Snapchat, WhatsApp, Vine, etc … it seems like we can’t go too long before a brand new “hot” communication app hits the “buzz feed.” This genre has almost exploded over the past year or so.
There is visual messaging, email clients that take on more of a messenger feel, video messaging, and many many more! In fact PC Magazine just put out it’s 100 Best iPhone Apps of 2015 to include 13 communication and social apps.
Having said that, most of the tools we read about on a daily basis are targeted more for the personal use. So what about us business minded individuals who have teams to network and collaborate with?
Sure there are a few business minded communication apps out there but weeding through them to find the the ones that are right for you can be a pain! That’s where I’ve done the trial and error and work for you.
VoIP technology has been around for well over 20 years, yet our conference calls in the corporate and small business since still looks something like this:
We all know how painful conference calls can be with the dial in number, pin, bridges, and software to download. However, UberConference has attempted to make this a whole lot easier these days. They offer rich benefits such as:
Easy screen sharing with one touch of a button
Call controls that allow you to mute individual callers
No dial-in, UberConference actually calls YOU
Free call recording
Custom hold music (just because it’s fun)
And integrated social profiles
Free plan allows up to 10 guests per call. Subscription plans (only $10) allows up to 100 call participants.
There are probably literally hundreds of ways to share a file these days. Skype, Google Drive, Email, etc … For ease of use though and the ability to find that same file six months down the line my choice is hands down DropBox.
With over 200 million users and 4 million businesses, Dropbox knows a thing or two about file sharing! Dropbox allows users to sync documents on your personal device with the person sharing said document in real time. However, the end user can also download a file without even having a Dropbox account via the shared link option (much like Google Docs).
Dropbox offers users 2 gigabytes or more of storage space for free, that’s enough to hold hundreds of PowerPoint files!
Individual paid plans start at $9.99 for 100 GB of storage, where businesses pay $15 per user per month for unlimited storage, with a minimum of five users.
Team Chat or Messaging
So you have a question that you need to pose to the team but don’t need to tie everyone up to their phone or headset. Sure as heck not email. (Please, please no more email.)
Again the choices are numerous in this arena as well. There is traditional Skype, which most everyone has (or should) where you can easily create a group chat or even call with a limit of 10 participants. But what if you want something a little bit more hefty? This is where I have two options.
Google Chat, now slowly being called Google Hangouts is one of your best options. For one it’s Free and comes built into the Google + interface. You can invite anybody into the hangout chat room and the entire conversation can be archived for later use. Only drawback here being is that it will need to go through your Google+ page, whether that be personal or business, and does require some forethought and set up.
Campfire is also a fantastic option here, especially if your team is in a growth spurt. They offer password protected chat rooms that can be set up pretty easily. There is nothing to install since everything is captured inside it’s online web interface. They also offer the all important iPhone App! So what are the drawbacks?
Pretty heafy pricetag – $12 a month for 12 participants
No android app that could be found at time of writing
What type of communication do you use for your team or small business? Is it working for you or are you looking to make a change?
We would love to hear your thoughts on the matter via comments below.