- INDUSTRY INSIGHTS
A Property-Based Approach to Fiber Sales
Rising demand for bandwidth-hungry technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart buildings is driving impressive growth in the fiber optics industry—with estimates of 9.9% CAGR through at least 2028.
But, while the growing demand for high-speed broadband connections will be a boon for fiber sales teams, that doesn’t necessarily mean everything will be smooth sailing. The high costs of installation—due to the need for expensive splicing equipment and highly skilled technicians—is just one hurdle that fiber sales teams still need to overcome.
This is why, even in the middle of a period of remarkable growth for the industry, it is so essential for fiber sales teams to have a well-thought-out strategy. A strategy that takes a property-based approach to the sales process can help your sales team take advantage of growing demand while mitigating some of the factors holding back the adoption of fiber.
Why a Property-Based Approach Makes Sense for Fiber Sales Teams
The traditional sales strategy focuses on identifying potential buyers based on the needs and goals of individuals or organizations. By contrast, in a property-based approach, sales teams qualify leads based on the characteristics of the buildings themselves.
Even though the benefits of fiber optic to the end user are clear—pure fiber connections can reach download speeds of up to 1 Gigabit/second, nearly 20 times faster than the U.S. average download speed of 54.99 Mbps—there are several reasons why an approach that targets property owners rather than end users makes sense.
Chief among these is the nature of telecom and fiber infrastructure. Even if the end user is in an area where fiber infrastructure exists, they may not have access to a pure fiber connection due to bottlenecks during the “last mile”—the distance between core internet fiber lines and user homes or businesses. For many customers, older systems based on much slower copper telephone lines and coaxial cables are responsible for transferring data from the network to the end user. To get the full benefits of a fiber-optic network, the last mile would need to be upgraded with an end-to-end fiber connection—a costly upgrade the end user may have little control over.
How to Build a Property-Based Strategy
The steps involved in a property-based strategy aren’t radically different from other sales strategies: sales teams define their ideal target and identify high-potential leads based on these core criteria.
Define Your Target
Your fiber sales team may have thousands of properties in your service area. But not every property will need the blazing-fast internet speeds provided by fiber optic. Defining what attributes make a property a good target—and which properties can quickly be filtered out as dead ends—is the first step in turning the large set of prospects in your sales area into a manageable list of leads.
A target definition for fiber-optic sales might focus on the type and use of the property, square footage, the building’s permit or certification history, or whether the building is owner-occupied or tenant occupied.
Using these building-based criteria, we can create multiple potential targets for fiber sales:
Map a Viable Service Area
Once you have defined your target prospects, it’s time to map out your service area. While the last mile is only a figure of speech, this critical piece of the broadband internet infrastructure can only go so far. So whether it’s one mile or ten, you can efficiently map viable properties based on their distance from key fiber-optic hubs.
And by adding additional filters, the map of your viable service area will become more detailed, precise, and accurate. You can filter your service area map to remove areas that are too far from critical infrastructure, inaccessible due to geographic limitations (is there a protected waterway or other obstacle blocking the way?), or outside of the scope of your business for whatever reason. What you are left with is a map of all the viable properties in your service area.
Rank High-Potential Leads Based on Key Criteria
Now that you’ve defined your target and mapped your service area, it’s time to reach out to prospects. Of course, it’s not possible to know beforehand exactly which opportunity is going to lead to a sale. But it is possible to identify which prospects in your service area have more potential than others.
Whether your sales team takes a high-touch approach or prefers a broader strategy that begins with a cold-calling spree, ranking potential leads allows you to know which prospects are worth contacting first (and which prospects aren’t worth the trouble).
Atlas, for example, allows users to color-code prospects based on the criteria that matter most, making it easy to organize prospects and know where to focus your sales energy.
Monitor Properties and Track Opportunities
Not all prospects are going to be on the same timeline. Keeping an eye on your leads and monitoring changes can help you focus your sales efforts not only where they will be most effective but also when.
Maybe you have an office building in your sales area that seems a good fit, but they aren’t ready to upgrade to fiber. By monitoring the property over time, you can quickly identify changes that might increase their interest in fiber. Is the amount of vacant space in the building increasing? Why not upgrade to fiber? Ultra-fast internet is a big draw for new tenants! Was the property purchased by an owner-occupant planning to use the building for their high-tech startup? Now would be a great time to upgrade to fiber before you move in!
By organizing your leads using tools such as the customizable boards in Atlas, you can be sure to remember where each lead is in the prospecting process, so you can go back to cold leads as soon as they begin to warm up. With this kind of visibility into each prospect, it becomes much easier to nurture each lead and give them the attention they need to close the sale.
Data Is the Key to Making Sales at the Speed of Fiber
Building a successful property-based sales strategy requires access to in-depth data on both individual properties and the broader market as a whole. The Convex Market Intelligence Engine gives your sales team a complete overview of the people, businesses, and properties in your area so you can prioritize the most valuable opportunities in your market.
By combining these market and property insights with the lead-management and monitoring tools in Atlas, your sales team can qualify leads and monitor prospects, so you can make contact when the moment is right.
Learn more about Convex or schedule a demo.
Whitney is the VP of Marketing at Convex, with more than 10 years of B2B marketing experience. She’s previously led product marketing at AppDynamics and within GE’s power business. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Harvard and an MBA from Columbia.
Originally published on July 7, 2022 Updated on July 7, 2022