Photo by Tyler Franta
2020 presents an exciting time for alarm installation companies, which continue to see strong growth and have not suffered from the DIY industry as many feared that they would. Additionally, new alarm and security technologies are now becoming more mainstream, and that means curious customers are going to be seeking out more details this year.
To help out, here are several topics that you can expect to be part of more conversations. Consider having dedicated webpages or blog posts for explaining these concepts – and make sure that your points of contact are knowledgeable enough to walk customers through how these features work.
Smart arming refers to different arming options for digital security systems. It may seem like a relatively minor feature in the scope of all security devices available, but it’s getting a lot of attention from customers that are looking to upgrade their old systems or adopt more smart features.
It’s a good idea to point out that smart arming usually means “remote arming,” in that you can arm security systems remotely from a mobile app instead of needing to be at the security hub itself. Smart arming can also include the ability to check on the space via sensors or cams to make sure no one is there before the user arms. Those who aren’t used to much remote control over their security systems may be particularly attracted to this simple option!
Cloud Video Storage
Cloud security has become more common than ever, and if a customer is interested in video surveillance or security camera options, a discussion about cloud video is more or less required these days. This is important because the role and cost of cloud storage can vary greatly between platforms.
Installation companies should be well aware of the cloud video services offered by the platforms they provide. That includes answering specific questions like:
- Do I get cloud video storage for free? How much?
- What do I have to pay for cloud video, or for adding more storage?
- How much cloud storage do I need? (This is especially important for businesses to know)
- How long does video last on cloud storage?
- What happens to video when it is deleted from the cloud?
Other cloud data collection will also have details that are important for the customer to know, so stay prepared in this area. Understanding video surveillance rights is also important for these discussions.
New Smart Device Protocols
Smart device communication protocols have been an interesting topic of conversation in the industry since ZigBee and Z-Wave. Now that more buyers are consider remote smart devices as part of their systems, conversations about how they communicate remain important. This is one field that continues to shift! For example, a new consortium of Amazon, Apple, Google, and the Zigbee Alliance is working to create a brand new protocol for smart devices to increase compatibility and, hopefully, solve some of the past issues. Keep up on these issues and be ready to discuss them with knowledgeable buyers.
More advanced security systems are seeing the adoption of tiny surveillance drones as a way to keep an eye on larger areas. These smart drones can look for disturbances, take video, return to charging stations when needed, and be remotely controlled for careful surveillance. It’s important to understand how drone technology is progressing, where these drones may be helpful, what security expenses they can replace – and when they aren’t really needed.
If you offer drones as part of your security package, make sure to include video examples and careful descriptions of how these drones operate and what requirements they come with. Customers willing to pay for drones may also want in-person demonstrations of how drones are used in the security world.
As we mentioned, a growing number of buyers, especially on the commercial level, are looking to upgrade their systems with newer technology, and that means looking into wireless devices.
Wireless installations have a lot of on-the-face benefits, such as decreased installation costs. But many questions center around just how well they perform: That means talking about batteries, battery life, recharging batteries, battery replacement, and more. Be honest about how long batteries can last in wireless solutions, and how easy it is to recharge batteries as needed – customers will want to know these details when making a decision.
This is also an excellent time to talk about any wireless maintenance services you can provide or recommend, such as battery monitoring and battery replacement when necessary so the buyer knows they don’t have to worry about this with the right plan.
Customers who are looking at monitoring plans for the first time will want to know about response times in their area. It’s a great idea to collect accurate data on response times for your location so you can provide details on what people can expect from monitoring services. Even if monitoring services don’t provide localized data, they usually have a guaranteed or average response time that you can discuss.
Finally, remember that you don’t need to wait for customers to raise questions about these features before providing information! Be proactive in 2020 and offer all the information that decision makers need to choose the right alarm installation.