Category Archives: midiszed

We Are Family: ReadyTalk, a PGi Company

ReadyTalk, a PGi companyIn January 2017, PGi entered into an agreement to purchase ReadyTalk.

PGi

PGi is a company we’ve been watching for a long time. Its employees are dedicated to providing the best communication and collaboration experiences to customers around the globe. And they have the same values we do — a desire to excel in customer service, deliver great products and innovate.

ReadyTalk, a PGi Company

That’s why we’re pleased to announce that we’ve closed the deal as of February 2. From this point forward we’ll be ReadyTalk, a PGi Company. Our combined portfolio will enable PGi to continue providing the very best collaboration products and services.

We believe our customers benefit, too. They get the advantage of a big company with an expanded portfolio helping people all over the world. They’ll continue to enjoy fantastic customer service. And they’ll continue to get innovation.

Powerhouses Joining Forces

It’s a union of two communications powerhouses joining forces.

As evidence, within the past week, PGi and ReadyTalk were listed in the G2 Crowd Report detailing the Best Web Conferencing Products of 2017. G2 Crowd is the world’s leading business software review platform, and PGi is proud to be included, along with ReadyTalk, on this list of industry-leading conference providers.

We’re thrilled to be part of the family and combine our portfolios to provide the best collaboration experiences to enterprises everywhere.

3 Ways ITExp0 2017 Can Transform Your Company’s Communications

3 ways to enjoy ITExpoReadyTalk is thrilled to be a first-time sponsor of ITExpo in Fort Lauderdale, Florida this year! ITExpo is a communications-solutions event for engineers, IT managers, business owners and C-Level execs. As the communications industry continues to evolve, attendees enjoy coming to ITExpo to meet and hear from hundreds of solutions providers – all in a single place. It’s also a great event to learn best practices on how to improve efficiency, reduce cost and increase productivity.

As a first timer at this event, we’re not sure what to expect, but here are 3 things we can’t wait for.

1. Network with fellow cloud communications solutions experts.

We can’t wait to meet over 6,000 like-minded communications experts to exchange best practices and stories. Not only do we get to talk with like minded people, we get to see the latest technologies that enable people to better communicate – beacons, AI, virtual reality and more.

Because we’re always innovating, we’re looking forward to getting new ideas and sharing some of ours.

2. Learn more about and share ideas about the evolution of work.

The future of work is now — remote working, appealing to Millennials in the workforce, project-based work, mobile technology and more. We’ve been championing these evolving workforce ideas for more than 15 years, since the company was created. And many of these ideas and practices are already in the workforce. But what about tomorrow — Generation Z, AI, virtual reality and augmented reality?

We have some thoughts. While we’re at ITExpo, we’ll be sharing our most recent findings on the future of the workforce and how MSPs can adapt during the MSPExpo. Here are the details:

  • Title: The Future of the Workplace and MSPs
  • Speaker: Matt DiRienzo, Product Manager, Unified Communications
  • When: Friday, February 10 at 10 a.m. ET
  • Where: MSP-14

3. Get cool swag and be reminded of awesome companies.

It wouldn’t be a real trade show without tons of swag. We have our sights set on some cool apparel like socks. We know they’re all the rage.

We’ll have swag, too. In fact, our booth is going to be chock-full o’ swag, waiting for friendly faces to come by and spin our prize wheel! If you’re attending, stop by!

Win prizes at ReadyTalk booth #229.

The Hero’s Journey and Storytelling

As Marketers, we have to tell stories often. But sometimes when it comes to writing, we’ve forgotten what that story is.

hero journey
Some of the best stories involve evocative heroes leaving the known world. He’s given challenges where he overcomes seemingly impossible obstacles. After some successes and at least one defeat, the hero emerges — victorious! Whether the hero gets the girl or guy, or saves the world, the essence of what makes stories great is their ability to simultaneously take your audience on a journey. Essentially, many of the best stories involve everyday individuals overcoming unique challenges, inspiring us to do the same in our own lives.

To get geeky, Joseph Campbell mapped this hero’s journey after discovering that every major culture has heroes. Every culture’s heroes are called to adventure where they overcome obstacles. From Hercules, to Raven, to Luke Skywalker from Star Wars, these heroes are on an epic journey. His theory is that this essential storytelling is so interwoven into our fabric that it’s what we expect. For example, when you enter a movie theater, you generally know — with some exceptions — the good guys are going to win.

Okay, interesting, but how does this impact me?

Marketers can capture this same spirit within their content. While it isn’t an easy feat, there are a few strategies you can follow to craft excellent content stories and inspire your readers.

1. Your customer is the hero

It’s tempting to make your company the hero. That’s a mistake. Instead, your buyers and customers are the heroes. By using your products and services, they have overcome obstacles to victory. Victories could seem as mundane as saving money or as interesting as saving the entire company.

Added bonus: when your customer is the hero, they tell the story, too.

2. Watch your craft

Of course, your stories should be in brand — they should sound like your company. And when done well, these stories can serve in many different places — in your customer testimonials, in your website copy, in your collateral and in your blog posts. Even your salespeople should know these stories, being able to recall them quickly and easily. Not only will this give you content to use in multiple places, it’ll build the stories you tell. It may even convince prospects on the fence. Data and stories, when used together, have a greater impact appealing to people’s logic and emotions.

3. Get your audience involved

Sometimes just the story itself is riveting. That’s great! But when it’s a shared story moving beyond the walls of your office and building … wow. It’s magical. It’s mystical. It’s viral.

So, how do you involve others? You ask their stories. You can do that with polls and surveys or even as a continuted discussion. For example, just about everyone has a story for failing and what was learned. Once you’ve learned it, that in and of itself can help form part of the heroes journey.

4 Tech Tools IT Needs to Rethink

There are a few tools and workplace strategies today’s employees may not be using properly, and may not know it. These tools may be wasting money, gathering dust or not relevant anymore. Or worse, maybe all of those together at once! Don’t waste time, money and tech.

4 tech tools IT needs to rethinkAnd while you’re at it, consider how the workforce is changing and has already changed. Your employees are working remotely; that’s only increasing in frequency. Sales people are often at the office of your prospects and customers. IT personnel are working on servers at the data center. Marketing professionals are meeting with prospects at a trade show across the country. That doesn’t include all the doctor’s visits, dentist appointments, kids’ parties and more your employees are attending. Going mobile will increase productivity and ensure your workforce is still connected.

That’s why you need to rethink this technology in the office:

1. Desk phones

We live and work in a highly mobile world now, so there is no longer a need for the vast majority of employees to have and use desk phones. Instead, employers should empower their workers by providing them with work smartphones or implementing a bring your own device (BYOD) policy and reimbursing them for any added expenses.

Using smartphones, companies can use cloud communications, like hosted voice, to ensure people are contacted on their mobile device. It’s affordable and efficient.

2. Hard drive storage

Businesses thrive on easy access to necessary information. If your employees are storing their documents on outdated hard drives – or worse, on their desktop computer – your IT department is not only behind the times, but may also be putting your data at risk.

Hard drives are not a secure storage option, which is why your company should consider updating to the cloud. It’s secure. It’s affordable. And it’s usually saving your IT personnel time.

3. Email and instant message (IM)

A large portion of companies use free or low-cost email service providers. While convenient, these tools don’t maximize worker efficiency. Consider adding instant message (IM) to the mix to enable employees to easily contact each other. Again, cloud communications make that easy. Because let’s face it, there are a times a quick text is better than getting an email, especially when you’re on-the-go.

4. Video conferencing tools

If you aren’t using video conferencing tools to connect with employees, talk with prospects or get customer feedback, you’re missing out. It’s efficient and effective. Face-to-face communication is always best and video gets you one step closer, even as your workforce is busy. There are lightweight solutions that are affordable, like FoxDen, a product powered by ReadyTalk.

5 Tips on Moving to the Cloud

Move to the cloudCloud computing will continue to grow over the next few years. If your business is done with handling bulky, expensive on-premises IT systems, consider moving to the cloud today. It’ll free up IT resources, streamline and add to your productivity, enable your remote workers, provide business recovery benefits and more.

If you’re like most people, though, you have fears of moving to the cloud — from talking with employees about which data moves to security. Address those fears and get the most out of your move. Here are five tips on how to start:

1. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing

You don’t have to be fully on-premises or in the cloud. Many companies benefit from a hybrid IT environment. If you don’t believe you can move all your operations to the cloud, choose the ones that you can and keep the rest in-house.

2. Create goals

You need to develop a mix of short- and long-term goals for what you want to accomplish through moving to the cloud. This way, you’ll know you’ll be on track for reaching your main objective — a successful cloud migration.

3. Improve communication channels

Everyone should be in the loop during a major IT system restructuring like this. Take time to keep everyone informed and give periodic updates or hold Q&A sessions to give employees a chance to respond. This involves bringing them into the process before decisions are made. This will increase buy-in and ensure a higher adoption rate.

4. Address security concerns

Due to many high-profile data breaches in recent years, your clients and personnel may be concerned about the security risks from a cloud migration. Despite these worries, many companies actually boost their security abilities by switching to a cloud storage provider. Address their concerns to alleviate fears.

5. Use this time to consolidate and reorder data

Like spring cleaning, moving to a cloud-based data center is a great time to consolidate and get rid of excessive data or structures that are no longer relevant or needed. Again, you don’t have to do all or nothing.

Need more tips?

Get more information in our ebook (PDF), Move to the Cloud. You can even start small and move your communications system to the cloud.

Go Cloud Communications