Jola Cloud Solutions' Blog

Overcoming challenges supplying SIMs to large corporates

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 31-Oct-2018 11:13:51

The challenges

Resellers providing SIM cards to large corporates often contract with more than one supplier. Their biggest challenges are lack of automation, lack of control and billing issues. Orders need to be placed and chased via email. Resellers have no way of knowing when SIMs go live and data used, until they receive their bill, which can often be late. This results in customers complaining about high data overage charges.

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Topics: 4G, Mobile SIMs

4G Data Opportunities – 4G Sensors

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 31-Oct-2018 11:06:00

The Opportunity

With IHS forecasting 58 billion connectable devices by 2022, demand for 4G data is on the rise. Enabling data analysis from a wide range of devices from trains, to agricultural machinery, the 4G sensor market has grown significantly within a short amount of time. Many resellers do not see how they can benefit from this opportunity but know that they service industries with a current requirement. Partnering with Jola, resellers are winning more and more 4G data opportunities and benefitting from a profitable recurring revenue stream.

Physical Space Analytics

4G sensors at exhibitions offer key insights into how visitors interact at events and within retail spaces. 4G sensors gather metrics about users visiting and their engagement. Sensors track how many visitors attended, how long they stayed, how they moved around the space and engagement and conversion rates. Clients can view their data in real-time to view a live graph of visitors over time, length of stay and a heat map to show visitor flow and distribution within the space.

Primary detection is via WiFi sensors powered by 4G. These pick up 3G and 4G signals from all smartphones, laptops and tablets carried by visitors. Signals contain a unique identifier, which is used to build a picture of visitor data per event. Data is encrypted and anonymous, therefore is only used for monitoring purposes.

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Topics: 4G, Mobile, Mobile SIMs

4G Data Opportunities in Retail

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 17-Oct-2018 10:02:48

The opportunity

According to McKinsey, revenues from mobile data are set to increase dramatically in the next 7 years. Factors driving growth are the availability, speed and reliability of 4G and the trend of embedding data SIM cards into devices such as routers for 4G back-up.

Retailers like supermarkets, department stores, restaurant chains and petrol stations are creating private networks to carry financial transactions over IP, from multiple POS systems, often favouring SD-WAN networks with 4G back-up. Depending on their size and the complexity of their requirement, they typically choose a trusted supplier, with experience rolling out and managing solutions in their sector.

The customer’s problem

They are not sure which network is best in each location, when the 4G back-up will be used and how much data they will use. Sending engineers to site to establish the strongest signal is a timely and expensive exercise. In addition, they regularly receive high data overage bills, which can be as much as tens of thousands of pounds a month.

The solution provider’s problem

Managed Network Providers are experienced at designing, rolling out and managing solutions, however have struggled with the 4G element, managing multiple in-country suppliers, with multiple manual ordering processes and a lack of visibility across the SIM estate. They have no direct control over SIM assets and cannot aggregate data across countries.

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Topics: 4G, Mobile, Mobile SIMs

4G Data Opportunities – door entry systems

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 17-Oct-2018 09:43:56

The opportunity

Revenues from mobile data are set to increase dramatically over the next few years. This has certainly been Jola’s experience. We have partners benefiting from the availability, speed and reliability of 4G back-up solutions for fixed line services installed in a range of devices including door entry systems and gates.

Door entry systems are popular in gyms, hotels, laboratories, warehouses, factories and large corporates. Some simply check validity of membership/room cards and grant access, others include more complex biometric systems and video.

The customer’s problem

4G data SIM cards on a single network can fail if there is an issue with, or congestion on, the local mast. It costs money to send out an engineer to look at the problem and swap the SIM card to another network.

The solution provider’s problem

The solution provider needs to establish the mobile network with the best signal in each location. They then need to contract with multiple providers to be able to provide the strongest mobile signal in each location. They have no visibility or control over the whole SIM estate and regularly receive high data overage charges, when single sites use up more data than anticipated.

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Topics: 4G, Mobile, Mobile SIMs

Mobile solutions for lone workers

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 08-Oct-2018 15:13:32

There are over £6 million lone workers in the UK. Lone workers are employees who conduct tasks without the supervision of colleagues. Employers usually provide lone workers with a basic mobile phone to make calls. Typically, they bought from the networks, but with the availability of low-cost phones and the flexibility of 30-day SIM-only contracts, employers have started shopping around.

Channel partners are providing SIM cards to employers with lone workers such as mobile vets, healthcare workers, postal staff, social workers, drivers, estate agents, construction workers and agricultural workers.

The opportunity

Lone workers typically need a cost-effective voice and data SIM, they can use in an emergency. Employers want the best deal they can find.

The solution

For this type of solution, many channel partners use Jola, as they have very cost-effective SIM packages on 30 day contracts.

The next opportunity

To stay safe, lone workers are increasingly equipped with GPS location devices, with alert buttons and/or smartphone apps, enabling them to raise an alarm if they run into trouble. Some lone workers are being provided with body cameras, to capture conflicts, similar to dash camera technology.

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Topics: 4G, Mobile SIMs

What is 5G?

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 08-Oct-2018 14:57:26

5G is Fifth Generation Mobile Networks. It is set to be much faster than 4G and could open up new uses for mobile data, creating an exciting new opportunity for the channel. In the UK, 5G is due to start rolling out in 2020, however we may not see widespread 5G until 2022.

What benefits will it bring?

Speed

5G is set to be as much as 100 times faster than 4G. We can expect to see speeds in excess of 1Gb/s with many estimating speeds of 10Gb/s.

Lower Latency

With lower latency, users will see little or no delay, which creates opportunities in industries, such as the car industry, who require no latency to connect their devices. Because it is set to be such a revolutionary technology, it is likely to be used to create services and applications we haven’t yet imagined, capturing the interest of the channel.

Greater capacity

With greater capacity, many high-demand applications can be managed simultaneously. This should provide a fast, stable connection in any device, in any location. 5G will support a wide range of services from HD video streaming, to monitoring devices in every industry.

Efficient, money saver

In the channel we hear a lot of noise about IoT and struggle to see how we will ever make money from smart fridges and electric autonomous vehicles yet are seeing mobile data opportunities for 4G. Blue light services are rolling out SIMs in push-to-talk radios. Couriers are using data SIMs in PDAs. Hauliers are using SIMs in CCTV cameras and security and tracking devices. Companies in both the public and the private sector are using data SIMs in CCTV cameras. Supermarkets are using 4G as a back-up solution and to power POS kiosks and digital bill boards etc.

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Topics: 5G, JolaMobile, Mobile SIMs

The benefits of a single supplier

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 03-Oct-2018 16:28:12

It is five times easier to sell to existing customers than it is to attract new business, so it makes sense for resellers to sell their customers as many complimentary products as they can. This also stops competitors gaining a foothold in their customer base.

One person to call

For customers, having a single-source supplier makes sense, as they only have one person to call to report an issue. Often when resellers only manage the hosted voice solution and not the underlying internet connectivity, it is more difficult to analyse the fault and fix it quickly. Similarly, you can only guarantee an improved SLA if you buy the primary circuit and 4G back-up from the same supplier. Customers often feel fobbed-off by suppliers when they ring to report a fault with their telephony, only to be told to re-dial their internet supplier, as there is no known fault their end.

Lower churn

As a business if you feel valued and rewarded for buying several products from one single supplier, you are less likely to churn away, especially if you have a good deal and experience great service.

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Topics: Jola Cloud Solutions Ltd, jola

How do you differentiate commodities?

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 03-Oct-2018 16:16:13

What is a commodity?

A commodity is defined as a product or resource that is traded primarily on the basis of price, and not on differences in quality or features. When a product or service becomes a commodity, the market price will fall to the marginal cost of the lowest cost volume producer.

What challenges must be overcome when selling commoditised products?

Many consider broadband and telephony to be commoditised products. The challenge most resellers have is how to add real-value and differentiate themselves, to retain existing customers and win new business.

Buy well

To compete with the price leader, companies need to buy well from their suppliers. To win business, resellers may have to accept lower margins. In these situations, it is useful to have higher margin products you can add, to help boost margins.

Leverage USPs

If products are commoditised, are you adding anything unique? Are these USPs valued by your customers? Good service is a given, however installation expertise may be USPs you can charge for.

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Topics: Mobile, Mobile SIMs, jola

Get started with mobile

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 03-Oct-2018 14:18:51

There are two types of partners that sign up with Jola for mobile data SIMs. The first already has an opportunity and needs a supplier to help fulfil the data SIM element, the second has been impressed by the products, pricing and portals and is enthusiastic about growing a new revenue stream.

Experienced Partners

Partners with existing opportunities often have strong relationships with their clients. Although they may not already offer data SIM solutions, they are trusted advisors and capable of sourcing the elements they need to build and roll out solutions. These partners are looking for a solution to a data problem. They need a partner to quickly understand the problem, pose a cost-effective solution and help them to win their bid. This often involves pre-sales and product development, to create a tailored solution to displace an incumbent.

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Topics: Mobile

How did you measure the success of your last event?

Posted by Cherie Howlett on 25-Sep-2018 09:49:05

So often success is measured on anecdotal evidence. “It’s not as busy as it was last year...” “I was expecting more...” On the basis of one or two opinions, events can be deemed successful or not worth repeating.

Most marketers will be ready with measurables, such as leads generated, meetings conducted and predicted returns, however unless objectives and success were defined prior to the event, the figures lose their impact.

Before planning an event, it is useful to draft objectives, set a strategy and outline deliverables. Involve key parties, such as the sales team, to set joint targets everyone agrees defines success.

Key measures such as total cost of exhibiting, hosting or attending, plus total visitor numbers are good to gather as a starting point. You can then set targets for lead generation against costs, or as a percentage of the total audience, and follow up with leads converted and order values over time. This way you can calculate the return on investment and time taken to achieve the return.

Analysis of last year’s attendees and performance compared to this year’s statistics, gives you facts you can analyse. You can also compare visitor numbers and break them down into target audience and compare that with the number of leads generated. If target audience numbers were up and leads were down, you may want a closer look at how the stand was run.

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Topics: marketing

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