Hikvision USA, a provider of video products that has made its name in the SMB side of the industry, is upping its game by pursuing the high-end market and the larger integrators.
Its long-term strategy has been to be the preferred video product vendor in North America, which Sam Belbina, vice president, enterprise sales Hikvision USA, said they’ve done quite well. The company has now, Belbina said, decided to focus on the top systems integrators.
“These systems integrators were not the main focus for Hikvision in the past years,” Belbina said. “We are trying to change.”
That all changed in early 2015 when Hikvision began its focus on targeting the larger systems integrators with the same goal of being the preferred North American video vendor. To facilitate that goal, Hikvision invested in a new team, and the enterprise solutions group was born
Hikvision brought Belbina on board in October of 2015. Years before coming to Hikvision, Belbina had worked with high-end integrators in his previous positions, bringing a deep understanding of their needs and behaviors. “The high-end integrators — while they do care as much about price — they’re looking for value. I believe we’re positioned very well to go after this market segment, because Hikvision can offer integrators the innovative technology they need, but more importantly we can compete on service. We have focused on our tech support, added highly qualified and experienced sales engineers, and our people know their local markets in every region of the U.S. and Canada,” he said.
There are some market basics that companies employ to compete in today’s challenging security industry environment:
- “We need to create demand, simple as that. One way to do it is to establish your relationship with A&E,” Belbina said. “The engineers, consultants, and so forth, are looking for a lot of tools, better product and, most important, better support. Hikvision has made a major investment in this initiative to better educate and service the engineering and consultant community.”
- “Also, engagement with the high-end system integrators is crucial,” he said. “What the company should bring to the table is technology and innovations. These are not just cliché terminology, these are essential. However, most importantly, a vendor should provide an outstanding level of support. Between the SMB and the enterprise team, we have an excellent group of sales and support people located across the country.” Belbina explained this substantial support sales network is designed to help Hikvision become trusted partners with the systems integrators.
- “Finally, a company that wants to succeed needs to create a team to engage with those high-end video management systems and access companies to ensure a seamless integration of technology, and also to foster deeper partnerships,” he concluded.
Belbina explained adopting this strategy and executing it well is the key to acquiring some of the market share. “Our goal is to make Hikvision the preferred North American video supplier for systems integrators.”
Already the company is seeing results. “We’re working on projects with some of the top SIs right now. As the systems integrators get to know us better, we expect that list of Hikvision systems integrator partners to grow, a lot.”
Initially, Hikvision is focusing on developing relationships with integrators and consultants. “We want to make integrators’ jobs easier. Our products are flexible enough to meet many verticals and will adapt easily to each. We believe we have the right products in our portfolio that are designed for these kinds of verticals, and our focus is to become the enabler for those guys to win projects,” Belbina said.
Hikvision has invested in the right mix of regional sales managers, business development managers and solution application engineers. These people, Belbina said, are tasked with giving the necessary local attention and focus to integrators and consultants.
The goal, however, is not just to help the integrators win projects, but to help them through the entire process, strengthening the value proposition of Hikvision’s offerings. “Our priority is to train them and make sure they learn how install our product and make it work the first time,” he said. “Systems integrators take very complex, long-term projects, and sometimes the installation goes beyond six months or even up to two years. They want to make sure they make money at the end of the project.”
Belbina emphasized the importance of selling value to the high-end systems integrators. “Hikvision’s video surveillance solutions have been proven and tested in a variety of demanding environments. Our more than 7,000 R&D engineers is a testament to our continued commitment to innovation, but our value goes far, far beyond that. That’s why we’re focused on creating trusted partnerships. We earn that trust by providing the best tech support, sales engineers and ongoing service in every region of the U.S. and Canada.”