Table of Contents

Tower Coverage Integration: Overview

Mitchell Paul-Soumis Updated by Mitchell Paul-Soumis

Read Time: 11 mins

In order to properly implement the Tower Coverage integration, you'll need to have set up Network Sites within your Sonar instance. If you need information on creating a network site, take a look at the Network Sites: Overview portion of the Network Dashboard: Overview article

What is Tower Coverage?

Tower Coverage is a third-party service designed from the ground up for Wireless Internet Service Providers, designed to create a dynamic coverage map based on Network Site and Network Footprint information you provide.

Tower Coverage simplifies the customer signup process by embedding a signup sheet on a webpage of your choice, capturing the customer's location information, checking it against your coverage map, and providing you with a corresponding lead in your Sonar instance, along with the nearest tower information. As a result of implementing Tower Coverage and using it effectively, you'll be able to partially automate the lead generation process, the customer intake process, and the address qualification process within Sonar.

Tower Coverage themselves has both a website as well as a video on YouTube providing an introduction to their offerings.

Creating a Role to Manage Tower Coverage

In order to manage and make use of the Tower Coverage integration, new role permissions have been added to every Sonar instance. Please take a moment to review these new permissions, and ensure a role is created to allow the management of this integration.

If you're a Super-Admin of your Sonar instance, no permission changes are required for your account, however, any other accounts involved with the Tower Coverage integration will require an updated role. For more information on Roles and Permissions overall, please review this linked article.

By navigating to Settings --> Security --> Roles and either editing an existing Role or creating a new Role, you'll be able to see permissions specific for managing Tower Coverage:

The Tower Coverage Configuration permissions have to do entirely with the management of the integration - if the role you're modifying or creating won't be modifying the integration parameters, these permissions can be left unselected.

The Tower Coverage Submission permissions have to do with the management of customer information sent to your Sonar instance by the Tower Coverage integration, which we'll review in more detail later. If you plan to allow this role to view and manage submissions from Tower Coverage, this permission needs to be enabled.

Using Tower Coverage with Sonar

In order to start using Tower Coverage in your Sonar instance, you'll need to have an account created with them already. While we integrate with their tool, there is no direct link between the applications and no way to sign up within Sonar.

Once an account is created, follow the below steps to begin the process of integrating Tower Coverage with your Sonar workflow:

  1. Click on Settings
  2. Expand the Integrations section
  3. Click on Tower Coverage

Setting up the Integration in Sonar

The first step in setting up the integration is filling out the fields on the Integrations page in Sonar:

  1. The Enabled checkbox will allow you to control whether or not this integration is enabled. When the Tower Coverage integration is enabled, a "Tower Coverage Submissions" button will appear on the Accounts List View.
  2. The API key acts as a sort of password for communication between Tower Coverage and your Sonar instance.
  3. The Account Type selector allows you to define a default account type for all customers forwarded to your instance. This will apply to all potential customers forwarded by Tower Coverage but can be changed on an individual basis as required.
  4. The Account Status selector will define the default account status for all customers forwarded to your instance by Tower Coverage. The account status can also be changed on an individual basis, but most commonly will change along with their progress through your onboarding stages.
  5. The Phone Number type allows you to select how the customer's contact number is stored. This can be modified on a case-by-case basis.
  6. The instance's push URL will vary based on your actual instance name and will need to be provided to Tower Coverage in order to complete the setup.

Once this information is filled out, click "Save" to complete the first step of the integration.

Linking your Tower Coverage Account with Sonar

The next step on the path to implementing Tower Coverage effectively is taking the API key you generated, and the instance's Push URL, and linking them within your Tower Coverage account, which you can do by following these steps:

  1. Log in to your Tower Coverage account
  2. Navigate to Account -> API:
  3. On the "Default EUS Settings" page, select "Sonar" from the EUS API dropdown, then enter the API Key, Push URL, and Tower Coverage user credentials that were all generated in previous sections:

Ensuring Valid Coverage Information

Before you start receiving customer data with Tower Coverage for migration in to Sonar, you'll need to ensure you have both Sites and Coverages configured within your Tower Coverage account. Without valid sites and coverage, the information Tower Coverage delivers to you based on customer submissions may be incorrect or incomplete.

Adding a New Site

To add a new Site to your Tower Coverage account:

  1. Hover over the "Site" button on the sidebar so that "NEW +" appears and click on "NEW +" or the "New Sites: button:
  2. On the Map page that opens, give your Site a name, and then provide the Latitude, Longitude, and average antenna height on the tower within the New Site modal:
  3. Click the "Create New Site" button. The map will reload and your Site will now be in place within Tower Coverage.
    You can also import a CSV file containing your Site information based on a template that Tower Coverage provides | Siteimporttemplate.csv
Adding a New Coverage

With your Site added, the next step is adding the antennas and coverage area to the tower. To do that, follow the steps below:

  1. Hover over the "Coverages" button and click on the "New +" that appears, or click on the "Coverages" button and select "New Coverages"
  2. Fill in the Coverage information based on the antenna and band spec of your actual hardware. The information that needs to be entered here will vary greatly, but it is important for it to be accurate to your network. You can see an example below:
  3. With the Coverage added, click on "Create" and Tower Coverage will start processing the new coverage information within your system.
    The processing can take some time, depending on the complexity of your coverage information.
Adding a Multi Map

In order to establish a zone of coverage, you also need to configure a Multi Map. This is a collection of Coverage areas that represent a serviceable area on your network.

  1. Click on the "Multi Map" button from the navigation sidebar, then by hovering over it and selecting "NEW +" or selecting "New Multi Map"
  2. On the next page, select all the coverages that will comprise this Multi Map, click "Add Selected" and give the Multi Map a name before clicking on "Create New Multi Map":

How Tower Coverage Works in Sonar

Once you've configured the integration and pointed your Tower Coverage instance towards your Sonar instance, you can begin using Tower Coverage to store leads and receive coverage information.

When a customer fills out the contact form provided by Tower Coverage and hosted on your website, the process flow occurs as below:

  1. Tower Coverage gathers the customer data and stores it initially on their end
  2. Using your provided Network Coverage information, Tower Coverage calculates the 3 Network Sites with the best coverage
    These Network Sites aren't always the closest ones, and that's perfectly normal! Tower Coverage uses a variety of methods to determine the Network Sites that result in the best signal.
  3. The information from Tower Coverage (including Name, Address, and Coverage details) is sent to your Sonar instance via API, which was configured in the previous section.

Once you receive a customer lead from Tower Coverage, you can access it by going to Accounts > Tower Coverage submissions

Managing your Received Leads

Once you receive a lead from Tower Coverage and locate it within your Tower Coverage Submissions, you can then move on to managing them. When you receive a lead, it appears in the following table:

  1. The Simple /Advanced filter toggle allows you to switch between the Simple filtering, which is pictured, and the more robust Advanced filtering.
    For more information, you can review the Filtering: Simple vs Advanced article.
  2. The Date Received column shows the exact date and time each Tower Coverage submission was received in Sonar.
  3. The Full Name column displays the first and last name provided by the customer during the submission process.
  4. The Email Address column displays the email address provided by the customer during the submission process.
  5. The Phone Number column displays the phone number provided by the customer during the submission process.
  6. The Valid column shows whether or not the submission contained all required information.
    An invalid submission can still be converted into an account, but may require manual information entry.
  7. The Address column displays the serviceable address submitted by the customer during the submission process.
  8. The Assignee column will display the account name once the serviceable address has been linked, and the lead has been converted to an account.
  9. The action column allows you to link serviceable addresses and convert Tower Coverage Leads into accounts.

The Link Serviceable address button allows you to create a new Serviceable Address in your Sonar instance to serve this potential lead. Once you click the button, a new modal will open, which will allow you to provide address and geocoding information, while also providing you the opportunity to correct any incorrect information the customer may have entered.

More information for Serviceable Addresses can be found in this article.

Linking a serviceable address is a necessary step, as until the link is made, you'll be unable to convert the lead into an account, and you'll be unable to see coverage information attached to the address by the Tower Coverage integration.

Exploring the Coverage Information

When Tower Coverage sends a lead into Sonar, you can view network coverage and signal strength for the customer's location by clicking on their Serviceable Address once it's been linked. This opens a sidebar containing the various signal details as attachments:

From there you can click on any of the images to examine them in more detail, and access the detailed report for that network site provided by Tower Coverage in text:

These images and details will remain attached to the serviceable address even after an account has been created for this customer, and can be reviewed by clicking on the serviceable address from within the account management interface.

Creating the Account

Once you've verified the coverage information and confirmed that the customer's address is serviceable, the next step is to convert the Tower Coverage submitted lead to an account within your instance. After linking the serviceable address, which was done earlier, you'll note the column button has now changed to "Convert to Account".

Clicking this new button will open the account creation modal, where you can fill in all required fields to create a new customer account.

This process is nearly identical to the overall process for Creating a New Account, and it's recommended to review this article if you have questions during this step.

One thing to note is the Account Status will default to "TC Lead" by default in order to simplify searching, sorting, and reporting when evaluating the effectiveness of Tower Coverage as an integration:

Scheduling the Installation

As with any other new lead account brought into your instance, the next step is to schedule an installation job with your field technicians in order to deploy the network equipment and provide service to the customer's address.

In order to schedule a job for service installation, you'll want to make sure you have Job Types configured, and you've also configured your Schedule Availability.
  1. First, navigate to the new customer account and add services from the Billing > Services & Packages sub-tab in order to simplify the first invoice:
    Services can also be added to the account through a job, if the automation was put in place when the job type was created.
  2. Next, create a new installation job by going to the Jobs tab and clicking on the "Create Job" button:
  3. Schedule the job at the customer's preferred availability.
    Both the job creation and job scheduling can also be done from the "Scheduling" page in your instance. For more information on Jobs, you can check out the Scheduling How-to: Creating and Booking a Job article.

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