Residential Security Insights With United Alarm’s Jim Corbett

United Alarm’s Jim Corbett offers his thoughts on the residential security market.

In honor of SSI‘s annual November Residential Issue, my Between Us Pros column includes comments from four leading home controls and services market experts. In a series of four blogs, I share the complete Q&As. This installment features United Alarm‘s Jim Corbett.

What is the greatest residential opportunity presenting itself to security dealers/integrators right now?

Jim Corbett: With more exposure for burglar alarm systems and the negative things going on, we have more opportunity for sales based on protecting people with cameras, access control, burglar alarms, fire alarms and CO gas detection.

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How can companies best take advantage of the above opportunity or opportunities?

Corbett: When you do a sales call, you educate the consumer as to what products you have available to help them secure themselves.

What are the top barriers or challenges to succeeding in today’s residential security marketplace?

Corbett: Educating the consumer that nothing is free to do the job properly, as we want to protect you properly. Never forget, we are trying to save a life.

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Which is the better sales approach today, leading with security or with home automation-type convenience services? Why?

Corbett: For us, it is still about protecting a life, so we lead with security. Other items we always use as add-ons; we are an alarm company first, and our focus is on you.

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Should security dealers be concerned about telcos, cablecoms, DIY and all the rest that have jumped into residential security? Why or why not?

Corbett: We are not concerned about the phone company or cable as they are only about the money. As we know, they have failed in the past. They can never do as good with service as can a traditional alarm company. As for the DIY consumer who is looking for inexpensive, that is not a person we want as a customer. We want customers who want true security. I always tell people, “I can sell you a proper alarm cheaper than you can get a free alarm.” If you had a bad light switch, are you going to call a nationwide electrician or a local person? The same is true for security. It is all about the service and doing the job right. 

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Tagged with: Residential Market

About the Author


Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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