Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Transition of the Copier Industry Part V

What Can Copier/Printers Dealers Do?

You could do nothing and keep stealing pages from other vendors and have other vendors steal your pages.  There's no growth in pages!

Many traditional copier companies are now embracing and moving forward with Managed Network Services.  At one time I asked why the heck would we do that, the other day I got my answer, when it comes to on-site service and support no one does it better than copiers dealers, not IT companies, not phone system dealers nada they all stink. We are the best for on-site support within our channel.

Dealers need to diversify their offerings:

If you're just a traditional copier dealer then I might suggest adding systems where you can also can some maintenance agreement revenue along with break and fix.  Take a look at offering folding machines, folders/inserters, mailing equipment, paper cutters, scoring machines, business card cutters, and pressure sealers. I like the addition of pressure sealers because you can get more bang for your buck, you can sell the media, the pressure sealer and then reap the clicks from higher volume MFP's, light production units and even duplicators.  All of these devices will need service from time to time, most are very mechanical and with trained techs you should be able to garner a some nice margins with service.

Dang, I forgot this one, and it's huge, get on board with 3D printing, it's right up our alley, very little competition, high margins on supplies, high margins on maintenance agreements, the best is that they have to come to you for supplies. Typical users are Colleges, Universities, manufacturing, and Architects, when was the last time someone from a College or niversity call you for a product?  3D printers are on fire right now.

How about just becoming an expert with 3rd party MFP solutions?

I'm hearing and seeing  many dealers looking to add new services, but what about the MFP's that are in the office already. What about all of that neat software that can be embedded within the device that can drive BPO (Business Process Optimization). Many years ago dealers deployed specialized reps to visit accounts and sell the extras such as maintenance agreements, auto document feeders, and finisher/staplers. Why can't this be done with OEM or 3rd party solutions. New accounts are so dang hard to get, but it's your existing accounts where you can sell the extras and make some excellent margins. 

Pick 5 different solutions for 5 different vertical markets, train 5 sales people to sell these 3rd party solutions which could be programs like Print Audit 6, Doculex, Intellenetics, UDOCX. However, you also have depending on what manufacturer you represent all type of business process improvement solutions that can be embedded within the MFP. Before you jump on the MNS/Backup band wagon become and expert with your own solutions from your manufacturer.

One more idea, how about starting an hardware agnostic solution sales team that will go out and sell, install and train on 3rd party solutions. I don't have an accurate number but if I were a betting guy, I would bet that 90% of all mfp devices are not running and embedded software. There's treasure trove of opportunity!

Eat What You Cook:

If you decide to make the jump to offering BPO (Business Process Optimization) then I strongly suggest that you look at your own business processes first.  I'm sure there is pain in your organization with a process.  Look to solve those processes first, one I would fix at the place where I work is the sales process.  Here I would stream line the amount of paper needed and look into developing all of my forms on an ipad or a business type tablet, from here I would want the forms to go to my sale manager for review, he would sign off on them with a digital signature and then send them to order entry. Your company could then become an expert in that particular business process and pitch the solution process to other companies that have the same pain. I could go on and on, but look at your own company first, make the improvements and then sell the heck out of it.

Think about this for a second. you're selling BPO, curing a customers pain and then when they are ready to order you hand them sheets of paper to sign, DUH!

-=Good Selling=-


Greg Walters said...

Eat What You Cook.

Yup - best idea around.

Konica Minolta Singapore said...

3D printing is really growing fast!!