3 Things we learned at Channel Live 2019

3 Things we learned at Channel Live 2019

Paul Smith, Head of Reseller

Paul Smith, Head of Reseller

3 things we learned at Channel Live 2019

Channel Live is always one of the most anticipated events in the channel calendar, bringing likeminded businesses together in the second largest city in the UK, Birmingham. I’ve attended Channel Live for the last few years and I relish the chance to meet with Partners, create new connections and engage in thought provoking conversation.

After an eventful couple of days at Channel Live, the TalkTalk Business team and I have combined our key learnings and we’d love to share them with you.

Full fibre is becoming a reality

With many providers racing to get FTTP to market, we were keen to hear what some of the big providers thought about the UK’s full fibre rollout. Guy Miller, Director of TalkTalk’s Fibre for Everyone Programme, joined a panel discussion with CityFibre, Sky Business Comms, Glide Business, Openreach and nextgenaccess to discuss addressing the fibre buildout. 

It was clear that all the providers are taking the reality of building a full fibre network seriously and addressing how much there is to do. Guy Miller urged the panellists that above all, we have a responsibility as an industry to serve 30 million homes and businesses and work together to make a better digital economy. Everyone identified that there needs to be clear and consistent information about what’s going to happen and when, not just for end users, but for the providers who will be working together. One of the panellists voiced fears that providers could overbuild in areas to take territory and deter other networks from building in that area. Guy Miller advised that the channel community thrives on competition and the nature of this competition should create more opportunity for resellers and the channel.

You can demonstrate value without price

several men sat down on a stage in front of audience

In my panel debut, “Connectivity as a commodity: dealing with price pressures” I joined several providers, such as Virgin Media Business, Entanet, Sky Business Comms and Vaioni, to discuss how connectivity providers can demonstrate value to customers, instead of focusing on price.

Sometimes it can be challenging to demonstrate value to smaller businesses who often want to pay the same price as a consumer line but still receive an enterprise grade service wrap. Larger businesses tend to be savvier, however full resilience continues to be undervalued by some, but even a 5-hour SLA would feel like a very long time in a large business if their EAD experienced an outage.  Or for a smaller retail business who relies on card payments, if their connectivity goes down, they won’t be able to fully transact which could incur impactful losses. It’s only when you ask customers to consider the scale of loss if their connectivity fails that people begin to appreciate the value of add-ons such as resiliency.

I argued that one of the ways providers can evidence the value of their connectivity is by helping customers to understand the underpinning network. Many providers claim to have a nationwide, uncontended and resilient network, but often this isn’t the case. Every network is created differently, and some are more high-performing than others, so it is worth understanding what you are plugging into.

End-customers often don’t ask providers important questions such as, what are the resiliency options? What’s the network utilisation? Are they updating service index data? What’s the peering like? Do you have choice in terms of which exchanges the connections will go to? Proactively sharing the answers to these questions can help reveal the true quality of a network/solution and if customers take time to understand this, they can definitely help to expand the conversation outside of just pricing.

EoFTTC hit the sweet spot

We’ve made some improvements to our EoFTTC product and we were delighted that interest in the product garnered a lot of attention on the TalkTalk Business stand.  If you didn’t catch us on the day, EoFTTC is competitively priced, with guaranteed speeds and an average 25 working day lead time. Plus, it comes with 24/7 business grade support, a 7-hour fix SLA. We’ve enhanced the in-life experience and improved delivery journey so it’s even easier to buy and consume.

Does EoFTTC sound like the right product for you? You can learn more about it in our upcoming product webinar which will take place in October 2019. Please speak to your account manager to join the webinar.   

Thanks to everyone who visited our stand at Channel Live, we thoroughly enjoyed meeting you all and look forward to seeing you at the next event!