I’m sure you’ve all heard of Skype and some of you are probably using Skype for business, but many more may just be using it for contacting family or friends overseas – and why not; free or cheap calls abroad, talk as long as you like. It’s technology advancement at its best.
I’m a huge fan of Skype for both personal and business reasons. Personally, as I live and work in France, it’s a fantastic way to stay in touch with everyone back in the UK and Ireland on a regular basis. As the famous BT strapline goes “It’s good to talk”! Unfortunately for BT it’s not their service I’m using whilst doing it! This is because times have changed significantly. Consumers and businesses have become more savvy.
Skype is the obvious choice for your business needs. Here are my 3 reasons why:
1. Price: Without doing anything but signing up to Skype (free-of-charge), you can speak to people who are also registered. It doesn’t matter where they live, as long as they’ve got an internet connection and account, you can chat for free. In addition to this, you can buy a landline telephone number within the country of your choice for a minimal fee and take advantage of low-cost calls, make your business more reachable to potential clients, and have an answer phone service. You can even do this in several countries if you choose, which is brilliant when you deal with clients and / or colleagues in multiple locations!
2. Work Collaboration: As a VA you’ll probably be working with various clients in multiple locations. And given we’re based remotely; it can be difficult to share files, get status updates at the click of a button, find out availability, or communicate easily. With Skype it’s not difficult at all. You can share those files by uploading and sending via Skype, you can find out if your colleague / client is online, you can get an instant status check via their Instant Message service, and you can communicate 1-2-1 or in a group conference with or without video, it’s up to you!
3. Ease: With Skype you can be contactable or contact others in a number of different ways. You can use your computer to make calls, or via your telephone. You can get your voicemails emailed to you or text messaged to you (the latter for a small charge). You can redirect your Skype number to another landline number or your mobile. And finally if you’re part of a larger team, you can upgrade to the Skype for Business which allows you to create multiple colleague accounts to manage your business spend and resource more easily.
Recent stats revealed that Skype had more than 663 million users (September 2011) which means that very probably your current and perspective clients are most likely onboard already.
So if you’re not, why not?