Selling in 2022: What tech solutions are end customers looking for this year?
Microsoft Teams – still very much in demand
With the accelerated shift to Cloud services, particularly Microsoft Teams, partners that previously had a stable portfolio selling hosted VoIP, on-premise and UCaaS from a mix of vendors are now looking to achieve a greater wallet share from the Microsoft Teams environment. Customers have learnt that they can now work effectively on Teams, so the product set has moved accordingly.
Resellers and MSPs are now having to learn how to exploit the situation. Many talk about having a Swiss army knife of solutions around their Microsoft proposition with add-on applications for call centre services, analytics and call recording. The aim is to meet customers’ evolving requirements whilst enhancing those that the customer had in a traditional voice environment.
Resellers need to get a grip or they risk being left behind. The Teams environment is a huge ecosystem that presents a considerable challenge for those trying to understand its complexity and licences. The transition to Teams means resellers need to upskill to stay competitive through either training or acquiring the necessary expertise.
Quick wins are key
An easy win is to offer low touch add-ons to Teams. Resellers can differentiate their offering beyond just selling SIP trucks. This helps them to elevate the conversation so that they are talking more about productivity improvements and the utilisation of the services. This is where the greatest margin is available and where resellers can find sticky applications that add value and differentiates them in the market.
What are the long term implications?
The largest MSPs will be looking for a full spectrum of applications and services to enhance their portfolios which deliver primarily quantifiable benefits to customers, but also a good margin for them. Call analytics and call recording services as well as analytics for Microsoft Teams, are some of the areas that are capturing particular attention as our working environment remains in flux. Attention is also turning towards fraud protection as scam calling regulations for telecoms providers become enforced across the globe.
How should vendors be supporting their partners in 2022?
Vendors play a vital role in supporting resellers and MSPs and helping them to understand the value proposition in depth. Vendors can ensure their partners have the necessary go-to-market materials in various formats that can be easily accessed and used by their sales teams. Training is another key ingredient, helping to keep the product and sales teams up to date with the latest capabilities via tools like videos and webinars.
Resellers and MSPs should look to work with vendors that provide education and guidance in a structured way, providing everything they need to spot opportunities, close deals and give an excellent customer experience that secures high retention. It’s just not good enough to provide materials that are only relevant for the proposal stage of a deal.