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TECHNOLOGY TODAY


Gain a competitive advantage through cloud computing concept


“All I want in life is an unfair


advantage” — Michael Aun, CSP, CPAE


D


oing business is tough today. Hey, it has been tough since the first bargain shoppers


tried to get the best price at the local bazaar from the traveling trader back at the dawn of business history. Get- ting an advantage is something we all try to do so that we can ultimately serve more customers and help them more. Interesting how serving more customers is always the way to gen- erate more funds for you — but that is another article. As I type this, I’m visiting


Panama, my beloved adopted coun- try here in Central America. The business climate is good and grow- ing. The atmosphere is teeming with potential, and I love being part of this. One of the ways you can get an advantage here — as well as else- where — is to embrace the concept of cloud computing. I’ve talked about cloud computing


in these columns before. Now I’m using it to get more done, be more productive and serve more cus- tomers. In brief, the concept of cloud com-


puting is that you have the data and the tools you need based on a server or another computer which you ac-


cess remotely. The Internet has pro- vided a platform through which you can do this now as never before. I’m using an online service to keep


all my contacts and to manage e-mail with those contacts. I get the benefit of having all my important contact in- formation backed up 24/7/365. If my computer or iPad were lost or stolen, that would be bad, but at least I would still have access to my all-im- portant contacts. I’m also using Google Docs for


word processing, calendar, translating (important in international work) and a lot more. This lets me keep impor-


is nice to know that I can use whichever tool is more convenient at the time. And yes, in a worst-case scenario, I can access what I need through a local Internet café or a friend’s computer. This is the way you can gain a


strong competitive advantage. You will have notes on that important con- versation you had with that important prospect. You can reference it through the cloud and immediately know the history of dealing with that prospect. You can also give access to this data to others on your team via a password and then come up to speed


As I type this, I’m visiting Panama, my beloved adopted country here in Central America. The


business climate is good and growing. The atmosphere is teeming with potential, and I love being part of this.


tant documents (doc, pdf, jpg and more) online. When I need that im- portant reference or client letter, I can easily access it via Google Docs and have what I need when I need it. Another really nice benefit of using


cloud computing is that I can access my data from my main MacBook Pro, my Windows computers (I have four of these), my iPad or my iPhone. I don’t need to use all of them, but it


quickly on the communication they have had with that contact. Another advantage is that you can


save money on the hardware and software you purchase. You need a Net-accessible device to use cloud computing effectively. Instead of pur- chasing a large, expensive computer, you can get something much cheaper like a Netbook computer. You can use your Net-accessible smart phone. I


BY TERRY L. BROCK Technology/marketing specialist


find I’m using my iPad more and more.


Cloud computing — coupled with


some strong, versatile Net-accessible devices — translates to a decisive competitive advantage for you. Some of the benefits you might realize in- clude the following: • You can get what you need when


you need it online. You can have the references you need about previous contacts with prospects and clients. • You can use a variety of hardware


and are not subject to total shutdown if your computer is unavailable. • You save money. (Always a good


thing!) • You don’t have to worry about


viruses and other nastiness hitting your computer as your data is in the clouds and protected by the server. • You get to focus more on people.


You can focus on establishing, build- ing and maintaining quality, prof- itable business relationships by using the cloud. Here in Panama I have access to all


the vital documents I need. I have the vital tools I need to do business here or anywhere. That gives me the ad- vantage of being “on the ground,” seeing new business opportunities. If you’re not doing business this


way yet, I encourage you to find out about it. If you are using it, find ways to expand what you’re doing. Armed with a device like the iPad or a Net- book computer and some key cloud computing services, you will have a strong competitive advantage. That will help you build more in your re- lationship marketing. And ultimately, that all flows through to your bottom line. You’re welcome!


n Terry Brock is an international


marketing coach and professional speaker who helps businesses gener- ate profitable results. He can be reached by e-mail at terry@terry- brock.com or through his website at www.terrybrock.com. Join the Twitter adventure with Terry through his Twitter address: TerryBrock. Join Terry’s Facebook Fan Page at www.facebook.com/SpeakerTerry- Brock.


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•THE WHOLESALER® — MARCH 2011


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