Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Importance of high speed broadband for business

We thought we'd share a little internet speed secret with our readers...

Our office has some of the fastest broadband in Australia. In fact we moved to our current office because we could get the full throttle, pure fibre optic broadband offered by our suppliers.

Truth be told we hunted around for months to find an office premise that had the full fibre deal that our National Broadband Network (NBN) was offering in our area.

Yes it flies faster than a speeding bullet, leaps tall buildings with a single bound and is indeed more powerful than a locomotive. Super Man stuff really. Though it is in more subtle ways where the unexpected dividends lie.

Our full fibre connection has enabled us to run a series of fully operational trial servers. Nothing transactional or world beating of course.  Though this allows us to experiment with new web based technologies of all sorts by getting our hands dirty.

We also can run internal only servers that open up for resources from outside occasionally. Showing a potential client a new concept or feature for example. The added bonus is we don't need to keep talking to our secure server house people before we need to and we like occasionally just playing with the servers.

We also run a streaming video server of the view outside our office. Which happens to be quiet spectacular much of the time. We run that though a YouTube Channel and stream a local radio station for those that want to stare out the window on their screen.
Here it is, for those that wish to watch.

Another advantage of all this capacity is that we can share it with our clients and colleagues. They drop into the offices when they need to get move seizable things around the internet. It's no skin off our nose due to our unlimited plan. It's great to have a reason to catch up with them while they're here, we talk about new ideas and motivate each other in various ways.

More than occasionally we are swamped by people that come in to use our super fast internet. When nearby internet connections go down or go slow we attract 'internet refugees', sometimes a dozen or more. Again it's a pleasure, we have the space and more often than not we benefit from the goodwill and ideas exchange that happens. In fact we sere featured on the national ABC News Program 7.30 report recently. Here it is, quiet amusing really, underlining a few issues with the national broadband infrastructure.

 ABC 730 report

All of this fun and games doesn't mean much if the connection was not reliable. It is fortunately, as a result it's become more than a business resource, it's become a utility, an advantage and something I wish all of my fellow businesses will be blessed with in the not so distant future.

A very merry Christmas period, may you be blessed with ever faster and more reliable internet.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

VR and Drones : New Business Photography

Of the digital mega-trends one is the internet is becoming increasingly visual.  Whether it's through the media of Instagram, Snapchat or emojis, all appeal to our seemingly endless fascination with pictures.

It should then be no surprise that there is a constant arms race to visualise the business that you do. We've covered previously Infographics if you're in the business of sales or statistics. Though many businesses are what I would call location based businesses; restaurants, cafes, car dealerships, hotels, galleries, markets, music venues, gyms and sporting venues etc. All of these rely, at least in part on their location to function.

We held a business seminar that demonstrates the benefits of these new opportunities.

I know though experience that creating great visual assets is a challenging task for most businesses. Everything from logos to videos are a major undertaking, as they require a good deal of thinking and a good producer to make them look professional enough to pass muster in today's visual landscape.

This is where new Business Photography comes in!

The use of internal 360 Virtual Reality and Drone Photography offer fresh, interesting and above all useful images for most location based businesses.

Below is an example of an indoor climbing venue. You'll agree this really works in showing off their business. Click and drag the image around to take a VR tour. Amazing really.

From the outside you can also capture fantastic drone footage and create a series of stunning visuals that illustrate your location in relation to the landscape. This example is also very powerful.

I really love this - click through for an even more amazing example of this image.

Click to access the 360 animation - image thanks to Bravo Drones 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Quality not Quantity the key to Social Media success

As of today I have exactly 17,309 subscribers/followers/friends/colleagues over my various social media networks. These are personal, business, and organisational accounts. Many more if we count account pages and organisations I share administration rights.

So what? So what indeed!

Of course this is nothing compared to a particular young person I know. He has 10s of thousands of connections, so many I gave up years ago even talking social network numbers. One video post alone spurred nearly a million views and 1000s of comments that lead to equal amount of subscribes/likes/follows over the various networks. Of course this young person doesn't sell anything, it's a profiling game that strokes the ego very nicely.

If on the other hand your job is selling products/services/ideas the question of raw numbers is much less important. Numbers should be just the start of your strategy. It is in fact the type/sort of people you should be most concerned about. In other words the 'quality' of your connections.

As the image below illustrates certain people are much more influential in connecting with other people than others. Imagine if the central message here was a recommendation to subscribe to a particular news service. Imagine now that you have received a message from a trusted associate recommending the news service. Emotionally and statistically you are approximately 10 times more likely to take up that same recommendation than a cold recommendation from a random/unknown source. Let that sink in for a while.

Quality networks are more important than the raw numbers
One of the best tactics I use is to conduct an audit of your social media networks. Rank people and organisations into relevance for categories. Divide these into logical communications groups and start becoming more relevant to more people over night. Your contacts will reward you with a smile because "Quality Rocks!" .

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Make 2016 the year The Cloud works for you

We've heard so much about Cloud Computing over the last 4 years that this weird term has quickly become a part of our vernacular. Everything digital is increasingly "in the cloud".  How can we make it work for us?

Your photos are likely on Apple's photo storage site, your address book is up there too, via your phone. Gee even your relationships and private opinions are most likely archived in FaceBook's cloud for you.

If you think about it all of this has kind of happened without us making much of a decision about it.

Perhaps it's now time to do a little thinking about "The Cloud" and what you want in it, what you don't want in it and how it could work for you.

The most obvious advantages of the cloud are the ability to access your work from anywhere with an internet connection. The other being your ability to be able to share your work with others.
Both these features of cloud computing open up a world of flexibility in how a business works.

You can easily have people work from home or outsource a task to someone by giving them access to your cloud systems for the period of their engagement. This alone can vastly reduce costs.

Cloud systems are however very reliant on reliable broadband connections that are fast and inexpensive. While this is available to many people, it is still an issue for many locations. Fortunately most cloud systems now have phone apps that allow you to do your business on your phone.

One of the most robust and useful of cloud systems is now called Google Apps for Work - This is very similar to Google's free versions delivered through gmail. The difference is you can operate all through your own domain name instead of Google's. You also get a higher storage capacity for documents in this paid version.

The pricing is reasonable at between $10-15 per month per email account. Which is very similar to Microsoft's own cloud app offering.

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