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IAP introduces new eRemote Message On Hold Playback Technology

The next generation of Messages-on-Hold (MOH) playback technology has arrived at Illinois Audio Productions (IAP).  The IAP eRemote player offers a number of new benefits, starting with how it’s programmed.  Each unit is assigned a specific email address, which IAP programs initially before shipping.  Once installed, the player itself periodically checks for new email and then follows its commands.  This is the foundation of many eRemote advantages.  Changing audio is as easy as sending the player an email!

Using IAP eRemote technology, you no longer need to burden staff with the responsibility of downloading an MP3 via USB drive.  No more loading tapes or CDs.  IAP can remotely load the unit directly from the studio!  This is a key point especially for multiple locations across many cities, states, or even countries.  No employee ever needs to be on-site to physically load MOH audio.  Plus, the unit can be scheduled to play specific files for designated time periods at multiple locations.

Here’s a recent real-life example.  This past holiday season, a group of six automotive dealerships each had IAP eRemote players in place.  Each had custom messages designed to run from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day.  IAP completed the recordings in-studio well in advance, then “instructed” all six individual units to play just those designated messages…all by a simple email generated centrally from IAP.  On the scheduled “stop” dates, replacement audio was directed toward the group and worked flawlessly at every stage.  All done automatically without any end user involvement and no dealership staff or time required!

This ability to remotely add, replace, or delete messages offers distinct advantages, obviously.  But eRemote units also offer flexibility in other ways.  Volume level too high or low?  Output to the phone system can be adjusted remotely.  Have special recordings to play only during scheduled times?  IAP can email your eRemote unit accordingly.  Need to check the status of what’s playing and what’s scheduled to play?  eRemote makes both possible…and easy to do.

Also easy?  Installation.  IAP includes an Ethernet cable, audio cable, and AC power adapter.  Plug them in and the unit typically begins playing in 90 seconds or less…true plug-n-play convenience!  Since every eRemote unit has been pre-programmed with its own email address, issues with firewalls and direct network access are minimized or never enter the picture at all.  The player actually “checks” its own email for audio so you don’t have to manually load it.

Giving your business a competitive edge requires great attention to a million and one details.  MOH is a proven method for boosting revenue…after all, your phones are the front door to opportunity.  But during the course of a busy work day, it’s easy to overlook when your staff is focused on other priorities.  With your new IAP eRemote unit, you get all the benefits of MOH without any manpower expense.  From one location to hundreds, imagine the possibilities!  Put IAP’s outstanding MOH quality to work in your operation remotely with the dynamic new eRemote unit…no matter how many locations you have or where they’re located!

Tips for Effective copy writing and winning solution beyond audio

There’s a style and method of attack when it comes to writing copy for the ear, and if you’ve been with Illinois Audio Productions for any length of time, you’ve likely seen, heard, and/or experienced the different nuances.  Audio copywriting is very different than standard print copy because the intended audience never gets to actually read it.  Colorful phrasing and pertinent points must be expressed quickly and succinctly – meaning the number of words to get a print across must be minimal.

We’ve learned a few tricks along the way and even though “Audio” IS our middle name at IAP, our skills in marketing go beyond the magic we create in our studio.  Do you have pictures and graphics laid out for a new tri-fold brochure…just need help with the copy?  Unveiling a new product line and want to introduce it with a press release?  Unhappy with the number of internet “hits” the blogs are getting on your website?  These are just a few areas where you might consider recruiting the writing services of IAP.

While some areas of print advertising in newspapers and Yellow Pages have become increasingly passé, new wrinkles in technology have opened several other avenues to reach your audience, especially online.  If you’re putting together an informative “how to” video to give customers a hand using a new device, a well-constructed “story board” makes your video easy to understand and avoids extraneous information that causes the viewer/customer to tune out.

For example, if you sell home security products and have had a recently successful rush on a new Smart Home system, there’s a great chance your customers may not remember just how to program it or use it to the best potential.  This could result in a lot of technical phone time monopolizing your sales staff, who suddenly find they’re re-explaining every feature.  But a well thought out video can show visually, step-by-step, every advantage and nuance of that system (how to program locks, thermostats, home electronics, sprinkler systems…you get the idea).  It reinforces the purchase and lets the user go through the tutorial at his or her own speed.  Picture the possibilities…from heavy duty track part sales to high-tech tutorials in medical supply.

As business needs change, have you found yourself wishing you could simply tweak what your own website says about your operation?  This is a situation frequently encountered by organizations that no longer use the original web designer who set up their online presence in the first place…most likely some time ago.  Since not everyone is a web design wizard, even cosmetic text changes can be problematic.  Chances are, you do have the knowledge, ability, and the power to alter your online presence to spotlight a featured special or service.  But what to say about that highlighted product?  Leave it to the pros at IAP.

No doubt, it’s more of a visual world than ever with the advent of popular digital signage and specialty items like vehicle wraps.  So what do you want to say that will separate you from the pack?  You already have the answer right at your disposal.  Trust the experts at IAP to give your message some pop no matter what form of media you’re using.  If it’s a series of short headliners for a digital sign or banner on your delivery fleet, you’re covered.  Press releases, brochures, fliers, and e-mail blasts?  Check.  YouTube video or website content?  Leave it to IAP.  We have the whole language at our command…and so do you.

Spring Cleaning Checklist-Updating with a Fresh Message and Audio

It was the never ending winter, wasn’t it? No matter where you read this, chances are good you felt it. But winter has finally ended and so begins a new season of reinvigorated growth and a consumer population itching to go out and spend. Be ready for a busy spring and whatever you do, don’t neglect the phone lines that are sure to stay humming as we get closer to summer.

Even the most diligent, well-meaning Messages-on-Hold users take a break from their MOH after the busy holidays and New Year. But as we get into the second quarter, it’s time to freshen up marketing campaigns and kick start new promotions. This applies to audio for food service, retail, agriculture, the auto industry, veterinarians, and a cross section of proactive operations. If you’re in hospitality, this is prime time to raise awareness of summer specials. Caterers? You know wedding season’s coming. Hardware outlets? Put away the snow shovels and start talking about weed killer and hedge clippers. MOH is a vital component because it relays the most crucial information to callers already on the line and wanting to do business with you.

If you haven’t changed your MOH in at least three months, chances are, repeat callers have begun tuning out. Shake it up and give your MOH a Spring Cleaning. Even if it’s just scribbling down basic ideas, the team at Illinois Audio Productions (IAP) can formulate a rough draft to give those callers something new to grab onto. For those who may not have as many repeat callers – dental practices, for example – it’s still a good idea to refresh MOH audio this time of year to catch the changing audience once the school year ends. You have a number of services to promote…which are best with the time parameter in mind? Let’s put them at the forefront.

The bitter winter put a dent in construction time and home sales. Expect a big rebound and use your audio advantage to reflect an increase in activity and foot traffic. Time to run a new radio campaign? This is an area of audio production where IAP excels and will no doubt save you money compared to station and agency rates. A related industry that will also benefit from both a strong radio presence and a highly topical new MOH production? Building suppliers and home DIY stores. Not just BECAUSE the season’s changing, but because of the toll winter weather itself took. Lowe’s, for example, is expecting higher than usual spring sales as homeowners begin repairing snow damage to roofs and driveways. Spring sales growth of approximately 4% is expected according to Forbes, 5% total for 2014. It’s this kind of possibility that could be in your future, too.

Wheels turning yet? Here’s another thought and maybe a lesson also learned from winter. You never know how Mother Nature can affect your business and today’s phone systems typically accommodate alternate greetings in case of closure with no remote voicing necessary. Would you like to have a professionally produced voice prompt announcing emergency closures? They were used prominently in recent harsh weather and will no doubt come into play with spring storms and hurricane season coming. While you’re at it, what voices do your callers hear with your Automated Attendant (AA) greetings and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) prompts? If they’re done in-house and leave something to be desired, get a professionally polished voicing job from IAP.

So welcome spring and a world of new profit potential. Get a jump on the competition and give your callers and radio audience the kind of info they need to place orders, set appointments, and walk through your door. It really is a golden time to explore the potential using IAP audio. Let’s talk about breathing new life into a tired radio spot and updating MOH audio along with all the phone peripherals. You can even engage in a live chat with us depending on the time you’re reading this. If not, please don’t hesitate to ask any questions…we’re always glad to help.