How Brands Are Using Drones To Enhance Their Business

The mainstream public didn’t consider drones to be much more than a toy as the Parrot AR Drone was unveiled as the first commercially available model, an iOS smartphone-controlled quadcopter, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in 2010. However, it hasn’t taken long for them to be used in a variety of incredible and often unbelievable ways utilising this growing technology.

Here are a few examples of how drones such as the xk detect x380 drone are becoming a standard tool in so many industries, the problems they’re built to solve, and the range of major brands utilising them to aid their needs.

Entertainment

From big budget to independent filmmakers, the use of drones in entertainment has added an affordable option to give greater depth into both education and storytelling. A sweeping view of a snow capped mountain range, floating like a bird above the coastline, a skyscraper view of a car chase or a superhero battle, the pursuit of a mountain biker down a hillside, or even drones filming drone racing! From live music, cultural and news events to wildlife programmes where safety is an obvious concern, these free flying camera systems are now indispensible to the industry.

The BBC have utilised drones throughout their programming. They have their own in-house team of ‘drone-journalists’. Red Bull have not only set up their own drone racing event but they are renowned for using the technology to film a whole host of extreme sports, utilising the system for unrivalled views and angles to give an extra dimension to the action.

Delivery Services

There are too many companies to list who are using drones to make deliveries or are testing to include them as part of their service.

UPS have introduced a residential delivery drone that makes its deliveries from an electric powered van. The van also acts as a charging station to enhance the lifespan of the drone and in turn its efficiency. They are commercially operated to deliver to remote areas but in testing they were utilised to make medical deliveries to out of reach locations.

The Royal Mail, Amazon, Flytrex and DHL have all entered the market with their own testing and introduction of this technology. Even JustEat have been testing drones to make food deliveries in some of the bigger towns and cities in the US and Europe. Now that’s what I call ‘fast food’!

Construction & Architecture

In May 2017 Balfour Beatty acted on their word to investigate the use of drones by trialling them to survey two bridges in West Sussex. Not only did it greatly increase staff safety but it also made a saving of over £8,000 compared to more traditional methods.

CIO Fernando Villa who is overseeing a team of sixteen senior architects has also stated that the use of drones in filming the facility will be used for augmented and virtual reality technologies in order to process the maintenance of the 133-year-old Sagrai Famila church finally completed, although it isn’t due to be until 2026.

Telephone & Internet Technology

BT have been investigating using drone technology to provide temporary internet access in remote areas or in emergency situations. They have been researching ways to bring coverage to disaster zones, battlefields and limited access areas by introducing them to assess the situation and then creating a network through tethered drones and balloons.

Also working in the same technology are US communications brand AT&T when they recently provided a temporary internet connection to an area of forty square miles over Puerto Rico via their drone, the Flying Cow (which stands for ‘Cell on Wings’) after the hurricane Maria shut down all telecoms on the island. They also announced that they are now using drones to inspect their cell towers too.

Transport

Last September in conjunction with the German company Volocopter the Dubai Roads & Transport Agency tested their first taxi drone service with a view to launching it commercially within the next five years. The driverless drone flies two hundred meters above ground and will be able to tackle thirty-minute flights controlled by an app and GPS co-ordinates with speeds of up to 100mph.

Warfare

Technology innovators Animal Dynamics have created military drones inspired by dragonflies that use a flapping wing propulsion system as opposed to the conventional rotor blades due to their quiet performance and ability to glide, saving on fuel and becoming highly efficient. Ideally suited for short-range surveillance it can operate in high winds and adverse weather conditions.

The US Military have been using drones for armed attacks since 2001 and have been featured in the media more recently with their Predator AUV (unmanned air vehicles) attacks on the Taliban and al-Qaeda militants in Afghanistan. These drones are designed to carry out attacks on ground targets ranging from military bases, vehicles and high-profile individuals.

Law Enforcement

We’ve all watched the helicopter coverage on Police, Camera, Action but in 2015 Devon and Cornwall police undertook a trial using drones to help carry out some of the tasks more efficiently that your typical beat bobby would normally undertake. Searching for missing people and monitoring traffic accidents was shown to be a much more economical alternative to sending out the police helicopter service. In 2016 they created a special unit dedicated to drone use throughout the country.

Remote Repairs In Industry

Oil giants Shell has been using drone technology throughout their plants in Europe to carry out safety checks that were once hazardous and time consuming. Previously the checks were undertaken by teams of engineers having to abseil into hard to reach places to monitor for gas leaks and other faults. The use of drones now means the inspections are fast and easy and where plants were often closed for one of two days they can now remain open and functional as the checks take only a matter of hours. Fitted with standard or infrared heat cameras and various sensors a range of information can be gathered and processed from often inaccessible places such as heat towers or the underside of an oilrig platform in a fraction of the time.

Easyjet have also announced that they too have trialled safety inspections using drones and will be introducing them to UK airports in 2018. They have stated that the drones are more efficient with these checks than the human eye and want to roll them out worldwide – not only that but they also want to use drones to make runway checks in the first six months of 2018 too.

Environmental Solutions

A drone has been designed to catch rhino poachers through the national parks in Africa by Spanish engineers developing the technology at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia in Barcelona. Its key development is in the use of thermal vision technology in its camera.

And in 2014 Coca-Cola delivered messages of thanks tied to cans of Coke to the 2,500 migrant workers building high-rise buildings in Singapore. The message was to link Singaporean nationals and the migrant workers who travel far from their countries to build the city-state’s hi-rise buildings to provide good feeling and community in places where it isn’t always natural. The campaign was called “Happiness from the Skies” and it hit the media with a message that they wanted to use a method that is often associated with death and evil, due to the drones more frequently portrayed military uses, and turn it into something peaceful and good.

…all that and more

Drones are getting smaller, bigger, faster, stronger, lighter, more reliable, and infinitely smarter with the advances in technology. This progress is giving them an almost never ending list of uses to help achieve our daily tasks and many more we haven’t thought of yet.

Where will it end? Only the future will show us that but while we’re along for the ride, we may as well do it with a selection of rotors above our heads…

What Makes Employees Happy? Our Top Tips

If you want your employees to work hard, you need to keep them happy.  After all, the well-known and true saying is that a happy workforce, is a productive and industrious workforce.  It is generally felt that the people who have greater job satisfaction are usually the most productive and engaged. 

If you are looking for ways to keep your employees happy to garner the best efforts and results from them, you have come to the right place.  In the following post you will find our top tips for ensuring that your staff are happy, valued, motivated and capable of helping your company be as successful as it can be.

Offer Bonuses And Incentives

Our first tip is really a no-brainer and something that all employers, regardless of industry, should implement in their company in some way or another.  Bonuses, incentives and other rewards give your employees something to aspire to, beyond just meeting the sales targets or company goals.  By establishing an bonus and incentive scheme, you are showing them that you are willing to put the money where your mouth is, if they achieve something great on your behalf.  It will also give them a confidence and motivate them to take greater pride in their work. 

Recognise, Commend And Reward When Employees Are Progressing Well

While many employers tend to congratulate, commend and reward in a big way, the members of staff who are always doing very well at their job and achieving the biggest and best targets and results.  Although this is a really good thing, it is often done at the expense of the people who are reliable, stable and consistent with what they achieve for the company, even if they are not the ‘high earners’. 

By taking the time to appreciate these kinds of employees impact on your company, you are raising morale and people will enjoy working for you because of it.  Paying close attention to the achievements of those who have had to overcome obstacles to improve the standard of the work, is also crucial.  You don’t even have to do much more than a sincere thank you, for your staff to feel that their efforts are worth something.

Establish a Fun and Friendly Workplace And Avoid Being Too Strict

Work should never be seen as a playground by your employees, and it is imperative that they know they are there to work as hard as they can for you and achieve specific goals and targets.  That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t enjoy working for you though.  If your company hires office staff, encourage conversation between your workforce.  Not only are great ideas shared through back and forth communication, you are also establishing a work culture where colleagues can become friends and who will share the responsibility of progressing your company in the direction you want it to go.

Provide Comfortable, Clean And Hygienic Working Conditions For Employees

It is crucial that if you want to keep your employees happy, that you create a comfortable, clean and hygienic environment for them.  This includes aspects of the workplace such as sufficient ventilation and lighting, break areas that allow your staff to relax a little without feeling crammed into a tight little kitchen or lounge area, comfortable seating at all desks and work stations, and a regularly scheduled cleaning and maintenance. 

Equipment cleaning is essential, because if your staff are using equipment that is clean and in good working order, they are less likely to become frustrated and unhappy.

Arrange For Team Building Activities Such As Social Gatherings and Day/Weekend Trips

One of the easiest ways to keep your employees happy, is probably the most obvious.  Reward them for their hard work by taking them out of the confines of their office, work station or desk and into the outside world.  Whether it is organising a work sports event, a trip to the local bowling alley or for a 3 course slap up meal at a nice restaurant; as long as it is something they will enjoy and allows them to let their hair down, it is bound to make them feel happy and enjoy working for your company.  It doesn’t even have to involve a lot of money, as it is more the thought behind it and the chance to unwind away from the office that will keep them happy.

By enjoying a break from work, they will be even more motivated and diligent when they return to the office and have those goals and targets to meet.

Make Open Communication A Key Policy For Your Company

You’d be amazed at the number of amazing ideas that there could be right under your nose.  By making open communication a key policy and encouraging your staff to share any ideas they have; or to at least make it clear that you will always listen and take under consideration anything they suggest, you will make them feel valued and in turn happier.  On the other hand, if you are known as an arrogant boss who doesn’t listen to staff’s suggestions, feedback or comments; your staff will likely be very happy and in turn, lack motivation.

As you can see from our top tips, creating a positive working environment that keeps your workforce happy and therefore motivated, does not require a lot of money or effort.  A lot of great planning and forethought and common sense.

Put yourself in their shoes or remember back when you used to work for someone else.  What would you like if you were in their position and how would you like to be treated?  By looking at your staff this way and considering their thoughts and feelings, you will be able to establish a work environment that encourages people to be happy, that makes workers feel special and not as if they are just another faceless drone.

The advantage is that if your employees are happy they will be less likely to look elsewhere for a better offer. 

The Impact Of Tech On Your Business

Technology has far become the way of the world we live in now. You can barely walk down a high street without someone with their face glued to their phone. It is ever changing. And it is important to keep your small business up to date with these changes. I get it. Having a small business, you are going to be run off your feet. However, investing some of your crucial time into what technology has to offer can go a long way. Even if you are not technologically savvy, small changes can pay off in the long run, and do your business wonders.

Whatever the question, technology will most likely be your answer. Believe it or not, some small businesses out there still do not have websites. Perhaps they are stuck in their ways, but almost half of small businesses say they don’t need a website.

But now is the time to change that. We live in a completely different world, and it’s time for small businesses to adapt. Think about it, around 7 billion people in the world, at least 6 billion of them probably have at least one mobile device, by moving online, even if you reach just a small percentage of that, your business will benefit.

The evolution of eCommerce

Start off with an E-commerce site. This is pretty much essential if you want your business to succeed. No matter the size of your company, you could be a small local business selling online, or someone like Reid Brothers UK where they sell worldwide . If you don’t, your potential customers will go elsewhere, end of story. Having an online store can help your business grow. People now prefer buying online to save them leaving the house. Why go walk down a cold, wet high street, when you can order something from the comfort of your own home. Ecommerce sales are expected to double by 2020, so if you have not already, now is the time. If you are a unique business, take advantage of it, especially if you cannot get your product on the high street.

The Mobile Revolution

Making your website mobile friendly is just as important as having one. Whatever your business does or sells, having a responsive website is essential. This allows your usual desktop page to adapt to mobile, tablet or desktop, meaning it can adjust to a screen of any size and without losing any effect.

Not having this could lose you major points. Again, like before it could lead potential customers elsewhere. Simple as that. All is fair and well if you are at your desktop, but if your potential clients are on the go, you need to adapt to support this. Another positive is by having a responsive site you are more likely to rank higher on some search engines.

The Rise Of Social Media For Business

Social media is pretty much a given in this day and age, but it is how you use it to your advantage which matters most. Whether it be Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube or Instagram, it is a great way to promote your business and what you have to offer. As much as it helps inform the latest news in your business, you can also use it to sell.

More than 2 million people in the world have at least one social media account, and you can reach a number of them in various ways. You can use the paid advertising services, to optimise adverts to reach a desired audience, or Facebook and Instagram have specific features which let you purchase products without having to leave the app. Facebook’s shop now button allows you to offer your products on your page, making an easy to buy functionality for customers to buy straight away.

The Power Of Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is also an option. Social media has skyrocketed for businesses over the last few years. Influencers such as bloggers, YouTubers, or celebrities that appear on reality TV shows cash in by advertising products to their large followings on their channels. Sometimes they team up with a brand or company to help sell products online. As they have a larger following, they are guaranteed to reach more people, getting into areas you didn’t think was possible for your business.

The Growth Of Marketing Tools

Customers react with companies in different ways. But it is how you connect with the vast age groups. Marketing and communication will help meet the demands of your customers. Start a blog. Blogs create original content and provide value to your customers. Perhaps if you are a load securing company, a how to apply stainless steel banding blog would benefit, or if you are in retail, an insight into what the newest trends for A/W would help. Tip: writing a blog also boosts your SEO. Video marketing. Or even better, live video marketing. Whether it be an edit from a YouTube tutorial or broadcasting live from a company event, it puts your customers right there in the middle of the action, while also encouraging reaction.

Does Email Marketing Still Have a Place?

Email marketing is another option. Collecting email addresses of your current customers can fuel an audience for an email marketing campaign. Believe it or not, email marketing is one of the best ways to gain return on investment for your business. Relating to the point from above, email campaigns must be accessible from mobile as well as desktop. Most people access their emails from their phone, so it is important that they get the full effect. A benefit, also, is that you can target specific groups of customers. So if you have customers in different markets, you can tailor newsletters to suit different sectors, ensuring each email is of importance.

Its All About Customer Service!

Customer service is still important. Technology allows you to keep up with your customers. Through your website you could use the option of a live chat. This allows a member of staff to be on the receiving end for any queries potential customers may have. It solves questions quick and fast, and being live it allows the customer to get the answer in real time, gaining a quick solution.

Popular in 2017 are the AI Chat Bots. Making that change in communication, they are automated robots which learn data, content and products from your company and can chat to your customers in real time. They can provide information such as delivery enquiries or can help find products. It is set up as an automatic chat machine through messenger apps such as Facebook or text message.

Technology is forever changing, and it can definitely help move your small business forward. Although there are still concerns such as cyber security, the benefits of growth will far outweigh. Some of these ideas may not be brand new to you, but it is worth a think about if you have not already to improve your business.

7 Tips to Choose an Automation Tool for Your Business Growth

Nowadays, services need automation tools to save money and time. As a matter of fact, automation tools bring a great deal of performance and efficiency. That is the factor; they are all the rage nowadays. Before you pick an automation tool for your business development, make certain you think about a couple things. Provided listed below are a couple of aspects to think about when selecting a marketing automation tool. Keep reading to know more.

 

  1. Relieve Of Usage

Reduce of use and versatility are two aspects that can impact the performance of the tool. Apart from this, since organizational needs continue to change with time, the tools they need ought to be easy to use and versatile.

  1. Mobility

The 2nd essential factor that you must think about is mobility of the tool. Really, this is everything about how and what you are going to do is the maker of the tool fails. Apart from this, ensuring that the tool is portable can make it simpler for you to handle expense decrease requirements, requirement modifications and performance concerns, simply among others.

  1. Reporting

Great companies have objectives that are quantifiable no matter what they do. The very same uses to marketing whether it is a contemporary technique or native technique. If you take a look at the reporting function of the automation tool, you will save you from a great deal of problems down the roadway.

  1. Interoperability

Make certain the automation platform can be incorporated with the other tools used in your company.

 

  1. Mobility

Nowadays, cellphones are used for practically whatever. When selecting an automation tool, make certain you think about the mobility factor also. This will help you significantly in the long run.

  1. Modification or Adaptability

Automation tools that are offered online have basic functions. And you need to personalize these tools so that they can meet the needs of your company. So, make certain that the service provider is open and versatile. Besides, the tool ought to be simple to tailor. If the tool cannot be tailored, you will be not able to use it down the roadway. So, you might wish to ask the company of the tool if it can be personalized.

  1. Expense

There is no doubt that the tool needs to be fairly priced. Typically, people make their choice based upon the expense or cost alone, which is not a smart idea. What you need to do is take a look at the RIO while picking a tool. If you are searching for a standard tool with standard functions, you will not need to pay a great deal of money. But if you need one with a great deal of innovative functions, be ready to pay a bit more money. We recommend that you take a look at the needs of your business to select a tool that can best meet your needs.

So, these are 7 aspects that you might want to consider when trying to find an excellent marketing automation tool for the development of your business or company.