10 Years of Phone Systems
This fall will be All Call Technologies 10th anniversary!
It’s hard to believe we’ve been in business for 10 years! It doesn’t seem that long ago that Rebecca and I made that “leap of faith” decision to start a small company. Having both come from corporate backgrounds, there was a lot to learn about a wholly different business environment…and starting from scratch! Answer Idaho was born and we were happy to welcome our first client soon after. He was a neighbor who created websites. Our first month, we made $30, that was so very cool. We had a paying client! Now we just needed a few hundred more.
Having never been a business owner, I thought I would be programming new clients phone systems and recording their greetings all day long. That was flat wrong! I had to find new clients!! Programming new clients and setting up phone systems became a very small part of my day. Marketing, networking and promoting became the bulk of what I would do.
Technology solutions like ours are not always easy to explain to people. We joined local networking groups, chambers and several other social groups. A couple of years after we started, the "recession" came. It was tough for many of our small business clients who were forced to downsize, trim or go out of business. We tread water for a while, gaining and losing clients and trying to keep our outlook positive.
One day I was chatting with a friend. He said he could always tell when a business had our service because he would hear my voice or Rebecca's on their phone system. That was a little eye opening! Our local market was too small for us to reach our goals. We needed to grow and expand into other markets!
We made a big technology investment and changed our strategy, which included changing our name so it more accurately reflected our geographic capabilities. We became All Call Technologies! All Call Technologies could serve clients in all 50 states now! WooHoo!!!
Our new strategy included new marketing that would reach beyond our local market. I had to develop a new way to reach people in all 50 states. It became less about networking meetings and more about internet presence, search engine optimization and finding ways to introduce ourselves and our solution to people across the country. Think upgraded website, Google, FaceBook, LinkedIn and a whole bunch of other tactics to market all around the country. I know more about SEO now than I ever thought I'd need to know.
Oh yeah, I'm in the phone business! Even though my business is telecommunications and I love to talk with people about their phone systems, I became an expert - in the eyes of my chamber friends - on websites, SEO, analytics and social media.
Now I'm a telephone engineer...well I own a telephone services company but I'm also an online marketing expert. I guess that's what you do when you're en entrepreneur, you say you're this but you're really an expert in your field.
Rebecca and I have grown the company from nothing to now having several hundred clients in 27 states. We find we are a great fit for the small business owner that wants the features of an advanced phone system, but not all the hassle of new - expensive equipment. Some mid sized companies are working with us too.
Looking back, it is still hard to believe it’s been 10 years when we found our first client. There have most certainly been a lot of twists and turns along the way. Small business ownership is not for the faint of heart.
We want to thank all of our clients, past and present! Thank you to all of our friends, who we meet with face to face and those we only know through phone conversations or social media. We could not have made it this far without your support!
As for the future, we have built a solid foundation and we continue to grow. We look forward to another 10 years and the day when we have clients in all 50 states! From our first day as Answer Idaho to today as All Call Technologies, it’s been quite a journey and we look forward to what’s around the bend.
Greg and Rebecca Standerfer