How does the launch of Spoka help provide effective communication tools for small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)?
I have always believed in breaking down barriers and that humans excel when we are in it together; when we are closer, not further apart. This goes some way to explain why I have lived on three continents and why my family is a real mash-up.
At 43 years old, I remain fascinated by new cultures, foods, sights, and sounds and I am totally embarrassed that I do not speak anything other than English and bad French. I hate the divisive politics that we see in the world today. Brexit makes me sad as it is about separation and not togetherness and I can’t help thinking that if we all worked together rather than focus on our own narrow ages, climate change could be tackled. Ultimately, I think if we all had a big hug, things would look a lot better. And I believe that the same applies to small businesses and entrepreneurs especially in the field of communications technology.
Picture this: You are an entrepreneur who has started his company and done, as entrepreneurs do, everything and anything to make it a success so far. You are totally flexible and technology-agnostic. The tools you use depend on their cost and flexibility as you are always on the move. Gmail and the G-suite for day-to-day productivity tools are your go-to because they’re great and free, and you use both Google Drive and iCloud free versions to maximise document storage space. Most of your calls are made via WhatsApp or Skype and if you need to call a telephone number, you use the free version of Zoom for online video meetings with your main device being your smartphone. Work is at home, at the nearest café with decent Wi-Fi, or you have to pay for a few sessions a month in a local co-working space.
But then something happens that never happened before—your business keeps growing! Your spouse is very happy, but you are in unchartered waters and facing the following problems:
- You have given clients your mobile number and they keep calling it as that’s the only way that they can reach you;
- Your client meetings are now involving more people and the free conferencing tools that you are using are looking unprofessional. Plus, they are limited to three participants and a 45-minute duration.
- You are a bit embarrassed by the fact that your company Web site has a mobile number only for customer service;
- You considered getting a desk-phone installed but you don’t really have a desk other than at home but you are rarely there;
- Anyway, the local telco is going to charge you a hefty set-up fee, insist you buy a physical telephone, and the per minute rates to call India, which is where your developers are, and Malaysia and Australia where you have most clients are really expensive. Business is good but you are not making money yet. Furthermore, they want you to commit for a minimum of 12 months;
- You do not have the desire to spend hours on the phone with ‘Big Telco Limited’ getting passed from department to department; you do not have IT support as it is only you, your assistant, and your sales guy; and
- You are also getting really annoyed with having to switch between different tools and platforms depending on what you are doing at that moment.
These issues are starting to choke your growth, frazzle your brain, and, worst of all, your clients are starting to question how serious you are as a company (“I call my Mum on WhatsApp!”). They are barriers to free and effective communication and, frankly, in 2019, really frustrating.
This frustration is akin to how I used to feel with trying to book a taxi on a late rainy Friday night when I had no idea when the taxi would arrive, where it was, what condition the taxi and driver would be in, or how much it would cost. The disruptors like Uber and Grab fixed this and drove down prices. Similarly, Airbnb dramatically increased the options for accommodation and again, drove down prices for the consumer.
At Spoka, we believe that ‘together we discover more’ and that in 2019 challenges with communicating with anyone, anywhere should no longer get in the way of fast growth and simply getting things done.
As a result, Spoka is committed to providing telephony, messaging, and video meetings for SMEs that:
- are intentionally the most affordable on the market: unlimited video meetings and unlimited international calling for a fraction of what you pay for your mobile phone per month. You never need to compromise quality due to cost reasons;
- get your business telephone number set up within minutes via our online Web site—www.spoka. com;
- No hardware required—just download the apps on your smartphone and desktop/laptop and you can start making and receiving calls, messaging, and video conferencing straight away;
- No long-term contracts because well, why would you do that when the business goes up and down? and
- A beautiful experience for our customers—fast, and fun, and minimal effort required. Does this sound like any telecoms company you know?
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