The 7 ‘Must knows’ about your competitors

Posted on Jan 12 2016 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on The 7 ‘Must knows’ about your competitors
Categories : Business, Marketing, Reselling

You’re aware of what your competitors are up to aren’t you? You know what products they offer and how much they charge? That’s all you need to know, right? Well actually, you may well be missing a trick or two by not evaluating other areas of their business and seeing how you measure up. Benchmarking your business objectives, positioning and marketing against that of your leading competitors could help you gain valuable insights into your own performance and highlight areas of improvement or new opportunities.

Our new eBook ‘7 Things You Must Know About Your Competitors’ explains 7 of the key areas to consider when trying to differentiate yourself.

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Is bargain broadband pricing driving customer churn?

Posted on Jul 08 2015 by Stephen Barclay | Comments Off on Is bargain broadband pricing driving customer churn?
Categories : Broadband, Marketing, Reselling
Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

The pricing war in the consumer broadband market continues apace with lower and lower headline costs being announced every week. It’s becoming increasingly difficult for smaller ISPs to compete within this market, if you plan to compete based on price alone, that is. Realistically, only the big providers with large scale customer volumes can succeed with this strategy, and even then it’s not necessarily viable in the long term. With such a price sensitive market, is bargain broadband pricing driving customer churn and if so, how do we beat this to successfully retain customers?

How does pricing affect churn?

It’s generally agreed that it costs more to attract and recruit new customers than it does to retain existing ones. Forrester Research suggests it could cost up to 5 times more! So, it makes sense to aim to retain customers and reduce your churn. Not to mention the ongoing marketing and general business benefits gained from having a happy, long-term, ‘sticky’ customer base.

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Is the Which? fight for broadband speed guarantees right?

Posted on Jun 24 2015 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Is the Which? fight for broadband speed guarantees right?

Last year we discussed the campaign being led by ‘Which?’ demanding guaranteed broadband speeds and slating a number of the larger ISPs for not delivering what their headline advertised speeds promised. Unfortunately, whilst we ISP types are well aware that it’s simply not that easy to ‘guarantee’ broadband speeds, Which? has reignited its campaign and whilst its intentions are good, the demands simply aren’t feasible.

Based on a recent report from Ofcom which sampled approx. 2000 connections Which? has used the findings to further promote its campaign to convince the ASA to change the current advertising guidelines governing broadband speeds. Currently, ISPs are required to advertise headline speed claims based on actual speeds achieved by at least 10% of their customer base. Which? argues that this recent survey shows ISPs are not conforming to these guidelines, which the ISPs dispute. It is also demanding a tougher ‘majority’ based calculation, wants providers to back up arguably generic statements such as ‘superfast’ with actual speed information and requests a crackdown by regulators on confusing adverts.

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Meet the author – Darren Farnden

Posted on Apr 17 2015 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Meet the author – Darren Farnden
Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

It’s time to introduce Entanet’s Head of Marketing and keen Opinion author, Darren Farnden…

How long have you worked at Entanet?

I started at Entanet in April 2006 so 9 years now.

 What are your key responsibilities within the business and what are your areas of expertise?

I run Entanet’s small but truly dynamic marketing team. A member of the management team, I’m responsible for ensuring we translate the company’s strategic direction into a plan that supports the business internally and our channel partners externally. This means we take ownership of everything from maintaining a high profile in the market, providing our own sales team and also partners with support and intelligence to help them sell, right through to communication with existing partners and attracting new ones and nurturing their interest. We’re sometimes fondly known as the colouring in department but we know we’d be missed.

With regards to opinion, which topics do you usually cover and why?

I cover quite a range of subjects – obviously anything directly linked to marketing such as the growing opportunities for resellers in social media, adhering to connectivity advertising rules and several of our selling related guides and eBooks. I’ve also previously discussed the Government’s plans to tackle copyright infringement through the controversial DEA and most recently discussed the pros and cons of classifying broadband as a utility.

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Is the upload speed REALLY important?

Posted on Nov 24 2014 by Darren Farnden | 1 Comment

ISPs’ controversial headline speed adverts pretty much exclusively focus on broadband download speeds. After all, that’s what the customers are really interested in, isn’t it?! Not according to ISPReview.co.uk, who recently ran a poll of their readers that found that almost 25% rated upload speed as ‘very important’. So, should ISPs be providing this information more readily?

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

In fairness, ISPreview.co.uk’s readers are probably a bit more tech savvy than many broadband users and therefore are more aware of the increasingly important role upload speeds play in their day to day Internet usage habits. So, are customers really concerned with (or even aware of) the importance of their upload speed?

Changing Internet usage habits

That depends on how they use their Internet connection. If they are using it to support an application that is reliant on two-way data transfer such as VoIP or video conferencing or predominantly upload based such as FTP, then they are likely to be more aware of the importance of a good upload speed. Even in the residential broadband market, where customers are uploading more and more information (e.g. photos) to social media sites or online gaming for example, they will be significantly aware of the impact a faster upload speed can have. Alternatively, if they are predominantly downloading information it may be a less important factor to them.

However, with market trends showing an increasing adoption of hosted services and analysts predicting significant growth in things like the IoT and connected devices, surely upload speed is set to become increasingly important to everyone’s day to day Internet usage.

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Knowingly undersold

Posted on Nov 21 2013 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Knowingly undersold

Reliability – not price – is what really matters to resellers and customers when it comes to connectivity says Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing at Entanet.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

It’s always easy to focus on price when it’s all that the customer seems to be focused on and especially when connectivity services are promoted as a commodity. Do businesses really want a cheap service that can’t be relied upon?

At Entanet we’ve never espoused or promoted the low-cost-only route to selling. We always encourage and support our partners in promoting the key values of connectivity and, while this may seem like an obvious point to make, it’s one we believe is important to re-iterate time and time again because it’s all too easy to fall into the trap of selling on price and little else in a competitive and crowded market.

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Selling with care – A guide to consultative selling

Posted on Jul 22 2013 by Stephen Barclay | Comments Off on Selling with care – A guide to consultative selling

With businesses relying on their digital links to the outside world to stay operational, responsive and competitive, and more choice of connectivity services than ever, resellers need to focus on the needs of individual customers.

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Any good sales person will tell you selling is mostly about listening and applying common sense to help the customer solve their problem. Unfortunately it’s not quite that simple. Every customer has a different story to tell and their own particular challenges. Every customer wants to be treated as a special case.

These truisms are becoming more pronounced in today’s market. Customers are faced with what must seem a bewildering array of connectivity options. They’re bombarded with messages about superfast broadband, EFM, GEA and many other kinds of service. All most of them want though is a reliable connection with the bandwidth, availability and performance they need to run their business efficiently.

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The connectivity scale part two: Where does broadband end and Ethernet begin?

Posted on Apr 19 2013 by Stephen Barclay | Comments Off on The connectivity scale part two: Where does broadband end and Ethernet begin?

In last weeks article (Part one) we started to look at the ‘connectivity scale’ and looked at the growing options around copper and fibre based broadband that are driving customers’ expectations of faster and more reliable services. Today we look at Ethernet based products that build on these expectations and deliver service attributes that are even more essential to business critical connectivity. Let’s start with GEA…

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

GEA

GEA is a new service which begins to bridge the gap between fibre broadband and Ethernet based solutions. Like FTTC, GEA utilises the existing copper infrastructure (a single copper pair) between the customer premises and the cabinet and then uses fibre back to the exchange. However, from the exchange it delivers the traffic across the Ethernet core network, not the broadband one. This means it can deliver an uncontended and dedicated service with service guarantees. GEA provides a comprehensive SLA, choice of backup options and a 9 business hour return to service guarantee, making it an attractive and cost effective option for business customers looking for a guaranteed service with short installation times and symmetrical speeds from 2Mbps up to 20Mbps.

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The connectivity scale part one: Where does broadband end and Ethernet begin?

Posted on Apr 08 2013 by Stephen Barclay | 1 Comment
Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Stephen Barclay, Head of Sales

Just when you think you’ve got to grips with all the latest connectivity technologies, their features and how to confidently sell them, another one emerges!

With the launch of GEA (Generic Ethernet Access) you could be forgiven for being confused as to where broadband connectivity ends and Ethernet based connectivity begins. So, in this two part article we thought a little clarification of the key differentiators may be useful.

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ASA broadband advertising guidelines – any clearer now?

Posted on Mar 28 2013 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on ASA broadband advertising guidelines – any clearer now?

Last year in April the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) and CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) released new guidelines governing the advertising of broadband speeds and ‘unlimited’ broadband packages.

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing

In a previous article ASA broadband guidelines – What will it mean for resellers? we discussed the details of the guidelines, the likely impact on end users and for the industry and what they would entail for resellers. We came to the conclusion that although we recognised that the ASA and CAP were attempting to protect consumers and prevent them from being misled, the guidelines would cause further confusion and could potentially have a negative impact on the digital divide in the UK. We feared that these guidelines would put a lot of providers off advertising altogether and that this could lead to speed information being withdrawn completely. A year on we review the situation and see what the effect has been.

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