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COMMENTARY: Historically, one of the most challenging aspects to running a limousine service is the time and commitment it commands. It is a 24/7 business that requires much “hand holding” of clients. Traditionally, most start-ups come into this marketplace with little or no money and work the business alone before hiring that first chauffeur.
The last item on the neophyte operator’s bucket list to invest in was almost always the operating software. In fact, in a recent conversation with one longtime business owner, he said it took him 15 years to get his operations to a level where he could actually leave it and pursue other interests such as golf and travel.
And then along came mobile technology. Described as a breakthrough operating medium, mobile technology gives us the freedom now to work wherever we want and for small businesses to compete easier with large ones because so much of the technology is free — or thanks to cloud computing — a minimal investment. In today’s chauffeured transportation and charter bus world, while you may not be able to fully check out of your businesses for days and weeks on end, you certainly can leave the offices and keep it all running.
Smartphones are basically mobile computers. Within reason they can help you complete the same tasks as a basic laptop, PC or Mac. From a business point of view, it means you can manage your cash flow, run your accounts, update your social media, chat with employees and customers, and create documents — all on the move. How this makes your business more efficient is plain to see: Whereas 10 years ago being on a train meant you were out of the office, today you can be ‘in the office’ whenever you choose. Take advantage of this and you’ll have a firm footing to compete with bigger rivals.
Mobile technology allows companies to have an unprecedented level of connectivity between employees, vendors, and/or customers. Workers can download applications on their mobile devices that allow them to connect with others through social media such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Real-time communication with the office is important in delivering improved customer service, but also works to track employee timekeeping with ease.
Social media allows you to market your business and broaden its reach without any spend. Mobile technology has introduced a new dimension into advertising and marketing for businesses worldwide. Potential customers now see business advertisements on mobile phones through a wide variety of mobile marketing technologies including: SMS (text) messaging, mobile websites, mobile applications, banner ads, QR codes, IVR messaging and more.