Skip to main content

Short Term Thinking as Customers Hanging Up the Phone

Business Voice has a history, and not in a good way. The non-ILECs have made voice an ordeal for business customers. It started when CLECs were selling Integrated T1s like hotcakes. LNP issues. RESPORG/ Toll-free problems. Deployment messes. [To be fair, when BellSouth launched BIS-T1, it was a disaster as well. A huge cluster of a F!] gave an interview to CRN saying that "Every business needs a voice offering, and solution providers that aren't offering VoIP to their customers today are leaving money on the table." True. But voice isn't just a copper line any more. Cellular, SIP Trunks, TDM, Hosted PBX, UC, WebRTC in apps and more are available to replace the POTS lines. This only adds to the crazy. Plus compatibility and inter-operability issues for PBXs, faxes, alarms, elevators, paging and more. Key System Emulation makes me crazy. Intermedia continues, "I've been thinking about what's stopping partners from selling voice, and they must have bad information. They must be believing something that used to be true but that isn't true anymore." Spoken like someone who hasn't been near a customer in ten years. Years of really bad implementations of voice services have resulted in horrible customer experiences. It is why many partners shy away from voice. Sure, a replacement SIP Trunk for a PRI may seem easy until you miss a Toll-free number or the call quality diminishes or the Internet pipe isn't as good as you thought! Cloud communications is more challenging than dial-tone replacement, but providers have done nothing to dispel fear. They add features, but fail to address the Customer Fear! There isn't any real Project Management. Where are the Customer Success stories? As we are in a state of turmoil due to M&A and the integrations that don't work, basic telecom is a mess. How could you trust a company that has to punt on an Ethernet Private Line, a simple point to point, with anything complex? Another reason we are finding it hard to move to UCaaS: The Industry has spent years taking any revenue instead of thinking about the lifetime customer value or the brand. Simply, never saying no to a deal - despite knowing that the customer will not have a great experience - has brought us here. Short term thinking has gotten us to commodity sales. Cable offers HPBX but sticks to selling trunks because it is easy. Partners stick to selling dial-tone replacement because frankly anything else is scary. Forklift upgrades?? No thanks. Figure out how to deliver a P2P easily. Hire a PMP. Start talking about the Deployment - and post-sales. Then we will listen. Zero touch provisioning is a pipe dream.


Popular posts from this blog

3 Things Changing the Channel Forever

There are three things happening that will change the channel forever. And cloud isn't one of them, although indirectly it is.

   One of the biggest factors affecting the channel is the Age. Partners are getting old. They are aging out. And no new blood is coming in. About one-third of the channel has already left - either retired, sold or pivoted to other things (like software). One estimate was that 700 new vendors entered the IT/telecom space in the last 3 years. At least that many. All with the expectation that channel partners will flock over and sell their stuff.

    It is more difficult today to be an Agent. When you made big bank selling T1 and LD, it was easy to transition into the Agent space. Today, notsomuch.

 If you sell a 100MB Internet pipe for $800, you make $120 per month for 3 years BUT you will likely not get paid for 180 days after the contract is inked due to process, install, build, turn up and billing.

 If you sell a 110 seat UCaaS deal at $20 per seat (a…

Secrets of Channel Management

The paperback version of my book, Secrets of Channel Management, is available now on CreateSpace and on Amazon!

The Kindle version has been available for a while. (Get it here.)

To kick off the second half of 2017, I am presenting Secrets for Channel Managers, a 50 minute webinar for channel managers to get some tips, tricks, reminders and Q&A. This webinar will be August 11th at Noon Eastern time. The cost is just $25 per person. Register Here!

Secrets for Channel Managers (webinar)
Aug. 11, 2017 at Noon ET
Register Here!

I will be doing another webinar on the Hosted VoIP/UCaaS Competitive Landscape. This webinar will examine 20 providers out of the 2000 currently operating in the US. It will provide some context as well as analysis of what the marketplace looks like today. Join me on August 25th at 2 pm ET for this data packed hour. REGISTER NOW!

The Competitive Landscape of US Hosted VoIP/UCaaS
Aug. 25, 2017 at 2 pm ET

On RAD's Radar: the CEO of LANtelligence

LANtelligence CEO, Marty Tracey, did both an interview with me and a podcast. We discuss the changes facing the channel as well as Cloud Contact Center as a Service.

 LANtelligence comes to the space after morphing from a PBX systems integrator. Today, they design, implement and support UCaaS, CCCaaS and other cloud comms for businesses of all sizes in the USA and Canada. Partners are welcome to work with them as we discuss in the podcast below.

The Interview with LANtelligence CEO, Marty Tracey.

 Here is the podcast with him:

The podcast is at Soundcloud.