Could Integrators Make More Money Selling Smaller Systems?
- By Robert Messer
- Oct 27, 2020
To get excited about selling smaller surveillance projects at first thought is anti-intuitive. However, it may be best for the diversification and long-term growth for most integrators.
Today’s uncertain world, and business climate makes it tough to close a sufficient volume of large deals. In uncertain times the closing probability is inverse to the project size and the closing time grows disproportionately. That means statistically resellers are better off going after smaller projects that close quick and with less risk of not closing at all. There are also a lot more, smaller deals to close today than ever.
In today’s world, the concept of essential surveillance makes a heck of a lot of sense. Like everyone, owners – and managers, too – are frequently working from home and a small surveillance platform can give them the situational awareness they need and fill a visibility gap. Particularly since most, smaller businesses didn't get surveillance systems in the past as they did not have a use case, and also the general understanding was that these systems would be too expensive for a smaller company. Both no longer are the case.
Now companies want need and more visibility of their offices. They may need a log of who was at the office at specific times for contact tracing and many other issues that may arise. Businesses and entities of all kinds now want people counting, statistics, and building occupancy. Most businesses have an alarm but very few actually have a surveillance solution that is integrated with their alarm and most would be interested. Who wants to be blind when the alarm goes off? What if you could provide all of the above, plus cloud storage and instant video verification of alarms – everything starting with as little as one or two cameras in the cloud.
We saw that integrators could not easily capture this market with the available known solutions and decided to develop a new platform for integrators to provide a more partner friendly, highly interoperable and scalable cloud platform. We called it IPTECHVIEW MxMSP/MxLINQ.
The solution is not based on a cheap box or temporary, throw-away solution but on high-quality durable, and secure German MOBOTIX cameras that will last up to a decade and a secure cloud platform. Now, by focusing on explaining to your customers how they can benefit from just a couple of MOBOTIX cameras for less than $1,000 is easy to sell, partners can actually make money fast and at the same time gain new valuable customers that will grow their business with you for years to come. Because no one stops at purchasing just two cameras.
The best part is that a connected cloud surveillance system provides a systematic shift in labor and hardware cost. The equipment is mostly pre-configured – making installation super simple – and final touches can be done remotely lowering the installation and setup cost by an order of magnitude. The customer will spend less money in equipment since the remote access, visualization, and notification infrastructure are in the cloud which logically creates a new recurring revenue stream.
A 30% margin on MxLINQ revenue, a really short sales cycle, almost no cost to setup, minimal installation and training, and the fact that no-one buys one camera but usually sells at least 2-4 cameras and projects grow will do magic for your profitability. Suddenly, to have many small projects makes a lot of sense.
There are some extra bonuses. Today, smaller deals will tend to grow into much larger deals once the pandemic is over and the economy changes. Once a customer starts a cloud-based project with IPTECHVIEW with one partner it is highly unlikely he will go to another place. Therefore, integrators are working to sell for today, and at the same time are building the foundation for their business tomorrow.
Then there is the consultative approach. Today, cloud solutions can scale both quantitatively, you can start with one or two cameras and end up with a project with hundreds of locations and thousands of cameras but it also can grow in a qualitative way.
In addition to selling add-on cameras, integrators can offer add-on solutions like access control, environmental sensors to protect people, and critical infrastructure and new analytic solutions. Technology partners can now easily up-sell vertical solutions or analytics in the cloud. Integrators will have access to an ever-growing portfolio of solutions: people detection; eliminating false alarms; facial recognition for opening doors; license plate recognition for parking garage applications; mask, hard-hat or goggle detection for people safety; and much more in the future.
One more thing. The IPTECHVIEW MxMSP (Managed Services Partner portal) empowers integrators to securely do remote service on installations and generate extra recurring revenue that will provide integrators extra cash flow and an even better ongoing relationship with their customers which will lead to more future business than the old "Install & Break Fix" model. Last but not least the mobility and intuitive IPTECHVIEW MxLINQ application for end-users provides amazing information to the owners and manager. They are fun to use, and customers show their new system to their friends. That changes the sales dynamic for integrators too. There is nothing better than a first-hand endorsement and a customer sending your V-Card to his buddy to get another ball rolling for you.
Robert Messer is the CEO ABP Technology.