Registration Open for Ultimate Partner Training August 20-23
Registration Open for Ultimate Partner Training August 20-23

How to Sell UCaaS:

The Ultimate Guide

Businesses are increasingly adopting unified communications as a service (UCaaS) with its benefits that include flexibility for remote workers, access to advanced features, and relief from having to maintain on-premise communications technology. Telecom agents have an opportunity to grow their portfolios with UCaaS as its adoption rates won’t be slowing down any time soon. Here lies a strong sales opportunity for partners. But you can’t approach these sales in a haphazard manner; the key to success is to develop an understanding of how to sell UCaaS.

The UCaaS Market Today

Why Partners Need to Tap Into the UCaaS Market Today

According to a study by Synergy Research Group, the UCaaS market is experiencing a growth rate of 29% per year. From zero upfront fees and a reduced total cost of ownership to increased flexibility and unlimited scalability, UCaaS offers an abundance of benefits at a price most companies can afford. There’s never been a better time to offer UCaaS to your customers, which brings us to the question: How do you sell UCaaS? There are a number of aspects to address when it comes to selling UCaaS, which we explain below.

Leveraging the Rise of UCaaS in the Enterprise

Enterprise businesses have an opportunity to reap the benefits of UCaaS. It’s important for partners to understand, however, that selling to the enterprise isn’t a sale of advanced features. Enterprises are more focused on the total cost of ownership, and they’re looking to get rid of on-prem servers, which pose both a risk and a responsibility.

It is still important for partners to demonstrate the slicker products and feature sets available through UCaaS, but it is even more important as an agent to pay attention to effectively using the customers’ budgets to give them what they need by reducing the management footprint. This increases an organization’s ability to satisfy the needs of both their external and internal customers. Moreover, it helps agents provide additional services that can help customers succeed and make the agent more valuable, while increasing wallet share in a single customer.

There are a few nuances regarding how to sell UCaaS to enterprises:

Spend time understanding your customers’ environments and the solutions that work in those environments.

Conduct a full review of usage to ensure enterprises are not missing anything that they may not recognize is required.

Verify the features the customer says they want are actually necessary.

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How to Sell UCaaS

How to Sell UCaaS to the Mid-Sized Business

Enterprise customers are one thing, but mid-sized businesses are a different animal. Often too big for the simpler packages but too small to have the pockets of the enterprise, mid-sized businesses need a partner with the expertise to guide them through a transition to UCaaS. Here’s what you need to know about how to sell UCaaS to mid-sized businesses:

They’re investing in unified communications. According to Gartner, mid-sized businesses expect to increase their investment in several different breeds of unified communications technology, including collaboration tools, mobility-related systems, solutions focused on meetings, and more.

They are shifting their focus to the cloud. Mid-sized businesses are turning to cloud for their IT investments, allowing the partner who specializes in these services to bring out the latest and greatest.

They are moving toward mobility. Whether it’s having an emergency backup for disaster recovery and business continuity or going to a full remote working program, mid-size businesses are looking at unified communications to make connecting remotely easier.

Improve Your Ability to Sell UCaaS to Businesses of All Sizes

It’s important for partners to understand how to sell UCaaS to any business, regardless of size. These tips will help pave the way to more UCaaS sales:

Protect the customer. Downtime costs an average of $8,850 per minute. UCaaS is extremely reliable and quickly addresses any downtime issues. Boosting your UCaaS sales, therefore, can be as easy as calling attention to your protective measures. Focus on your security, your highly-trained staff of problem solvers, and your quality of service (QoS) agreement if you have one. (If you don’t, making one is a good plan.)

Support remote workers. More than one-third of employees will work remotely in the next 10 years. UCaaS is a great tool to keep remote workers working, so draw attention to that point. Point out how a customer’s remote-working employees can use UCaaS tools to stay connected to each other and the wider office and improve accountability.

Adjust your sales tactics. Sales tactics that were a requirement 20 years ago like cold calling and telemarketing are mostly illegal today. Instead, focus on social media interaction, qualified leads and the like to keep up. Those more modern channels present an opportunity to interact with (and possibly become) thought leaders in the UCaaS world.

Get to know your customer’s true needs. The only way to ensure a truly successful UCaaS sale is to get inside your customer’s business, understand the issues and obstacles at hand, and then recommend the right UCaaS solution for the job. Sales reps who are uneducated about UCaaS and just sell to sell won’t get as far as a knowledgeable partner devoted to truly understanding the customer’s pain points.

Educate your sales reps (and yourself). Leverage your partner ecosystem to continually learn about new technologies, including UCaaS. If you’re able to bring true expertise to your customers, you will be better able to solve their pain points.

UCaaS and the Internet of Things

With the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT), a whole new opportunity has opened up to help drive those UCaaS sales. Partners can leverage IoT to drive their UCaaS sales by explaining these benefits:

A powerhouse in fleet. Anyone with a fleet—vans, trucks, or even drones—can appreciate the value of IoT. Incorporating unified communications simplifies the connectivity process and allows the information that IoT systems gather to be more readily sent back for use.

Improvements in monitoring. The same principles that make IoT and unified communications a power in fleet management can be put to work in other segments. IoT data collected can be used to improve workflow, address bottlenecks, and ultimately improve productivity.

Better collaboration. While unified communications systems tend to improve collaboration alone by offering more ways to keep employees talking to each other, IoT generates data that makes that communication more effective. It also helps keep data where it’s needed, meaning there’s less time wasted in trying to find the information about shipping schedules, raw materials figures, or whatever needs to be discussed.

Take this page with you with a free PDF version.

Overcoming UCaaS Challenges

How to Sell UCaaS in the Face of Certain Challenges

The clear benefits to UCaaS should make it a relatively easy solution to sell. There are, however, a few challenges presented by the technology that need to be addressed in order to convince more skeptical customers.

More data, more problems. Unified communications systems can be positively staggering sources of data, but data needs to be collected, stored, and accessible by analytics systems in order to be put to use. This means that when the UCaaS solution is deployed, it needs to have not only facilities to gather the data generated—call times, call lengths, content of the call and so on—but also a means to gather that data and move it to the analytics systems.

A cloud connection. Analytics functions have made great strides in cloud connectivity, and thankfully, so have unified communications systems. Since both systems have localized equivalents, though, it may mean that special accommodations need to be reached, especially for firms making the decision to do either analytics or unified communications in-house.

The relationship between big data and UCaaS. While it’s immediately clear how UCaaS improves big data, it may be less clear how analytics improves unified communications. Explain to customers that they can take the analysis tools big data offers and discover all sorts of useful things. For instance, analytics can tell when a unified communications system is experiencing unusual lag or issues in voice quality. It can also tell why and provide insight on how to fix problems.

Overcoming the Cost Objection

One seemingly major hurdle that’s actually easy to overcome is the question of UCaaS costs. All that needs to be done is to demonstrate that the value of UCaaS is greater than the value of the cash that would be required to bring it in. Sound simple enough? Here are some trends that will help you sell UCaaS in the face of the cost objection:

Highlight the fact that budgets are on the rise (mostly). Some hefty gains are afoot in total IT budget spend. The gains aren’t universal, but they’re there: 46.2% of companies are planning increases, while only 6% of firms are planning cuts. The firms likely to bolster budgets are larger firms, where firms under 250 employees remain skittish about hikes.

Explain that cloud is growing. Right now, architectures are broken down into three classes: on-premise, hybrid, and cloud. Those with on-premise solutions hold 33% of the market, cloud at 29%, while 38% hold hybrid. Those with hybrid architectures are either planning to go full cloud over several years or stay hybrid permanently. Cloud, therefore, is on the rise as the other two classes hold ground or decline.

Cost is no longer the priority. Costs in general are a declining priority, down from 49% in 2017 to 33.1% in 2018. The big new priority is agility, which large businesses commonly need. (And those large businesses are the ones boosting their IT budgets as noted previously.)

The Top 5 Things You Must Know as a Partner for a UCaaS Rollout

So you figured out how to sell UCaaS, and it’s time to help your customer implement it. That’s great! For partners, a UCaaS rollout can be a challenge. The actions you take to help establish a rollout can be the start of business relationships that last long after the individual partner has retired. Help build those relationships with the top five points to know to make a unified communications rollout work.

1

Make sure everybody is involved.

Before you’re even in a position to start a rollout, get ready in advance by bringing in perspective from all the major stakeholders. This helps you increase the chances of spotting problems before they crop up, right in the earliest stages.

2

Be ready with an answer.

It’s a safe bet that your customer will ask a lot of questions in the earliest stages, and that’s just what you want to happen. All these questions help suggest issues to watch for, and establish your reputation for being knowledgeable in unified communications.

3

Know what’s available.

A UCaaS rollout can be a big process; it’s easy to overlook some key points. Consider adding lesser-known technologies like redundant connections to fuel stability. This makes the rollout go more smoothly and work better down the line.

4

Prepare for the worst.

Watch out for things like number porting and the development of design documentation, and be flexible so you can address issues that pop up.

5

Engagement, always.

Get regular feedback about the process, and then be available to make the desired changes. Don’t just take that feedback from one or two sources, either; try to get a complete cross-section or even poll the entire user base. These points help build engagement and reinforce your positive image.

Are You Ready to Sell UCaaS?

Just over half (51%) of businesses implementing a tool like UCaaS to integrate their communications report both improved productivity and better communication among colleagues. As a telecom agent, you have a vast opportunity to expand your portfolio when you learn how to sell UCaaS to businesses of any size. If you’re ready to connect your customers to the benefits of UCaaS, we can help you get started. Contact us today.

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