Many industry experts agree that unified communications and collaboration (UCC) technology is poised to become a windfall for value-added resellers (VARs) in the coming years. UCC is making significant gains in many verticals, especially in the area of video. Recent reports indicate that 80 percent of businesses expect to invest in some form of UCC in the next two years. Rapid advances in the adoption of UCC mean an increased demand for high-definition video delivered ubiquitously.
Resellers of pro AV, on the other hand, offer audio and visual systems for business commercial use. UCC and pro AV technologies can be combined to provide excellent business opportunities for VARs by increasing revenue and building client rapport. So how does an enterprise choose? Maybe they don’t have to ...
For many VARs that have long offered professional audio/visual systems, UCC is the next step. Pro AV VARs are a natural fit for offering UCC because the back-end work with cabling and networking is so close to what is required for digital signage and pro AV. With the UCC market going through a period of fast growth, clients will need a skilled and trained VAR to explain how UCC connects to Pro AV and to help decide which solutions are best for their companies.
A Perfect Partnership
UCC devices and systems are made to provide customers with real-time communication and collaboration opportunities. When working with UCC, VARs will likely use a wide range of tools, including chat, email, instant messaging, VoIP, video conferencing systems, smartphone and tablet applications, and Web and data sharing.
Pro AV indicates any audio or visual system installed for business use. This could include sound and lighting devices, video conferencing, digital signage and other video screens, recording equipment, projector systems, speakers, building automation, interactive whiteboards, and any other device that relates to AV.
As both UCC and pro AV mature and evolve, the two once-distinct product lines are now experiencing more assimilation and alliance than ever before. For example, if customers require video conferencing and projector systems, they will probably also need to incorporate VoIP telephony systems, Web and data sharing, or mobile capabilities. Enterprise-level collaboration solutions typically require video cameras, digital displays, microphones, and speakers as well.
Resellers that offer either UCC or pro AV ideally should offer both types of equipment and services. End-users today need to partner with a VAR that can offer well-integrated, easy-to-use systems that work together seamlessly. Knowledge of both UCC and pro AV systems can help distinguish a company as a more diverse reseller.
For VARs that are already familiar with pro AV technology, UCC is a lucrative opportunity to generate new business. Start by reaching out to existing AV customers to determine their interest in communication technology. With new customers, educate them on the value and abundance of solutions offered. Following this strategy, as the UCC market expands, VARs’ bottom lines will expand along with it.
Are there areas of success in pro AV or in UCC that, as a VAR, your business can count on? Does your business agree that there is opportunity to sell both product lines?