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Cell phone signal booster dealers and integrators play a key role in bringing people better cellular service. Yet, finding business can be touch and go without a reliable manufacturer, account manager, or cellular carrier to rely on.
Instead, many independent integrators build their businesses as they go by forging relationships and receiving referrals. Along with this, some dealers strive to build partnerships with cellular carriers in their regions.
In many cases, these partnerships can fuel their businesses and grow their networks. This article discusses how cell signal booster integrators, dealers, and installers can build their businesses by forging partnerships with carriers.
One dealer’s story
We’ll begin with a real-life example of a dealer who built his independent business from scratch. In 2009, WilsonPro-certified cell signal booster installer Steve Klingensmith from RCS Wireless Technology reached out to a Verizon account manager over email, explaining how he was trained and experienced in helping people improve their cellular connectivity.
Over time, Steve and the Verizon account manager formed an informal business relationship. Anytime the account manager learned of a customer complaining of poor cell signal, he’d send the customer to Steve.
There was no formalized business guideline for such a partnership. “We were simply taking care of customers and making them happy,” Steve said. Yet, as time went on and word spread, Steve’s network grew.
The informal relationship became a strategic partnership in which Verizon referred its customers to Steve, the customers paid him directly, and Verizon offered credits back to the customers to offset their costs.
Eventually, the partnership evolved into a formalized agreement between Verizon and WilsonPro. Now, Verizon customers experiencing poor cellular reception can visit Verizon’s website and enter their information and complaint, which notifies WilsonPro. WilsonPro then reaches out to integrators in that region, like Steve, to help.
Benefits of establishing a carrier partnership
There are many benefits of creating an ongoing partnership with a local or national cellular carrier, both for the installer and the carrier.
Perks for the cellular service carrier include:
- Since the carrier manufactures no hardware, having a connection with an experienced dealer who has access to top-of-the-line equipment is a big benefit.
- Independent, certified dealers offer more cost-effective options for small businesses (compared to DAS systems for enterprise clients).
- Carriers can track which customers report problems, where they are located, and how their problems were resolved.
Benefits for the integrator include:
- Reliable business from a trusted source
- The opportunity to build a reputation and maintain relationships within a network of account managers and customers
- The chance to collaborate with carriers to provide better service to new and existing customers
How to establish yourself as a dealer and build your network
Dealers who want to build their businesses should begin by getting to know the carriers in their local area. Think about the service providers in the area, and which retail stores are nearby.
“Go into every local [carrier] store and introduce yourself to all associates,” Steve said. “Educate them on who you are and what you do, because at some point, a residential or business customer will come in with a poor signal problem and then they’ll know who to call.”
Steve found success by being outgoing, friendly, and informative. He suggests that dealers connect with their local carrier representatives and educate them about what cell signal boosters do and how they can help customers.
“Ask about offering training classes to the carrier associates to teach them about cell signal boosters,” Steve says. “Many just don’t know.”
Educating carriers and customers alike can prove extremely valuable. Explaining different options and ways of boosting coverage can help people understand the difference between a high-cost distributed antenna system (DAS) and a cost-effective cell signal booster solution from a company like WilsonPro.
Dealers can even hand out literature and informational assets, such as WilsonPro’s “Ultimate Guide to Commercial Cell Signal Boosters.”
“Effective partnerships can work for any major carrier, so there’s lots of opportunity,” Steve says. “We’re all in partnership trying to make customers happy.”
As dealers and integrators build their networks, partnerships based on referrals from manufacturers, carriers, and customer word-of-mouth can all contribute to new and ongoing business. Putting yourself out there and constantly educating carriers and customers brings even more value to the table.