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The Help You Need—When You Need It

February 9, 2011
at 10:05 am PST

The Small Business Support Community puts experts at your fingertips to provide assistance and resolve problems

As a small business owner, you rely on the technology that runs your business. Time is money and you can’t afford to lose either because a switch, storage device, or security appliance that’s critical to your business is down. You need help, and fast, to get your business up and running again – one way is to turn to an online support community.

Similarly, you wouldn’t consult a single source for a technology recommendation if, for example, your company needed a wireless guest access solution. You want input and experiences from multiple sources so you can make the right choice for your business.

The tech community has a long history of leveraging advice and help from their peers. Online bulletin boards and chat rooms have provided support and solutions for more than 10 years. Fast forward to 2011 where advances in web and social media technologies have enhanced the possibilities of these tools. Now, you can poll your peers, independent experts, and even company product managers to get assistance and find information.

Cisco’s Small Business Support Community is based on this principle: Find the help you need, when you need it.

Whether you have a product question, need assistance resolving a problem, or are a looking for a solution recommendation, you can get the help you need from this community of other small business customers, Cisco Partners, and Cisco employees.

Here are some other benefits of Cisco’s Small Business Support Community:

  • One-to-many interaction: You benefit from the knowledge of many people and subject matter experts. Small business customers, Cisco Partners, and Cisco employees share their product knowledge and experience to help others in the community. Also, you can participate in the Ask the Experts program, which provides regular week-long discussions between a Cisco employee and other community members on a specific technology topic.
  • Collaborative solutions: When trying to find the right solution for your business, such as integrating your current phones into a new voice system, you can turn to the community for advice and recommendations—not only about Cisco products but also third-party products.
  • Two-way conversation: Not only are you getting help to an immediate problem; you can also provide feedback and suggestions about Cisco products—feedback that goes straight to the appropriate product group.
  • Online chat: Can’t wait for an answer? If your product’s registered and within the first year of warranty, you can take advantage of the free web-based chat and communicate directly with a Cisco Small Business Support Center engineer.  This option is also available if you purchase a service contract.
  • Wealth of content: In addition to conversations, the Small Business Support Community provides helpful information in other documents, videos, and a blog.
  • One-stop knowledge shop: The support community provides a centralized knowledgebase for all Cisco Small Business products and services, from switches and wireless to warranty.
  • Updates: As a member of the community, you can  choose to receive email notifications of any activity in the community.  You can also follow us on Twitter (@CiscoSBsupport) and receive alerts about the latest product firmware and software updates, promotions, and any new community features that might be helpful to you and your business.
  • Intelligent search: As you start typing in your topic, the community’s search feature will begin offering recommendations for content and people that might be of help to you.

Have you participated in Cisco’s Small Business Support Community? Share your experience!

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