… spend the time – and money – troubleshooting to try and get their customers back online. This is a win for both the partner and customer.
Uptime is a leading reason behind why Cabot Howell, VP of IT at MSP Digital Agent, leads with Hosted Exchange with his clients.
“Hosted Exchange delivers greater uptime, and that’s a huge deal for both our customers and our company,” says Howell. “And in addition to a superior on-boarding experience, I know that my customers will receive a better response time on Hosted Exchange whether they have support needs or modification requests.”
Partners need direct support too, but it can be a big expense. In fact, support is a critical differentiator that can mean the difference between healthy margins and profit loss. With my company’s – and most suppliers’ – Hosted Exchange offerings, partners can gain direct access to email experts, sales resources and marketing collateral, in addition to the usual partner program elements. When evaluating Hosted Exchange vendors, look deeper than 24/7 support. This should be the baseline minimum. Will they handle all of the migration and on-boarding for you? Will you have a dedicated representative or have to turn to multiple sources for support? Make sure you know how that service and support received will translate across other partner systems, like ConnectWise, for instance. Partner-friendly support programs free up precious time while making for happy customers.
A common concern among MSPs is the fact that Office 365 cannot be sold under a private-label model.
“We evaluated Office 365 but chose Hosted Exchange from Intermedia because Microsoft wouldn’t offer a white-label version,” says Kirk Harding, CEO at Bay Computing Group. “This made the margins miniscule. With a private-label approach, we are able to apply our branding to add on services and better control the strength and longevity of our customer relationships, all while setting our own margins.”
By its nature, Hosted Exchange doesn’t price as a commodity. While Office 365 might offer a suite of products, as a standalone offering, Hosted Exchange provides partners the opportunity to better customize their email service depending on customer need, while allowing partners to set pricing. Again, complementary add-ons, like email archiving, email encryption, and UCaaS – which includes services such as file sharing, video conferencing and voice – give partners the ability to create their own unique solution bundles that can be priced according to the additional value they deliver.
If a partner is selling Office 365 Business Premium for example, a customer can easily look up the price on this predefined, branded bundle, handcuffing the partner to meet comparison shopping pricing; whereas, due to its inherent nature, a highly customizable model such as Hosted Exchange paired with value-added services effectively removes comparison shopping from the equation, allowing partners to better control margins while providing their customers with exceptional value, flexibility and reliability.
At the end of the day, it’s about differentiation and adding exponential value for the customer. Hosted Exchange is just one more option partners can use to differentiate themselves, establish and grow relationships, and offer great and reliable service, all while realizing better margins and profitability on their own terms.
To hear more, stop by Intermedia’s booth at Channel Partners Conference & Expo.
As SVP of product management, Irina Shamkova is responsible for the development and execution of Intermedia’s product road map, ranging from cloud voice, web/video/content sharing and conferencing, chat, presence, file backup, sync and share, business email, identity and access management, security, archiving and other essential unified-communications applications. In addition to product strategy, Irina oversees several high-performing Intermedia teams, including product management, UI/UX, and customer experience.
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