Cisco UK & Ireland Blog

Two heads are better than one: collaboration in action at Cisco Live

February 18, 2015

At February’s Cisco Live, the DevNet Zone showcased not only the latest and greatest in innovation and the brightest Cisco-sponsored start-ups, but the true power of collaboration, too.

A case in point? An inspiring session by dynamic duo Peter Shearman, Local Government Innovation, Cisco CREATE and Oliver Theobald, Business Development Director, KILTR, whose collaboration has empowered local enterprises to boost engagement and revenue with social WiFi.

KILTR is a local social network with users across Scotland that enables people to enjoy user generated, localised content. In fact, it’s KILTR’s mission to disrupt social media as we know it and create a community-based network for every village, town and city in the UK.

Recognising that local businesses, local authorities and end users weren’t fully benefitting from social WiFi, KILTR has been working with Cisco CREATE to help local traders and local public services benefit from the sophisticated customer engagement traditionally confined to larger enterprises – all while driving community renewal.

When users log onto local social WiFi, they are delivered relevant content like local community groups and information about what’s going on in the local area. Meanwhile, presence and location-aware WiFi access points enable local businesses and community organisations to promote themselves to customers in their immediate area, and work together to support local commerce and community activities.

“Local businesses are under pressure from all sides: out of town facilities, online commerce and chains – this is a real threat to local identity” said Peter. “Being online isn’t enough – you also need reach to be heard. Local social WiFi finally makes the Internet local, providing the platform for the digital and physical renewal of community.”

On the ground at Cisco Live, Peter claimed the event offers a great opportunity to spread the message with his fellow Cisco colleagues. “I actually met a Cisco team member from Virginia who is working on a similar project, which really shows that the need for engagement resonates wherever you are,” he says.

“Engagement is top of the agenda for any forward-thinking business right now, so it’s great to be able to share our work with likeminded people at such a standout industry event.”

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