Monday Morning Thoughts on Sales and Strategy

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

Monday Morning Thoughts on Sales and Strategy

This testimonial for ANPI by an RLEC is worth listening to just to understand the thinking behind moving to cloud comms. Try at least the first 90 seconds.

Seth Godin's blog today describes not a pyramid, but a Frustum. Seth uses the music business as the example, but I see it in the telecom industry today. There are no winners. There are lots and lots and lots of providers doing the exact same thing.


And in channel building, it isn't about getting 450 partners, because truthfully it will be 45 that make you all the money. The other 405 are overhead.

Developing a strategic plan means not only describing the product, the outcome, the target market, but what success looks like. Often we just have a nebulous revenue number in mind or hundreds of millions.

Everything is a race to raise millions, be a unicorn, cash out big. It is the new lottery system. It isn't reality.

At the end of the day, what is the business strategy? What is the Why? What is the exit strategy - or are you building a business built to last?

I notice that every channel exec and every telecom exec says that the reason that things are off - or they are not growing as much - is because sales people can't sell. While I understand that telecom selling has not kept up with the times, I also think that the providers, the execs, the marketers have done a crappy job of telling the story.

Throwing words like Hosted PBX, Cloud, IOT, SDN at the marketplace is nonsense. It's inside baseball jargon that doesn't mean anything to the buyers. No one is searching for hosted pbx on Google. The fact that we have gone through so many terms - Hosted VoIP, Hosted PBX, UC, Hosted UC, UCaaS - just goes to show that we don't know what the f we are selling. A new acronym is not going to move the needle. A new story will. Plain language will. Talking about Solutions, Business Outcomes, take-aways, not features and products. (More here)

Selling needs to change. But so does all the friction in buying and selling telecom. No one makes it easy.

And speaking of friction, AT&T is pushing its IPFLEX, scaring customers with the noise that all the copper is being retired, basically forcing people to transition to IPFLEX from TDM PRIs. However, you can't run faxes on it - still! IPFLEX is just a SIP Trunk -- like oh so many providers offer in much the same way. There still needs to be a pipe. There are still call quality issues with OTT VoIP. Despite all of that, it is simply pushing a Product, not delivering a Solution. It is FUD, friction, frustration.

I guess I have been beating the same drum over the last three blog posts. A little repetitive, but maybe we need to hear it more than once, in a couple of different ways, before we realize that this blog is in fact a mirror for you.


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