We like to think that Skype can bring you around the world virtually, but entrepreneur Jacob Marek is using Skype to help bring people around the world literally.
Jacob runs two travel-related businesses, and relies heavily on Skype for their daily operations.
45 Degrees Marketing, founded January 2011, helps foreign hotels and tour operators market their services in the United States.
Wilde Travels, launched the following year, creates luxury travel packages to places like South Africa, China and India for American gay and lesbian travelers.
“My 45 Degrees clients are all abroad, and it would cost a small fortune to keep in touch with them without Skype,” says Jacob. “Because my work is so international, it’s critical that I can connect easily with people all over the world.”
“I used Skype from day one with 45 Degrees. My partner was in Seattle, and we were both online all day, every day, just constantly in contact with Skype,” continues Jacob, who is based in Miami. “That’s why we use Skype so much in our business. It was something we were used to.”
For both Wilde Travels and 45 Degrees, Jacob uses Skype to receive calls from landline and mobile phones.
“It’s easier than using my phone,” he says.
“Sometimes I’ll share my screen to walk a client through a relevant website, if I’m setting up a tour to someplace like India or China,” says Jacob. “I’ll also refer to a document, and I’ll send it over Skype so we can both review it together.
“Screen share also is really handy for sales calls, when I’m pitching a potential client. I’ll present a PowerPoint presentation about my company that way. It’s just so much simpler than using web-conferencing software, and it’s free.”
Jacob makes sure anyone who wants to reach him on Skype can do so easily. He includes the Skype ID for each of his businesses on the Contact page of the respective Web sites.
“I don’t think I could do what I do without Skype. If I did, it would be a lot of unnecessary emails,” says Jacob. “I probably wouldn’t be able to afford being in business.”