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Roundtable: Inspired Video Innovation

Experts from eight of the industry’s foremost video surveillance technology suppliers summarize and prioritize the latest solutions. They break down the key ingredients to ensure engineering breakthroughs meet real-world needs to become breakout successes.



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Mellos: One very interesting innovation is the recently introduced wearable computer. I can see this technology possibly being embraced and implemented by first responders to provide them with video from a facility before and after they arrive on the scene. Another innovation that holds potential is large-scale, gesture-based controls that will enable end users to more quickly, simply and intuitively manage their video surveillance systems. These controls, using hand or other gestures, have the potential to make both a mouse and touch screen redundant.

Surveillance Success Strategies

Surfaro: Instead of being reactionary and following what other integrators do, choose a market where you have strong contact with multiple end-user departments and learn their processes. Then do your best to become a business partner by packaging video surveillance solutions for a wide variety of uses within that one vertical market. In other words, with IP video, you can look beyond typical security or surveillance and into operations, marketing, distance learning, etc.

Simple is better in many cases and end users need useful recommendations to legacy systems. Understand that the faster a user can acquire an upgraded system, even if not 100% new, the faster they will be improving their investigations and facility protection. Video encoders, coax-to-IP converters and similar technologies offer ways to “tighten up” solutions rather than proposing a completely clean, and often more costly, replacement. Along the same lines, be sure to leverage existing infrastructure where applicable. Ethernet over coaxial solutions are lower cost than ever and can get an HDTV camera in the hands of an end user. They will see immediate benefits not only to investigations but business intelligence.

Lastly, mobility is everywhere and, as long as the mobile platform and video source are secure, tablets and smartphones are all potential security action points. It might be as simple as sending a specific text message of a door forced alarm to a particular group or a periodic “check-in” at entry screening. With more personnel carrying more powerful platforms in the palms of their hands, the security information presentation opportunities are tremendous.

Poulin: Think outside the box. Surveillance technology can be used for much more than just security. For example, it can be used for employee training, or to provide valuable analytics and business intelligence. Imagine being able to customize digital advertising depending on the profile of the person walking by, so it is most relevant to each individual based on relative age and gender.  

Know and communicate the difference between price and cost. Customers want the cheapest solution that meets their needs. However, if that system has a high failure rate and will only last a short amount of time, it will end up costing the customer much more in the long run — not just in replacement costs but also labor, lost productivity and the cost of potential theft or other activity that may occur while the system is down. Think in terms of total cost of ownership to help customers get the most for their money.

Upselling really comes down to fulfilling the basic function of any supplier — to serve the customer’s needs. Successful upselling is a function of a maximum understanding of those needs combined with product and market knowledge that equips installing security contractors to guide the customer to meet them.

Staying up with technologies is a challenge in the realm of video surveillance, but successfully answering that challenge also prepares you with an ever-expanding number of ways to earn, and to retain, satisfied customers. For your business, the measure of success will be a healthier bottom line.

Editor-in-Chief Scott Goldfine has spent nearly 15 years with SECURITY SALES & INTEGRATION. He can be reached at (704) 663-7125 or scott.goldfine@securitysales.com.

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Article Topics
Video Surveillance · Bosch Security Systems · D-Link · Dave Poulin · Features · Frank DeFina · Genetec · All Topics

About the Author
Scott Goldfine
Scott Goldfine is Editor-in-Chief and Associate Publisher of Security Sales & Integration, directing all editorial aspects of the magazine brand in print, electronically, online and in person. The voluminous, innovative and award-winning body of work he has distinguished himself with since joining the publication in 1998 includes groundbreaking research, landmark features, leadership roundtables, high profile case studies, and many industry exclusives. Well versed in the technical and business aspects of electronic security (video surveillance, access control, systems integration, intrusion detection, fire/life safety), Goldfine is a nationally known figure in demand as an industry presenter and subject matter expert to mainstream media. He is responsible for developing many unique products and programs, including the SSI Industry Hall of Fame, Control Panel (industry’s first E-mail newsletter), Police Dispatch Quality (PDQ), Marketing Marvel, Installers of the Year, Integrated Installation of the Year, Security Industry Census, Systems Integration Study, Installation Business Report, Operations & Opportunities Report, Commercial End-User Study and Security’s Fantastic Fleets. Recognized for his relationship building, integrity and lead-by-example ethic, Goldfine is a solutions-oriented team player who advises and collaborates with industry dealer/integrator, consultant, distributor, central station and manufacturer icons, luminaries and executive business leaders on a daily basis. He is also actively involved in several security events and organizations, including the Electronic Security Association (ESA), Security Industry Association (SIA), Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC), False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA), PSA-Tec, SAMMY Awards, International Security Conference and Exhibition (ISC), Electronic Security Technology Summit (ESTS), Mission 500, Electronic Security Expo (ESX), ASIS Int’l, Honeywell CONNECT and other supplier conventions. Goldfine also serves on several boards, including the CSAA Marketing and Communications Committee and PSA Cybersecurity Advisory Council. A certified alarm technician, former cable-TV tech, audio company entrepreneur, and lifelong electronics and computers enthusiast, Goldfine graduated with honors from Cal State, Northridge with a management degree in Radio-Television-Film. His professional media endeavors have encompassed magazines, Internet, radio, TV, film, records, teletext and books. Goldfine resides in the Charlotte, N.C., area with his wife, son and three cats.
Contact Scott Goldfine: sgoldfine@ehpub.com
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