AMS Offers On-Hold Messaging as a Service

Agents looking for an easy add-on sale can look to Audio Messaging Solutions LLC, which recently released is managed on-hold messaging service to telecom agent channel.

“This is really a marketing tool to help their customers’ businesses grow,” said AMS President Mitch Keller. “It just happens to be connected to their telephony platform and happens to leverage that phone call as a captive audience.”

AMS has a large, entrenched channel of telephony gearmakers, distributors and dealers for its hardware/software package, but it’s looking to telephony agents to embrace the subscription-based managed service it offers directly to businesses.

The service includes music and professional voice recordings for on-hold messaging, auto attendants and IVR systems. It works with newer IP-based systems that have embedded flash memory, or can work with a traditional PBX using external hardware, which is included with the subscription service at no charge.

In addition, the company recently developed industry-first software to automatically update embedded systems rather than require IT staff to manually update audio files, said Keller. The software enables AMS servers to talk directly to each local system to send updates to the audio files. As an alternative, it also will link with a client’s server to communicate instructions and files, which it, in turn, disseminates to the local systems. Generally available since January 2010, the software works for Cisco Unified Communications Manager and UC Manager Express; AMS is working on compatibility with Asterisk-based systems and is investigating opportunities to integrate with Avaya Inc. systems through its Aura software.

The messaging package includes four updates (including writing and voice talent) during the year for $59.95 per month; additional locations with the same messaging are $19.95 each per month. Multilocation businesses – each with custom requirements – receive a 15 to 20 percent discount on each location. Locations that only want music are $19.95 each per month. More frequent update schedules are quoted individually.

AMS has three tiers of partners. Referral partners earn $250 spiff on messaging sales and $150 for music-only sales. Agents that close sales themselves earn the upfront spiffs plus a residual of 15 percent if their volume is less than $30,000, and 20 percent if it’s more. A third tier, a master agent, is billed at a wholesale rate of $9.95 for music-only and $29.95 for messaging. They rebill the customer while AMS still handles the customer service.

Keller said he is seeking to recruit 30-40 indirect sales partners in 2010. AMS offers Web-based training for new partners and also a secure partner portal where agents can see their accounts, their scheduled scripts and listen to the audio files.

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