How to Land – and Keep – Your Cloud Customers
Why Service Quality is the #1 Way to Grow Your Cisco UCC and UC Services Business
There’s no doubt about it. Whether you are a Cisco hosted service provider or offer Cisco managed services, it’s an incredibly competitive world out there. Businesses depend on their cloud-based Cisco UCC and UC services to create customer satisfaction, drive revenue growth and increase efficiency. And they’re looking for the right services partner to help them do that – which is why so many service providers are competing aggressively for their business.
So how do you stand out from the pack? As a Cisco service provider, how do you consistently win customers – and then hold on to them? How do you differentiate your service offerings and create a sustainable competitive advantage? Above all, how do you drive revenue growth and increase profit margins?
Service Availability and Performance Matters
Here’s the bottom line: your customers want to sleep at night. Yes, they care about rolling out new features and expanding capacity to keep up with business growth – but that’s not their number one concern. Unless they can rely on their contact center and unified communications services, their business is at enormous risk. No matter how advanced the technology, it’s useless if it’s not working. That’s why service availability and performance are critical – service degradations and outages are every business’s worst nightmare.
Let’s take a simple example. Assume that one of your customers does $250 million per year of business through their contact center. That’s about $700,000 a day. A three-hour outage during peak times can easily affect 50% of these daily sales – that’s $350,000, or nearly $120,000 an hour. And if you’re providing and managing that contact center service, you’re the one in the hot seat when the service goes down. Don’t expect a pleasant conversation – either at the time or when it comes around to contract renewal.
And it’s not just about your customers losing short-term sales and productivity when their contact center or unified communications services go down. There’s also a huge long-term impact. Service issues directly affect customer loyalty, brand reputation and repeat business. In other words, poor service quality is the gift that keeps on giving – but not in a good way.
Great Service Quality Drives Revenue Growth and Increased Profitability
Now, imagine that you could dramatically increase service availability and performance for your customers – and that you could do this without increasing your service delivery costs. What if you could reduce the number of service issues and fix them more quickly when they happen? What would this mean for your service provider business?
The answer is simple. Better service quality drives increased revenues and better profit margins. Here’s why:
1. Increased customer retention
We’ve talked about this, but it’s worth stating again. Great service quality is sticky. It dramatically increases customer satisfaction – directly leading to higher customer retention. Rather than wasting your sales efforts replacing lost customers, you can now focus on acquiring new customers – driving increased revenues.
And this isn’t just about revenue growth – it’s also about increased profitability. When existing customers are satisfied, they are less cost-sensitive when it comes to contract renegotiation. The risks of switching to a new service provider far outweigh any potential cost savings. Don’t just take our word for it – according to the Harvard Business Review, a 5% increase in customer retention typically increases profits by between 25% and 95%.
2. More new customer wins
As we just said, great service availability and performance increases customer retention – freeing up sales resources to target new prospects. However, it does more than that – it also increases your win rates.
Why? No matter how skillfully you manage each sales cycle, customers ultimately want proof that you can deliver. That means providing compelling case studies and ironclad references. When you provide great service quality, existing customers are happy to provide these testimonials – giving you the credibility you need to win. And because you’re confident in the quality of the services you deliver, you can back this up with SLA commitments.
And once again, this isn’t just about new revenues – it’s about increased profitability. By focusing on service quality, you can differentiate yourself from your competition. This allows you to command price premiums and avoid a race to the bottom with bargain-basement providers.
3. Increased upsell opportunities
Winning and retaining customers is critical – but it’s only part of the story. To put your business into overdrive, you need to drive new revenues from your existing customer base. Upselling sticky new services creates a virtuous circle – it creates new revenue streams, but it also increases customer retention, giving you even more opportunities to upsell new services.
Focusing on service quality creates these upsell opportunities. You can now sell enhanced SLAs to your existing customers – confident in the knowledge that you can deliver. And that’s only the beginning. Problem management is another example, with customers paying you to proactively increase service availability and performance.
Your customers care about service quality – and they have choices. It’s a competitive world out there, and you need to differentiate your services to win. By offering great service availability and performance, you can dramatically grow your revenues and profit margins by:
- Enhancing customer satisfaction and retention
- Increasing new customer wins while commanding premium prices
- Building customer trust and creating new upsell opportunities