Ooma Moves Beyond the Office Walls

Ooma Office Mobile App

We know that small businesses have to be flexible to thrive – and that more and more of your business is happening outside its physical walls. That’s why we’re excited to have released our mobile app for Ooma Office. We took all of your most-used Ooma Office features and built them into iOS and Android apps that let you tap into the full power of Ooma Office from anywhere. You and your employees can use at the office over Wi-Fi, or on the go using your cellular data plan.

What else can you do in our new app?

  • Make calls using your business phone number, so your mobile number can stay personal
  • Receive calls by setting the app to ring when a call comes in to your Ooma Office number or extension
  • Easily transfer calls to another extension or voicemail box
  • Check your voicemail and call logs
  • Access and adjust account settings

Best of all, the Ooma Office mobile app is a free add-on that any user on your system can use at no additional charge.

No longer “tied down by landlines,” longstanding customer Sheree of Sheree Earle, LCSW shared that “it fits right into my on-the-go lifestyle – it’s like having an office wherever I go.” Another Ooma user, Juan S. of Pasan Services, summed up his experience, saying that the Ooma Office mobile app “presents one of the best office mobile solutions I have seen.” The flexibility it provides to small business owners have Juan recommending the service to friends looking for a versatile business solution.

Try Ooma Mobile Office for yourself and let us know what you think. The iOS and Android apps are available for free download in their respective app stores. Which new mobile feature are you most excited to try out?

 

Here’s Why You’re Still Getting Robocalls and What You Can Do About It

UntitledElection season is upon us – polling numbers and sound bite analysis fill the airwaves. There’s another sound that becomes all too familiar during election season – the sound of the incessant ringing of phones due to unwanted robocalls across the homes of millions of Americans.

In May, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said in a blog post “Last year alone, we received more than 215,000 complaints related to unwanted and intrusive calls and texts.” Certainly thousands more went without a complaint. In the same blog post Wheeler went on to say “…telephone companies can – and in fact should – offer consumers robocall-blocking tools.”

So, why are unwanted robocalls still such a major issue? Let’s have a look at few telemarketing and robocall myths.

Myth: Listing a phone number with the Do-Not-Call Registry will eliminate all robocalls.

In fact, the Do-Not-Call Registry doesn’t protect consumers from calls made by non-profits and political pollsters.

Myth: The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) protects consumers from all unwanted telemarketing calls.

The latest order of the TCPA provides an exception that allows banks, pharmaceutical companies and health care providers to send a limited number of communications containing vital financial or medical information to consumers–without their consent.

At Ooma, we help our customers take control over their phone systems by providing technology specifically designed to combat telemarketers and robocallers. We offer three distinct types of blacklists, which are lists of phone numbers that customers would prefer did not reach them.

On average, we block 26 calls per month for each blacklist subscriber and the system gets better over time as new feedback from the community rolls in. Here are a few details on our blacklist features:

  • Personal blacklist: The Personal blacklist is your list of phone numbers that you don’t want to hear from. Customers can add and remove numbers from the Personal blacklist whenever they’d like.
  • Expanded blacklist: The Expanded blacklist taps into a third-party database of confirmed telemarketers, robocallers, and phone spammers. When an Ooma customer enables the expanded blacklist on their account, they will be protected from unwanted and unsolicited calls from nearly 900,000 known sources of phone spam.
  • Community Blacklist: The Community blacklist contains thousands of phone numbers that are known sources of spam and telemarketing calls. When an Ooma customer enables the community blacklist on their account, they’ve instantly blocked phone numbers that the Ooma community has collectively found to be invasive or annoying.

So, before you get another annoying unwanted call, see how our robust blacklisting features can bring you some peace and quiet this election season and beyond.

 

Thank You for Supporting Ooma!

Ooma Thanks You!

You heard right – Wall Street’s phones are ringing with crystal clear quality. Ooma is now officially listed on the New York Stock Exchange as OOMA!

This is a landmark occasion for us and we wanted to say a big heartfelt thank you to each and every one of our customers. We wouldn’t be here today without your support and enthusiasm for Ooma.

We started this company more than ten years ago with the idea to transform the landscape of home phone service. Then we reinvented phone service for small businesses with Ooma Office. And as we move into a new era of connected homes and businesses we plan to continue to deliver innovations and partnerships that reshape the future of smart communications.

Whether you’re calling a loved one across the country or calling a customer down the road, Ooma is humbled that you chose us to be the one connecting you to the important people in your life. Every time you’ve picked up your phone you’ve brought us one step closer to where we are today. Thank you again for your support and being a part of our journey.

This is the beginning of an exciting new chapter – and we are committed to continuing to create innovative new products and services that make your life better.

– Eric Stang, President and Chief Executive Officer, Ooma

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*This blog post shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction.*

Calling on Small Business: Diana Brobmann of GiGGo Toys

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.59.39 AMRecently we sat down with the talented Diana Brobmann, owner, CEO and creative director of startup toy company GiGGo Toys. Diana is a brand-building and licensing expert, and uses her experience to bring the GiGGo Toys’ vision to life, which is to “bring fun to kids everywhere.” We asked Diana about her role as CEO and her advice for budding and current small business owners.

Q: What are some of the educational and career steps you took in order to become a small business owner?

DB: Putting myself through college at night while working during the day instilled a strong work ethic and made me value the importance of time management. Now, I encourage my team to take webinars and attend classes to continue learning. I always say that we are a “teaching hospital,” meaning we want our employees to learn on the job.

Q: What is one of the biggest challenges you’ve faced since starting GiGGo and how did you overcome it?

DB: We’re a small company, so we don’t have specialists in every area. Because of that, we struck up a partnership with our local university and brought on interns. We’ve had some great talent come through these doors over the last two semesters. We hired an excellent marketing intern who developed our social networking capabilities and another one who was finishing his master’s degree in IT and helped us with our e-commerce site. We could not afford to pay the interns so we made sure they got college credit for their time. They told me that they feel like they are part of the beginning of something big – and what they learned from us was more than they could learn in one semester at school. It’s been a win-win for all of us.

Q: If you had to offer small business owners one piece of advice, what would it be?

DB: Do a business plan first. It is so critical to understand the environment in which you want to open your business. Who is your competition, what are your opportunities, what are your five year sales and P&L forecasts?

Q: If you could go back and do something differently, what would it be?

DB: I would have saved additional money before starting the business. Getting financing from a bank is next to impossible for a startup company so you end up using a lot of your own personal funds. Make sure you have enough saved in case your ramp up time exceeds your plan.

Q. Do you have business motto or inspiration quote you try stick to?

DB: Since we are a woman-owned company, the motto that I say (almost daily) is “A girl don’t get what a girl don’t ask for…”

Q. Is there a book or business manifesto you would recommend small business owners read?

DB: I took an entrepreneur class at Hofstra University. It was here that I learned to write a business plan, and the ins and outs of basic accounting, the legal requirements for starting a business, as well as the insurance basics. I truly believe that if more people take classes like this one, there will be less failed businesses in this country.

Q: We can’t help but ask – which Ooma Office feature has saved your (SMB) life?

DB: I would say it is a tie between the virtual receptionist and the multiple extensions.

 

 

Your Business + The Cloud = More Productivity

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.32.02 AMTime is money – especially when you’re running a small business. With so much on your plate it’s important that you spend every minute wisely and streamline wherever you can – and the cloud can help you do just that.

The Cloud” may sound like a big mystery, but you’re probably already using the cloud without realizing it. If you’ve ever uploaded a photo to Facebook, posted a video on YouTube, or archived an email in Google, you’ve used the cloud.

The cloud allows small businesses like yours to get access to the technology that helps you do the heavy lifting of business management. You don’t have to host these tools on your own servers – you can access them through the Internet and use them anywhere. This allows you to use the tools you need, when you need them. There’s no need to hire an IT specialist to install, manage or uninstall business software. You can scale up or down in your usage as you need it – helping you stay flexible, efficient and more productive.

While you’re probably already using the cloud for email, there’s a lot more that you can do. Here are three ways you can use the cloud to boost your productivity.

Use your cloud accounting software to send and review invoices (and more!)
Want to get paid on time? You need to make creating, sending and following up on invoices as simple as possible. If you’re still sending PDFs via email, it’s time to move your invoicing to the cloud. With you can send invoices from anywhere, review who owes you at a glance and follow up automatically. You can also keep your accounts balanced and get an overview of financial health of your business. It’s the best way to stay on top of your cash flow while you’re on the go.

Rely on the cloud for better phone service.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re doing business from a 1500 square foot warehouse or your kitchen counter – you need a reliable, full featured phone service. Fortunately, the cloud can help you make and receive calls with extras that make your business more productive while reducing your phone bills. Features like a virtual receptionist that quickly directs callers to the right extension, getting your voicemail sent to your email as an audio file, or using a mobile app to make and receive calls as if you are in the office are all capabilities of a cloud based phone system that make your business run more efficiently.

Easily collaborate with team members through the cloud.

You may be in business for yourself, but you’re not working alone. By using the cloud, you can make collaboration a breeze. You and your team members can access cloud-based collaboration tools from anywhere using computers, tablets and even smart phones. You can track project deadlines, communicate about customer issues and brainstorm new ideas to keep your business running productively.

The cloud helps your small business act bigger, without a big budget. You can increase productivity and professionalism all while keeping your costs low. If you’re ready to help your small business make a big impact, for more tips and tools that will make you more productive and profitable.

About the author:

Mike Savory – Customer advocate and automation engineer
I operate at the intersection between technology and ease of use. I strive to make our customers’ lives easier through elegantly automating manual processes. Much of my time is spent listening to small business owners, making sure to bring their voice to the table in everything I do. My free time is spent with my kids, which includes being a Cub Scout leader for an energetic group of 10-year-olds where I’m lobbying for a Software Product Management badge.

Drop me a line at michael.savory@sage.com

 

 

 

Ooma Office Business Promoter Brings You the Leads Your Business Needs

ooma-more-leads-193x183Quick – what’s one thing your business could always use more of? If you said “customers” then we have some big news for you! You already know that Ooma Office can give you a full-featured business phone service at an affordable price. Now, we’ve expanded Ooma Office beyond telephony with the introduction of Business Promoter, a powerful lead generation tool designed to help you drive customer acquisitions via qualified inbound customer phone calls. Business Promoter helps small businesses get the most from their marketing by building and optimizing their online presence and providing targeted advertising support – this helps your business get found by potential customers and drives qualified inbound phone calls to connect your business with sales and service opportunities.

Qualified leads are a goldmine for small businesses. By incorporating lead generation into Ooma Office our customers never have to leave inbound leads up to guesswork and chance. Your business will operate more efficiently, and you will gain new insights into the effectiveness of your marketing efforts – all through the smartest VoIP phone service that’s already saving you a ton of cash.

Ooma Office small business phone service starts at $19.98 per month, and our customers using Business Promoter will only pay for high-quality, qualified leads to your business. We also provide a weekly breakdown of activity and performance so you can track the performance of your marketing over time. We’re excited for you to try out this new service and watch your business grow.

 

Make Unlimited Free Mobile Calls

Gearing up to hit the road this summer? We want to make it even easier—and more affordable—to stay connected no matter where your travels take you. The Ooma Mobile HD app now offers free nationwide outbound calling for all Ooma customers. Just download the latest version. And, if you’re traveling overseas, you can avoid paying those expensive roaming charges by using Ooma prepaid international minutes or the unlimited Ooma World plan.

Mobile

Want to stay connected to home when you’re away? Upgrade to our Premier service for only $9.99 per month to add a host of features including unlimited outbound and inbound mobile calling. You’ll also be able to call cross-border (US to Canada, or Canada to US) for free. And, calls to your home phone can be sent to your mobile app – whether you’re out running errands or off on an epic road trip.

Check out the Ooma Mobile HD app today. It’s available for free download in the iTunes App Store and Google Play store. Since the app works over Wi-Fi or data networks, you can even use it to turn your tablets and other mobile devices into free phones. Happy calling!

20 is About to be Your New Favorite Number

Hate beicon-20-users-193pxing tied to your desk but fear stepping away and missing that important call you’ve been waiting for? We’ve been there, done that too – that’s why we’re making it possible for each Ooma Office user to answer calls coming in to your Ooma Office phone number not just on your desk phone, but on a remote phone number and a mobile phone too. Previously, setting yourself up on multiple devices meant you were taking up additional user spots (and we know those are precious!), so we’re making it possible to set each individual user up on multiple devices for the low price of only $9.99 a month, while also expanding each Office account to support up to 20 users.

While big businesses may be able to afford constant investments in new technology, that’s rarely the reality for small businesses. We’ve always believed costly upgrades shouldn’t be necessary to have a great experience. That’s why Ooma Office can now call you on any phone you already have. It’s also why we’re making expanding your system to support 20 users really easy. Each Base Station can support up to five users and you can link multiple Base Stations to one Office account. Already have a couple but want to add more? Our new Base Stations link up just fine with the ones you already have – no need to waste money buying replacements for equipment that’s in good shape.

We hope this makes it easier for you to stay connected both inside and outside of the office on the devices you already have, while growing with you as your business grows.

 

Ooma Voted No. 1, Again!

Allow us to humble-brag for a moment. We’re proud to share that Ooma has been voted PCMag’s 2015 VoIP Business Choice winner for the second year in a row! Ooma beat the competition receiving No. 1 scores for overall satisfaction, reliability, and likelihood to recommend. So if you’re considering upgrading your phone system, check out why Ooma is the most recommended and liked of all business VoIP systems.

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Why is VoIP Becoming More Popular to Small Businesses?

Small Businesses strive to present a polished appearance to attract and maintain customers. One way to build a professional image is by implementing a sophisticated business telephone system. Often challenged by limited budgets, such a system has traditionally been beyond the reach of small businesses. Fortunately, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology has enabled new business phone services such as Ooma Office to emerge and provide a full-featured small business phone service at an affordable price.

Below, you’ll find a summary of the features offered by Ooma Office compared to the nation’s biggest landline providers:
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Ooma Office offers more features and a savings of 59% or more over its landline competitors!

A typical small office might have one telephone number and three extensions, a dedicated fax line or credit card processing line, and a conference bridge. Once you factor in the cost of expensive IP phones along with installation and potential activation fees, getting started can come at a big cost.

You can see the average cost of getting started outlined in the chart below. Using the small office use case, you can see the total cost of what you can expect to pay over two years for each of your options.
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Taking advantage of the unmatched features with Ooma Office will save your small business money while letting you present a polished appearance to attract and maintain customers.

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Or call 866-412-2777

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