Momentum has been swelling over the past few years in the custom integration industry for dealers to protect their bottom lines by adding offerings that provide them with recurring revenue. A known, expected payment that’s incoming to the business provides a number of added benefits – namely a sense of financial security. At the same time, these services, which typically involve regular system maintenance or updates for their customers, give clients peace of mind that they’ll have the latest and greatest technology in their homes or businesses – or a sense of relief knowing they have an expert essentially “on-call” to take care of their technological needs.
Seeing an opportunity to borrow from that strategic shift in the industry, SnapOne recently announced the launch of two services within its Control4 brand: Control4 Connect and Control4 Assist. SnapOne says the new software and support offerings are intended to improve the end-user experiences while giving U.S.-based Control4 dealers the opportunity to provide superior customer service while increasing profitability through revenue sharing.
“The homes and businesses of today rely on a wide range of networked systems and devices to operate. This makes software updates and system monitoring critical to ensure reliability, confidence and continued use,” John Heyman, Snap One CEO, said in a statement announcing the services. “As such, the traditional business model of the CI integrator must evolve into an ongoing partnership with their customers. We believe that the customer understands the importance of working with professional integrators to keep their investment current – and that they’re willing to pay to ensure their systems are maintained and optimized.”
Starting in April, Connect will be included on all new Control4 systems installed in consumers’ homes, and the annual cost will vary depending on the type of controller installed. SnapOne explained that systems with a CA-1 model will be free of charge, systems with the Core Lite until will cost $99 and systems with any other controller or multiple controllers will cost $249. Dealers will receive a monthly share (roughly 40 percent of the total annual cost from each system they’ve installed). The Control4 team is exploring opportunities to provide existing customers with a path to upgrade their systems to Connect, but those are not available for the time being.
During a call with Oasys Residential Technology Group dealers to introduce the new services, Control4 representatives explained that Connect will provide a number of convenience-based features like system updates (still to be implemented by the integrator), access and insights, and help with integrating new devices into the customer’s system among other features.
With Assist, dealers that become Control4 Assist certified will be able to offer their clients this support-based service. For an annual fee of $899, customers get proactive system monitoring and access to the Control4 Assist Team of programmers, AV technicians and certified networking administrators who remotely solve issues, answer questions and help manage customer experiences. A $2,999-per-year Premium version is also available and includes two personalized manufacturer check-ins each year in which the Assist team will review the full system, discuss personalization needs, and even optimize automations.
Dealers will, again, receive monthly recurring revenue payments from Control4. Their team explained that the main benefits of the Assist program for dealers, beyond those payments, include the opportunity to significantly reduce the burden of providing customer support, freeing them up to focus on selling and installing new systems.
Unlike Connect, Assist will not be mandatory for customers. More information about both services is available on the Control4 website.