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A New Approach in Managed Print

11 Feb, 2009 By: Digital Gateway imageSource

A New Approach in Managed Print

Darwin’s theory of evolution suggests that over time, things evolve to a more
complex state.  Our industry currently faces an evolution of its own complexity
with managed print. Industry analysts report that the managed print market is
growing by 11% annually, while the copier market is declining.  It’s apparent
that those dealers with an eye toward the future need to adapt and make managed
print a central focus of their business. Doing so can help them not just
survive, but thrive through the challenges facing our industry. IDC reports that
over 4.2 trillion clicks occur each year with only 3% under managed print
contracts.  This fact represents a huge opportunity for dealers to capture the
remaining 97% not under contract.  This has brought an explosion of technologies
and services aimed at helping dealers enter the managed print space.

problem is these technologies and services are disparate and dealers are left to
cobble together their own solutions.  A few dealers have been effective and
experienced great success while many have not fared so well.  Too many people
are telling independent dealers where they need to go but not how to get there.
The challenge is dealers are hard-pressed to find a solution that brings
together all the training, technologies and partners a dealer needs to ensure
their success.

Jim Phillips, CEO of Digital Gateway, watched  his dealers, now numbering
over 1000, struggle with managed print. A year-and-a-half ago, he set a goal to
develop an integrated strategy to help his dealers go mainstream in the managed
print services business with a new go-to-market strategy. The result is Managed
Print Success 2.0 (MPS 2.0), an end-to-end managed print solution to help
dealers bring managed print services into their business, incorporating
necessary elements needed by dealers, approached in innovative ways. Dealers
participating in managed print programs today are  making or seeking to make the
transitions needed to adapt to new growth opportunities found in MPS. Phillips
realizes managed print is the best way to ensure success for his company’s

Now more  than  ever during  trying economic times where every business with
copiers is looking  for ways  to cut costs, managed print services is the way to
help both dealers and their customers become recession proof.

“Right now, the best way for dealers to protect their current customer base,
increase their pages under contract, add new revenue streams, extend existing
profitability, increase service revenue, and improve their company valuation is
through managed print,” said Phillips. “For our dealers, 60% of their revenue
comes from their existing customer base. If they don’t evolve this  base to
managed print, someone else will.”

A Different Approach

Evolving to managed print requires some fundamental shifts in the way
dealers approach the managed print opportunity. It’s not just a matter of taking
a class or buying a new software program. A good program is designed to help
dealers deploy managed print services with effectiveness and efficiency. Here
are a few essentials covered in the MPS 2.0 program:

From training to mentoring: Success in managed print is a process, not an
event. Each dealer is given a personalized and affordable coaching program where
team members learn skills via live expert coaching until they are successful.

From branding to marketing: The program guides each dealer in the development
of strategic marketing programs that position their company as a managed print
expert and in the execution of campaigns that show the benefits to a C-level

From guessing to measurement: If you don’t have benchmarks in place to gauge
your success, you might be headed in the wrong direction. Worse you could be
pricing your deals incorrectly and end up with an unprofitable contract. With
MPS 2.0, dealers are given tools and mentoring to help them set and achieve
goals and measure their success.

From manual processes to automation: Try to do the print management business
without automated systems and you’ll be frustrated because it’s a high
transaction business. Dealers are given the systems to automate the entire
Managed Print Life Cycle from sales to fulfillment.

It Takes a Team

From his past consulting experience with Fortune 1000 companies, Phillips
knew it was going to take more than new software to make managed print services
work.  “We needed a complete strategy that covered the entire motion of
marketing, sales, meter capture,  TCO analysis, financing, billing, fulfillment
and commission.”

Phillips went to his clients and asked them who they had worked with that
helped deliver results.  The two individuals that kept receiving positive
endorsements were Darrell Amy and Jim Salzer.  The duo had already been working
with many of e-automate’s most successful dealers.  Amy’s companies, Dealer
Marketing Systems and Prospect Builder provide marketing services to help
dealers succeed in managed print.  Salzer is the President of DocuAudit (www.docuaudit.com),
providing sales training and proposal tools for MPS. 

“Over the past year, I watched Amy and Salzer work together with our dealers
that are Hewlett-Packard SVIP Elite partners to help them develop their managed
print services businesses,” said Phillips.  “I knew these guys were the ones I
wanted on our team.”

“I’ve watched sales people come to training sessions, buy software licenses
and then go home and forget half of what they learned by the time it came to
implement,” says Jim Salzer.  “We deliver a program that holds the print
management specialist’s hand as they work through getting appointments with
CFO’s, presenting the value proposition, conducting the assessment, closing the
business and performing quarterly account reviews.  We function as a virtual
sales manager to these managed print reps to drive activity, manage results and
provide support.”

“Marketing by itself is fine, but it is really powerful when we can integrate
sales activity,” said Darrell Amy.  “In the MPS 2.0 program we provide marketing
support to position the dealers brands correctly and develop scripted sales
tools. We also execute campaigns to generate demand with current and potential

In addition, Digital Gateway has pulled in the expertise of Gary Halperin. 
His previous experience included helping develop the Global model for the copier
business.  He also served as CFO of Print Inc., an early innovator in managed
print.  Halperin brings the unique understanding needed to develop the new
financial model and metrics needed for managed print success.

“Metrics, measurements and benchmarks are not goals in and of themselves,”
said Halperin.  “They are tools to analyze a dealer’s performance against other
companies and against their own goals.  A well organized routine  management
reporting package (such as  e-automate) will be a very important step in the
maturation of your business and help   greatly  on  directing  activities  for
performance  enhancement.”

Tools for the Job

Dealers need more than just coaching to succeed into managed print. They
need strategies and good software programs. The program MPS 2.0 incorporates
Digital Gateway’s e-automate Managed Print Edition, and includes tools designed
specifically to automate the managed print services lifecycle, to make running a
managed print oriented business simpler.  Integration is a key component.

Good Criteria and Tools to Consider:

Addressing the administrative load, dealers can set-up & shop multiple
vendors for the best prices & stock on supplies in real-time.  Consider PO

Dealers can create full, professional and accurate managed print proposals in
a fraction of the time.  Integrate  Digital Quote Manager™  with  DocuAudit™.

Generating complex reports & splitting commissions for sales reps paid on
page volumes is a difficult process to manage. Simplify with Commissions™.

Dealers need real-time info at a glance to see if contracts are profitable or
whether they need immediate attention. Consider the President’s Report™.

Getting Results

“It’s great to see the dealers participating in the MPS 2.0 program
experience real change and real results,” said Lon Price, VP of Sales and
Marketing at Digital Gateway.  “No two dealers are alike and each participant is
given unique expert coaching designed to drive results for their specific
business. ”

“Since the program started in August, we have coached dealers on hiring new
specialized managed print sales reps, and provided sales training and management
to the new sales reps. These reps were able to make sales appointments with
multiple CFOs, present dozens of managed print proposals, sign agreements for
millions of pages under contract, and enjoy strong and growing pipelines. And
this is just the beginning. During a time when most businesses are talking about
how to survive through economic crisis, it’s nice to see our dealers talking
about how to keep up with demand.”

Better Business Equipment (BBE), a dealer based in Nebraska, has been
participating in the MPS 2.0 program. They landed a 1.2 Million page per year
managed print contract with a large financial consulting firm after a few weeks
of being on the program.

From the skills BBE acquired through the program, they uncovered an
opportunity to add more value to one of their customers.

A BBE sales representative helped the firm see value in maintaining their
existing equipment instead of suffering the cost and hassle of replacing the
assets.  Improvements were also made from the assessment, to redeploy their high
volume HP LaserJet 8100 printers to high volume areas to improve productivity
and extend their life cycle.

The firm now looks to the dealership to automatically restock cartridges when
devices run low. 

Laser’s Resource, a Michigan-based dealer, is also participating in the
program. As a part of the program, sales representatives participate in a weekly
online skill building meeting where they are taught the skills needed to drive
managed print sales.  Representatives work through actual deals, directly
learning how to handle real world selling scenarios. 

In less than two months, this coaching enabled their sales team to land a 4.8
million page per year managed print services contract and 80 HP multifunction
printers in a local law firm. 

“Reviewing the sales process each week has been helpful to our sales
representatives,” said Dan McCloud, VP of Sales at Laser’s Resource. 

“The MPS 2.0 program has given us a consistent talk track.  It’s been a huge
help in getting our foot in the door of some big companies and I look forward to
becoming more proficient at completing the entire proposal process.”

Infincom, another dealer participating in the program, has learned how to
evolve their business in ways that has captured the attention of their
prospects. “The MPS 2.0 program has brought focus, expectation, energy, and
distinction to our approach,” said Jeff Bucher, President of Infincom. “In
addition, it has taken us to a higher level in our accounts than we have had in
the past. The people we’re talking to, including C-Level executives, are
genuinely interested in hearing about how we can help them to create a strategy
that controls rising costs in the print space. It has also given us a nice start
to where this business is ultimately going for the next five years, managed
print services.” 

The Future is Managed Print

Dealers are looking to profit from managed print and are seeking companies
to partner with to help lead the way. For Digital Gateway, that means fueling
growth among its user base.

“We have assembled a top-notch team, tools and partners to
build an end-to-end program that helps take the guesswork out of transitioning
to managed print,” says Phillips.  “And, the recent results from the program
have validated our approach.”

The company’s MPS 2.0 program has already conducted multiple summits, with a
recent group of dealers having started the program in January.  Throughout 2009,
Digital Gateway will seek to expand other dealers into their program.

 Phillips is committed to the managed print business.  When asked, his
response is passionate:  “We have staked our reputation on being the independent
company for the independent dealer.  We know that our clients have to succeed in
this new area.  If they don’t succeed, we don’t succeed.”

For more information on Digital Gateway's end-to-end management print
program, e-automate Managed Print Success, please contact Digital Gateway at
1.866.GATEWAY (342-8392) or visit

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