By Roy Emmett
Today’s specialized communication company should be a hybrid of all the best options for making money and building professionalism in a whole new world of business.
An outstanding opportunity for developing a business in telecommunications, by providing services that are currently not being offered by hardly any other communications company inexistence, should be natural. So why is this new communications company so scarce? Why are so few people reaping the rewards?
The reason? Hardly anyone knows what’s really possible. We’re in a whole new age of business. Technology is settling down around us like morning fog in a bog. Our opportunity right now is to bring new ideas of a very practical nature right to the businesses who can best use them. Our opportunity is as a resource to the business community we choose to serve. Our opportunity is to present as wide a range of revenue streams as we can possibly represent, as long as they relate to the primary goal of being a Professional Communications Consultant and have the power to make money.
The world of business communications does not end with voice mail or with pagers or cellular phone or any other single communications entity. It is a compendium of all that is beneficial for the individual clients we have selected to serve. The fact that you can make money on multiple recommended services, even ones you don’t directly provide, is not a bad thing.
To balance out the limitation of only so many hours in a day with our desire not to be working 18 out of the 24 allotted, we need additional revenue streams which will produce income we don’t have to specifically be involved with once a client has been sold. That is one of the secrets of the potential of this special business opportunity; I call it “passive income.”
Voice and Fax Processing are the heartbeat of the newest business opportunities in fact they are also the nerve center. I don’t care what your focus is currently, whether live operator services, paging, an executive suite or cellular telephones, the new opportunities are awesome and you should be aware of them. Properly configured, your voice/fax processing system will be a major kingpin in your credibility. It will be the spring board to your professional standing as a true telecommunications entrepreneur. But it is not the end-all. It simply provides an incredible entree into new services that can make “Maximum Money Per Minute”, without the need for labor or personal involvement in day-to-day service performance.
Long distance services, pagers, 800 numbers, email, the Internet, upcoming wireless devices, interactive television, video teleconferencing and an ever growing capability of custom solutions for helping businesses streamline their operation with the latest communications meet the dynamically changing world of business. Those are some of the obvious directions that it makes sense to include in your mix of revenue streams. That’s our niche.
Hardly anybody at all is out there proactively working with the business community at being that professional who understands the big picture as well as how all these services can be combined to assisting really helping not just responding to requests to fill orders that dozens of competitors can supply. If the bulk of the communications world is standing by ready to take orders by filling in the blanks on an order screen, , or even a major state-of-the-art fiber optic, microwave and satellite network, then the world at large will be left to its own devices to figure out what’s available to really help them in some of the most basic support service around.
It’s time to be awesomely proactive: Painting a picture of what may be a dynamic concept for one person, doesn’t necessarily make it dynamic to someone with a totally different mind set. So who this concept is directed toward is more than likely the new entrepreneur who has decided that telecommunications is the business to be in. Or it may be someone who has chosen to diversify from another area of communications. One special focus that goes with this direction is the ability and the desire to “go for it!” You can’t sit back and wait for advertising to kick-in so you can plant clerks in retail la-la land, to bring in the big bucks.
What is it that is super charging the opportunity quotient? Primarily, it’s the “Age of Automation and Computerization.” It’s also the “Age of the Home Based Business,” the “Age of Complete Mobility,” and the “Age of Downsizing and Overhead Reduction.” In addition to all that, we’re in the “Information Age.”
The times have caught up with technology. People are accepting the benefits of technology over the once perceived impersonal aspects of automation in communication. Now there is both acceptance and a mandate, since the cost of labor has reached a new high. And since the “Age of the Personal Computer” is also in place, the networks of the world are all coming on-line together.
We who choose to take this direction in providing specialized services to the changed business world will be entering fertile territory with almost nobody to challenge us for the fruits of our efforts. The voice/fax processing system of today, with its PC based functionality, is now in tune with the future of the world’s communication. We can do things for businesses that could never be done before.
What is it that we can do that’s so spectacular? It isn’t just what we can do with the technology we have in our facilities, it’s what has come along in the total universe of telephony that has brought us a whole new range of application. Two-way DIDs, for example, are bringing in a whole new menu of concepts. Automated call-screening for one. Remote automated attendant is another. The ability to promote a single phone number that can reach a person on any communication device is going to be invaluable for the Age of Mobility.
How about receiving messages from anywhere in the world, delivered right to your alphanumeric pager via the Internet? How about being a message center to receive and deliver email or Internet information to customers the same way you might handle fax messages or operator messages?
How about having your own share of the revenues that travel through the nationwide communications network built by AT&T, MCI, Sprint and about 300 other companies in the long distance business? A tiny piece of the billions of dollars that flow through that network could be a princely sum. And it’s growing at the rate of $500,000 a month. How much are you making from it now?
Who’s out there bringing creative, custom tailored service ideas to the business community you serve? Who among all the communications companies in existence in your market, or any market, understands how all the relative services work together to provide just what is needed for a specific business and its unique needs? Who can provide truly diversified service packages for businesses that don’t even know what questions to ask, let alone know where to go to ask the questions in the first place?
We’ve gone from a world of flat rate pricing to usage sensitive billing. We’ve moved from basic commodity priced services in communications to custom tailored communications packages. The former headline services of companies like Beeper companies, have now become adjuncts to new primary services that simply access pagers as an alert to the information found in voice mail or email. The voice/fax processing system has become the nerve center of the world of fax, paging, and to a growing extent, email.
The technology of the voice/fax processing system allows it to be a complete information center, messaging center, call director, fax storage depot, call screener, advertising enhancer, order entry service, fax broadcaster, wake-up service, and customer service supporter. And it’s all automated.
Imagine seeking out just a couple hundred accounts worth in excess of $100 a month each to bring you over $20,000 a month in automated services. Add to that about $10,000 a month in passive income from the world wide communications network, just dripping dollars into your bank account. As you watch the little colored lights blinking on your system, realize that it’s actually money accruing in usage sensitive application that don’t require human hands to intervene in the process.
There’s certainly something to be said for all the communications businesses that rely on and use talented operators to provide additional valuable services. They represent the only other real custom communications service option on the scene. I envy the companies that can maintain such a high level of performance in such an interpersonal arrangement. It has to be one of the most difficult arenas in communication in which to operate, given the personality variables and labor considerations.
It is precisely this service that anyone in automated services should link up with to offer operator intervention services as the need arises. We don’t all need to be in that side of the business. In fact, I don’t know many people who want to enter it based on all that it would take just to start. Let those of us who choose to deal with automated services as our prime direction just deal with the professionals who are already out there in operator services, to provide the options that require “people.”
We must bring practical, down to earth ideas to the selected prospects with whom we feel we would really like to do business. Matching valuable concepts to specific prospects is the goal. How you accomplish that is the evolutionary process we need to expedite. And right now, “we’re exploding with opportunity!”
[From Connection Magazine, May 1995]