There’s no disputing that over the past few years the Channel (not to mention the world as a whole) has seen some huge changes.
Yet there are still massive opportunities for the inbound market – if you know where to look. In this two-part blog, Invosys’ Steve Glaister gives his take on how resellers can get the most out of inbound in the current climate.
•Get to know – really know – your customer
It’s going to be no surprise that before you do anything else, it’s absolutely key to get to grips with the customer’s requirements. The secret to doing this is to go beyond thinking simply as a sales person, and starting to think as a communications consultant.
Often customers will assume that they know what they need, which is normally what they already have or what they’ve seen someone else use. It’s important to note here that a great communications consultant will remember that the majority of end users are experts in their field, but not in telecoms, so will need guidance on the products they require.
Take the opportunity to actually sit down with your customer and then ask them to clear the heads of what they think they know, and describe the system they would choose in an ideal world, if they could have anything they wanted.
Only then can a truly bespoke solution can be created, making the customer happy – and very sticky.
•Keep things simple
Keeping products highly innovative – yet at the same time beautifully simple and easy to use – is crucial to a reseller’s success. The simplicity of the Invosys range means that products are easy to demonstrate and sell in. Partners can then give their customers access and be confident that they are able to manage their own services, resulting in fewer calls into their support teams and the whole operation running more efficiently.
When talking to customers, recognise that often, they are not really interested in how a product works – as long as it is reliable. Don’t blind them with technical jargon – it isn’t necessary to over complicate things with lots of different buzz words. At the end of the day your customer makes widgets. You don’t need to know the ultimate inner workings of their business – and they don’t need to know the finer details of yours. To quote Blackadder the Third
“ I am one of these people who are quite happy to wear cotton, but have no idea how it works”.
•Keep it in the cloud
Network and cloud based call management allows end-users to benefit from sophisticated call handling solutions, free from the burdens of capital expenditure and hardware costs. It’s also far simpler to design hybrid solutions to make the most of existing assets.
Some resellers may still be resistant to this, so they must remember that Cloud services are all around us and have been for some time. The problem that the channel and the end users often have is that they wrongly believe it is a complicated, brand new technology – yet in essence, they are already using it all the time, every day.
It’s essential that they get past this fear and embrace this solution moving forward in order to survive in a tough market – with the roll out of fibre, cloud based services are something that the end user is demanding more and more.
From a sales perspective, cloud makes life a whole lot easier. There’s nothing better than visiting a customer without a laptop or complex systems, and showing them everything that they could want on their own pc – as everything is in the cloud.
In part two, Invosys’ Steve Glaister will give his take on how resellers can Hosted, Systems and all important profit – when selling inbound.