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3 Sales Challenges of Remote Power Management & How to Solve Them

The best way to sell remote power management is to fully educate the customer. Here are some tips to pass along to clients.

CE Pro Editors · October 4, 2013

All integrators clearly understand the benefits of remote power management, but there are a handful of challenges that must be overcome to successfully sell and deploy these systems.

It’s simple to sell audio, for example, because your client can hear the music in a demo. Likewise, video, shade control and even home automation can be seen, therefore, sold much easier. But in general power management (along with wireless networks by the way) is one subsystem that can’t be visualized by clients, so it can be a more difficult sale.

Also, it’s easy for a homeowner to simply roll their eyes when you mention power management, thinking that they can just go down the local Wal-Mart and buy a $7 power strip and protect their equipment.

The best way to sell remote power management is to fully educate the customer, first by explaining the need for surge suppression and then discussing the advantages of allowing the integrator to remotely manage the devices.

It’s Not Just Lightning: Before you even address the remote aspects, you should offer some simple education. For example, you will likely need to be able to explain the difference between an inexpensive circuit-based metal oxide varistor (MOV) power strip that becomes useless after a single activation vs. true power management that is non-sacrificial and fully … and quickly … protects the equipment. This type of instantaneous protection can be found in power distribution products such as those designed with Series Protection from Middle Atlantic Products

Unfortunately, most homeowners perceive power protection as “lighting protection.” But that perception can be changed by explaining the causes and frequency of electric spikes, transients and surges inside a home’s wiring. Externally, lightning and problems with the local utility’s equipment and power grid can be causes, but most people are unaware that internal spikes and surges caused by refrigerators and air conditioners are much more common. Therefore, the infrequency of lightning in a particular area should be a simple objection to overcome.

Speed: While many integrators are focused on protecting home theater equipment from power surges, most homeowners today perceive their home networks and computers as much more important. So from a sales perspective, emphasizing the speed of power protection and recovery for their PCs and Macs is an effective discussion. 

In some cases, breakdowns and replacements of electronic equipment in the home that a homeowner might have thought was due to normal wear and tear might actually have been caused by external and internal power surges. The ability for an integrator to immediately reboot a home network - automatically or remotely using equipment like Middle Atlantic Product’s RackLink Power Management System devices - that does not require a hard reset after a surge could be invaluable to a homeowner, especially if a home office is located on the property.

Cost of Labor: The fastest way to a homeowner’s heart might be through his wallet. A full explanation of the potential savings in labor costs by allowing for remote power management might be the best solution of all. For example, the average service technician in the custom electronics industry is billed at $85 per hour, according to CE Pro data. Plus, most integrators add a $50 one-time truck roll fee on top of that. That means $135 every time a technician must be dispatched to reboot their system. That savings can add up, and the labor savings could be a compelling sales argument for integrators to use with their clients.

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Networking & Cables · Power Protection · News · Equipment Racks · Middle Atlantic · Power Protection · Remote Monitoring · All Topics
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