sendQuick by TalariaX: Our new year’s resolutions for 2021

2021 marks our 20th year in operations – and what a year it is to achieve this milestone! 2020 has presented a new set of challenges for the tech industry, and forced us to re-think the ways we can support our customers better in the years to come. 

Covid-19 created unprecedented waves of uncertainty that were felt throughout the world. Initially, many companies were unprepared to deal with the sudden changes in work arrangements. Having to digitally transform entire businesses overnight is no easy feat. It made us think: how can we better prepare people to deal with crisis at work? 

As the world gradually gains clarity on the Covid-19 situation, having familiarized ourselves with mitigation strategies like quarantines and social distancing, together with the launch of vaccines, we’re all beginning to find some measure of stable ground to stand on. In this new normal, businesses need to have the right digital tools in order to succeed. These digital tools might include remote monitoring capabilities, social media management tools, cybersecurity protocols, and others. The rate of digitalization was unprecedented in our 20 years of operation, and it is one that will have lasting impacts on the world of work. What can we do to support businesses new to the digital landscape?

Despite having 20 years of experience in the tech industry, we honestly feel like we have just begun! 2020 has brought new challenges and opportunities for us, and we too need to make sure that we keep ourselves updated of the latest IT trends so we can provide the right solutions for you.

As such, our new year’s resolutions in 2021 are: 

  1. Enable companies to better deal with crisis at work
  2. Support businesses new to the digital landscape with best-in-class tools
  3. Remain adaptable and flexible to the fast-changing IT industry

Thank you for supporting us the past 20 years. We look forward to serving you in 2021! 

Marketing of the Future: Two-Way Messaging

With the onset of an era of smartphone use, text messages (apart from other messaging applications) have become the primary means of communication for you between both friends, family and colleagues alike. In fact, a majority of businesses use text messages to reach out to their consumer base and let them know about current events, promotions or monthly subscriptions.  An article written by Tatango shows that 90% of text messages are opened in just 3 minutes. With such a high open rate, it’s no wonder that brands deem text messaging to be the most efficient way of reaching out to their customers. However, this interaction is inherently static, with businesses pushing communications onto customers, and does not promote customers reaching out to businesses. To be more efficient in communications. two-way SMS marketing might just be the way to go. 

 

One-way VS Two-way Messaging 

You might ask, what exactly is two-way marketing? It’s when brands recognise the importance of hearing not only their own voice, but also the voice of their customer. One-way marketing is simply a campaign – two-way marketing establishes a line of communication between customer and business. 

For example, one-way messaging often means that customers have to reach out to dedicated emails or phone numbers to make enquiries about news that they receive via text messages. This can pose a problem as customer retention is likely to fall when they perceive poor customer service (implied by the longer wait time for service) and lost revenue as more complicated transactions mean customers are less likely to go through with their purchase. 

 

The Era of Two-way Messaging

How exactly can two-way messaging optimise business operations? Let’s start with the following:


1. Recovering abandoned carts

When customers have doubts about their purchases, they are likely to leave their carts without going through with their transaction. This can result in the business losing a large amount of revenue. However, by texting customers a reminder of their abandoned cart and opening up a conversation that allows them to address their concerns directly to the officer they are texting, they are much more likely to finish their purchase. Talking to them personally will also give your business a better idea on how to address their queries or ensure purchases are completed. 


2. Increasing website conversion

Oftentimes, consumers who make purchases on their mobile phone will not have the patience to reference an FAQ page if they have any queries about pricing, shipping time etc. By including a number that customers can text for quick answers to their questions, this can increase conversion rate by ensuring that customers complete their purchase. 


3. Optimising customer experience 

Beyond simply offering a number for customers to conveniently reach your business, try to enhance their experience. For example, if a customer wants to know when their purchase will arrive from the time they have placed an order, it might be beneficial to offer them prioritised shipping. This indicates that the brand cares about their consumers, and helps to build stronger customer relationships through important touchpoints.


4. Supporting conversion optimisation

Integrate two-way messaging seamlessly into your present conversion optimisation efforts by trying out the following: 

  • Including a textable number on your website’s contact page
  • Including a banner with a textable number to attract customer’s attention
  • Offer promotions and engage customers on text with campaigns that help to boost conversion

 
5. Scaling the business

With the increasing cost of campaigning social media platforms and a saturated landscape, including messaging as a part of your marketing funnel can help to galvanise the existing email and social media strategy. 


6. Generate repeat purchases 

By increasing customer loyalty from one-on-one touchpoints and conversations, follow-up text messages are more likely to generate further purchases by prompting customers with new offers or promotions.

To do, or not to do?

Two-way messaging may be a different way of approaching traditional customer marketing, and changes may have to be made to your existing funnel. However, with enough time and effort, the payoff can be great. Taking a simple step to implement two-way messaging at the bottom of your conversion funnel can be the start of a revolutionary marketing platform for your business. 

 1.https://www.tatango.com/blog/90-of-text-messages-are-read-within-3-minutes/?utm_source=zapier.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=zapier

How do we stay connected in the new era of virtuality?

Though this generation of digital natives might think it easy to build relationships online – but it is not as easy as it seems, as our current experience with the shift to online workplaces is proving. Be it the struggle to fight through a terrible wi-fi connection, or a lack of ideas when it comes to workplace relationship-building activities, the worldwide pandemic has forced us to face a new normal we might not have been ready for despite having the technology to move our work online. A task that once took a few minutes might take a little longer and take more of our energy to complete, and our productivity may have taken a hit as we try to navigate ways of remaining focused while working from home. There may be misunderstandings, miscommunications and missed deadlines that makes work a little more maddening.

However, humans are an adaptable species. It is how we have survived for so many eras, across many generations. The pandemic has not bested us yet, and the fact that we have been able to come out of quarantine and make the shift to online workplaces so far has shown us that. The more and more time we spend doing something, the better we can get at it.

The core of improving our experience with working online lies in building better and more meaningful working relationships, even if it might be the one thing that seems impossible to do on an online platform. You have heard about the ‘3Rs’ of recycling; try to follow ‘3Cs’ of online relationship-building:

 

Connect

Being genuine with the people you meet is the first step. Make an effort to reach out to them for a simple online meal together or short one-to-one meeting where you get to know your colleagues and clients more closely. Find out what motivates them, what would help them work better and try to use that information to help them with any issues they might have at work, or even open new opportunities for them by connecting them with others they might benefit from. By proactively reaching out a helping hand in response to what they have told you in a genuine manner, this will help them feel more valued.

Having trouble deciding how exactly to go about connecting with your business relationships? SendQuick may be the application for you. With omnichannel messaging on any platform of your liking, whether it be SMS, Whatsapp, Line, WeChat or other collaboration tools like Slack, this allows for a single API to offer a unified means of communication to connect with every one of your business relationships – from varying customer touchpoints to communicating with colleagues.

SendQuick can be especially useful for companies with a need to respond to customer expectations oftentimes, providing them an option to connect on any social channel they prefer. In turn, SendQuick helps to align organizations with its unified communication and collaboration tool and prevent disjointed customer experiences or miscommunication by encouraging seamless collaboration.

 

Compassion

Compassion can be the most important quality in working online. By viewing other’s struggles and work approaches with the same compassion you might view your own, this can help you to manage your expectations. Listening to others with compassion can in turn encourage them to help you feel more valued and listened to. As the Golden Rule goes, “Treat others how you want to be treated”.

 

Capable

Showing that you are capable of doing your job well not only improves other’s expectations and perception of you, but also encourages them to reach out to you for help and opens opportunities for intra-organisational learning. Some ways to show capability might be to follow-up on tasks, be ready with information when it is asked for and take the initiative to take on tasks that need doing. This ties in with Compassion and Connecting; by listening with compassion and connecting with others, you can find out the kind of resourcefulness that would most be appreciated in your workplace. Capability does not only mean showing your mettle. It can also mean acknowledging the limits of your abilities, but expressing an interest to improve and learn. This will not only encourage people to connect with someone realistic, but also allows them to respect you as someone who is constantly striving to give their all in work – even in an unfamiliar virtual setting.

This is simply the beginning of a new era of virtuality that 2020 has brought us into. It might feel unfamiliar to us, and we might want to go back to the old norms. The essential need for communication can make IT solutions like SendQuick ever more important to our work life, and a greater reliance on such solutions might just make the 3Cs much more approachable.

The Big Digital Shift: How to adapt to the new normal with digital transformation

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way we run businesses forever. After long periods of quarantine and social distancing, companies and consumers are now finding the digital space a viable alternative to interact with one another. It’s now made clear that businesses have to go online to adapt to the new normal.

The digital space opens up many possibilities for businesses. This includes:

  1. Increase outreach to potential customers/clients
  2. Potential to increase revenue with a large customer base
  3. Ability to track and analyse business data to improve profitability and productivity
  4. Have better work-life balance with hybrid work structures

 

Are you prepared for digital transformation?

However, making the digital shift can be uncomfortable for businesses that have relied on physical operations to generate sales. Whether that is having staff on-site to manage plant machinery, or having a brick and mortar store to sell products, both employees and consumers have had to take their activities online since the onset of Covid-19.

As operations and sales activities go online, businesses also have to deal with a new set of challenges unique to the digital space. 

Digital Marketing  There are many skill sets required to generate leads and sales online. The digital marketing spectrum consists of content creation, advertising, public relations, lead generation, and many more. In fact, having a social media page alone is not enough these days. Businesses have to build a digital marketing ecosystem that can reach out to audiences at different stages of their decision making process. 

One key component of digital marketing is having timely interactions with your customers. Sending them messages and reminders of your latest updates can help to keep your brand at the top of mind of customers. Business can employ automation tools to help them interact with customers promptly.

 

IT downtime When Gmail suffered a 7 hour global outage on 20 August, users were not able to access their emails, storage, documents and video-conferencing tools. This severely inconvenienced business operations at a time where many users were relying on their digital tools for everyday activities.

For small to medium businesses, it is equally, if not more important that IT downtime is prevented at all costs. Downtime not only results in a loss of revenue, but it can severely impact the company’s brand image and reputation in the long run.

Cybersecurity Having an online business also means that customer information, business operation statistics, employee identity and other important data are stored online. Cybersecurity is of paramount importance, and it’s crucial that businesses keep on top of any potential breaches to prevent their data from getting compromised.

Having the right tools to manage operations and customers remotely is an essential component for every business today.

 

How to manage your digital assets effectively? 

It is more essential now than ever to ensure that our online business assets are well built and well protected.

Issues such as IT downtime, a failure to respond to customers promptly, and cybersecurity issues can cost businesses thousands of dollars. As we enter the new normal where there will be a greater reliance on digital products and services, it is inevitable that every business will have to upgrade their systems to match the current IT advancements.

Curious to learn more about digital transformation for your business?

 

Stay On Top of Remote Incident Response During the Pandemic

The cost of IT downtime and data breaches adversely affects businesses both large and small. The recent downtime with Gmail, for example, has caused disruptions across the globe and interfered with business operations and working professionals ability to do their daily tasks. This detrimentally affects its users, specifically those struggling with the current COVID pandemic and working from home.

Such a large and prolific company like Google / Gmail are considered an essential service during these times, and the number of users still gravitating towards their services may not be as adversely impacted as the average business. For the rest of the companies that do not command a sizable influence over a large portion of the world’s population, IT downtime could spell disaster, resulting in a huge loss of revenue and customer base.

 

How do we therefore ensure that we keep IT disruptions to the minimum?

IT disruptions will happen – and it is unfortunately a matter of when and how. If Google, with their infinite resources and top tier security could falter from time to time, so could we. It is thus crucial for companies to receive information on potential issues that might arise in real-time to at least mitigate the losses that could happen should there be a hiccup to our IT services.

A “bird’s eye view” into the affected IT environment is thus an important service to incorporate in any aspect of businesses. Whether they are related to customer service, operations, marketing, or finance, there is now a pressing need for companies to maintain continuous network uptime to ensure that they stay profitable and credible especially given the dire situation that the nation has seen itself plunged into.

This can be done with an IT alert notification platform. sendQuick’s IT notifications has become an integral part of IT incident management. It has the ability to work with any network management system and sends out notifications via our preferred devices and social messaging platforms (SMS, WhatsApp and Telegram for instance).

Imagine being informed, in real-time, for any part of the system that performs suboptimally or experiencing unplanned downtime – this is undoubtedly a game-changer for businesses hoping to preserve their image and provide the best services for their customer base.

 

How can sendQuick help?

“IT Alert” is a prominent feature in all sendQuick product models, each customised to suit your organisation’s needs. We have worked with major companies such as Rasa Sentosa, for example, a world-class standard resort that needs to be provided with 24 hr updates on critical issues within their IT infrastructure.  Given the size of their business as well as the reputation they must uphold, there is a pressing need for their IT engineers to be informed anytime and anywhere of potential IT issues in their organisation.

sendQuick therefore removes their reliance on slow and outdated email notifications, integrating seamlessly into their IT infrastructure. We enhanced email alerts, converting them into SMS that are sent out immediately to their key engineers to ensure limited downtime and that issues are handled immediately.

To learn more about how sendQuick can help, contact us.

The Game Changer: Alert Notifications in Businesses

IT has come a long way from just data being stored on paper in the 70s. System interconnectivity was almost non-existent then. This has slowly evolved  into a more complex IT infrastructure  that requires a high level of management. As such, businesses now require an  efficient machine to person communication in time-sensitive issues – and this shows itself in the need for the implementation of IT Alerts.

While we have seen the value of alert notifications in our day-to-day lives (a “ping” from your mobiles on the latest update from your favourite apps, or a pop up on my laptop when an email arrives into your inbox), how has  this been incorporated in businesses from different industries? Here are some of the ways Alert Notifications has created an impact on companies and the way in which they run their businesses.

 

1. Tracking financial transaction statuses at banks

Monies move in and out of bank accounts in real time. It becomes important therefore to receive confirmation for transactions in real time. This helps both the customer and the bank maintain a bond of trust and transparency, removing the need for follow up and costly time wastages on customer hotlines. Alert notification also helps prevent fraudulent transactions from occurring. Customers now have the option to quickly contact their bank to freeze their assets to prevent any unauthorised transactions from taking place.


 

2. Receiving updates on your online purchases

One of the most life changing services in this in the times of the COVID pandemic would be the option for folks observing quarantine to order their favourite food from apps such as GRAB or groceries from RedMart. Alert notification helps users to be constantly updated on the status of their purchase, ensuring that both the users and customers have improved relationships. Delivery schedules are important, especially when busy individuals need the assurance that their items will come on time, and they will be around to receive it. A simple text that says “delivery is arriving in 15 mins” from RedMart, for instance, allows customers to prepare for the arrival of the delivery man, making the transaction simple and fuss free at all times.

 

3. Real-time updates on status of manufacturing processes

In times of factory automation and the growth of an increasingly complex IT infrastructure, it is almost impossible to make note of all potential issues that might occur without some help from alert notifications. A small crisis can escalate into a big issue, leaving a large impact on revenue and profitability of the business. Time will be wasted to find out the source of error or disruption, and the efficiency of the manufacturing process is destroyed. Alert notifications can therefore  help mitigate these potential disasters, ensuring that the factory operates like clockwork at all times.

Running a business, whether large corporations or smaller scale operations has changed in 2020. We are no longer storing data on paper files, for instance, and slowly excel spreadsheets are being replaced by more intelligent software that automatically crunch out the numbers and flag up potential anomalies. This is the future of alert notifications, and it has helped us make sense of what is increasingly a distracting and (sometimes) frustrating world for the benefit of both businesses and humanity.

3 ways Alert Notifications has evolved by 2020

Alert notifications can be the bane of your existence, and they come in many forms. Whether they are alerts from your social media friends, email notifications at work or that constant, semi-annoying “ding” that comes from your messaging apps – these notifications can be overwhelming and most have resorted to muting notifications altogether to avoid feeling harassed.

Thankfully, technology has advanced, and alert notifications can be more meaningful to us, helping us save lives and prevent disasters from happening.

Here’s how they have evolved by 2020:

 

1. Alert notifications now informs users of old news as well as fake news

Truth telling has become so important on social media platforms. With the onslaught of “fake news” circulating to create discord amongst users across the globe, Facebook now gives a notification if the news users are intending to share are more than three months old. This helps prevent users from taking an old incident and representing it out of context by spreading misinformation.

In addition, Facebook is moving to send notifications on important current affairs such as COVID-19 news. Users will be directed to “authoritative health information” for updates on the disease instead of random gossip from their friendly Whatsapp chat groups. Users who have interacted with “fake news” will be redirected to the World Health organisations “mythbusters” page and will be actively discouraged from speaking the misinformation to other users.

 

2. Amber Alert notifications in Ontario used to locate missing children


The police in Ontario have managed to locate a missing child within 40  minutes on June 29, 2020. A notification on child abduction has been sent as well as a plea for the public to keep a lookout for the child. As such, this helps the police solve the case efficiently and effectively, allowing the child to be found safe and a suspect arrested.

Similar usage of Amber Alert notifications has also been implemented in events such as natural disasters and other matters of national importance. While users are given the option to toggle these notifications on and off, this life saving alerts has helped get people to safety in the event of an imminent disaster that occurs.

 

3. Alert Notifications used to contain the spread of COVID within South Korea

South Korea has managed to contain the outbreak of the coronavirus by sending out alert notifications to its citizens of potential hotspots. Areas and locations that are visited by infected citizens are mass broadcasted, while travellers coming into the country have to update their health status on an app upon arrival at the airport. This keeps the public constantly updated and they are able to make informed decisions on the routes to take during their day-to-day activities.

While we’re swarmed by notifications on our mobile phones as well as at work, there have been developments in these notifications that could save lives and keep us informed with critical news updates. As such, these alerts are not just a tool to update us on superficial information, but have the capacity to save lives now.

Protecting Your Business During the Pandemic with Timely Alert Notifications

With a majority of the citizens in Singapore locked down within the safety of their own homes, effective and timely transmission of official information is crucial to ensure that life runs smoothly whether in terms of national security or business operations. Remote working, for example, has since been an uncomfortable necessity for many businesses, and some IT support may find that they are ill-prepared to handle the vast influx of requests both for staff and customers given the mandate given by the government to stay at home.


Why focus on timely alert notifications?

Alert notification has worked wonders in the preservation of public safety. In South Korea, for instance, emergency texts from the government to keep its citizens updated on critical information. By utilising mass mobile messages and installation of tech within the mobile network, the country is able to connect with millions of people per day.

In an interview with CNN Business, Dr. Fred Muench, the president of the US-based Center on Addiction, confirms that these SMSes in the public health sector are the most effective methods in terms of reach and speed of communication. It also offers the authorities a chance to collate data and use the information garnered to get on top of critical issues founded.

Timely alert notifications, in the case of South Korea, are crucial for the nation’s success in preserving the safety of an entire country in ways where other developed countries and economies have failed rather severely.


How can we translate this success story into our business operations?

Speed is of essence when sending out time-sensitive information. Unfortunately, the average business depends mostly on emails or phone calls in times of crisis. When this happens, information may get distorted and not communicated properly. Imagine a business that is struggling with working remotely suddenly having issues with their IT servers. Then imagine the frantic emails and phone calls that staff and customers may send to an IT manager – not only would this result in a complete obstruction of work, but the impact could mean a financial disaster for the company.

Your IT Manager needs to know exactly what happened, how it happened, who is in charge of fixing it and then communicating clear instructions to staff. This cannot be done easily through simple emails. As such, there is where Alert Notification Systems come in handy.


Is it worth subscribing to these notification systems?

Businesses who depend on quick and accurate dissemination of information find value in embracing such a system. Short, concise messages are far more valuable than a string of emails that might not get the attention it deserves because it is buried under thousands of spam messages.

sendQuick’s alert notification systems, for example, helps IT personnels respond better in the event an issue pops up within the company. Sending instant alerts via SMS to the respective parties within the organisation anywhere and anytime helps reduce downtime and help businesses protect themselves in times of severe uncertainties.

Take action to protect your business now, contact us.

Challenges of IT Security amidst COVID-19

Whether we like it or not, the world as we know it has probably changed because of the current pandemic. With most businesses now forced to operate remotely, there is a scramble to get IT security in order as staff members begin to earnestly work from home.

 

Scaling IT security during work-from-home arrangements

Security teams for both small businesses as well as larger organisations are struggling to safeguard their confidential data in a manner that will not disrupt day-to-day activities. Staff members are already struggling with the sudden disruption in their daily work life. There is, therefore, a necessity to balance implementing new security protocols alongside the new work arrangements. 

The issue IT staff face therefore depends on many variables – including the additional struggle of having to deal with home computers with different setups and working conditions.

 

Cybersecurity – the human problem

The fact remains that the biggest threat to company security is the one working in front of their personal computers right now. According to an article by the World Economic Forum, cybercriminals are exploiting COVID-19 to laugh and all out cyber assault on businesses. Passwords therefore remain one of the most vulnerable targets and, the article proposed, it must be gotten rid of to improve security, lower costs and increase security.

That said, businesses are still highly dependent on passwords to protect their online accounts. A drastic shift towards removing passwords altogether is unlikely in such short notice. It’s crucial therefore for companies to enable 2FA in order to add an extra layer of security to prevent unauthorised persons from getting their hands on your personal data.

 

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) – now easy to use and affordable

The good news is, 2FA is no longer difficult to use or expensive to install. With remote working being enforced, this is the perfect way to incorporate an additional layer of protection to protect your data.

With sendQuick ConeX, our low-cost / seamless 2FA implementation, businesses no longer have to access the password via any other devices besides their mobile devices. This means there are no physical tokens to buy for your staff, therefore reducing operational costs.

With new working conditions comes a need to pre-empt new issues that comes with it. IT security becomes top priority for companies looking to protect their data from malicious attacks. As such, 2FA offers a cheap and flexible option for businesses, both big and small, and it remains one of the most popular options for companies to-date.

4 ways to remain productive while working from home

Working from home, especially during the growing global panic, has its perks. For starters, it feels great to wake up and not worry about getting infected during the long, crazy commute to the office. While countries are in lock-down and members of the workforce are forced to retreat into their homes to work remotely, it is easy to be distracted and become less productive while working.

Here are 4 ways you can remain productive when working from home:

1. Reduce distractions at your working space

Make sure that you’re carved out a quiet and professional space far away from kids and pets. Unnecessary interruptions break your concentration resulting in poor productivity. While you save on travel time as well as cut down on the unnecessary chit chat at the water cooler, make sure that nothing else at home engages you in idle chatter as well.

 

2. Track your work progress with free productivity apps

Youtube and other online entertainment websites are also a distraction. Make sure that you’re not tempted by making a clear to-do list on online productivity trackers such as Asana and Trello. While folks who work from home enjoy the flexibility of working however they like, ensure that you fulfil the list that you have set out for yourself for the day.

 

3. Take breaks in-between working hours to keep your mind focused and fresh

Staying at home all the time can be daunting – especially for people who thrive on human interactions each day. As such, do ensure you get some light exercises each day. Do a short march around the house, some stretches, or sit and balance on a gym ball to work those core muscles. A little workout is necessary to get your blood flowing and your mind alert.

 

4. Ensure your IT security is enhanced

Simply put, passwords can be hacked. If you’re handling private and confidential information for your company, hackers may be able to get access and steal your data if your password isn’t strong enough.

According to a recent report by Reuters, the recent move to work-from-home has put a strain in IT resources, and it is harder to keep up especially when cybercriminals are consistently making attempts to phish for passwords.

As such, implementing a 2-Factor Authentication system is a great solution in providing an extra layer of security. Instead of being issued with tokens, sendQuick’s Conexa sends a one-time password (OTP) to users via mobile devices, thus verifying users before giving them access to the data.

 

Given the climate of panic and uncertainty, having a proper system in place at home is important in ensuring both your productivity and data security. While it can be challenging to maintain a professional working environment at home, having poor IT security could actually cause massive financial damage to the business. It is therefore important for companies to stay ahead of hackers by implementing the necessary protection to prevent a financial disaster caused by data theft.