In beta for the past six months building up a base of over 500 small business entrepreneurs seeking new customers, Skype today launched Skype in the Workplace, a free-to-use online platform for small businesses and entrepreneurs, enabling instant connections with potential customers, partners and suppliers across the globe.
In a Skype Big Blog post, Bringing you face-to-face with small businesses around the world: Welcome to ‘Skype in the workspace’, Ural Cebeci, head of SMB Marketing at Skype, summed it up with:
Skype in the Workspace provides you with a single, web-based platform to effectively run your business online. SITW is designed to be simple and straightforward for small businesses to use. Users can sign up in just 30 seconds using their Skype or LinkedIn profile and sharing tools on the site allow users to share their latest business activities with their online network via Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Whether it is video calling with Skype or booking appointments to meet with new connections, it can all be done within the Skype in the Workspace environment.
Don’t forget, SITW is also open to the public. Consumers are able to use SITW as a directory of companies across the globe, offering them the ability to search and instantly connect with businesses.
Entrepreneurs can sign up, using either their Skype or LinkedIn account, at no cost and describe the opportunity they offer to prospective businesses and consumers. Included is an option to offer free time on a Skype call to answer initial questions and establish a customer relationship.
ReadWrite.com has put out a review: Microsoft’s “Skype In The Workspace.” It’s Like A Video-Based Quora, pointing out some shortcomings:
A video-based, Quora-like repository of knowledge seems to have value, but only if people can quickly connect and benefit. Skype In The Workspace really needs filtering capabilities, as well as some sort of reputation system. Microsoft has built an intriguing platform with Skype In The Workspace, but this initial version seems more curiosity than useful tool for entrepreneurs.
With over six years of following Skype, its hardware and its expansion of features, Voice On The Web is offering free 15 minute sessions with small business entrepreneurs to discuss their needs and how they may leverage Skype. Frankly I’ll provide them with an overview of Experience Skype to the Maxand how it can serve as a reference for taking advantage of Skype in building low cost communications in a small business. Most valuable is my experience with Skype collaboration tools that can help build a worldwide business team and customer base.
Bottom line: Skype has always had small businesses as a significant portion of its user base. Skype in the Workspace provides an opportunity for small business entrepreneurs to share their experience and knowledge in a way that makes their business customers more profitable and productive.