Have you heard about our webinar

sharepoint and synergy combined grahpicSynergy Announces… The Continuous Improvement Tool Webinar

Short of a magnet or the debate on mayonnaise and Miracle Whip, few things are as polarizing as Microsoft SharePoint. Developers say it’s too difficult to make it adaptable to end users. End users say it makes day-to- day tasks too difficult to make it a mainstay. Management often says it’s too time consuming to be valuable which then leads to low adaptation company wide.

With these short comings in mind, how then is it that Microsoft has sold over 120 million licenses for SharePoint? The reason that SharePoint is so often purchased is not just that it is included in the Microsoft 365 suite of products, but rather when used correctly, say, in a manufacturing setting, the program can drastically reduce labor hours and save companies hundreds of thousands of dollars. Yes, let me repeat that. When utilized properly in a quality control/ focused improvement manufacturing environment, Microsoft SharePoint could save a medium sized manufacturing business hundreds of thousands in labor hours alone.

So, this begs another question: how is it some can benefit so greatly from the program and others reap no reward greater than a massive headache? The answer is simple. It’s all about where your organization puts the investment. With this in mind, you should be checking out Synergy Computer Solutions. At Synergy, we know SharePoint, and we can back that statement up with our new Continuous Improvement Tool.

That’s right, Synergy is here and ready to help your company by showing how utilizing a SharePoint-based application can pay massive dividends by making data organization and report generation hassle free. We are so excited to show you just how simple generating useful analytics can be that we have organized an entirely free webinar. This webinar will demonstrate how a properly functioning SharePoint application can save you hassle, hours and money.  All this while it will be providing useful information to employees and executives alike.

Join us on Thursday, July 14th to learn more about Synergy, SharePoint, and our Continuous Improvement Tool. Register on our website at www.synergycom.com/webinar. Leading up to the event you will then receive a reminder and further instructions telling you how to log in on the day of the event. The webinar will begin at 12PM EST and run until 1PM EST. There will also be a section dedicated to questions and feedback.

Synergy looks forward to this participation in this event and is excited to show everyone the benefits of  a properly implemented SharePoint solution – specifically, the Synergy Continuous Improvement Tool.

Synergy Hits its Stride at MMPC

IMG_3092Each year during the first week in May we are reminded again why diversity is so important. No, I’m not referencing a national holiday or even a news story making headlines, but that does not diminish the importance of the events that take place. From May 4-7, the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council, (MMSDC), hosted an event that brought Minority Business Enterprises together and served as an intermediary to those companies seeking to allocate their minority spend. Together, minority suppliers and purchasers alike, participated in an amazing three days of celebrating diversity and promoting commerce amongst the business owners in Michigan.

As in previous years, Cobo Hall was bustling like the auto show was on a reunion tour – and at the center of it all was Synergy Computer Solutions. Synergy, as always, participated in the show’s many events and even sponsored a booth at the MMSDC Minority Procurement Conference’s Opportunity Fair. Everything appeared to be status quo, however, what did change was what Synergy has to offer. This year Synergy Computer Solutions debuted its Continuous Improvement application and it created some buzz!

Armed with a digital media display, Synergy’s Business Development Managers and Sales Reps were busy all day long showing off the new innovation to interested individuals from all walks of industry.  The booth was not the only place Synergy was drawing a crowd. While walking the floor with our new Microsoft Surface Pro, Synergy employees could hardly take a step without being approached to explain what the interesting application was that scrolled across our tablet screen. By day’s end and almost 20 requests for product demonstrations,  Synergy left the MMPC with validation that the application was a hit. From robotics to automobiles, warehouse management to coating applications, Synergy had successfully engaged several companies servicing multiple verticals.

All in all, the MMPC served as a reminder to Synergy, its staff, and its customers that we continue to be on the cusp of new and innovative solutions that help our clients “solve IT problems.” We are truly grateful for the opportunities the MMPC and the MMSDC have presented and we look forward to continuing to support MBEs and expanding diversity in the IT realm. Working to improve our clients’ workplace while promoting diversity? WE DO THAT!

Why is IT So Impersonal?

emaIL ARTICLE BANNERIt’s funny how things we once pegged for dead seem to find their way back into mainstream. Like a cat with nine lives, items from previous decades are rising from the ashes and making their way to the forefront of pop culture. Millennials are grooving to vinyl again, teenagers are walking around snapping Polaroids, and John Lennon’s sunglasses are the hottest thing in fashion. Everywhere you look there is a back to basics approach.  Does this only apply to pop culture? Or in this digital world can this apply to business?

I’m glad you asked, because that’s the reason I sit down in front of my computer to bring you some cold hard truth. Fact is, advertising is going back to basics. What does this mean? Are we going to see “Where’s the beef?” spots and 30-minute TV infomercials again? Does it mean your computer screen will be flooded with popups once more? No, both of these predictions miss the mark. In fact, to see what I am talking about, you will have to look up from your monitor, stand up, and head out the door. That’s right! I am talking about regular, direct mail.

Direct mail is back. That stuff that gets delivered six days a week, the same form of advertising that used to make your heart jump for joy in your youth is making a comeback in the B2B sales realm. Your tech guys might ask, “We have email and it works all right so why do we need direct mail?” Well Mr. IT Guru, your company likely does have email. I’ll even make the prediction some employees have more than one email address. However, if you are like 99% percent of Americans you will agree that email, and furthermore digital communication in general, has become tired. I personally can attest that if I don’t recognize the sender, or your subject line reads, “Dear Sir or Madam,” you are getting
thrown in the trash quicker than an “Office Space” TPS report, (as I said we are bringing things back). In fact, with a house list, e-mails only generate a .01% response rate as compared to direct mail’s 3.7%, (according to a direct marketing association survey). With more companies having in-house tech support devoted to reducing spam, increasing firewall security, and limiting means of digital contact, electronic communication is not only becoming blasé , but it’s also becoming a royal pain in the uh …neck.tps-reports-coversheets-800x450

What is the driving force behind direct mail dusting off the cobwebs and getting back into circulation? Many in the sales realm attribute it to building meaningful relationships again. When asked why he supports direct mail, Scott Langohr, Business Development Manager at Synergy Computer Solutions, stated, “I get hundreds of emails from prospects and companies every week. After a while it all becomes white noise.” Scott continues, “When someone takes the time to type something out and send me a hard copy, it’s attention getting, much harder to look past, and it’s a nice personal touch.”  Recent survey results seem to speak to Scott’s point. That same DMA survey showed direct mail to be up to 30 times more effective than email marketing with over 50% of respondents saying they prefer direct mail to email.

So what’s the overall message here? I think it’s clear that some if not all IT companies have lost that personal touch. Yes, we are all involved in the same space. We often work within or sell similar services built on even more similar platforms but we no longer communicate like we used to. Too often we utilize what we create in our day-to-day jobs to communicate, sell, advertise and broker deals. The driving force behind business is personal communication no matter what line of work you are in. Direct mail allows us to step out from behind the computer screen, to reach out with a more personal touch, and show that the person or entity on the receiving end is worth more to us than a few swift keystrokes.

Synergy is committed to restoring the personal touch into IT business.  That is why we will be reaching out with our new direct mail campaign. We understand that your business and IT resources are important to you and that makes them important to us.  We will be sending personalized letters to our prospective clients with the goal of arranging face-to-face meetings and doing our part to show we value you as a customer, and that you mean more to us than an email. Putting the personal touch back in IT? WE DO THAT.

CaptureIn this brief article Erika Flora discusses what traits a successful project managers should have. Synergy Computer Solutions has time and time again displayed an ability to find PM’s with all of these qualities, who can deliver projects on time and on budget. Our PM resources are some of the best in the industry and if you’re in the market for a project manager look no further than Synergy


Laziness : Email Marketing’s Kryptonite

emailHave you met your great uncle from South Africa? You know the one I’m talking about. He is a millionaire and needs your bank account number because he wants to transfer you part of his fortune. How does he get ahold of you? Email. How about that trusty old free iPad offer? You know the one where all you have to do is sign up for some other service and then agree to subscribe to a magazine and only then do you get a free iPad? How did this golden ticket of an offer end up in your hands? Email. Finally my personal favorite, the “Dear CEO” messages sent to every associate…. the one where no matter how special and important it made me feel, (until I realized my name is not on the door, but only on the stapler), I came to realize how irrelevant it was. How did this amazing bit of literature get to us? EMAIL!!!

What am I getting at? This rant has purpose and it’s to show just how far a well-executed email campaign can set you apart, and how far a poor email blast can set you back. Let me take you on a little vision quest here. You just got into work, traffic on the 405 was terrible due to someone not turning off their blinker for seven miles and hitting the car in front of them. Your coffee is too hot to touch meaning your tongue has been reduced to rubber. You reluctantly open your email box. What then do you see? Nothing but failed marketing attempts left and right. Emails with more action verbs in their subject lines than Taken 3 (you would think that family would stop leaving the house). Why is it these companies failed? Bad copywriting? Didn’t spend enough on the email leads list? Or could it be that I can’t read the Chinese font they selected? No, it’s because the majority of email campaigns suffer from LAZINESS.

Good email marketing comes down to one thing that encompasses many other things, but for the sake of simplicity one (largely blanketed) thing. It is research.

Doing your due diligence is what can make or break a campaign. Too many times we see a company spend the aforementioned fortune my South African uncle offered me on a lead list and sends out a heaping pile of garbage to prospects not in the market for their product with a message that is ultimately unclear.

An email marketing campaign should have these three characteristics:

  1. Segmented: Anyone can go out and buy a leads list, but the odds are that your entire product line or newest innovation is not going to appeal to everyone on that 700 person recipient list. Figure out what products or services appeal to what customers and target that segment of the market with an appropriate message
  2. Calculated: An email marketing campaign is not just a blind date. It must be a cool, patient, well calculated courting process. There needs to be an appropriately-timed attempt at initial contact, a strategic follow-up message, and finally a message to close the sale or secure a meeting. The biggest mistake is that companies try to draft these on the fly. This all should be done before the initial message is sent out. That way the message will be consistent and feel much more personal.
  3. Relevant: This is the last and final place you need to hit a home run. Would you send a vegetarian ad to a community that thrives on meat processing? NO! It’s like attempting to drown your goldfish in a bathtub. It’s pointless. Make sure you customize or curtail your message based on the segment you’re sending it too. Higher income demographic? Highlight high end products. If you know this group of customers is interested in a specific thing, make your message more niche based. By making your message more relevant, you can ensure your responses will be too.

You must know by now that you can’t venture into battle without a plan. Email marketing is no different. You have to know who you’re sending your material to, and what you are attempting to accomplish and what purpose does that goal serve. Then, when your marketing plan is successful and generates the leads desired you must be ready and prepared to execute. Your landing pages must be in order, you must have time open to take the meetings, and you better be sure you have the capacity to fulfill the influx of orders. It’s no secret – with all the obstacles, it takes a super strategy and super execution to make waves in this space. If you do everything right, you will have power over a wide client base. But, as all super marketers know: “With great power comes great responsibility” and your responsibility here is to fight laziness, AT ALL COSTS!