Peter Radizeski is Founder and President of RAD-INFO INC. He is an accomplished blogalyst, speaker, author and consultant. He has helped many service providers with sales training, marketing, channel development and business strategy. He is a trusted source of knowledge about the telecom sector. His honest and direct approach make him a refreshing speaker.

Look for his innovative ideas and analysis of current technology on his blogs.

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Friction

In 15 years, cloud communications had not even hit 15% penetration of the market. A pandemic pushed it to 25% (maybe 30%). That means it wasn’t really anything the CSPs did; they just answered the phone when people called (and if they didn’t drop the ball, they got a customer).

UCaaS messaging centered around voice and PBX replacement, yet when the pandemic hit, businesses were buying Facetime and MS Teams. This functionality was built into every UCaaS bundle. How did it go so sideways?

Webex, PGi, GoTo had all been offering video conferencing for years, but Zoom swooped it and stole the show. Even on the education sector, when schools went virtual, did any of the legacy players take market share? Marketers have to examine that to find out why.

As I think through the MS Teams win, I chalk that up to Microsoft marketing muscle and the fact that Office365 was already in front of so many businesses. It made sense for businesses to leverage that on the fly. And lean on it as it is embedded now – email, messaging, documents. The unified inbox.

When enabled, the MS Teams app will contain docs, email, chat, presence, SMS, voicemail, video and conferencing. That’s kind of the Holy Grail the market has been waiting for. And Microsoft’s plan to extend MS Teams infiltration to every business is moving forward. Every Metaswitch shop will be pushing MS Teams as the “softphone” going forward.

A lot went into play to get to here for Microsoft including how many gyrations of Lync, Skype, Office. Also, a ton of marketing muscle especially to their partners.

Why did Zoom win so big? 1 Million phones in 24 months! Was it the price, the pandemic, or a confluence of factors? Is $10 the price point to move seats? MS Teams Direct Routing runs between $5 and $10 per seat, so perhaps that is the sweet spot.

Or was it the simple (frictionless) way to add voice? No phone was shipped, just a tab on the Zoom app was added / turned on. In other words, voice is the pull-through (fly-wheel) from the video service.

It took 8×8 and RingCentral over 10 years to hit 1M seats. In 2020, both pushed out Meetings apps. This is chasing the market leader. Does anyone have a Zoom problem? Because if you aren’t solving a problem your market has, harder to get traction.

This leaves me asking you: How easy is it to buy from your company? I secret shop the cloud comms space frequently. It is not simple or easy.

For Microsoft users it was just easy to transition to MS Teams. Most companies already use some Microsoft product. Not a lot of friction to upgrade or add more products. Microsoft is also salient (top of mind). Marketing and ease of business.

Hard to be a Buyer of Telecom

It must be hard to be a Buyer for telecom services. The old acronyms – PRI, POTS, T1 – are hard to procure. In some cases, even buying a PRI doesn’t get you a PRI; it gets you PRI signaling. If the Buyer is current, is he/she looking for CPaaS, … [Continue reading]

What to Look for in 2021

Don’t expect the vaccines to change the landscape in the short-term (for many reasons – call me if you want me to elaborate). Even Dr. Fauci predicts Fall of 2021. Customer Experience (CX), Customer Engagement, API and UX/UI will be the focal … [Continue reading]

MicroCorp Goes to AppSmart

I have been a MicroCorp partner since 2002. I was on the Board for quite a few years. It is a fantastic group of people there – and one of the industry’s best channel managers (Cynthia Briggs) works there. 2020 pummeled the channel. Yes, some … [Continue reading]

Lessons from the Pandemic

As you can imagine there have been quite a few articles about the pandemic. I have read a few articles about lessons learned during the pandemic. These are worth the (short) read. This one is like a journal of thoughts. A couple of examples: … [Continue reading]