August is an important month for cable MSOs as swarms of college students descend upon communities. Students armed with the latest high tech tools make broadband access a top priority for cell phones, laptops, desktops, and TV.

Recent financial results from the cable industry have indicated that DSL may be falling out of favor as bandwidth requirements for new technology toys have increased. Students want uninterrupted access for cell phones, laptops, video and content streaming. To capitalize on the broadband needs of returning students, MSOs need to make sure their sales force is ready using state-of-the-art Sales Force Automation (SFA) tools.

Why Use SFA

Easy to learn and implement, a quality SFA from a proven CRM provider can help make sure Direct Sales Representatives (DSRs) remain in targeted route areas for the maximum amount of time. A SFAtool accomplishes this by:

7 Reasons SFA keeps DSRs in the field making cable sales

  1. Having flexible route criteria such as zip code, bridger number or node.
  2. Being able to assign priority to specified addresses.
  3. Organizing streets into routes.
  4. Setting measurable time frames for route completion.
  5. Automating the work order process from DSRs using handheld devices.
  6. Speeding up the sales cycle through on-demand credit checks from the field.
  7. Reducing the amount of time a DSR needs to spend in the office filling out paperwork.

How Important Is It for Your SFA to Come From a Proven Provider

Choosing a SFA vendor is not always an easy decision. Some MSOs base their decisions on price, glitz or support promises. Unfortunately, decisions made for these reasons only provide MSOs with a false sense of security. When selecting a SFA tool it is very important that MSO management consider:

5 Reasons to choose a proven Cable SFA provider
  1. The total cost of ownership (TCO) of the SFA system is lower with a cable specific designed product. TCO for quality SFA is less than new technology vendors because of:
    • Durability of handheld devices; Cheaper non-commercial devices will break more often and cost more in the long run.
    • Reliability; How often is technical support needed, how long do the batteries last? How much downtime can be expected as a result of software bugs?
    • Ease of use; Handheld devices should be easy to use with large enough screens to input or retrieve sales information yet stay portable.
    • Technology platform; Will changes in technology render the current hardware obsolete requiring new hardware each time the operating system is revised or a new model comes out?
  2. Established cable CRM vendors have greater industry knowledge which provides for a better understanding of needs and product design.
  3. Cable MSOs are their business, products integrate with the major cable billing systems.
  4. Technical support is more established with experienced staff.
  5. SFA system capabilities can be verified by industry leaders
Capture the Cable Sales Opportunity

Students are returning to school now which means the opportunity is now. Smoother sales cycles, better bandwidth than DSL and the ability to offer triple play packages, make this the ideal time to capture a customer for years. Although students may have more technology at their disposal than a few years ago, they are still going to be resistant to change if they find something that works for them.

Tell us how your MSO is going to increase student subscribers. If you liked this article you may also enjoy reading: