4 Dealer Programs to Help Security Companies Achieve Greater Success
Bosch, COPS, Honeywell and Wavestore — which dealer program is right for your business?
IN BOTH STRONG ECONOMIC TIMES and tough ones, every business owner can surely benefit from a strong support system. Whether it be financial, marketing or sales support, today’s security dealers and integrators have myriad options to choose from on the dealer program marketplace.
As the industry continues to evolve and mature, increasingly more dealer programs are being put in place, both on the monitoring company and manufacturer sides. They’re designed to help dealers and integrators grow their companies and support their business goals. Finding a good fit is fundamental to making the most of what a dealer program has to offer, specific to your company and your particular business goals.
Most dealer programs offered by monitoring companies involve the purchase of your monitoring contracts and they, in turn, provide you with additional capital and sales and marketing support to expand your business and customer base. Many manufacturer partner programs, on the other hand, offer discounted product pricing and sales and technical training to catalyze your sales and technical savvy when specifying their brand.
If you’re looking to align your business with a dealer program, do your homework to ensure it is in sync with your business model and growth plans. Take inventory. Are you focusing on a particular type of install (e.g., video surveillance, access, fire, etc.) and typically specify a particular brand? Are you looking for funding? Technical support? Special pricing? Marketing and PR assistance? Pinpointing the type of support system most relevant to your business and future growth strategy is the first step in choosing a dealer program that’s most beneficial to you.
An in-depth look at just a few of these offerings can be found below as several industry-leading companies detail the specifics on their latest dealer program and support offerings. Even if you don’t partner with them specifically, note what they deliver to help educate yourself about the types of benefits to hunt for with other firms shown in the directory (see SSI’s Gold Book edition for additional providers).
1. Bosch Targets Training and Marketing
Bosch Security Systems works with an extensive network of certified dealers and integrators to design communications, security and life-safety solutions for the market. Its products and systems span communications, video surveillance, access control and intrusion and fire detection.
The company has been closely engaged with the dealer community for decades, and launched its most recent offering – the Bosch Authorized Security Dealers program (which supplanted the Bosch Certified Security Dealers program) – last year. It is an invitation-only program with about 10% of its dealers enrolled.
While some dealer programs can be labor intensive for the dealer to manage, Bosch has invested in automated tools, like a marketing automation platform and a private app, to help streamline the process for the dealer to access program benefits. Bosch’s authorized program focuses on two key elements: training and marketing.
“There are a number of benefits in the program that revolve around making sure we have the best-trained dealers in the market,” says Paul Garms, regional marketing manager for Bosch Security Systems. “Leveraging the Bosch brand is important to our dealers, so we also provide marketing support to ensure they have access to materials and automated campaigns that they can use to promote their business and their relationship with Bosch.”
Bosch offers free training at all of its corporate training centers, as well as significantly discounted private training sessions. Online training resources are also provided through the Bosch Training Academy.
“Our private dealer app offers up-to-date information on promotions and new products, as well as branding and marketing materials,” Garms points out. “We also have a marketing automation platform that provides access to more sophisticated tools that can be used to build marketing lists, manage and send E-mail campaigns, create custom ads and direct mail campaigns, and more.”
When they join the program, dealers receive a welcome package with logo items and gain access to the online tools. “Our field sales organization is great at answering questions about the program, and there is a product marketing resource at our corporate headquarters who manages the program and is available to handle any inquiries,” Garms says. Membership in the Bosch program is at the recommendation of its district sales team and is based on the dealer’s commitment to representing the Bosch product line in a manner consistent with the brand’s reputation for quality and innovation.
With so many dealer programs being introduced over recent years, Garms advises dealers and integrators shopping the market: “You should never represent a product line just because of the dealer program being offered. As a manufacturer, we’re looking for quality dealers who are committed to our products. As a dealer, you should feel passionate about the products you sell; customers will see that when you are speaking with them. The dealer program should simply reinforce those goals.”
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