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How to Get More Done, More Efficiently: Choosing Technology Solutions

Last week I had the opportunity to present at Dreamforce 2014 in a session about utilizing marketing automation solutions. One of the benefits was that I got to meet and talk with a lot of people who face similar problems and have similar objectives: how to get more done, more efficiently.

I spoke alongside Colin Berta, a Principal Marketing Architect, as well as Roy Keely, VP of Market Strategy for Xcentric. They spoke about the need to connect the dots between Sales and Marketing, and how to create a cohesive communication thread between a company and their customers (or prospective customers), using a marketing automation solution. While the content was geared more toward Marketers, I couldn’t help but draw parallels between the presentation content and the approach that LoopUp takes toward improving communication in remote meetings – something that also helps people get more done, more efficiently. In light of this, here are three tips on how to consider a technology solution.

1. Your tools should fit the way you work

In the session, we discussed ways in which marketing automation tools can integrate with other tools (such as When discussing any technology solution, though, it’s important to keep in mind that a technology solution is really only a solution for you if it solves your problems – that’s what takes it from a ‘tool to a solution‘ as I realized after presenting at Dreamforce last year. Further to that idea, it’s important that the solution makes sense given your processes. There is no point having a ton of great functionality if it doesn’t integrate well with your existing applications or systems. This just creates confusion and more work to try to bend your processes to the tools – rather than just choosing tools that fit within the way you work. This relates to the idea that people should ‘stop looking at tools or features, start choosing technology solutions‘ using a more holistic perspective.

2. Get the right info to the right people, at the right time

In the context of our presentation, this concept was discussed relating to messaging strategies, but this also extends more broadly to considerations about choosing technology solutions that make everything come together seamlessly. There is nothing more frustrating than having to piece together disparate information rather than having it all available in one place when you need it. This is especially true when meeting remotely – as we’ve discussed before, it’s much better to be able to quickly explain your point on a call while walking someone through a presentation or a spreadsheet, than to have to stumble your way through a call while referencing something someone emailed to you. Being on the same page is invaluable.

3. Make it easy (for you and for others)!

In marketing terms, it’s important to make it easy for people to tell you that they are interested – after all, no one likes to have to search endlessly for a way to contact a company or click around a website to find a buried pricing page. It’s also important to choose tools that make it easy to manage what you’re working on – whether it’s a website or an email campaign, or when thinking about other technology solutions. Unfortunately, the concept of making things easy is often casually adopted through marketing language – rather than something that is at the core of the design of a technology solution. The fact is, if a tool is difficult to use it will be harder to get people to adopt it. This means for tools that help you communicate more effectively, such as audio and web conferencing, it’s especially important to find a solution that provides the functionality needed in a way that everyone can use it – as we have mentioned in tips to choose a provider.

As always, Dreamforce was exciting, intense and exhausting – and also provided a great opportunity to see what technology solutions are available to solve problems that many people face. One of the common threads between all these solutions is that people want to be able to get more done, more efficiently. Hopefully these three tips will help you think about your next evaluation of a technology solution in a slightly different way.

Read other posts on technology solutions and communicating effectively:
BYOD and Productivity: Why You Need a Good Conferencing Smartphone App
3 Business Apps Which Solve Problems
4 Tips for Communicating Across Multiple Time Zones

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