Eastern Business Systems "Marketeer": User Manual [PDF]
For the telex, electronic mail and FAX features described in this chapter to operate, your computer must be fitted with the modem discussed in Chapter 4.
When you send a letter by conventional mail, you first dictate or write down what you want to say and then have it typed. Then you sign it, put it in an envelope and post it. The Post Office then carries your letter physically to the premises of the person to whom it is addressed. The recipient then opens the envelope and reads the letter.
However, physical mail takes a long time to reach its destination - particularly if coming into the United Kingdom from a foreign country. Therefore, faster means for transmitting the written word have been the subject of much research and development for a long time.
The first attempt to apply electronic speeds to the transmission of printed messages was the Telex Network. This is a switched circuit network similar to (but much smaller than and completely separate from) the Public Telephone Network.
To send a message by Telex, you first have to type it out on a Telex terminal which records it onto punched paper tape (or onto some form of electronic memory or magnetic medium).
You then have to dial up a connection to the Telex terminal of the person or company to whom you wish to send the message. A circuit connection must be established through the Telex Network between your terminal and the recipient's terminal. If the recipient's Telex line is engaged, you have to try again later as you do with a telephone call.
The fact that you need an actual circuit connection between the sender's and recipient's terminals in order to send a Telex message means that the sender's terminal and the recipient's terminal must be available at the same time to handle any particular message. This can cause delay and frustration to the sender when the recipient's terminal is very busy handling other messages.
Also, because of the high cost of the Telex service, each Telex terminal is shared by a large number of individuals. The Telex terminal inevitably becomes subject to an internal bureaucracy which effectively imposes a long delay between the individual originator or recipient and the terminal itself. The inland Telex can thus end up being no faster than the ordinary mail.
However, Telex has been around a long time, and the technology, speed and efficiency of the service is improving. There are over 100,000 Telex subscribers in the United Kingdom. Telex is therefore a significant, established and on-going means of communicating with a vast market. For this reason, MARKETEER enables you to send sales messages both to individuals and profiled target groups of prospects by Telex.
When you send a letter by electronic mail, you first dictate or write down what you want to say as before. You then have it typed into a terminal. From there it is transmitted through the public telephone network to the appropriate Public Electronic Mail Service. There it is placed in the addressee's electronic 'mailbox' from where he can view it through a terminal at his own premises.
In the context of MARKETEER, the term 'electronic mail' refers to a proper public electronic mail service such as that provided by Mercury Link 7500 or Telecom Gold which enables independent people and organisations to communicate with each other by electronic mail. This is sometimes referred to as a 'wide area' electronic mail network. It is distinct from a private electronic mail service (or 'electronic memo' service) operated on a local area network (LAN) within and between a company's own offices.
Electronic mail is much faster than conventional mail. However, you cannot sign an 'electronic letter' and it won't be printed out at the other end on your own notepaper. But although it cannot thereby have quite the same visual impact as a conventional sales letter or the personal intimacy of a telephone conversation, it does possess the unique quality of combining the immediacy of the telephone with the precision and accuracy of the written word.
This makes the 'electronic letter' able to fulfil a valuable role within the selling process which has previously been impossible, namely that of providing an instant hardcopy follow-up to a telephone conversation which can arrive on the prospect's desk almost as soon as he puts his phone down.
This is invaluable for responding to a sales enquiry with instant formal product details and prices, for crystallizing the facts mentioned in a telesales call, or simply as a courtesy note.
Thus you can see that an electronic mail facility offers you a tremendous speed advantage over your competitors whether in maintaining a strategic presence, closing an important deal, answering a query, or winning an all-out tendering race!
A public electronic mail service also gives you faster and more convenient access to the Telex Network. It enables you to send a Telex message (or even a batch of Telex messages) all in one go without having to establish a direct circuit connection with the recipients' Telex terminals. The electronic mail service's computer stores all your messages within its own storage and then sends all the messages on for you afterwards. This method is also considerably cheaper than having a Telex line.
To enable MARKETEER to send your sales messages to prospects who subscribe to an Electronic Mail service, you simply enter their electronic mailbox number in braces (curly brackets) on the 'Telex' line of their name & address box. If they do not subscribe to an electronic mail service but are Telex subscribers, then provided you are using Mercury Link 7500 you enter their Telex number and answer back code there instead. If you wish to use another electronic mail service for sending telexes, you have to enter each prospect's telex number as a special form of mailbox number as decreed by the service concerned.
Since electronic mail equipment can be attached to any conventional telephone line, the potential for its growth is as great as for the telephone itself. As technology, competition and demand drive terminal equipment prices down, so more businesses and individuals will become equipped for sending and receiving electronic mail. So although numbers are now few, they will soon explode. And MARKETEER is fully prepared for this explosion!
But with so few current subscribers to electronic mail, how can MARKETEER'S electronic mail facility be useful now? The answer is that it is useful in any situation where you have an established relationship with whoever is at the other end. For example, you could use it for sending updates to product details and prices to your dealer network or group of franchisees. Or you may use it simply as a means of fast communication with other offices within your own organization.
With dealers or franchisees, you could make being equipped for electronic mail a part of your dealership or franchise agreement. Perhaps you could offer to pay part of the cost. But whatever the limitations to its present use, the advent of universal electronic mail is almost upon us. When it comes, electronic mail will be able to reach almost anybody - at least, anybody in business. At that time, subscriber directories for electronic mail will be readily available in the same way that telephone directories are today. Businesses will then put their electronic mailbox numbers on their official notepaper as they now do with telephone and telex numbers.
The 'Electronic Mail & Telex' facility deals only with outgoing telex & electronic mail. It does not handle incoming messages. This is because its task is primarily to identify your target group and then 'hit' the whole group with a standard telex or electronic mail sales message. However, once people respond, whether by letter, phone or electronic mail, they have to be dealt with individually. Received messages are therefore handled through MARKETEER'S Communications Terminal to be discussed later.
Before selecting Option 6 for sending electronic mail, there is a small 'once & for all' job which you must do first. For this you have to use Option 1 'Prospect Records'. So once the main menu appears on the screen, please select Option 1.
Because electronic letters and telexes are not printed out at the other end on your own notepaper, it is necessary to include your company's name, telephone number, electronic mailbox number and so on as part of the text. To do this, MARKETEER needs an internal record of these details for your company. This internal record is in fact Prospect Record No 1. You must therefore enter yourself (ie your own company) as Prospect No 1 on MARKETEER'S database. The familiar name & address box now appears beneath which are the also familiar prospect record retrieval instructions. A note at bottom right tells you to put your own name & address details in Record 1. Please type-in the number 0001 and press the carriage return key. The contents of Record 1 are then displayed in the name and address box. Ignore what appears in the CLASSIFICATION & STATUS box.
Now press F6 to edit the name and address, then overtype the name and address in the box with your name and address details including your telephone number, telex number and electronic mail number according to the editing instructions beneath the box. Enter your NAMECODE as 'AAAAAAAA' and ignore the XREF field. Then press the 'End' key to store the record and return to the main menu.
Any name & job title entered here will be ignored. For telex & electronic mail letters, MARKETEER uses the name & job title of signatory which you enter using Option 6 of the Electronic Mail & Telex Menu. This will be discussed later.
The different nature of its transmittal medium, makes the 'electronic' letter (or telex) better suited to a follow-up rather than a front-line role. This requires a different approach to its content. Its text should comprise an element of thanks for previous attention during a telephone conversation, plus a straight forward listing or statement of the relevant facts, including your offer and your request for action.
At this point, please take a break from your study of MARKETEER and apply some thought to composing a text for your 'electronic' letter. This should be about the same length as for your ordinary sales letter, although its slant must be somewhat different. Bear in mind that, unlike with an ordinary letter, the instancy of electronic mail allows you to put in such things as 'please call us now - our experts are manning the phones until 4.30pm this afternoon to answer your queries first-hand'.
Having got a good idea as to the desired form and content of your 'electronic' letter, there is one further job to do before we actually get into sending electronic mail. From the main menu, please select Option 3 'Letter Creation' as you did in Chapter 7.
Follow the method described in Chapter 7 to type in the text of your 'electronic' letter paragraph by paragraph. Then develop and perfect the wording as you did for your original sales letter. These additional paragraphs will be automatically given new paragraph numbers and will co-exist on file with the paragraphs of your original sales letter. When naming these paragraphs in the 'index', prefix their names with 'E/M' to show that they are part of the 'electronic mail' letter.
You must now 'build' these paragraphs (or text frames) into your complete electronic mail (or telex) message. So please select Option 5 to build the message from its component paragraphs. When you have finished, use Option 7 to view the complete message. Print it out as well if you wish. If you are satisfied with it, copy it into the Output File as you did in Chapter 8 with your sales letter. Now return to the Main Menu.
From the Main Menu, please select Option 6 'Telex & Data Comms'. The Telex & Data Comms Menu now appears. Please ignore the right hand side of the screen for the moment. We shall now concern ourselves with Options 4 to 7 of this menu which normally have to be dealt with only once when initially setting up MARKETEER.
Use the down-arrow and up-arrow keys to scan these options, reading the explanatory text on the right as each option is highlighted.
Please select Option 4 'Communications Services'. A box now appears on the right with the names of some of the public electronic mail services, Value Added Network Services (known as VANS) and other data communications services. If the service or services to which you subscribe are already on this list, you do not need to enter anything further here. If you do not find a service to which you subscribe, then enter its name on a spare line according to the editing instructions given below the box. Make sure that the names of all the services to which you subscribe appear on the list.
Now select Option 5 'Service Protocol Macros'. Another menu now appears made up of the names of the services entered using Option 4. Please select from this menu the number of the service to which you subscribe that you wish to use for sending telexes.
In the display that follows, the prompts shown on the left are what the service sends to MARKETEER during an electronic mail or telex sending session. The responses or commands on the right are what MARKETEER answers when it receives the adjacent prompt from the service. Items in square brackets are variable names for which MARKETEER substitutes actual data. Unenclosed items are literal data sent as seen. Please press F1 for further details and help on how to enter a protocol macro.
If the macro for the service you wish to use is not present, you must refer to the service's user manual to determine the protocol (communications procedure) entries required. Also, your electronic mail service may notify you from time to time of a change in its protocol. In such an event, you will have to use this option to change the appropriate macro accordingly. They sometimes change the protocol slightly to improve presentation and ease of use of the service.
If you are not familiar with the setting up of communications macros yourself, you are advised to seek expert help. Please consult your dealer or EBS. Set up the appropriate macro for each service to which you subscribe, then press the 'Esc' key until you return to the Telex & Data Comms Menu.
Now please select Option 6. A menu now appears comprising the list of communications services and a blank box for your subscriber details appears on the right in which to enter the telephone number of your Electronic Mail Service's local access node, your user ID (or Account Number), your User Name, your Password and your Mailbox Number. Please select the service you subscribe to and then type-in (according to the instructions shown beneath the box) whichever of these items are relevant to that service. These details are supplied to you when you become a subscriber to the service. Do this for each of the services you subscribe to, then return to the Telex & Data Comms Menu.
Now please select Option 7 to enter the modem control details. In the box which appears on the right, enter the following: On the first line enter 'PULSE' if you are on a public exchange or on a PABX using pulse dialling. Enter 'TONE' if you are on a PABX with tone dialling or on a public exchange that uses tone dialling. If you are on a PABX where you normally have to dial '9' to get an outside line, then enter a '9;' on the second line. The semi colon causes the modem to wait for an outside dial tone before dialling the rest of the number. If you are outside the U.K. and you are using MARKETEER for telemarketing into the U.K. then you can add the international dialling code for the U.K. after the semi-colon.
On the third line, enter the number of rings the modem should allow to pass before answering an incoming call. This is usually 9. In the remaining 4 lines, enter 'V21'. This causes the modem to operate in 300 baud full duplex mode which is best for all functions with the modem currently supplied. Now return to the Telex & Data Comms Menu.
Now please select Option 1 'Electronic Mail & Telex'. We shall discuss the other options on the Telex & Data Comms Menu in a later chapter. The Electronic Mail & Telex Menu should now be on the screen. Please use the down-arrow and up-arrow keys to scan through this menu and read the explanatory text for each option as it is highlighted.
Option 6 concerning the setting up of the name & job title of signatory is exactly as described for ordinary sales letters in Chapter 8. In fact, both telex and letter signatories can be set up from either the Letter Printing Menu or the Electronic Mail & Telex Menu. Please use Option 6 to set yourself up as the telex signatory. This is how your name will appear on the message header as the person who the message is 'From:....'. Remember that the company name and other details are taken from Prospect Record No 0001.
With the Electronic Mail & Telex Menu back on-screen, please select Option 1. The familiar name & address box now appears with instructions beneath giving you the facility for typing in the NAMECODE, POSTCODE or Ref of a prospect in order to retrieve his name & address details from MARKETEER'S database. The prospect whose NAMECODE you should now enter is the one whom you wish to be the addressee or recipient of your first electronic letter (or Telex message).
Since you have not yet set up any of your own prospects on MARKETEER, the only ones currently on file are the sample prospects which comprise our test data. We, EBS, are one of these 'sample' prospects. So please type in 'EBS'. MARKETEER now searches its index for our details and then displays them in the name & address box. Beneath the box the five command words appear. However, instead of 'TYPE' or 'DIAL', the first command word this time is 'SEND'.
Before sending your electronic letter, please take a closer look at what is shown on the 'Telex' line in the name & address box. There, following the ordinary telex number and answer back code, and enclosed in braces (curly brackets), is the author's personal 'electronic mailbox' number: B19016965. Please nip back to the Electronic Mail & Telex Menu and select Option 4 and study the detailed explanation of electronic mailbox numbers. Then return to where you were.
Please enter the command word 'SEND' or press F1. A message appears asking you to switch on the correspondence printer. Please do this and the message will disappear. MARKETEER now checks the validity of the electronic mailbox or telex number. If it is invalid, a message appears on the screen telling you so. This attempt to transmit your message is then aborted, and you are returned to the command entry field.
Assuming the prospect's mailbox or telex number is valid, MARKETEER attempts to establish a connection to the currently selected Electronic Mail Service's equipment via the public telephone network. To do this, it first dials up the Service's local access node from the telephone number given in your subscriber details for that Service.
Modems can send and receive data over the telephone line at a variety of speeds. The speed need not be the same in both directions. Three data transmission modes (speeds) are usually offered by the electronic mail services. These are known by their CCITT designations: V21, V22 & V23. A V21 modem sends and receives data at a speed of 300 bits per second. A V22 modem sends and receives data at 1200 bits per second. A V23 modem sends data at 75 bits per second and receives it at 1200 bits per second or vice versa. You have already set up the modem speed to V21 using Option 7 of the Telex & Data Comms menu.
Once it has finished dialling the telephone number of the appropriate Electronic Mail Service, the modem starts to send a 'calling tone' and continues to do so long enough for the public telephone network to connect the call and for the Electronic Mail Service's equipment to answer. On answering the call, the Electronic Mail Service's equipment 'hears' the calling tone and thereby recognises that it is being called by a modem. It responds by sending back an 'answer tone'. When your modem 'hears' this answer tone, it knows that its call has been answered successfully by the Electronic Mail Service, stops sending the calling tone and advises MARKETEER that a connection to the Electronic Mail Service has been established.
If the modem does not 'hear' an answer tone within a certain time limit, it assumes the call attempt has failed and advises MARKETEER accordingly. This covers all situations where no answer tone is received, namely, when there is simply no answer, where the line is engaged, where the number is unobtainable or the line is dead.
According to the advice received back from the modem, MARKETEER displays an appropriate message on the screen. This gives you the opportunity to check your equipment and see that all plugs and cables are plugged in correctly and secure, and then try the call again. To try the call again, all you do is press F1 'DIAL' again. Alternatively, you can abort the call altogether.
Assuming that the Electronic Mail Service answers the call, MARKETEER logs on to the Service by sending your 'mailbox' number and 'password' according to the particular Service's communications procedure. It then transmits the text of your sales message, after which it signs off from the Service and breaks the connection. This whole process takes about one minute.
The format within which MARKETEER embodies the text of your electronic letter is essentially that of a telex as illustrated in the Telex Directory. The destination electronic mail or telex number & answerback appear on the first line with your telex number & answerback immediately underneath. Your telephone number is also given on this second line. Then, following a blank line is a line containing the message reference (or serial) number plus the date & time of the message. Following a further blank line is the recipient's name and his company followed by another line containing your name and company followed by a third line stating the subject of the message which is in fact the library title of the letter. Then follows the text of the message below which appear the words 'End of message'.
Once transmission has been completed, you may scan to the next or previous prospect on file with a view to sending your electronic letter or telex to them. However, on this occasion, please press the 'Esc' key to return to the 'record retrieval' display, and press it again to bring you back to the Electronic Mail & Telex menu.
Now please select Option 2 'Send Telex to Target Group'. The name & address box and the status box appear on the screen together with the command words. In the name & address box is a message telling you that MARKETEER is ready to send telex messages to the addressees on the current telex calling list. The target profile number, the target list serial number, and the size of the calling list are shown at the bottom of the status box on the right. All you have to do to initiate the transmission of a copy of your text as an electronic letter or telex to each prospect on the current telex calling list is to press F1 (or enter the command 'SEND').
MARKETEER then proceeds automatically to transmit the message to each addressee on the list. You can follow the sequence of events involved in transmitting the message to each addressee by observing the entries in the status box on the right of the screen. In transmitting all these telexes or electronic mail messages, MARKETEER calls the Electronic Mail Service only once and sends all the telexes as a single call. It then disconnects automatically when the last message has been sent. The Electronic Mail Service then forwards each message to its addressee's electronic mail box or telex terminal as appropriate.
After a teleshot transmission, you should return to the Electronic Mail & Telex menu and select Option 3 'Print Telexshot Report'. Then follow the on-screen instructions for printing the report. The report is headed by the text of the telex or electronic mail message which is followed by a list of all the addressees to whom the message was sent. It also gives the time & date of transmission for each message.
Every time an electronic mail or Telex message is transmitted, the fact is recorded in the addressee's data record within MARKETEER'S database together with the date of transmission. Differentiation is made between an individual one-off message or telex and a message or telex which is part of a target or general 'electronic' mailshot.
Please now return to the Telex & Data Comms menu and select Option 2. A communications terminal screen now appears comprising a main text display window in the centre above which are modem and call status indications and below which are the terminal's operating instructions plus some other status indicators. Please press the F3 key. A fuller explanation of the operator instructions now appears in the main display window. Please read these carefully. The following paragraphs add to and clarify these explanations.
If you press the F1 key while in MARKETEER's communications terminal, the following takes place. If a data call is currently connected (or is in the process of being connected or disconnected), the call is safely terminated and the telephone line is released. Then you are returned to the Telex & Data Comms menu automatically. If no call was connected (or in the process of being connected or disconnected), you are simply returned to the Telex & Data Comms menu immediately.
If you press F2, then whatever text was currently displayed within the terminal's display window is cleared and the cursor returns to the top left of the window. This is useful when, having completed a logging on procedure, you wish to send a message. It means that you can start with a 'clean sheet' for the outgoing message to be displayed. The transmission or reception of the Form Feed character (ASCII 12) has the same effect.
You have already seen that this key causes the explanatory text for these operator instructions to be displayed in the text window. F3 is ignored if text is currently being sent or received via the telephone line. If the help text is currently on screen, pressing F3 causes the original contents of the terminal window to be displayed. If a call is connected and the help text is currently on screen, the receipt of a character from the remote end will also cause the help text to be replaced by the original contents of the terminal window with the addition of the received character. This is to prevent any communication being missed while you are looking at the help text.
The TX-FILE referred to here is the Output File produced by the Letter Creation subsystem. It contains the letter which is automatically used as the letter text to be printed for a mailshot or to be sent in a telexshot. This simply offers another way of sending that letter as a telex or electronic mail message.
Transmission of the contents of the Output File can be invoked at any time while using the communications terminal.
Pressing F5 at any time while using the communications terminal causes all subsequent input and output via the telephone line, or local input and output to and from the control software of the modem, to be printed on the correspondence printer as well as being displayed in the terminal display window. When connected to a distant device via the telephone network, provided the Remote Echo lamp below the terminal display window on the right is lit, the characters actually printed by the printer (and those displayed on the screen) have in fact come from the remote end. In other words, characters originating from this end have been sent to the other end, echoed back and the echoed characters then printed (and displayed) here. This guarantees that whatever you see printed (or displayed) has actually been received by the remote equipment.
In stead of, or as well as printing what is received from the telephone line, you can also capture it in a text file on disk. You can invoke the capture of incoming text in a text file any time you are using the communications terminal by pressing F6. You can later stop the process and close the file by pressing F6 a second time. Each time you press F6 to start capturing text and then press it again to stop the capturing process, a new and separate text file is created. Each completed text file is then placed in the Received Messages Library.
Up to 40 such text files containing received messages can exist in the Received Messages Library concurrently. How these received messages can be displayed and printed will be described later. An indication at the bottom right of the screen shows how many spare RX (receive) files are currently available.
To send text manually, you simply type it on the keyboard. What you type is displayed in the terminal display window on the screen. If you enable the printer using F5, it is also printed by the correspondence printer. If you enable text capture by pressing F6, it is also written to an RX file in the Received Messages Library.
If you are connected to an electronic mail service or some other remote equipment via the public telephone network, then what you type is also transmitted to the remote end. If no call is currently connected, what you type simply goes to the modem controller.
When you are connected to a remote service via the telephone line, every characters you send down the line is received by the remote equipment which normally re-transmits it back to you. In other words it 'echoes' the character. This is known as full duplex operation. Receiving the character back from the other end after you have sent it ensures that you know that it was received by the other end correctly and was not lost or garbled on the way. The echoed character is then displayed in the terminal display window. What you see is therefore what the other end has confirmed that it has received. Some remote equipment, however, does not provide an echo.
If you are connected to such equipment, you need to press F7 to cause MARKETEER to display directly on the screen what it is actually sending out. Otherwise you will not see what you have sent. You can press F7 a second time to disable this direct local character echo.
When you are not connected to a remote service, what you type goes to the modem controller as a request to dial a call or tell you its status etc.. Although the modem controller does not echo characters, you do not need to press F7 to see what you are typing because MARKETEER automatically provides a local character echo when a call is not connected.
Some remote equipment requires a separate Line Feed character to be sent to advance it to a new line after you have sent a Carriage Return character. In this case, you need to press F8 to cause MARKETEER's terminal subsystem to transmit a Line Feed character after each carriage return it sends.
Please now press F3 to return from the help text display, then press F1 to return to the Telex & Data Comms menu.
Please look at the Auto Logon 'menu' on the right of the screen. It shows a list of the Communications Services, the details of which you entered using Options 4, 5, and 6 earlier in this chapter. You can ask MARKETEER to dial up and log on to any of the listed services to which you subscribe simply by typing in the corresponding letter.
MARKETEER then displays the 'terminal screen', automatically dials the selected service and performs the logging on part of the service's protocol. You may then proceed from the keyboard with requests for whatever functions the particular service provides using the command syntax given in the service's user manual.
The automatic logging on procedure can fail. For example, the service's lines may all be busy or the telephone network may misroute the call. If the auto-logon process fails, an auto-logon failure message is displayed above the terminal display window. You may then press F9 to invoke a re-try or F1 to exit the terminal subsystem. If the auto-logon process succeeds, a message is displayed above the terminal display window telling you that you are now logged on to the named service.
Please return to the Telex & Data Comms menu and select Option 3. A window is displayed on the screen similar to the terminal display window. You should now see a sample message in the display window. A bright message on the right below the window should tell you that the message has not yet been printed; ie no hard copy exists for it at the moment. Since the whole of the message will not fit in the display window, you can use the PgUp and PgDn keys to scroll the text within the window. You can print the message by pressing F3 and then following the instructions which appear at the bottom right of the screen. After printing the message, you can if you wish erase it from the library by pressing F4. To avoid the possibility of losing a vital message, MARKETEER will not let you erase it until it has been printed.
The NEXT and PREV commands move you to the next and previous messages in the library respectively. Up to 40 messages can be held in the library concurrently. As you use the library, you will probably fill it up and then erase selected messages. This will result in unoccupied entries in the library. On entry into the library subsystem from the Telex & Data Comms menu, the first existing message is displayed (which will not be Message No 1 if Message No 1 has been erased). The NEXT command then takes you to the next EXISTING message and so on through the library, skipping over all erased message entries.
This completes your introduction to MARKETEER's terminal and received messages library subsystems. Please press the 'Esc' key until you return to the main menu and then switch off your printer.