Vernon outright that either a money-saving tactic is used or Vernon would be searching for another job, and very soon. Rick, a friend in another business, stopped in earlier that day to boast about how sales were exploding due to a new marketing campaign that was discovered, which saved thousands of dollars and was almost effortless. Revenues were up 60% since starting the new service! Vernon couldnt wait to ask Rick Well, what is the secret? Rick said the company discovered that marketing messages, advertisements, coupons and even more can be sent to any cell phone number in the world from a computer for free! Imagine all the money to be saved by not having to text messages from one phone to another. All that needed to be done is to send the messages from a computer directly to the cell phone that is to receive the advertisement!
Vernon immediately thanked Rick, ushered the man out of the office on the premise that a project was behind schedule, and then scurried back to the desk chair with a smile from ear to ear. Wow, this was the answer to all woes. Vernon would find out exactly how to initiate this advertising campaign utilizing the free text messaging Rick had spoken about. Dreaming of the smile beaming from the bosses face was enough to send Vernon to cloud nine, and even imagined a big raise and promotion as a result. Quickly Vernon did some calculations and discovered that a savings of several thousand dollars can be saved by doing things the easy way. Rick told Vernon the name of this procedure is called text messaging marketing. This is a free text messaging service provided to any person at any location. The marketing executive spent the next couple of hours gathering all the phone numbers of all the clients obtained over the last year or two, and entered all into a database for ease of retrieval later. Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; if thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; Then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding (Proverbs 2:4-6 KJV).
Next, a search was done to find a provider for the free text messaging service that Vernon would use for the marketing campaign. When all was in order, the executive made an appointment with the boss for the next day at 9 a.m. to present the new advertising project. To celebrate the future, Vernon treated himself to a steak dinner at a local restaurant and then went home to dream about success. While dreaming, ideas came into Vernons head that not only could a free text messaging service for text messaging marketing be used for sales, but that the service could also be utilized for inter-office purposes such as sending reports between departments, communicating administrative short memos from one department to another or a host of ideas such as these. This made the executive deliriously happy, even while dreaming. Vernon awoke the next morning feeling better than ever and hurriedly got ready to head for the office. Index cards were clutched tightly in hand to memorize the presentation on the way to work.
With sweaty palms but heart pounding with anticipation, Vernon entered the bosss office promptly at 9 a.m. A cup of coffee was waiting as notepads were laid on the meeting table, niceties were exchanged and then the two men got down to business. Okay, Vernon. What new idea is in the works to save the company money? Vernon could hardly hold back from blurting all the words out at once, but checked himself and steadily introduced the concept of utilizing free messaging marketing to send company advertising to all clients for free. When the boss heard this, eyes widened and a faint smile appeared. Vernon was encouraged and continued relating how that thousands of dollars could be saved by doing the campaign in this manner, and that other uses could be found for this service between the departments within the company. The executive produced a long list of clients that could be served, in not only this country but also all across the world with the potential of even more savings!
By the time Vernon was finished presenting the facts about the new marketing campaign, the boss was ecstatic. Right away, all the other sales executives were called into the office to hear about the free text messaging service and the huge savings it would provide for the corporation. The executive felt ten feet tall, and left the office with a bouncy step for the first time in many months. Vernon made a mental note to take Rick out for dinner as a thanks for the wonderful text messaging marketing idea.
By the time the executive reached his desk, there was a voice message on the phone stating that indeed there is a raise in store and that it would show up in the next pay check on Friday. One by one, other sales executives on the floor that had been in the meeting came by to congratulate Vernon on the successful presentation on the free text messaging marketing service. Admiration was expressed all around and plans made to get together on more of a regular basis to discuss new ideas on how to save money and market using the latest of technologies, something that had not been happening in recent days. The executive spent the rest of the day glowing and dreaming of the next great idea that could catapult his career. In doing so, Vernon picked up the phone to call his friend Rick.
Business Instant MessagingAs a communications tool, corporate instant messaging saves time and money, but presents some security risks. Since its inception in the late 1990s, instant messaging (IM) has grown in popularity amongst Internet users, nearly 50% regularly communicate online via chatrooms and blogs. During the last decade, domestic and foreign companies have opted to use business Internet messaging as a convenient, cost-saving alternative to landline phone calls or e-mail. Today, over 280 million users regularly send instant messages through one or more of five major IM providers. As a business communications tool, IM is expected to outdistance e-mail in the very near future, primarily due to its ease, immediacy, and seamless efficiency.
While some would argue that constant corporate instant messaging can be distracting and threaten employee productivity, others argue that the opposite is true. IM has been proven to be a boon to businesses that rely heavily on communication between workgroups and teams to collaborate on projects. Workgroups can easily conduct online think tank sessions comparing documents, images, files, and streaming content in real-time and at relatively little cost to the company. Compare IM with the high cost of domestic and international conference calling and the reason businesses switch to electronic communication is a no-brainer. Instead of mailing blueprints, drafts, or contracts to customers or business partners across the state or overseas, IM allows images and files to be shared and viewed at individual workstations.
The beauty of IM technology is that traveling sales representatives and employees at remote locations don't have to be left out of the loop when it comes to communicating. Business instant messaging is accessible anywhere in the world and to and from most cell phones. Partners can share files and download real-time streaming content to view stock quotes or share statistics accessed through links to other websites. Corporate instant messaging actually encourages greater workplace communication, collaboration, cohesiveness, and consistency in achieving goals and completing tasks. And that cohesiveness is a Biblical principle that reaps rewards in the world of commerce. "Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour." (Ecclesiastes 4:9)
However, the downside to business instant messaging is the security risk. In the information age, sensitive corporate data can translate into stolen dollars. When enterprises engage in electronic communications, server providers have access to confidential data that can cost billions if leaked to the public. Providers have a moral and ethical obligation to users to safeguard private information, such as email addresses, social security numbers, bank accounts, and confidential e-conversations and text messages. Corporations should only deal with reputable providers who can assure that text messages will remain secure and accessible only to workgroup members.
Other workplace abuses can exist when employees use business instant messaging to communicate with family and friends, or engage in personal texting at the expense of productivity. Many corporations have implemented policies limiting or prohibiting personal emails, text messaging and telephoning in the workplace to discourage abuse. A legitimate concern is that confidential corporate information may inadvertently be sent to personal contacts and vice versa. Especially susceptible to security breaches are military and government agencies, hospitals, retailers, banks and other financial institutions. A significant amount of damage can be done when personal identification, financial records, sensitive data, and even insider stock market trading information fall into the wrong hands.
On the upside, business instant messaging is cost effective; and some providers offer free downloads. Individuals and businesses can access free or low-cost programs online and install a software client, which enables users to connect to offsite servers through their PC with a provider-issued password and username. Once the client is logged on, the server verifies the client's Internet Protocol, or IP address and the client's unique port. The server essentially acts like a telephone operator, connecting the company's computer or client, to users in the company's contact list. As individual users log on, the server notifies chatgroup members of one another's availability and proceeds to send instant messages to and from their individual IP addresses.
To carry on an instant message "conversation," individual work or chatgroup members simply click on the name of a user who is noted as online and begins typing a text message into a window, similar to an email message box. Senders click "send" and the instant message is immediately and directly sent to the recipient. Having succeeded in making a connection between the right users, the IM server simply bows out of the picture and allows the clients of each individual within a chat group to "talk" as long as they want without worrying about long distance fees or rates. Each string of the text message appears to each individual logged onto the client, as users converse back and forth in real time. At the end of a corporate instant messaging session, clients end online conversations by closing the message window and logging off. The client sends a digital signal to the server that the user has logged off; the server discards the temporary file created by the client; and the username is placed in "offline" status.
The advantages of using business instant messaging are better corporate communications and increased workplace productivity. However, corporations must implement strategic and effective security policies and software programs to prohibit employee abuses and infiltration by insidious viruses and malicious hackers. Installing security measures to protect sensitive and confidential employee and corporate data and system hardware is an enterprise's greatest defense against cyberspace culprits and Internet crime.