Today’s customers have a host of ways to connect with brands and service representatives, from instant messaging to email and more. However, the most common method for businesses and consumers to connect is still through the standard telephone conversation.
When it comes to having the right first impression on your target audience, it’s essential to ensure that they hear the right message when they call your business. Music on Hold solutions and Audio Marketing experiences are one of the best ways to differentiate that initial interaction between consumer and brand. We caught up with Audio Productions, the market leaders in audio experience techniques for the contact centre, to discuss the margin available in MoH solutions.
Tell Us About Audio Productions
We spoke to Steve Neil, the Channel Partner Manager for Audio Productions, a company that delivers end-to-end support for customer conversations. Steve told us that he is responsible for assisting resellers and strategic partners who provide greater awareness of Audio Productions solutions to clients.
“My role is relationship management. I’m there to make the channel partner and reseller aware of what we do, how we can benefit their customers, and how they can make a healthy margin out of white-labelling the service without having to take responsibility for the back-end, which is what we do.”
Steve has been with Audio Productions for almost two years, and he moved into the position because he wanted a chance to work closer with channel partners. He has extensive experience in the music on hold industry, which he describes as “caller experience.” According to Steve:
“It’s not just music anymore, it’s bespoke recording designed to start a conversation with the customer.”
What’s the White Label Service You Offer?
Audio Productions offers a revenue-driving solution for their channel partners in the form of a white label music on hold service. I asked Steve to explain how the solution works. “A lot of telecoms people today get asked by their customer if they can set music on hold up for them. Unfortunately, when they can’t do this themselves, they have to send the customer elsewhere or guide that client through doing it themselves. This isn’t good for either party. The reseller doesn’t get any profit, and the customer doesn’t get a professional service.”
The Audio Productions white label music on hold system means that resellers can either direct customers to a portal where they can serve themselves from a selection of music and message options, or the reseller can set the solution up for them. “We’ve got plenty of music options to choose from that are license-free, and fifteen voices which cover the majority of businesses for things like local dialect, tone, and branding.”
Because everything is white labelled, the customer feels as though they’re getting a consisted experience from end-to-end.
What is the Mood Like in the Market for Music on Hold?
I asked Steve what he thinks the current mood is like for the Music on Hold market. He told me that he believes there are three different perceptions out there today.
“The first attitude you have comes from the people who have been in business for a long time – those traditional resellers who remember sticking a CD player by a PBX for music on hold at the beginning of the call centre experience. Unfortunately, back then it had limited value and some still think this is the case. The second type of reseller is selling entirely on price instead of value.”
In Steve’s opinion, the third type of reseller, and the most valuable partner for Audio Productions is the reseller that’s focused on providing exceptional account management.
“These are the resellers that want to give their customer additional benefits. These are the people who understand what we’re all about.”
According to Steve, there’s not only recurring margin to be made, but significant long-term customer value on the table which helps customer retention and ultimately business value.
Has it Got Any Easier to Sell Music on Hold?
For those resellers who continue to see Music on Hold as an additional hassle, I was interested to learn what Audio Productions has done to make the service more accessible. “I think one of the biggest problems is that resellers have more to sell. They’re looking not just at communications, but UC, call recording, and peripherals too. I think the best thing these resellers can do is offer their customers a fully bundled solution.”
Steve believes that the resellers with a real chance to get ahead of the curve are the ones who don’t merely try to sell their customers a “skeleton” phone system and then bolt other things on later. “The resellers that make it are the ones that give their users the full meat of the system straight away.”
Audio Productions supports their resellers by providing a simple and easy-to-deploy white label portal, where customers can essentially serve themselves. At the same time, there’s also a training solution available to help resellers create the perfect message for their Music on Hold packaged offering.
Does Music on Hold Help in this Age of Customer Experience?
Audio Productions and Steve both believe that the age of the business competing solely on the “lowest price” will soon be over. “For me, it’s a no-brainer to add this extra source of customer experience (CX) support into the mix for resellers. It’s a chance to start building relationships with your customers and show them that you care about the company, their growth, and how they take care of their customers.”
Steve told me that the person who stands out and “wins” in today’s highly competitive communications marketplace is the person who can go above and beyond in delivering additional value to their customers.
“We’re giving our customers a way to introduce new value to their end-users with things that they may never have considered before. I can’t think of a single company who wouldn’t benefit from a better front-end experience.”