AT & T SmallBusiness InSite Without Insight

200909101353.jpgI was reading one of my friends blog post about a “cool” small business resource launched by AT&T (NYSE: T – AT&T, Inc.). It sounded great and I was intrigued to find out more about it.

As most of you know, I usually don’t write “negative” articles, but after 30 years being a small business guy, this website really got my back up.

As it turns out this is a very bad example of a large corporate trying to offer something in the micro-business market, without really understanding what a small business is and what its needs may be.

The part that really got me, was the “Tips & Tools” section!

Absolutely no content apart from product information and the usual sales spiel. Under the subsection of “Productivity” you will find one(1) – yes no typo, that is one .pdf file – of in my oppinion no more informational value for small business, than putting “collaboration tools” into google and reading the first page headlines only. OK – sorry – that comparison would probably be unkind to Google.

Under the subsection “Starting Up” you will find zero, nothing or in other words no content what so ever. But I have to admit, AT&T is so old and so big, what could they possibly know about starting a business!

To go on with the rest of the website would be a waste of your and my time and an insult. The site was launched allegedly on July 16th, no content – these guys are not even trying? The server was unbelievably slow BTW, but all the sales & product related content was there, surprise, surprise!

I understand that the micro-business and home business sector is the only sector with growth potential left for these big corporations, but they still have a long way to go before they understand how to engage with small business. I don’t think insulting your future customers with these attempts to “pretend small business interest”, other than selling ones product and services, is really a good way to go about it.

If you’re just interested in selling your products and have no interest – IMO as in this case – in being part of the community, then be honest and say so. This would be a better approach for both parties.

Suffice to say, if you are large corporate reading this, have a look at the site as it is a perfect example of how not to do it. – ST.

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