BYOD. Bring Your Own Device? Or Bring Your Own Disaster?

cell phoneThe concept of “bring your own device” (BYOD) is an unstoppable trend especially in the small business space. It’s a winning combination as companies save on hardware and training costs while improving employee satisfaction. However to embrace the power of BYOD, businesses must ensure that they have adequate protections in place to counter the associated security risks.

The first step in enhancing your small business security posture with regards to BYOD is to lay out a clear policy. It should define access methods and mandate the use of company authorized applications and security tools for employee-owned devices that access company resources. Mobile device security is relatively limited today, but standard techniques such as VPN access, setting up a pin code to access the phone, installing a security application, and the ability to remotely erase data off a stolen device will be enough to deliver basic protection. Make sure any security and data protection steps you take conform to compliance mandates such as PCI DSS, HIPAA, or GLBA. These are often industry requirements.

Embrace BYOD with confidence to explore everything the new mobile world has to offer, and do it safely. To help, all AnyMeeting customers get free mobile phone security check-up free of charge delivered by 24/7 Techies. Send an email to AnyMeeting@247techies.com and schedule your session today or call toll free 1-888-294-7201 for assistance. 24/7 Techies delivers online tech support to small businesses and consumers nationwide. Support is delivered remotely by taking control of the customer’s computer or mobile device while the customer watches.

 

Note: This is a guest post from 24/7 Techies. To submit your ideas for guest posting on our blog, send email to press@anymeeting.com.

10 Easy Small Business Marketing Tips for Increased Visibility

Marketing your small business can seem like a daunting task, and sometimes we just need a little guidance to set things in motion. Here are some tips that you can easily implement into your monthly routine to ensure that your brand is communicating properly with your target audience.  Follow these steps and you will be on your way to better engaging your audience and achieving better success!

1) Be personal and authentic in your communication – With social media at the forefront of marketing and communications today, it is imperative that you communicate on a personal level. People are more inclined to participate with your brand if they know there is a real live person behind the brand identity who cares about them. Newsletters are more appreciated if they’re written from a personal perspective, addressing the individual with expert advice that can help the audience reach their goals.

2) Leverage your Network – your friends, colleagues and social network are your biggest asset. Ask for referrals and testimonials from people you know or have done great work for. We are more likely to purchase a product if our friends have had a great experience with it. Create a “Friend Referral Program” or provide other incentives — like deals, discounts and rewards on your services – when people say good things about your company. Doing this consistently will greatly expand your network reach to a genuinely interested audience.

3) Google rankings – As we all know, getting to the top of Google can be an expensive and time-consuming endeavor. Have no fear: there are lots of ways to build your search engine rankings without blowing your budget. Our number one recommendations? Put your business on Google maps: this is a great way to get to the top of the list! Generate quality content that your target audience can learn from or be entertained by. Being consistently active on Twitter and Google Plus are fun, easy ways to increase your Google ranking, while adding shareable links to your Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest posts drive traffic to your website or blog. Today, the best way to rise to the top in search is to consistently produce content that is relevant (use your keywords here) and shareable.

4) Create your own TIPS – People like tips! A quick, fun list is a great way to provide useful information to your audience. If you want to kick it up a notch, create a video for them! Video is a great way to show the face behind the brand, creating an indelible personal connection.

5) Photos are king – People love to share inspirational, sarcastic and funny photos. Join the trend by putting together some current text and quotes that appeal to your crowd and the type of people you think would appreciate it. This is a great way to access your fans’ network without being “markety.” People will see who created the image and share it via the original source (you), creating brand visibility and adding a few likes along the way. Plus, you’ll probably make someone’s day!

6) Collaborate with the competition – Working with other like-minded business owners can help promote new ideas and products. Because your audience already exists on social media – and so does theirs – collaborating is a natural and friendly way to seek out social media users who are interested in learning more about the products or lifestyle you offer.

7) Create contest giveaways – People love to win things! Especially if those things are highly valuable, unusual or difficult to acquire. Make sure what you’re giving away is a conversation starter, something that people want to tell others about. Use Facebook ads to further promote your contest, as the ads employ a targeted tagging system to ensure you’re reaching the right people.

8) Knowledge is power – Know your audience and your competition. Follow the old corporate adage: don’t try to be something for everyone, aim to be everything to someone. Before you jump in the deep end, learn to understand whom it is you’re communicating to and what value your product or service can add to their lives.
To do: create online polls using Survey Monkey, pay attention to Google Analytics and Facebook Insights, and most importantly, listen carefully to responses. Offer an incentive for participating, like a free coffee or a gift card from Tim Horton’s. Speaking of listening, keep your ears open to what the competition is doing. Be bold and willing to stand out and strategize over the long-term!

9) Partner with a charitable organization – Choose a cause you love and partner up with an organization whose mission is similar to yours. Get your staff and team out there helping out with a soup kitchen, throw an event and split the proceeds, or host an auction. You’re already a good Samaritan, so why not share your social consciousness with others? This alone helps your brand stand out and become a valued part of your community.

10) Capture information – Almost every message you put out there should come with a call to action. Add a newsletter sign-up form to your website, make a database of loyal clientele, and reach out to them on a regular basis. Offering incentives – “Sign up to our newsletter and receive 10 tips to…” or “Share this contest for more chances to WIN..” – is the strongest way to get your audience to participate, and it lets you find out what works for different segments of your market niche. Show them that you are grateful: a simple reward goes a long way.

 

The above article is a guest post by Sari Gabbay, founder, president and visionary at U2R1, a branding, design and marketing agency. To submit your own blog post or article for consideration, learn more here.

AnyMeeting Releases New iPad App

Small business happens everywhere.  And meetings, webinars, and video conferences must be easy to attend from anywhere at anytime.  That’s why we are excited to announce that AnyMeeting has released a new free iPad app that is available for download in the iTunes App Store.  The app enables iPad users to easily attend a meeting, watch a screen share, and even broadcast their video.  Today, meeting attendees participating  from the iPad app, will be able to:

  • View any presentations.
  • Listen to any audio broadcast through your iPad speakers.
  • Call in to participate through your phone.
  • Broadcast video through either the front or back camera of your iPad.

AnyMeeting iPad App Screenshot 4-way-video

For complete instructions on using the new AnyMeeting iPad app visit our support site.

Small Business Saturday and #ShopSmall Drives SMB Growth

Small Bus Sat 1Last Fall American Express launched the Small Business Saturday campaign to drive awareness and traffic to small businesses and locally owned and operated businesses. AnyMeeting joined the program as a proud supporter, offering discounts to members for #shoppingsmall during the 2nd to last weekend in November.

According to the Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey, U.S. consumers who were aware of Small Business Saturday reported spending a total of $5.5 billion with independent merchants on the day of the promotion.

Learn more about the program here. If you’d like to be notified the next time, AnyMeeting offers a Small Biz promotional discount, tell us in the comments below, or sign-up for a Free Account and stay tuned to announcements in our monthly newsletter.

 

Creating Killer Presentations: 5 Shocking Mistakes to Avoid

AnyMeeting users share thousands of presentations every month (literally) with nearly 20% of all meetings including a shared presentation. That is a lot of PowerPoint! And if you’re like most people, you’ve sat through a lot of PowerPoint presentations yourself. How many of them really rocked? And how many of them were just plain bad?

To help you rock your next presentation, tune-up your current one and shine like a star, check out these terrific tips: