October 02, 2018
A new startup run by Adrian St Vaughan has launched an app named ‘Drop Call 365’ that solves the customer care services issues of small businesses. To put it simply, this flagship product is a ‘professional phone system for everyone’ that fits an entire call centre in the businessperson’s pocket.
The idea came to Adrian when he realised that small businesses occupy a substantial part of every industry. However, the tools they have at their disposal to enhance their customer services are quite limited. Many small businesses rely on their personal contact number to keep in touch with their customers and solve their queries. As he puts it, “It’s practical but doesn’t look professional. You have to give out your personal mobile number, and if you are busy, you spend a lot of time listening to voicemails. The alternative is a business landline, but that chains you to your desk.”
As a result, many of the small businesses are losing the opportunities of scaling their growth by leveraging the potential of the existing customer base. To solve this pervasive issue, he launched a business ‘Ascendia LTD’ with the flagship product ‘Drop Call 365’, an app that manages incoming calls to the landline number.
Here’s how it works. Adrian’s team first set up a landline number for small businesses to then connect with the app. So when a customer calls on the landline number, they will hear a customised pre-recorded message that will help solve the FAQs for the customers. The recording of the message, too, has been rendered cost-effective with the use of AI which effectively converts text into natural and professional voice.
Furthermore, if the automated message doesn’t solve the caller’s issue, the call can then be redirected to the business owner so that he or she can provide a more tailored answer to the query. To make the feature more small-business friendly, the team has ensured that the ultimate call can be managed over the data connection, so even if the phone is out of reception, the call can be managed over a Wi-Fi connection.
The idea of the app is indeed quite promising and therefore has attracted the attention of a large start-up incubator and venture capital organisation in Silicon Valley, Y Combinator. Now the organisation has Adrian enrolled for a 10-week course at Stanford University that will help him grow the business on scale.
Adrian has expressed his enthusiasm for this opportunity and said, “I’m really excited that they liked the idea and saw the potential.” On the product itself, he commented that “The kind of products using this kind of technology are very expensive and aimed at call centres. Nobody thought about it from a small business perspective, especially for 20-30 calls a day.” He added, “All the pieces were there but no one had put them together and seen how they could make the difference between a small business that’s struggling and a small business managing its growth.”
But thanks to Adrian’s initiative, small businesses have the option to improve their customer services without messing their schedule on site. There is an array of packages, starting from £7.95 a month for up to 350 minutes of calls, which businesses can buy depending on their specific requirements.
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