When the reality of today’s world is reaching a “once-in-a-lifetime” black swan event and Talking Heads on the TV deliver news of civil unrest and coronavirus mutations, where do UCaaS (Unified Communications) platforms rank in importance for SMB decision makers?
Even with employees demanding more from their employer and the technology adoption gap increasing market to market, it turns out 91% of SMBs consider voice and / or advanced communication services essential to the operation of their business, but only 48% believe that their current set up is adequate for their post-pandemic needs.
With this in mind and 58% of SMBs considering changing their provider, UCaaS & VoIP providers need to consider: is this a goldrush opportunity or a smash and grab, and what secrets do the front-runners know that is setting them apart from the competition?
More than just flexible working
Although fixed telephony still has a place in the modern world, UCaaS has acted as a saving grace for remote working transitions in many companies that wouldn’t have survived the pandemic otherwise. Without lockdown rules forcing companies to implement work-from-home mandates, we may not have seen how hybrid working impacts productivity in such a tangible way.
Research conducted by Forbes has found that employees who work from home are 20% happier than those who can’t and further research from Oxford adds that productivity increases by 13% with a happy workforce .
This is also echoed by research that found that 77% of high-growth companies have reported increased productivity levels by offering hybrid working to their employees. This story is being told time and time again and clearly known by the 51% of the businesses that cite the desire for increased productivity as the number one reason for searching for a new UCaaS provider.
All this boils down to UCaaS being key to unlocking significant growth through increased productivity, resulting in measurable ROI, and all in all a no-brainer investment for companies that want to sustainably scale operations.
The ultimate solution
Having the right UCaaS and / or VoIP provider essentially improves a business’ bottom line. SMB’s are becoming privy to the fact that securing the ‘right platform’ is one of the investments to prioritise prior to the impending 2022/2023 recession.
However, piqued interest at a time when companies are thinking about tightening their belts means there will be more scrutiny of product offerings in the research phase. With search volumes for UCaaS doubling since 2015, the competition is high to capture the attention of the whopping 89% of decision-makers who are researching online before making a B2B purchase.
With this considered, UCaaS products should have clearly presented benefits and USPs. This makes it easy for SMBs to compare products across providers but also will increase brand recognition. Comparison tables are an excellent way to exercise this. Due to search engine algorithms, these are often hosted on trusted websites that rank highly on organic search and hold answer box positions. Even companies like Monday.com have reported success with this approach.
Play the field
Competing for engagement on popular marketing channels is an expensive struggle that is becoming all too familiar in the meeting rooms of Chief Marketing, Growth and Commercial Officers. This has led to the increased consideration of white label campaigns. These are unbranded campaigns which promise to match customers with the best solution to fit all their needs and remove noise from their research stage, providing them with a benefit-led and fit-first experience.
Companies, like MVF, run these white label campaigns across a wide but closely monitored channel mix, optimising based on performance data. This data is fed back into the marketing machine, helping the increasing number of SMBs find a solution for their UCaaS & VoIP needs.
Refresh the sales processes
Sometimes, the difference between closing and losing a sale comes down to the salesperson and it’s much more than just if the individual is a good fit for the role.
MVF consultation days and the tactics applied after these have proven a well-prepared and motivated sales team makes all the difference when it comes to close rate. Sales manager engagement is crucial.
Encouraging and helping teams to be informed on current market trends (like productivity levels being a motivator for buying a UCaaS platform) will help them to direct a conversation and find a pain point more efficiently.
Preparing teams with KPIs aligned with best practice will also help motivate them. For example, calling prospective customers within 1 minute of a form submission means that they are 400x more likely to convert.
If all else fails, competition-based incentives work every time (who wouldn’t want a shiny new iPad and bragging rights).
To learn more about how MVF can help you grow your business, click here.