The telephone wasn’t built for communicating with a group of people. It was built for communicating from one location to another single other location. Having a smartphone capable of using nearly 1 billion apps hasn’t changed that fact. Each phone still only has one phone number. Sure, you could all hop on a Facebook Group, subscribe to an email newsletter, or even sign up for a dreaded phone tree. But the mix of platforms, technological savvy or simple logistical prowess needed to execute all of that can be terrifying to the average small business or individual. We end up reverting back to a phone call or, if we are lucky, a text message going from one person to another.
But, a disruption is afoot. The mass notification and phone calling logistics silver bullet that has eluded us for so long is being developed and deployed in Troy, Ohio. One Call Now has figured out the small business solution for sending out a voice message from one person to many people with minimal effort. They have leveraged the smartphone market by making apps on all of the major platforms and they have honed in on the true pain of one to many communication: the logistics.
By simplifying the process of sending out those messages and getting feedback for things like class cancellations or product launches, One Call Now has opened up new possibilities for company and non-profit communication. In doing so, they have found significant sales growth and shown that they can expand their market to include nearly any kind of small business. In finding a way for individuals within a company to reach out to a specific group of people, they have made advertising and engaging specific market segments that much easier. Once the groups are created, the small business using the service can create an environment of high satisfaction and just-in-time information. We love this paradigm shift to instant access to a group of people via voice, sms, or email communication.
Although many times being a part of a group isn’t about one to many communication. Much of the time, being a part of a group is about letting the other members interact with one another and leveraging their feedback for even greater innovation. We would love to see One Call Now leverage their amazing group-communication protocols to empower a group to maintain a conversation and alert one another to what is happening within the group. Each member of the group could then become a node from which one to many communication is possible. Much in the way Cel.ly has tried to create “cells” for group collaboration, One Call Now could allow their small business clients to create engaged communities of consumers that could not only be alerted to what the company is doing, but also notify one another as to how they are engaging with the small business. Especially in the One Call Now target markets of schools, business, religious, and sports, the ability to create an ad-hoc group of engaged participants could shape the way in which those participants view the organizations and events they care most about.
Clearly, One Call Now is creating something worth investing in. They are essentially changing the way in which we can use a phone, and for that they deserve our attention and passionate approval.