HD Voice...

TV commercials are meant to be thought provoking and informational, well that is for some. Most of them were branded as a nuisance, especially during a cricket match you get to see same advert in between Overs throughout the day. Lucky you guys if you are subscribed on satellite TV broadcast – at least you can watch some hilarious ads.

Why I am starting off with Advert is recently Etislalat SL humming around the country about their new add on- HD voice. I am sure most of the subscribers are having no clue of what it suppose to mean (honestly, neither me known of this until I’ve Googled it ). With the help of some useful online posts, I thought to shed some knowledge about so called HD Voice on my post.

HD Voice- No, It’s not the first.

In early 2012, Dialog has introduced HD voice capabilities in SL for the first time, (I wonder why Dialog didn’t message this out when they’ve launched first).. Etisalat is 107th telco in the world to launch HD voice service commercially available while dialog already being the 42nd.  This is not entirely new to SL.

What HD voice means?

It’s the technology adopted to enhance the voice quality of audio call. It improves the quality of the call and also it reduces the background noise using noise cancelling technique. Usual Skype call is based on HD capabilities because data transmission is based on IP infrastructure- VoIP. However what telcos are trying to achieve here is bringing HD feature for mainstream voice call business. Great ha!

You have HD facility, does it mean you get these luxuries every time you make a call? Not necessarily..

To establish HD voice mode, there are few elements to be met technically, – this is largely on prevailing technology in the country and telcos can upgrade this.. well if they spend on it!

  1. Both handsets need to be HD voice compatible

We are talking about high bandwidth frequency range and both end of the phone must be optimized for HD voice capabilities. This doesn’t necessarily need to be a high-end smartphone; phone that are capable of handling AMR-WB (see below) would do the job, these days most of the smartphone out there are capable of handing HD voice. Earlier there were few version of mobile devices capable of HD voice and that runs on Symbian OS.

  1. Both devices need to be connected to a HD capable base station.

Base station that involves in establishing the call, the network must be supported for HD capabilities. ex: Base station with 3G/HSPA network of Dialog must connect with the same at Etisalat.

  1. Interoperability- since prevailing technology  can not cater for different network modes, two telcos connecting a call should be compatible with each others network modes- ex: both 3G/HSPA

Technology behind HD Voice

  • HD voice is basically doubled the audio bandwidth. HD voice makes use of Wideband audio technology transmitting at 50Hz to 7Khz. This is so significant when compared to Narrow band frequency range- 300Hz to 3.4KHz. To achieve this telcos use an audio codec – Adaptive Multi-Rate Wideband AMR-WB
  • Handset capabilities- It’s done with device manufactures and to make it compatible their handsets with acoustic design for enhanced mic and speakers to cater AMR-WB.
  • Signal processing algorithms. Audio processing is integral part in the background when establishing a call. With HD capabilities, process involves sampling rate of 16KHz/second where as with traditional voice call, the sampling rate is at 8KHz

Is it VoLTE?

When I heard the HD voice for the first time my mind was stricken VoLTE. And apparently it’s not. LTE is purely based on IP platform, more specifically IMS(IP Multimedia Subsystem), ) instead of circuit switched path. VoLTE is based on Voice and Data in a single radio layer and at the moment LTE that offered by Dialog and Mobitel is only for Data. Besides not many VoLTE compatible handsets are available in the market. This is one of the telco trends in voice call service.

 

The end !!

As it much hyped on TV, HD voice is not a new canon in SL, neither it’s guarantee HD capabilities each time making the call. Well that is advertising is it?

I want to steal few useful lead nurturing tips from the regular blog read published by Vince Koehler at http://www.salesbenchmarkindex.com/

Following is the excerpts of the article, and you can find it on http://goo.gl/9ibj9w

An impactful lead nurturing system is competitive advantage for the organization.

 

LDR_Cadence

source: http://www.salesbenchmarkindex.com/

High-touch nurturing is required before closing the prospects file or before ticking into automated nurturing process.

Sales reps are often gave up with 3-5 unsuccessful attempts (honestly, I am part of this group errr). However in a complex sales environment it is required sustained, high-touch nurture paths. On average prospects respond or decide to respond for an email after 9-12 impression attempts.

The idea 9X times of touch bases may be too high, it feels like spamming. It is in deed. Very thoughtful and useful content would provide a value addition. The right frequency and number of touch points will be decided upon review of what products and services are intend to sell.

Two interaction modes:

  1. Value based interactions: Lead development reps, provide value through each interaction aligned with prospects buying cycle. By providing useful resources LDR’s touch points will become very useful for prospects evaluate options.
  2. Missed and partial impressions: most of the voice mail/emails are deleted. Unfortunately most of the touch bases fall into this mode.

Automated nurturing vs 1:1 personalized nurturing

Automated nurturing executed by email, its broadcasting common content to leads, ideal at early stage or unknown.

1:1 is more personalized content and it is means of converting sales ready leads. Time intensive but this would be a personalized treatment for the prospects. Providing more useful resources for them evaluate.

Key points-

  • Voicemails should not exceed 30-seconds.  This does not include the time to leave the call back number.
  • Emails should be quick hitting and offer a resource.
  • Physical mail is recommended on day four.  Mail is an unclogged channel and should be tested for effectiveness.
  • Live connects on the phone should quickly get to the point.  In the phone conversation offer to provide resources.  This may include white papers, evaluation tools, or explaining key concepts.
  • An executive summary of the product/service in layman’s terms is valuable.  This can save a prospect time when evaluating multiple competitive solutions.

The tool provided on the website is quite useful- Lead nurturing contact plan, please follow the above link to download a copy.

Thanks Vince

story

This is my usual journey back home after work.

Take 1 KM bus journey to Colombo Fort railway station. Take South bound train and crumbled for another 15-20 Min to home town station. Take another bus journey for 1KM. One important fact: Train is always late(Yes always, if i get a train on time, that train ought to come 15 min before than it had arrived!)

Now the story!

While i was on the train yesterday there was a voice of a lad, echoing his anguish of a deprived story. As he sneak thorough the packed compartment the voice became much louder and clearer. The vagrants usually show off their drug prescription or costume their wounds but this poor lad has quite a different approach.

For the first minute everyone (including me) didn’t bother until he went on telling his story- what happened to him, how much he was earning, accident he was faced and this is heart wrenching – he said of his 10 years old daughters and demise of his wife.

He said: Few years ago he was a fisherman somewhere in South coast earning upto 80K a month and one day he caught with an accident, felt from a trawler – he told the height in numbers. Doctors had to amputate his left leg. He was showing the braces that partly wrapped with a bandage. He was telling about his sisters and daughters. And still he is taking care of his mother too. Story was a grief and pain, everyone only could imagine, if his claim was true, I was thinking God is surely tested his patience.

The learning: I am posting this story because it stuck on my mind reeling a story of a personnel. I was reading Dale Carnegie’s books and repeatedly mentioned people loved to talk about people and if you reeling a story attaching a person you arousing the audience’s interest. This is true!

Don’t reel the features, reel a nice story about people!

Seeds Of Expectation_thumb[1]

As part of e-book series published by sales authors Aaron & Jason I happened to read the part 1- “Seeds”

Seeds are leads that are generated from word of mouth. Until I read this 20page PDF didn’t pay much emphasis on customer success management.

I’ve learnt quite few definition (and work practice) reading Predictable Revenue by Aaron. Managing the existing accounts seems to be easiest and fastest option to generate sales- renewals, upsells & referrals. However the seeds are not proactively predictable (that’s the bad part)

The e-book was great resource I’ve listed the extracts.

Customer success management is not free help or glorified support: It’s a revenue driver-just like sales.

Six key elements to drive customer success suggested by Aaron-

  1. Customer success is Core revenue driver

Most successful companies drive sales within their existing accounts – renewal/upsells/referral

  1. Customer success is SALES channel not cost centre: drive more sales by establishing proactive customer success strategies.
  2. Dedicated resource: allocate customer success managers for accounts.
  3. Visit customer sites:5+2 Rule- visit 5 customers a month and own 2 customer badges-that is visiting so often warrant you a badge.
  4. Assign financial goals & metrics for CSM
  5. Evolve goals & metrics as the company grows.

Core focus is to minimize customer churn and improve CLV- customer lifetime value.

You could get the free e-book http://triple.predictablerevenue.com/triple/

Hope you enjoyed it!

Image

 

I was on LinkedIn and found this article quite useful - “Frost & Sullivan: Seven Enterprise Communications Scenes in 2014” - basically the trends in communication technology in 2014. This is the abstract version of the write-up, I felt its really interesting as some of the things mentioned, I’ve already being involved in: either I am using it or at least heard of it.

01. Microsoft Lync popularity will rise.

If you are not big fan of Microsoft you are unlikely to know about Lunc. Unified communication is basically consolidates channels such as IM, Voice, PBX, SMS, location etc for corporate. With Lync these had been addressed this is more like corporate communication tool especially for companies that already been using Microsoft platforms and enhanced into existing products such Office 365 and active directory. Since Microsoft already brought Skype this seems to be more feasible and UC vendors find it tough competition from Lync suite.

02. Mobile apps and enterprise mobile strategy.

Some of the new terminology for the 2013 I’ve learned was BYOD- Bring your own device.

When devising corporates’ mobile strategy companies are facing challenges how to manage those devices is only one part of the security concern. Varied mobile applications are being used by employees and security is critical for every organization. MDM- Mobile Device Management  vendors and security vendors play major role in 2014. As a result of BYOD, private Cloud based enterprise app sore is one area that could resolve  the situation which help the employer to have greater control on which apps re used by its staff.

03. M2M: Machine to Machine communication

M2M already on the surface and we’ve seen how future cars will be connected each other. Personally my preferred area in technology and I’ve heard many fascinating stories and the M2M domain could expand to wider scope. Smart senses such NFC tags (NFC stickers are on sale in Sri Lanka) and RFID’s will hit the sale along with innovative service capabilities especially through CSP’s. O2 UK is on testing project on smart metering for utility services.

04. Telecommunication vendors’ role in providing ICT services.

 Telcos already driving the mobility business along with device vendors, their operations likely to compliment with Cloud offering. Frost & Sullivan believes that telecommunication vendors will ramp up their service offerings across cloud, mobility, managed  hosting, contact centres and enterprise communication services. Telstra is an example where this had been live, however vendors such Amazon would make a tough competition.

05. UCaaS: Unified Comunications as a Service.

Companies will adopt either traditional on site deployment or managed cloud based model for their UC solution, leaving an end note for more old telephony system.

There are still traditional on site deployment for UC solutions but Cloud based model is slowly getting its trend.

06. Advancement in WebRTC

Browser-to-browser communications could eventually lessen the need for telephony devices and peripherals. Communicating will be as easy as clicking a link that will allow the user to make a voice or video call.

Cisco and Mozilla announced recently that the free and open distribution of the H.624 codec means that these two companies can collaborate for real-time streaming of online video from the browser without plugins. The WebRTC space will be one to watch in 2014, and we can expect more announcements from Enterprise Communications vendors over the coming year.

07. Google has already set the framework to dive into enterprise communication domain. Already Gooogle mail server is being used by large companies (My company does use it but its not large) and some of the services available through Google+ is quite useful leaving enterprise communication segment to sweep away by the search giant.

Amazon already leading vendor in providing Cloud infrastructure space, their Amzon activate service is already being used by popular start ups.

Although many companies will continue to buy servers and storage from the likes of HP, IBM and Dell, a growing number of organizations now feel comfortable with buying servers and storage in the cloud for a fraction of the cost of on-premise storage.

Just a couple of hours to go for the “pick of the week” match, wanna share few thoughts about this much awaited match.

North CArrying F'alou

Last time the Wales-Bok clash was during the World Cup 2011, it was 1 point win for Springboks- 17-16. I still remember James Hooks’ slightly missed conversion, everyone thought that was in.

This time plenty to look forward- for Wales, this is the first outing after the Six Nations triumph and whole lot bunch of Lions cap will be in action. For Boks, it is the first Northern Hemisphere compete after much successful  Championship series- much respected for their attacking flare that yielded 4 trys against mighty Allblacks.

After flourishing season so far for this year for Wales, there were plenty of reviews and I would like to share some of the key battles and pre match analysis if this were to Wales’s first win since 1999 against Springboks.

01. Breakdown:

This would be a close battle. I feel first quarter of the match set the tone for the entire match and this is a one area that both the teams try to get penalties for their goal kickers. Sam and equally good SA counterpart (plays for English based club) would be something to watch. Wales fielding the same back row that casted during the world cup would have a daunting task. As the game rolls off, if Wales want to adopt a passing game with more attacking flare, Tips could come in for No 6 Dan, and Sam to switch to Inside. Wales have to deal with the physicality of Springboks dynamic forwards (and the Backs too) and defending is crucial (stop the ball carrier  without conceding momentum and penalty).

02. Midfield attack:

If at all to suggest a weakest link on the Wales format, I feel the outside centre and the wing (both possessed few caps than their opponent) area where the SA fielding their captain Jean de Villiers posing some great ball running skills. Back three combination is something to look forward especially between Leigh and Lambie. I am pretty sure SA might be planning to play upfront which Wales had been having poor records on defending such threats.

03. Place kickers:

As always being such tense build up for crucial rugby, place kickers are invaluable. With 80-90% success rate would make your team win and Leigh and Steyn hardly make miscalculations to the post.

04. Master craftsmen

Manipulating the opponent’s weakness must align with your strengths. Who could take this role for Wales- Priestland. This is first time after recovering from the injury (and Dan as well) this could be something detrimental for the winning the match. However SA has no short of this- No 9 Fouri du Plesis.

Overall, the match would be close call, as in the past trend Wales starts a series with low node and steer upright as progresses, and as Shaun Edwards (Wales defend coach) commented  SA has the best side that can match their 2009 champions team.

Good luck Wales!

Good luck Springboks!

images

Autumn rugby internationals are almost there, I want to share the schedule for the rugby international during the month of November.

With All blacks’ recent high Octane performance, I don’t see anyone can stop them getting the “unbeatable” tag. However would love to see how they will handle Northern hemisphere nations after routed out Boks, Wallabies & Pumas in style. I don’t think neither of three matches they face would be a “Closest” battle. Yea, not even England! and even Wales if it is on the calendar. One which not on the table is the match between AB and Japan, historically this is the first ever test match played in Japan and it will stream on www.allblacks.com/allblackstv for FREE…ohh that’s great! AB played Japan in 1988 (I believe ) in Japan but the match didn’t carry test status.

Wales is going out of ordinary (as always been when its come to RUGBY) playing Wallabies as the 4th game which is out of the IRB rugby window, and playing on a Friday against Tonga on 22nd.  As my favorite rugby team Wales, I would love to watch Springboks and the Wallabies playing at Millennium  stadium. This would be a close call, and most of players would bring their Lions experience. I hope, unlike last time Whitewash, Wales would get at least 3 wins out of 4 match series.  Again Pumas won’t be easy at all. They are closing the gap after they had 2 runs in the Rugby Championship.

I was reading this article about the All Blacks recent unbeaten success http://www.espnscrum.com/newzealand/rugby/story/201623.html

The author suggests that All Blacks were getting fresh players in to the team without effecting the cohesion, and the depth of skill level they have in every position, even the 4th string player at Fly Half has the world class wave length. This proves and also I personally believe the individual skill level- Smith the Winger, and Barret 13 (score the try coming off the bench during the 2nd Bok game), and the Number 6 guy played earlier in the tournament instead of Messam. I am gathering more analysis as to who could stop (if at all) AB before next world cup. Will do a write up on this sooner!

Autumn series 2013, (GMT)

Date Time Home Away Venue
Sat 2 14.30 England Australia Twickenham
Sat 9 14.30 England Argentina Twickenham
Sat 9 14.30 Scotland Japan Murrayfield
Sat 9 17.30 Wales South Africa Millennium Stadium
Sat 9 17.45 Ireland Samoa Lansdowne Road
Sat 9 21:00 France New Zealand Stade de France
Sat 9 15:00 Italy Australia Torino
Sat 16 14.30 Wales Argentina Millennium Stadium
Sat 16 14.30 England New Zealand Twickenham
Sat 16 15:00 Italy Fiji Cremona
Sat 16 17.45 Ireland Australia Lansdowne Road
Sat 16 18:00 France Tonga Le Havre
Sun 17 15:00 Scotland South Africa Murrayfield
Fri 22 19.30 Wales Tonga Millennium Stadium
Sat 23 15.00 Italy Argentina Napoli
Sat 23 18:00 Scotland Australia Murrayfield
Sat 23 21:00 France South Africa Stade de France
Sun 24 14.00 Ireland New Zealand Lansdowne Road
Sat 30 14.00 Wales Australia Millennium Stadium

Arshad:

Some reviews on new iPad Air..Pretty cool ,,,

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

[tc_dropcap]Apple introduced two new iPads this month at a special event in San Francisco on October 22, and the first of those to go on sale is the iPad Air, which is in stores and on virtual shelves this Friday, November 1. After a week with Apple’s newest 9.7-inch device, it’s clear there’s a new champion of the large tablet market, and one that breathes new life into Apple’s original slab-style game-changer.[/tc_dropcap]

Video Review

[tc_5min code="517991001"]

Basics

  • 2048 x 1536 (Retina) 9.7-inch display
  • 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB
  • A7 processor
  • 802.11n dual-channel Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
  • 10 hours general use Wi-Fi surfing, 9 hours on cellular
  • Starts at $499

Pros

  • Thin and light design is a huge improvement over 4th-gen iPad
  • No battery life sacrifices required

Cons

  • Hard sell over the iPad mini with Retina, which also now has A7 power

Design

The design is the star of Apple’s iPad Air…

View original 1,471 more words

storytelling

I was listening to one of the sales podcast, downloaded from iTunes.

http://goo.gl/2NEGP1

It is a discussion/ Q & A session between Two industry experts on sales- Anthony Iannarino ( http://thesalesblog.com/ )and Mike Weinberg ( http://newsalescoach.com/ ).

I must say at first, the intro video on Anthony’s site was quite stimulating, indeed it was his story to the right audience on what they’d get and how.

The podcast explains the importance of “Top of The Funnel” activities that could bring-in new businesses, as a means  it is crucial to have time blocks on some “hunting” tasks. Most of the time ( and most convenient off course) is to get clicked on established accounts to meet the quota, however not many are invested on hunters task.

Getting linked up to the heading: story telling is one of the core skill set in sales, must get it right because this will lead to lots of other stories! in other words the sales story you tell the prospect would like to hear!

What I’ve learned: strategically executed prospecting plan, with strong language in all communication, go on outbound mode (and nothing else) consistently, identify definite target group, send  “WIFM” resources/marketing docs, right ATTITUDE.

NO..its not about Hydrogen and Oxygen!

I was shackled myself when my son raised a question last evening ( Sunday evening:  the time that we get THAT awkward feeling) “what made of water?” ..in a less than a second my wife replied from the far corner “it made out of Hydrogen and Oxygen darling!”   …ohh..that was stupid, yea, I know I was rude. How a Five year old suppose to know Oxygen and Hydrogen. The analogy reminds me sales experience when I’ve mentioned the word “telco” with a pro working in banking sector- next thing I heard was “what is telco means?”

When it comes to sales, the rule made myself: explain as you talking to an Eight year old….CONCISE & SIMPLE

Well, I still owe my son an answer, however this morning I’ve asked him to put across the same question to his class teacher; hope she has a better fluency in speaking with kids.

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