20 Best Skype Alternatives For

Jennie is buying her monthly groceries online. She checks out a pack of organic cereals, really likes one, but it falls a bit outside her budget. She decides she doesn’t really need it. The next day, while on her way to office, she passes by a store that has the same cereal box. She gets a notification on her smartphone, telling her the item is available at a discount. Voila! Jennie grabs the chance, and buys the box right there.

This example of contextualized, personalized marketing holds some vital lessons for the consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry today. Here is a brand that analyzes an individual consumer’s pre-purchase online behavior in real time, and activates a tailored, offline promotion for her, triggering a successful “conversion”.

Welcome to the world of 365 degree consumer mapping. With consumers increasingly not seeing any distinction between their online and offline environments, CPG marketers like you must leverage customer journey mapping to connect the dots across different touch points and build integrated buyer profiles. Let me elaborate.

Customer experience journey being redefined

The consumer’s pathway to purchase is changing drastically by the day, as social media, online product review websites, price and feature-comparison tools and other forums empower buyers with relevant, actionable information.

The modern-day consumer wants comprehensive, on-demand product intelligence, in terms of data regarding a product’s specifications and price, images and videos, the stores at which it is available, related promotions, shipping information, etc. Fifty seven percent of consumers already make up their mind on the items they will buy before entering a retail store, a 2016 report published by IRI suggests.

As a result, the decision making process at the consumer’s end is undergoing a dramatic change. Conventional linear purchase pathways are making way for individualized funnels where the consideration and evaluation phases get compressed, and in some cases, even eliminated.

How can you respond?

This unprecedented change in consumer behavior requires you to shift from the traditional, “push”-driven, one-size-fits-all marketing paradigm to a buyer-centric, personalized engagement landscape. You need to meet existing and prospective customers where they are in their purchase pathways, as well as on the channels they prefer, and revamp your communication campaigns.

And, adopting a 365 degree customer experience journey mapping approach will help you align marketing initiatives with the new consumer decision journey. Here is how you can get started with consumer mapping:

  • Shopper insights: Use data analytics tools to track the behavior of your target audience across various touch points in the purchase pathway, thus deepening your understanding of their motivations, attitudes, and decision making. Unearthing insights on which forums and apps individual buyers visit, how they navigate from one site to another and what search words they type in will let you build compelling buyer profiles for targeted messaging.
  • Contextualized marketing: Harness these insights to launch custom-made marketing campaigns across different formats, such as personalized emails and SMS, shelf advertising, in-store sampling, interactive kiosks, social media gaming and location-specific deals. And, based on a real-time analysis of the efficacy of such initiatives, prioritize investments in marketing programs that are delivering the desired ROI.
    In conjunction, drive contextual interaction with shoppers by mining behavioral data to figure out their intent, and accordingly pushing tailored deals.
  • Digital content: Drive a mindset shift across the organization, from simply buying media online to developing intuitive, digital properties that engage and inform consumers. Such assets, including Web sites, social media groups and mobile apps, can enable you to build significant mindshare, apart from cultivating different buyer communities focused on specific product interests.
    For example, by rendering relevant content for the evaluation stage, you will be able to influence an individual shopper, and improve your chances of making it to his / her consideration set. This, in turn, will increase the probability of that buyer promoting your product through word-of-mouth recommendations on social media and other online forums.
    Another thing to keep in mind here is the consumer is channel-agnostic. Therefore, you and your partners must provision all the information buyers are looking for about your products, irrespective of the touch point concerned.
  • Channel-specific messaging: Roll out dedicated consumer outreach initiatives for different channels–including the Web, mobile, social media, radio, television and print–based on the unique requirements of each medium. And, address specific buyer pain points across each stage of the pathway by delivering relevant communications that reflect their needs.

    20 Best Skype Alternatives For Video Calling and VoIP

    Whenever we talk about Video calls or VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) or Instant Messaging (IM), Skype is the first name which hits our mind. Skype has taken Video conferencing and Video calling to new levels, and nobody dares to deny that.

    But with time, Skype has been encircled by some rival apps which have outperformed Skype in most of its specialized fields. In fact, if you check Google Play store, you would notice that this freemium app has fetched some very negative comments from users referring to its difficult user interface and challenging set-up configurations.

    If you’re fond of Skype, but it is making you uncomfortable these days, then it is time you keep a track of the Skype alternatives.

    Best Skype Alternatives to Watch Out for 

    WhatsApp is unquestionably one of the best Skype alternatives. WhatsApp lets us send messages, pictures, videos, GIFs etc. to our friends and family. But the latest introduction of free Voice and Video calls have made it one of the top alternatives to Skype.

    WhatsApp is available in Windows, Android, Mac and iOS platforms and lets you perform both voice and video calls with clarity and ease. And with end-to-end encryption, you don’t have to worry about safety.

    You can make group video calls as well with maximum 10 personsat one go. You can even make international calls via this app, and it would not charge you a single penny. Add to these, the emojis available on WhatsApp are too cool. Most of you already use WhatsApp, and if there is anybody left who does not, then hopefully, you too would download this free Skype alternative very soon

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    Google Duo

    If too much hassle is not your thing and you prefer one of those Skype alternatives which would let you perform one-to-one video call and that too in HD, then Google Duo is where you should go. This not-so-old app has only hit the market in 2016 and has already fetched a cool 4.6 play store rating. This video calling app from Google provides features like Knock Knock, Audio calling, cross-platform calling etc. The best thing about this app is, a user who does not have this app stored in their phone can also receive a call coming from Google Duo.

    Messenger, though a part of Facebook, has been launched as a different app only in 2015 and has acquired more than 2 million users all over the world. Messenger does its part quite well by providing users withfree texts, voice, and video calls. It is one of the notable alternatives to Skype as it has a separate version for business.

    Messenger offers you several funny and quirky filters. You can download them and use them while in the middle of an ongoing video call, to make the person sitting on the other end go ROFL.

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    Viber

    The next and one of the most popular free Skype alternatives is Viber. Viber makes sending texts, making voice and video calls all over the world, easier. You can share media files, videos, locations, stickers, emojis etc. with your pals. A group in Viber can contain as many as 100 members, which is huge!

    Viber supports Android, Windows, Mac, and Linux mediums and is available in multiple languages. It has a 4.3 Google Play store rating which expresses that most of the users are pleased with Viber’s performance.

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    Google Hangouts

    The next name in this list of Skype alternatives is Hangouts. It is one of the oldest and best alternatives to Skype. This app too is coming from the house of Google like Google Duo. While Google Duo lets you have a one-to-one video call, Hangout lets you participate in group video calls as well.

    Apart from that, their offerings include free texts, audio calls, document sharing, screen sharing, synchronous watching of YouTube videos and so on. But this app seems to be a bit less evolved compared to its new age rivals and thereby is still standing on a not-so-cool 4 rating.

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    FaceTime

    The next app which totally deserves a place on this list of Skype Alternatives for its HD video calling facility is FaceTime. This app is only available for iOS and Mac mediums, which means, it is limited to only the users of iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks.

    FaceTime is a hit among users because of its faster and smoother video calling facility, which is lacking in Skype these days. iPhone users get FaceTime for free but Mac users need to download it from Mac store at $0.99.

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    Slack

    Are you by any chance wondering that, which one of the Skype alternatives, would make your business dealings smoother? Well, then you better download Slack. Slack is quite a newbie on the block as it has only started its voyage in 2014.

    But, in the last four years, it has seen a gigantic growth. Slack lets you communicate with your work teams and the organizations with which you are performing your business dealings. Additionally, you get help with messaging, audio calling, sharing and editing documents, integrating your workflow and a lot of other features beyond your imagination.

    This one is a freemium app. For limited usage, you can go for their free plan, but to enjoy their offerings at the fullest, you need to opt for either the Standard plan ($6.67) or the Plus plan ($12.50).

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    ooVoo

    One of the promising alternatives to Skype but a bit less recognized name is, ooVoo. ooVoo has all Mac, Android and desktop versions. This is one of those rare Skype alternatives which offers a high-quality, crisp video calling and video conferencing facility. You can perform group video chats with the maximum of 12 members!

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    Talky

    Talky is one of those simple Skype alternatives which is generally useful for group video chats. You can add more than 15 people to the conversation which is definitely a plus. Other than that, screen sharing and locked room features are also available. Talky is mostly a simple app with simpler features. You can use their web version as well as download the Talky app, which is available in the iOS store.

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    Telegram

    The next name in this list of Skype alternatives is Telegram. Telegram perfectly does justice to its name and works as a first, smooth and strongly end-to-end encrypted instant messaging service.

    You can send unlimited texts to people residing in any part of the world and that too at free of cost. Telegram is compatible with all Android, iOS and Windows mediums. Notably, it is one of those alternatives to Skype which only provides audio calling facility and is yet to enable video calling feature.

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    WebEx

    Another Skype alternative which can serve you as a business tool is, WebEx. Other than enjoying their HD 720p video calling facility, you can schedule meetings, perform group video conferencing, sharescreen, files, apps and so on. Their top products include personal meeting rooms, customer support etc. It is one of the perfect alternatives to Skype when it comes to business dealings.

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    Jitsi

    If you’re looking for one of the opensource Skype alternatives, then Jitsi is where your search should end. Jitsi is available on Mac, Windows PC, and Linux platforms. Recently, its Android app has been launched, with the name, Jitsi Meet. You can relish high-quality audio and video calls with a tight end-to-end encryption. A plus point of this app is, you don’t require an account to use this app. Just download it and you would be ready to go.

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    UberConference

    Another Skype alternative which does not provide video calling facility but is top notch when it comes to audio calling is UberConference. Along with a rich HD audio quality and some powerful call controls, this app takes care of your privacy concerns, lets you share documents and media files, integrates social profiles with a caller so that you can identify who you are talking to and offers tons of other exciting features.

    It is one of the freemium alternatives to Skype. That means, its individual version is free and the business version comes with a charge of $10/line.

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    Imo

    If an easy and smart video chatting app is what you’ve been craving for, then Imo is going to be the best choice for you. This simple app is available for Android, Windows and iOS versions and is thoroughly safe with the end-to-end encryption technology.

    It is one of those free Skype alternatives which lets you perform high quality and hassle-free video and audio calls, group video chatsand also lets you text your friends and family with some fun stickers and emoticons.

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    Join.me

    The next position in this list of Skype alternatives is occupied by Join.me. With a high VoIP technology, cross-platform audio and video conferencing have become a lot easier with this app. Additionally, this app helps in screen and document sharing, whiteboarding, link shortening, one-click scheduling and so on.

    It is one of the premium alternatives to Skype and has two paid plans. The Pro plan costs $20 and the Business plan charges $30. Though a bit costly, Join.me is worth your money.

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    Voxox

    Another Skype alternative which lets you make free audio calls, share media files and is also available in multiple languages, is Voxox. In fact, Voxox lets you make international calls to landlines or mobile phones and that too at very lowest rates. This is one of those Skype alternatives which does not have a separate business version.

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    WeChat

    One of the best and free Skype alternatives which is an absolute favorite to millions of users is, WeChat. WeChat has fetched a smart 4.2 Google Play Store rating, and once you download this app, you would know exactly why!

    Voice and Video calls, multimedia messaging, quirky sticker store, group chat, WeChat ticks all these boxes. WeChat is available in 20 languages and lets you connect nearby people by their real-time location facility.

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    GoToMeeting

    If you’re looking for one of those Skype alternatives which would help you in business dealing and video conferencing then the app you can trust is GoToMeeting. One of the best in this field, this app makes your business work easier by helping you in organizing group meetings withhigh video and audio quality, by giving you meeting alerts, by letting you check presentations and reports and so forth.

    This one is one of the paid alternatives to Skype and has three plans, namely, Starter ($19/month), Pro ($29/month) and Plus ($49/month).

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    Hike

    Another mention-worthy name among the Skype alternatives is Hike. Apart from offering audio and video calls, Hike provides some unique features like 20000 plus stickers and emoticons, amazing group chats, live filters, magic selfies, vivid chat themes and so on. Hike has its own wallet as well.

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    Line

    The final name in this list of Skype Alternatives belongs to Line. Line is another breezy app with some cool features like free voice and video calling, multimedia messaging, fun sticker library, personal storage space, free international calls and what not!

    These were our top Skype alternatives. While concluding, I must remind you to choose your Skype alternative meticulously. Various users have various intentions, be it business dealings or be it a simple chat with your dear ones. Hence, don’t ever rush it. Hit the download button, only when you get sure that the app would be apt for your purpo

Conclusion

For you to successfully crack the customer acquisition and retention code in this new buying landscape, a reimagination of your engagement approach with shoppers across touch points will be essential. And, building 365 degree consumer profiles will go a long way in helping you meet that objective, and meet rapidly evolving consumer expectations.

source:https://layerpoint.com/skype-alternatives/

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