Wow, that title was a bit dramatic wasn’t it? I could have gone with the tried and true “Top 7 reasons you will be saying goodbye to your security company (you will never believe number 6)”, however, I have a hard enough time reading those let alone writing one. Dramatic or not, the reality is that our industry is changing and it is happening at light speed.
For decades, “security” companies provided…security (go figure). This was the company that you went to when you needed an alarm for your home, a fire system for your business, or you were just in dire need of some extremely grainy, low quality videos that you can only get from a gas station camera system. The term “security” fit these companies perfectly as that is what they did and they did it well. The fact of the matter is that times are changing and consumer demand is reshaping our industry. Technology has advanced and with that comes a new “lifestyle” segment. Consumers will soon be driven based on Smart/Connected home options as opposed to traditional security offerings. Sound crazy? Let’s talk about another paradigm shift that I was part of not too long ago.
Rewind to 2001. A young and eager sales person sat in front of a consumer trying to calculate how many minutes he should buy to accompany his brand new flip phone. Was 450 minutes enough? “Don’t forget, you have your free nights and weekends!” I’m sure most of you remember that scenario. The wireless industry and its patrons only cared about phone calls. We all know how that turned out. While making phone calls was once the core of that industry, people now rank that below text messaging, surfing the web, and sharing pictures of every single meal that they eat on social media. What do you think would have happened to the company that stood by their roots and continued to only focus on providing standard phone plans? I’ll answer that for you. The same thing that will soon happen to the traditional security company that cannot/will not adapt to the new marketplace.
The “connected home” movement has already gained significant steam within the past few years. There are new start-up companies formed every day with the intent on capitalizing on this new market. Google and Apple have taken steps towards this while most cable and telecom companies have already begun promoting these products. Security companies are now at the proverbial fork in the road. Do they hold true and stick to their guns, or do they adapt and expand their product offerings and expertise. I am proud to say we (ADS) have done the latter.
Although no one can predict the future, there is one thing that is certain; a company that loses touch with its consumers and what they want will not survive. How many security companies will wind up like Blockbuster Video who didn’t believe that Netflix could threaten them? Will they find the same fate as Borders who laughed at the idea of an electronic book? The truth is that there is no real way to guarantee success in any industry. What matters is that a company never rests. The companies that make it through these times are the ones who continue to innovate while keeping a strong focus and connection with their customers. So that being said, I invite you to sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride. I, for one, am excited to see what the future holds and I can assure you that we are ready for it!