The ABCs of Selling VMS

Installing security contractors looking to take the leap into video management software (VMS) sales will need to begin with a strong educational foundation. Long-term customer relationships can be built with an instructive, consultative sales approach that positions the integrator as a subject matter expert.

Illustrating to the customer the true value of an open platform VMS system and its ability to keep people and property safe is a main selling point for many security installations. photography © There are common communication capabilities within the open platform, which is vital to address. For example, open platforms have the ability to work with thousands of devices from legions of camera manufacturers and software partners. Such integrated systems allow for interoperability that deliver newfound business efficiencies and optimizations.

Everything from recording, archiving and exporting requirements to camera and third-party integrations are important selling points, with each provided answer strengthening the relationship as it progresses. Continued education on both sides will go all way in fostering a long-term relationship.

Sales Success Begins With an Educated Team

For many integrators and their end-user customers, becoming acclimated in the IP space will engender learning the numerous aspects of an open platform’s integration capabilities. Certifications, hands-on experience and salespeople’s overall general knowledge are all important pieces for success.

The buyer must be educated on the problems they are trying to address and the goals they want to achieve with their new system: core infrastructure, operability, scalability and flexibility, among others. Ensuring the features and functions are well explained helps bring about a successful sale, as well as a more fruitful experience after the installation.

Open platform software manufacturers offer integrators trained and certified sales teams to help reinforce the technology aspects, while providing support to help earn the signed contract. Knowing the product is one thing, but what is the value proposition? Increasing revenue by offering additional services adds to the value, which the end user will certainly appreciate.

With additional certifications, an integrator’s ongoing strength is increased. Investing in the training certifications helps to underscore the professionalism of a partner, while also increasing the knowledge of industry tr
ends and applications. These differentiate you in the marketplace and end customers learn and appreciate who these more valuable partners are. 

The vast portfolio of an open platform, with a wider ecosystem to draw on, results in relationships that continue to build. This helps develop more leads and increase additional services.

Yet there is still no contract without an agreement; closing the deal is essential. Highlight the value of an open platform, IP-based VMS solution by literally doing the math for your customer. It’s one of the strongest sales tactics you can show a potential customer: “This is how much it costs … This is how much you will save if you install this system … It will pay for itself in this many months … This is what you can do with it in the future. This is how it will grow with your needs, earning back your investment many times over.”

At the end of the day, the system should adhere to the current requirements of the end user, while also enabling future functionalities and efficiencies. You can be there to provide them. That long-term capability is what really cements the success of your customer relationships.

Manny Nylen is Vice President, Field Sales, Americas, for Milestone Systems. He can be contacted at [email protected]

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