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Social media is a proven communications channel for marketing via conversations with the audience. Adopting to social media is a core strategy and change in communications channels within your enterprise. Political, technological and economic factors are coming together to make M2M more attractive than ever before. Opportunities to increase revenue, reduce costs and better serve customers using M2M are real, provided that the business undertakes strategy development, planning and deployment thoughtfully with an eye toward business outcomes.
Reliability, availability, scalability, interoperability and cost could derail an M2M initiative just as easily as security. As component costs continue to decline and businesses recognize the power of interconnected sensors, telemetry, control points, cameras and numerous other objects, executives must realize that reducing cost is not the only opportunity.
M2M is a transforming technology that enables businesses to reinvent, simplify and innovate in entirely new ways. Businesses around the world are considering and implementing M2M solutions to address production, performance, quality and cost challenges. AT&T has been working with its customers to deliver M2M for more than ten years, and it all starts with a Wireless Workshop. Benefiting from M2M doesn’t mean that businesses have to shoulder all the responsibility for planning, design, development, deployment and operations. There is no doubt that M2M represents complex technologies and integrations as well as global deployments and connectivity. From smart meters to tracking tags, radio receivers to connectivity software, as M2M devices and applications come to market, they are tested across the AT&T network to ensure compatibility, security and interoperability worldwide. A leader in machine-to-machine (M2M) communications, T-Mobile USA, Inc., is blazing a path to deliver the connectivity that will support the next generation of connected devices.
T-Mobile’s broad M2M industry expertise and deep vertical insights enable the company to collaborate with and successfully support its partners and customers. Though industry analysts’ projections about the amount of M2M device connection growth varies widely, M2M will grow significantly over the next three to five years. Forbes Custom is a custom publishing site that featuresspecial advertising sections from Forbes magazineas well as industry articles and videos from our partners. Learn writing strategies and techniques for clear, concise and persuasive reports, e-mails, articles, letters and all types of business communications. Learn the rules of effective business writing and speaking from communications professionals and university instructors. On-site or off, from half-day to multi-program workshops, we work with clients to create customized solutions to specific communications problems. And yet most business communications remains confusing, ungrammatical, unfocused or unnecessary. For more than 10 years, we have specialized in teaching business communication skills to business, government and private individuals. Each program emphasizes practical skills and hands-on, participatory training sessions that make learning relevant and engaging. Learning to communicate more effectively improves productivity, builds self-confidence and inspires leadership.
Technology has spurred on the Big Data phenomena and crammed data stores with transactional, social and profile data on consumers, employees and other stakeholders. The phrase “Content is King” was prevalent throughout 2011 and if it was accurate then, in 2012 Context is its Queen. The proliferation of screens, especially mobile devices including smart phones and tablets, has added a new dimension to content creation and display. Join us Wed, May 2nd, 2012 at 8 PM EST for the #bizforum Twitter debate where we’ll explore the future of business communications.
Sam Fiorella is a Partner here at Sensei Marketing, a consulting and technology firm focused on aiding global companies grow their business value through improved customer experiences. Growth in technology and international communication continues to open up a world of opportunity for Australian small-to-medium businesses (SMBs).
A recent survey commissioned by Truphone shows Australian businesses are expanding their reach globally, with more than half the respondents (53%) indicating their organisation regularly sends 10 or more employees on overseas business trips. The survey revealed that while SMB’s are embracing a more international outlook, they face a number of challenges in managing global communications. With costs top of mind for most SMBs, it’s not surprising that 40.1 per cent of respondents cited managing the costs associated with international communications as their biggest challenge.
To address this challenge, some Australian businesses are looking to policy to curb the costs.
For SMBs, the reliance on Internet based tools was more evident than for larger organisations (48.9% vs.
But limiting international communication has wider-reaching impacts than just cost savings. With cost and productivity high on the agenda for SMB’s driving their business across borders, what is perhaps most concerning is many are unaware of their options. For SMBs, this offers more than just a way to stay connected – they can create a virtual shopfront in countries where they frequently do business, allowing them an international footprint, without the cost of an actual presence in these countries.
For example, SMB’s with business interests in the US can have an Australian and a US number on a single SIM, giving them a ‘local’ presence in both of these countries.
With the number of small-to-medium businesses seeking a more global presence growing, now is the time to seek out alternative solutions for their international communications needs.
Prior to joining Truphone in 2011, Alex spent 25 years working in the international telecommunications business. It may seem small or simple, but there is something to be said about long-term business relationships when it comes to running your company successfully.

On the most basic level, it is necessary for you to form strong client relationships for your business. Fostering and building long-term business relationships is no different to other long-term relationships – it can be equally as time consuming and expensive (rather than dinner dates you’re dishing out for advertising!), but it can be equally as rewarding!
Encourage feedback: by encouraging constructive feedback from the people within your business relationships (clients, employees, vendors and competition), you will know how you are performing. Keep in touch: formulate a daily routine for keeping in touch with your business relationships. Be honest: even if you don’t know the answer to something, be upfront and simply say you don’t know (and then offer to find out the answer!). Don’t make your business strategy all about the sale at hand – if you want your business to survive for the long-term, you need to be in for the long-term…business relationship-wise that is. Now take the next step and harness the power of communities to bring your customers and employees together. Transformative technologies, such as PCs, assembly lines and mobile devices, have dramatically altered the way we do business, and M2M will be one of those technologies. As new infrastructure replaces old, companies and governments have the opportunity to drastically alter their businesses by implementing a technology strategy that is not only more efficient, but enables new levels of service, efficiency and economy. T-Mobile is delivering the BeClose home healthcare monitoring solution which, unlike existing home monitors, is entirely wireless and uses a dedicated cellular channel. When considering a technology transformation like M2M, it’s important to remember it is just a tool to implement business strategy and process. These aren’t isolated requirements, but rather interdependent needs that businesses in every industry vertical will struggle with and M2M suppliers will have to solve. M2M technology allows for the animation of nearly any object by enabling it to monitor, collect and send data from anywhere in the world. Hertz uses M2M to locate and track rental cars, and can even unlock the car remotely if the renter locks the keys inside.
M2M creates an opportunity to elevate the business to the next level, define the next generation of the company and create long-term competitive advantage.
The workshop is a strategic exercise to help quantify what is possible when current technology constraints are removed and where value can be added to the business. To that end, says Chris Hill, Vice President, Advanced Enterprise Mobility Solutions, AT&T has assembled an ecosystem of vendors, test labs, consultants and integration partners to simplify the specification, delivery and operation of M2M solutions. With America’s largest 4G network, T-Mobile has the capability to deliver the coverage, speed and growing bandwidth needs for 3D video and infotainment systems, data-intensive telehealth, and other emerging high-end applications. With a broad portfolio of custom and innovative SIM form factors, including unique embedded SIM solutions, T-Mobile gives its customers greater flexibility to meet their design requirements.
Recognized by the industry for its growth, leadership and innovation, T-Mobile is best positioned to bring the future closer and drive the M2M market forward. Our goal is to teach strategies that make sense and skills that can be applied immediately.
Over the past years people have called out Unified Communications, Cloud Computing and more recently Mobility and SIP-Enabled Infrastructure. It is this realization that will enable you to improve how your business communicates, not an in-depth understanding of the underlying technology. Due to social networks or mobile technologies, the expectation is clear: I want answers and I want them now.
So much so that software (and budgets) cannot adequately mine the horde of data sets for nuggets of insight.
Multi-device formatting is quickly becoming the war chant of Customer Experience strategist globally.
Yes, content must be visible and stand out from the plethora of mixed media messages we’re bombarded with daily but it must now also impact the reader on an emotional level if it is to solicit any advocacy through sharing, commenting, tweeting, etc. As businesses move along the strategy continuum from social media to social business, CEOs and CIOs will demand a demonstration of the financial value that social communications drive to the bottom line. And with it comes added pressure to perform, complete with greater risks and even greater rewards.
60.7 per cent of businesses surveyed believe being contactable is too expensive when employees are travelling for business, or communicating with people based overseas. The research indicated that more than 12.5 per cent of Australians have lost clients as a result of not being able to be contacted while travelling abroad. 40.7 per cent of respondents are unaware of alternative options for international communications. Global mobile providers such as Truphone offer a range of benefits to improve connectivity and enhance international communications whether at home or abroad. That way, they can get on with business, and their business abroad becomes business as usual.
He built, operated and ran a mobile network operator in the Macau SAR, successfully competing with the incumbent for nearly 10 years.
It is true that long-term business relationships can be easily overlooked and we often favour the details of the products and services instead. However, you also need to have well-formed, long-term business relationships with your employees, vendors and, while it may surprise you, your competitors.
Marketer Patrick Scullin says, “If you know where you stand, you stand stronger.” Look at our client audits page for more information.
Listening rather than speaking will show you’re prepared to take the time to understand – behaviour that will keep clients coming back and lead to referrals. Devise a plan to ensure not too much time passes without being in contact with these important people. People really appreciate honesty, and that it is a vital foundation to form a strong, long-term business relationship.

M2M can connect virtually anything, like a vending machine that notifies the route driver when it’s out of soda. Most communication service providers will agree that wireless coverage is nearly ubiquitous nationally and even globally. Containers, trucks, high-value items and temperature-sensitive medications are also regularly tracked using M2M. That kind of opportunity doesn’t happen very often, and businesses in any industry can benefit.
Representatives from across the business can recognize synergistic opportunities to remake processes from the ground up that improve products, customer support and the bottom line.
Competitive advantage and innovation will be realized from the unique applications that are developed to use data collected from M2M devices. AT&T also has certified over 1,000 devices with its mobile network and provides developer kits to ensure compatibility as applications are being built. Most predictions focus on the evolution of the technology rather than the cultural changes that impact how we communicate within our organizations and beyond.
On-demand contextual data will be the focus of productivity and strategy sessions in boardrooms across the country.
Big Data requires a new understanding of the relationship between the content generated and collected among sales, marketing and customer service teams. Blog posts for example must be written in various formats to ensure proper engagement across different platforms but this is no longer limited to text. One in five (18.0%) businesses permit only the use of email to reduce international communications costs.
Choosing a provider which offers multiple international numbers on a single SIM enables businesses to connect more seamlessly with their international connects closer by providing a local number in selected countries for their contacts to reach them on, at local rates.
It is your clients, employees and vendors that will carry you and your business through the tough times.
Develop a Customer Relationship marketing program to remain front of mind with all your key stakeholders and business relationships. It is these long-term business relationships that will keep your business strong and successful through the good and the bad times. Thanks to innovations in miniaturization of antenna and battery technology, devices can now communicate wirelessly from anywhere in the world. However, approaching M2M as a new growth area offers a clean slate on which you can define the next generation of the business.
It’s important to consider the maturity of the technology, stability of the provider, interoperability, coverage and IT requirements.
The possibilities for M2M seem limitless, but many businesses are having trouble getting started. The AT&T approach seeks to simplify M2M complexity by aligning capabilities from the device to the user and providing businesses with all the pieces of a solution up to and including end-to-end turnkey service, Hill explains. Meta-information will supplement voice, video, chat and text communications to provide greater context for customer experience design.
Content translation to sensory preferences such as visual and audio mediums including podcasts, videos, audio, etc. Furthering this, it is advised that you foster business relationships with your competitors to share resources, tips and practices – all of which can only serve to build your knowledge base and consequently strengthen your business. The difference now is that you can network the sensors in devices and objects, and use the data for extended purposes such as knowing that the garage door was left open and notifying the owner or security company. The result is an explosion in the number of proposed business and consumer M2M applications.
Not only can the vending route driver be informed, but inventory can be updated both on the truck and in the warehouse while suppliers are notified to restock. Costs will continue to decline for components and devices, so if the return isn’t there now, it may be in the future.
What changes are you asking them to make and how will it affect their lifestyles or business operations? However, the business, not the M2M supplier, will feel the market damage from a security breach.
Involving representatives from every part of the business reveals amazing insights and results in better alignment of technology goals with business strategies. M2M does not have to be an evolution of existing processes and systems, although it may ultimately include those, but many organizations have tried unsuccessfully to extend existing infrastructure. Although M2M devices will typically use the mobile network, the devices themselves may not move.
Users across the business require process simplification and better access to correlated, accurate data. Relying on external partners to deliver mission-critical services like M2M or cloud offerings makes secure procedures, components, software and networks absolutely essential. Eliminating truck dispatches, reducing time spent by technicians or support personnel, or providing better data for customer self-service are all quantifiable savings that businesses can realize now.
A sensor on a levee pump in New Orleans can’t go around the corner to get a better signal during a storm. It is important to recognize where you’ll be deploying the M2M network, field-test the devices, and negotiate a service level agreement that ensures connectivity for critical devices.

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