If the pandemic has taught us anything (beyond the term ‘social distancing’ and reminding us of the importance of washing our hands) it’s that customers are double and tripling down on security. There is a premium on feeling and being secure. As they say in the real estate industry, “this is a seller’s market.” And whether you are selling more standard equipment like video cameras and video doorbells or selling and installing more complicated commercial equipment like security entrances, there is a great opportunity right now to expand with new business and customers. Below you’ll find selling tips for security dealers, from security experts in the industry, that can help you close the deal and earn the trust of your customers.
Last month on the SDM Editor’s Podcast, several industry experts discussed selling tips for security entrances. While that might not be everybody’s expertise, there were a few main takeaways that can be applied broadly to the industry. On the podcast, J.C. Powell, vice president of sales at Boon Edam; Heath Mabe, vice president of business development at Integrated Security Solutions; Sean Crain, president and CEO of Orion Security Systems; and Joey Edmunds, vice president of sales at Stone Security, all provided valuable insights on selling security.
Sean Crain, president and CEO of Orion Security Systems, said one of the biggest tips he can offer security dealers is, “Get trained and certified. There are opportunities everywhere.” This applies to essentially every industry. How often do you think, ‘If I could just do [blank]…” Well, you can. The ESA National Training School is a valuable resource to get you or your team trained on essentially any install, integration or task. Or if you have specific partnerships with service or product providers, consider using their available certification programs such as Honeywell’s Dealer Service Certification for example.
Perhaps your company already knows all the ins-and-outs of your specific product or service, but you need to get your new sales rep(s) up to speed. For this, Joey Edmunds, VP of sales for Stone Security said, “Take a field trip to a place that has the technology in use. This helps both the sales rep and the client or potential client.” Seeing first-hand is a great way to educate your sales reps.
Heath Mabe, VP of business development at Integrated Security Solutions, piggy-backed on that point. “Take your sales folks to a place where there was a problem and where the problem was resolved.” Again, we’re discussing hands-on training. Showing your sales reps that issues are going to arise in the field, but that there is always a solution for those issues, is a great way to create a positive outcome mindset for the sales rep. And of course, it gives them a bit of a ‘visual training manual’ on how to handle those situations.
Building relationships with your staff, your customers, and seeking out partnerships with integrators can be hugely beneficial to providing your customers with the absolute best products and service.
Coinciding with their discussion on training, the crew from the SDM Podcast elaborated on the importance of building partnerships with other businesses and integrators, especially if you arrive at a situation where you may need to subcontract work. J.C Powell, VP of sales for Boon Edam said, “I’ve always found that in order to ensure success, surround yourself with the best people.”
Each business leader on the podcast discussed a point where they knew of a security dealer that didn’t quite understand how to do a job — which believe it or not is totally fine! But where security dealers go wrong is not finding the best people for the job. Through reliable partnerships, you can find someone to do the best work possible for your clients. This strengthens the relationship between both the customer and your business partners. What doesn’t build trust with your customers is doing a poor job installing something you don’t fully understand.
Joey Edmonds also expressed the importance of sitting down with your customers. “End users can sometimes think that products are too complicated. They might have needs, but not the vocabulary to explain. As the expert, you can listen intently and describe to them the solutions to their problems.”
Another major concern for end users is, of course, price. Sitting down with your customers gives you the perfect opportunity to expound on your product or service’s value proposition. If they can be walked through all the complicated security jargon and see the true value of your product and service, this eases their concern over pricing (most of the time, anyway).
J.C. Powell wrapped up the podcast with a great quote. He said, “You can’t just use a single hammer for every project that comes up [in your home]. You need a full toolbox.” No single tip or effort made is going to raise your sales through the roof. Instead, it’s applying all the above to your “selling toolbox” that is going to create your best sales team and the best experience for your customers. Educate and train yourself and your staff and work on relationships between your staff, your customers and your partners — that’s what industry experts say is the key to successfully selling security.
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