Why Security Dealers Should Always Offer a Demo

Consultant Peter Giacalone has witnessed dealers who’ve utilized demonstrations as part of their in-home sales presentation generate an increase in their closing ratios.

Without question we’ve all experienced how the electronic security industry has changed over the past decade. In addition to the great advances in hardware, systems, software, communications channels and services, shifts have rapidly become the norm in other areas of the industry that are not necessarily related to the technology and systems.

As we embark on the New Year with the belief of many experts that it will be a robust one for the security industry, it’s a good time to look at some fundamentals that will assure your own success in 2018. One area that’s experienced some vast change concerns the methods in which security and residential systems in particular are marketed and sold.

We veterans of the industry remember when home security barely had a marketing presence. Now we see constantly increasing usage on a daily basis of television, radio, newspaper, magazines, billboards, Internet, etc., to pitch home security or home automation and controls.

In addition, some of the fastest growing security and security-related companies have decided to take a page out of the old sales playbook and are very focused on direct sales and going door-to-door for procuring new sales and client expansion.

Every Presentation Should Tell the Full Security Story

While technologies and marketing approaches may have changed, it’s essential that certain basic and proven tactics remain in place, or at the very least not lost in the shuffle. It seems that the fast pace of Internet sales and door-knocking sales have caused some of the traditional security dealers to resort to a swifter, less comprehensive sales pitch.

Some have gone from the comprehensive in-home sales presentation, to a fast-and-furious pitch and an attempt at a power close before delivering the entire value proposition.

Although you absolutely need to have a strong and meaningful closing pitch, you can’t lose sight of the entire presentation and build-up to that close. The residential security channel has plenty of room for the variety of offerings and dealer types that currently exist, to varying degrees of success.

But I’m concerned that some of the traditional dealers — who have the desire to maintain clients with comprehensive systems that take the holistic approach of securing all openings and areas of a home — are starting to miss out on presenting and explaining the entire system.

They’re doing themselves a disservice because they have strayed from communicating the entire story to prospective clients, including visual aids that best depict the use and value of what your company brings to the table vs. the other guys.

This doesn’t even have to be a full-blown in-home demonstrating of the system. But in today’s industry climate it should most definitely include a demo of the mobile app and bringing the central monitoring center into the sale as an integral element of the entire picture.

Based on my experience, dealers that simply utilized two-way audio verification demonstrations as part of their in-home sales presentation all generated an increase in their closing ratios. This is one example of why allowing a prospect to touch, feel and hear the proposition will lead to more sales.

With all the great strides we have made in new technologies, dealers have tremendous opportunities to show services as web access, smartphone controls and notifications, remote video … just to mention a few.

Education on Advantages of Pro Monitoring Is Paramount

Consumers long for valuable information, especially when it comes to areas in which they are not highly informed or educated. Although security has grown and consumers are more educated than in the past, they are not necessarily up on a lot of the new technology.

This includes one extremely important area: why self-monitoring is not a replacement for UL-Listed professional monitoring. Only the professional dealer can convey why and how self-monitoring is simply an augmentation and extension of the services provided by a UL-Listed central monitoring center, which should be included with every system.

This presents a significant opportunity for the dealers who have the confidence and are willing to take the time to explain what is available. It puts you at an advantage when presenting to new users and especially when pitching existing or experienced users who are seeking new reasons to make a security decision.

It’s an area the competition may not be amply addressing. Home security and controls is a very hot topic and the future looks bright. Unfortunately, this also means more and more mature competition.

I don’t believe anyone likes to leave money on the table. Quality leads and new sales are hard to come by, so it’s vital to do all that we can in a professional manner when in front of a potential client to keep them informed and to secure the sale.

The tools and services are at your disposal; don’t forget to utilize them. Make it a New Year’s resolution, and you’ll be rewarded with more sales and referrals that yield greater margins and loyalty.

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About the Author


Peter Giacalone is President of Giacalone Associates, an independent security consulting firm.

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