Online Phone Numbers for Marketing and Advertising Firms: New Technologies
In today’s competitive business environment, marketing and advertising firms understand the importance of streamlining processes. Most firms invest heavily in database management systems, project management software, and web applications to improve efficiency. But what about communications systems?
Prompt communication, both internally and with clients, is essential to the success of any creative organization. And while most creative professionals are used to traveling and taking their work home with them, there can be a costly lag in response time when employees have to deal with communications network issues. Outdated voice messaging systems and clunky networks can lead to diminished productivity across the organization.
The Organized Chaos Of Creative Enterprises
Consider a typical creative agency process:
First, the account manager and key team members meet with the client to discuss the project scope. From there, a strategy brief is drafted, outlining the goals of the project, key deadlines, and the elements of implementing the campaign.
Then, the account manager must parse out all tasks and deliverables so the traffic manager can assign them. Kickoff meetings are held, and a creative brief is drafted. Once everything has been agreed upon, the agency teams shift into high gear. Proofs must be drafted and reviewed by the art director, creative director, copy director, and account manager. All must fall in line with strategy, budget, and deadlines. Revisions get sent back to the team and the subsequent drafts are resubmitted. Finally, the agreed-upon drafts are sent to the client. Once the client reviews everything, her revisions are then kicked back to the team and the whole process continues.
This cycle of chaos is complicated by change. Such changes might be: modifications in project scope, changes in project detail, personnel issues, unforeseen market shifts, current events, public relations hiccups, incorrect file formats, incomplete documents, server issues, misprints, late deliveries, vacations, sick days, natural disasters, and a host of other speed bumps.
The pace can be further complicated by outdated communications systems. If an account manager is out visiting the client and needs to check his email or voicemail quickly, hardline and slow systems could mean he misses a critical message from a team member about the data he’s about to present. A dropped call from an already-agitated client could mean a lost account for another manager. And an offline system can spell disaster if the New York office is trying to contact the Chicago office and getting a busy signal or worse, dead air.
Online Communications Systems Streamline Workflow
Updating your communications systems with online phone numbers can help streamline workflow, ensuring that internal team members can stay connected and client issues are addressed promptly.
Find me/follow me call routing. Marketing and advertising executives move between offices and spend a great deal of time visiting with clients. Many spend more time on the road than they do at their desk, which means a majority of calls are going to voicemail. Online phone numbers allow users to implement what’s known as find me/follow me call routing. An account executive can set her phones to ring in a specific sequence. First, at her desk. If it’s not answered after three rings, she can route it to her cell phone, and if she doesn’t pick that up, it can ring at a third line or be sent to voicemail. Execs can program any phone number, in any hierarchy they choose. They can also route calls by time and day.
Voicemail to email delivery. Online phone systems allow users to receive voice messages on their computer, laptop, or mobile device. They don’t have to remember to carve out time to dial in to the office to check their messages. Instead, messages can be delivered straight to their inbox, reducing missed calls and improving response time.
Built-in collaboration tools. Online phone systems allow teams to audio conference, video conference, record calls, and collaborate online on a single system.
Improved mobility. While traveling, some account executives may not want clients to know they are on the road. Online phone systems allow users to place and receive calls from their computer. This means the creative director can contact a client while traveling to Texas, but the call appears to be coming from inside the home office.
Greater resiliency. Phone lines go down, it’s a fact of life. Online phone numbers can be routed to other phones in the event of a disaster to ensure that disruptions are limited and don’t result in lost business.
Response time and connectivity are critical in the fast paced world of a creative agency. Online phone numbers are far more flexible than hardline systems. With older phone systems, businesses were forced to tailor their workflow to meet the restrictions of their communications network. But online systems are scalable and adapt to the needs of both the enterprise and the end user, providing greater flexibility and mobility while helping streamline daily processes.