Triple Play? Why Not Go For a Grand Slam?
By Justin McLain, CEO, Endeavor Telecom
For well over a decade, service providers have touted the considerable success in the bundling of "triple play" – the common suite of voice, data, and video/content services over some form of access. This type of three-pronged package is a fundamental utility when engaging residential end customers who utilize each of the different services daily. But is this traditional idea, the “Triple Play" package, relevant for commercial end customers?
I would argue that no, the traditional triple-play bundle does not have the same market demand, due in large part to a general lack of business interest in entertainment content services. Add to that the presence of legacy cable providers (MSOs)-turned-voice-and-data providers for high-capacity access lines, and this traditional model becomes even less appealing to non-MSO service providers. So, how can carriers and agents hope to effectively sell a triple-play package where one of the three offerings may be of little or no value to many potential customers? That’s easy, you change the equation.
For years, commercial service providers have been layering in app-over-app to bundle in access offerings. Even with disaster recovery, online backup, cloud computing, hosted PBX, etc, there is next to no bundling of the one service which has the same universal appeal to every business in America like broadband and video. That third service is security; physical security systems used for burglar alarms, intrusion detection, and premise safety systems. Until recently, managed service providers (MSPs) have largely neglected this true third option of the “telecom trifecta" but mark my words; premise security solutions will become “the next big thing" that sweeps across the industry.
With the convergence of IP networks, VoIP frequently proved to be disruptive to legacy-based analog security systems. Now, with the emergence IP-enabled alarm panels backed up through wireless cellular networks, the market is ripe for a true commercial triple-play bundle which includes security services as that third option. While only a limited number of commercial customers have interest in TV service, every business, whether in the retail, industrial, or administrative space, has the need to protect its property and people. In addition to universal appeal, the RPU on security solutions is much higher than providing TV service to businesses.
So now that you, as a channel leader, are sold on the idea of bundling premise security, it is natural to wonder who is providing such a service to sell. A handful of innovative managed service companies such as Interface Security Systems (ISS) are starting to roll out programs that utilize premise security, digital voice and Internet access via managed broadband connections. In fact, ISS recently announced a new program through which its channel partners finally can offer bundles, including security systems, to commercial clients.
“Many VARs and communication integrators know the benefits of cloud-based services, but have a hard time, and limited resources, transitioning to them," said Robert Aranda, president of Interface IP Services Division. “Our new Channel Partner Program is the easiest way to immediately sell Interface Secure Managed Cloud Services, enter new markets, boost recurring monthly revenue, lower attrition and increase customer loyalty – all with little to no capex requirement."
So there you have it. For the first time in what has been a very long time coming, a commercially meaningful triple-play package is available via the channel. As more companies like ISS emerge and begin offering such programs, so will opportunities emerge for agents on the channel as well. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and hit a grand slam!
Endeavor Telecom CEO Justin McLain is responsible for overseeing company operations. As the steward of Endeavor’s value, he is focused on the development of new service products and strategic relationships assuring the company’s continued growth and success within the telecommunications industry and is actively involved in managing Endeavor’s relationships with its largest customers. McLain has been in executive management with Endeavor since its divestiture in 2002. Prior to that, he worked for HealthSource and Shin-Etsu Polymer Corp. McLain earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a bachelor’s degree in biology from the College of Charleston. He also is a member of the 2010-11 Channel Partners Advisory Board .