A good radio dealer fulfills customer orders based on what they ask for. A great radio dealer anticipates the unspoken needs of those customers, and offers them each a comprehensive two-way radio system that will address them. Regardless of how that system is customized, there are three parts we recommend that you include. Read on to learn more about them, and how to use them to grow your sales margins even more this year.
Give Customers What They Really Want
It may sound gimmicky, but we’re basically saying that you should provide customers with the radios that are either what they originally asked for, or are comparable to those requests — not what manufacturers may be pushing your customers to buy because they have limited inventory.
Some of our competitors have discontinued popular models within their radio lines to cut costs due to the economy, but that can ultimately come back to hurt dealers like you. Radio users may be unhappy with having to choose models they don’t really want, despite any benefits that dealers may highlight about them. And if those models are more expensive than the ones they were used to buying, it shouldn’t be a surprise when customers hesitate to purchase from their dealers again.
This also happens when manufacturers treat radios like they’re completely interchangeable. Sure, they might have the same basic features — push-to-talk buttons, text messaging, emergency alerts, access to digital and analog radio frequencies, etc. — but you already know how much of a difference one model of two-way radio can have over another depending on where the customer needs to use it.
That’s why RCA continues to offer models that have been popular with end users, including portable two-way radios, compact base stations, mobile radios, and radio repeaters. The price points for each of these have been consistently less than our competitors, meaning that our world-class quality is also the most affordable. Plus, we’ve been able to avoid any manufacturing slowdowns over the last few years, maintaining a steady stream of product for dealers who have needed it.
As for dealers who have been negatively affected by the discontinuation of certain models under other radio lines, we can help. The EVX-530 from Vertex may no longer be available, for instance, but RCA’s RDR4200 series offers heavy-duty, intrinsically safe two-way radios that are a perfect match and cost less!
Promote Radios That Make Sense
Along with giving each of your customers the models that they’ve asked for, it’s also a wise decision to explain alternative solutions to them that could benefit their communications setup. For example, your customers may be so used to relying on portables for their day-to-day operations when compact base stations could serve them even better.
Learning about their workspace arrangements can make these radio consultations more personalized and effective, because you can advise on the best radios to operate in those environments.
Let’s go back to our base station example. If you have a customer who works from a desk most of the day but is used to having a portable radio, they may not know that a base station could be a better option, or why. Then you can explain how RCA’s RDR2750 is so small that it’s perfect for any desk configuration, or could just as easily be mounted to a wall. All it needs is an AC outlet for power, and it’s ready to use as soon as it’s plugged in. Not only does the customer now have a radio that gets the same coverage of a portable but doesn’t require charging, they’re also less likely to have it lost or stolen — and they can share it with others who work in their same area if needed.
In a similar vein, you might have another customer who employs one or more delivery drivers who use portables while on their routes, who would actually benefit more from mobile two-way radios. The BRM300D is easy to install in any vehicle’s dash, offers superior coverage, and provides an ergonomic, safe means of communication.
It’s possible that these radio alternatives will mean selling fewer total units in a given order. In the case of a compact base station, a single unit can be easily shared with multiple workers at one office, jobsite, or warehouse, rather than requiring portables for each of them. But your customers will be more likely to appreciate the fact that you took the time to understand their working situations and offered them solutions that made the most sense for what they needed. Your commitment to a two-way radio system, rather than a single order, means more to them and will be more likely to guarantee you future business as a result.
Provide Secondary Services
Along with providing the radios that your customers want, as well as advising them on better options to fit their needs, a thorough two-way radio system will also include secondary services to keep those radios running as long as possible. That can include engraving, radio repair, and annual tune and alignment services.
Engraving is when you add company names or user names, identifying numbers, and insignias to radios so that customers can track their use and repair histories. It also encourages users to be more protective of the units that they’re assigned, and establishes accurate maintenance schedules so that those units are kept in pristine working order.
Radio repair gives your customers a cost-effective means of maximizing the lifespans of their existing fleets, offers your business a secondary source of revenue, and reinforces your customer relationships.
An annual tune and alignment is best explained to customers as preventative maintenance for their radios. Similar to taking in a vehicle for a 5,000-mile checkup, these services also extend the longevity and performance of each unit.
Note: Although radio accessories are technically products and not a secondary service, emphasizing them with your customers can benefit your two-way radio system. Why? Items like premium-quality holsters may be small-ticket purchases on your end, but they’re another means of showing your customers that you want them to get the most out of every radio that they buy from you. You can even start this upsell by explaining to your customers how they would each buy a case for their latest smartphone, so why wouldn’t they get a holster for their next radio?
3 Questions for You
After everything we’ve discussed, we have a few questions for you:
Do you need a reliable source of continuous two-way radio inventory?
Are you looking for models that can replace two-way radios that you’ve seen discontinued?
Do you have questions about how to develop your own two-way radio system?
We want to hear from you! Call us today at (855) 657-0090 to discuss how we can support your efforts to be the radio dealer of choice in your area. We can also discuss what’s involved with becoming an official RCA reseller.