It's not called a managed services program. And it's not hyped as a recurring revenue effort. But Cisco Systems' latest pricing plan in the unified communications market is something that may interest managed service providers. The networking giant has introduced "per-user-per-day pricing" to help channel partners accelerate their unified communication sales to small and midsize businesses.
The so-called Cisco EasyLease "is tailored to SMB customers, offering simplified documentation, expedited credit approvals and low transaction minimums," according to a Cisco release.
Some critics have said that managed services -- and hardware as a service, in particular -- are nothing more than a new way to describe customer leases.
Regardless of what you call it, the per-user-per-day pricing model is an easy way to show customers how much they will actually pay for a solution, and savvy MSPs should marry that information with a per-user-per-day cost savings model, to show customers how much money they can save (or new revenue they can generate) by moving to unified communications.
Cisco says it has also enhanced several online tools, including:
- An updated self-service online commercial quoting tool that allows partners to generate their own customized per-user-per-day pricing quotes.
- Co-brandable partner marketing materials on the Cisco Partner Central website, available via the Campaign Builder and Marketing Acceleration Planner (MAP), that make it easy to market per-user-per-day pricing to customers.
- A series of brief videos on demand (VoDs) on the grow i.t. partner portal covering financing trends, financing basics, sales strategies, Cisco Capital offers and partner programs, and partner engagement.
- An updated Cisco Capital Operations Guide that explains how channel partners can work most effectively with their customers and Cisco Capital.