In many ways, rural America is still recovering from the effects of the Great Recession. As outlined in a recent publication from the United States Department of Agriculture, rural America continues to suffer from high levels of unemployment and an overall decline in population levels while urban and suburban areas thrive.
What can be done to pump some much needed life back into the rural American economy? The answer begins with casting any eye toward reliable—and affordable—high-speed Internet service.
In short, high-speed Internet connectivity is vital to the success of rural America because it has a waterfall effect on a local economy. Areas that support high-speed Internet attract more residents and developers, and thus create more business opportunities for telecommuters and brick-and-mortar facilities.
Internet service, in other words, is no longer a demand or a luxury. Conversely, it’s a basic need that Americans now have, as evidenced in the recent Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) decision to include affordable Internet service as part of its Lifeline program for low-income Americans.
Still, there are about 19 million rural residents who lack sufficient broadband connectivity.
The USDA, it should be noted, is actively working to change this. Recently, for instance, the association procured $85 million in grants and loans to help spread broadband connectivity to rural areas.
“Broadband is fundamental to expanding economic opportunity and job creation in rural areas, and it is as vital to rural America’s future today as electricity was when the USDA began bringing power to rural America 80 years ago,” explained U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack in a recent statement following the announcement.
This is where you, a broadband provider for commercial and residential customers, can come in and address this issue. Without your help, rural economic growth in America would be utterly impossible. Moving forward, it’s imperative that your business continues to provide your customers with access to lightning-fast network connectivity.
One way that you can help boost connectivity to your region—and rake in profits at the same time—is by switching from a fixed billing plan to a real-time, cloud-based subscription service. In doing so, your business will be able to offer flexible billing packages to residents. Commercial businesses that use more data and require more bandwidth will pay more, while residential customers will pay less. This will prevent your company from losing money to customers who use far more data on a daily basis than they are paying for.
In making the switch, your company will be able to generate the necessary profits for upgrading your network to a faster fiber optic system instead of the copper transmission system currently in place.
It’s a win-win strategy that will help your business succeed, while it also helps your local region. Click here to learn more about how Great Lakes Data Systems can help your business integrate a cloud-based subscriber management and billing system.