Lightyear Joins Hosted VoIP Fray

Lightyear Network Solutions Inc. has joined a number of its peers by getting into the hosted VoIP business.

The Kentucky-based CLEC announced the launch on Thursday; its hosted VoIP is available through agents, whose compensation will vary depending on factors including the size and opportunity of the sale, as well as any special incentives. Channel support includes webinar training and back-office assistance. Other advantages for partners include automated service activation; easy device configuration; firewall and security server; and, for the sales process, Web-based quote generation.

Lightyears BroadSoft-powered product targets SMBs often with more than one location that want to save money on voice services. Hosted VoIP achieves that aim because it uses IP, rather than TDM, access and requires little capital investment, relying instead on an operational-expense model. Most of the money spent on gear goes toward customer-premise equipment such as desktop phones, not pricey switches.

Hosted VoIP has grown in popularity as businesses try to cut down on long-distance and in-house IT staff costs. The product also lets users program adds, moves and changes quickly and cheaply through a Web portal, and comes with far more features than traditional phone platforms. For agents, hosted VoIP often ties into other cloud-based services, too, resulting in more revenue overall.  

Here are some ways partners can make the most of hosted VoIP sales:

  1. Identify ideal customers.
  2. Use the meeting time to discuss pain points and business needs. Explain how hosted VoIP features can help solve those problems and contribute to employees productivity. When possible, have your hosted VoIP provider on hand to conduct a demonstration.
  3. Create a proposal with the help of your carefully selected hosted VoIP provider.
  4. Again meet with the prospect, bringing in your hosted VoIP provider for answers to questions about technology, implementation and so on.
  5. Close the deal and let the hosted VoIP provider get to work on deployment.
  6. Take part in that provisioning as much as you are willing, so you keep learning about the products and services youre selling.
  7. Continue to take advantage of provider-hosted education and training.
  8. Encourage your customers to take advantage of the providers end-user training.

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