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HOW FAST IS YOUR RMR GROWING? / MAILING OUT NEW CONTRACTS OR ELECTRONIC FORMAT - February 1, 2017

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HOW FAST IS YOUR RMR GROWING?

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Every year I publish New Year's resolutions, which are really New Year goals.  Without exception RMR growth is prominent among the laudable goals.  What is great - good - fair - terrible RMR growth?  I suppose you can chart your growth going back 3 years and then develop a plan for 3 years going forward.  Figuring out how your RMR will grow is, of course, the answer to the question.  But having a goal seems like a good first start.  One thing is clear.  Today is February 1 and January is already behind us; soon 2017 will be behind us.  You've got only 11 months left to get it right.

 An article in Security Systems News [January 2017 edition] caught my attention.  Vortex Security ended 2014 with 650 subscribers and approximate RMR of $26,000.  In two years, 2015 and ending 2015 Vortex subscriber base had grown to 2500 subscriber and RMR of $100,000.  This growth is apparently attributable to sales, not the acquisition of accounts.  I think it's a great success story and I wish them luck and expect we will hear more about them.

So what about your RMR growth?  Too many companies complain that it's stagnant.  Some old timers are content to accept negative growth, letting the clock run out.  Others are entering the industry with lots of energy, ideas, and money, which is a pretty good combination for success.

 I think it's important to recognize that not all businesses are the same and not all visions for business is the same.  One may strive for a huge company and another for a one or two man operation.  One may strive for great wealth and another for simply a comfortable living.  A comfortable living, by the way, is not hard to define because it's not gauged by how much money.  It's comfortable if the money is enough to support the lifestyle you are comfortable with.  Some will be satisfied with what others would consider not enough, and some may not be satisfied because there will never be enough.  Like Clint Eastwood advised long ago, a man needs to know his limitations.  I'd add, a man needs to learn to be comfortable within those limitations.  I know you didn't envision me a philosopher.  Figure out where you are, where you want to be and how you're going to get there.  Then get moving on that plan.  If you start with new contracts that promote RMR it will be a good start.

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MAILING OUT NEW CONTRACTS OR ELECTRONIC FORMAT

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 Ken,

From our experience, I don’t think you will have very good results in mailing the new contracts.  The customer takes one look at it and observing the length of it, throws it on the desk and then forgets about it.

You would have much better results having your sales people or technicians present the new contract.  I suggest you schedule, a customer walk-through, then you can offer security upgrades, etc.  While with the customer, present a new contract that offers an advantage to the customer to continue their service.  Better yet, use the TMO - Totally Mobile Office CRM software that allows you to capture the customer’s signature on a mobile tablet or even a cell phone.  The software creates a PDF and stores the new contract in the customer's file and emails a copy to the customer.  It certainly is worth the small investment in the software and reaching out to touch your customers will create more sales and in the long run lead to less attrition. http://www.totallymobilecrm.com

 DCK

Security Alliance

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RESPONSE

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 Thanks for the input.  The feedback I get is that you can expect about half the subscribers to sign and return contracts by mail.  Of course, you need a cover letter, or phone call in advance, to explain why a new contract needs to be signed and you also need some marketing idea to make the new contract attractive.

 One matter I'd like to emphasize is that you need to learn how to sell the contracts.  You should already know how to sell the alarm and other services you offer.  Think of it this way.  You're now in the alarm contract business with a goal of increasing your RMR.  Your vehicle happens to be alarm / security / automation / integration services.   As the industry gets more complicated the contracts have tried to keep up.  Until Trump gets rid of all consumer laws and state and local license issues the contracts are going to remain a bit wordy, lengthy and complicated.  Going electronic may help, but all that it may do is help you sell the contract because there's less chance of reading the "form".  If you use the Standard Form Agreements and use them as a standard form, you will have a better chance of getting it signed.

 Whether you will continue doing business with a subscriber who just leaves the contract on the desk with signing or returning is a decision you have to make, but if you make the right decision and refuse to provide any services to a subscriber who no longer has a contract, your subscriber will then need to decide whether to sign or go elsewhere or do without the services.

 There are a number of services available for electronic contracts and you can find them on The Alarm Exchange.  Our first webinar in our All You Need To Know Series starts tomorrow and happens to be on electronic contracts presented by Mike Marks of SedonaOffice.