Kyocera Mita has warned dealers to take a more holistic approach to selling printers and own the document lifecycle, rather than rely on the meagre returns that come from selling hardware.
The admonition came at the Japanese manufacturer’s third Document Solutions Forum this year, held at the Kensington Roof Gardens with 58 dealers attending the event.
Tracey Rawling Church, head of marketing at Kyocera Mita, admitted: “No one is ever going to get rich from selling the box, there is no money left in hardware. So if you want to trade profitably and protect your customer base, you need to take a more holistic approach.”
She argued that as the printer and copier markets converged, the respective channels would look at seizing each other’s business: “If the IT reseller is not selling a document management application, it risks losing its customer base to other suppliers.”
Rawling Church said that until now, IT dealers may have only sold output, but the opportunity was to manage document import to networks, looking at the exchange and storage of all documents.
Kyocera revealed its strategy was to encourage its dealers to form partnerships with specialists, and a raft attended the event, including document management vendor ZyLAB and print auditor developer SLM.
Mick Elliott, director of dealer Greenacre Computer Services, claimed he was looking for an alternative to Hewlett-Packard and believed there were some common sense messages that came out of the day.
“All manufacturers’ technology is pretty similar and dealers need to find a way to stand out from the crowd. Kyocera’s strategy is common sense,” he argued.
Objectif Lune was showcasing its forms management product, and managing director Colin Casey agreed it was becoming ever more important for dealers to seek a unique selling point.