We will explore both of these services to make sure we have an understanding of how we can focus on the strengths of each one, and minimize the weaknesses they might have when attempting to close a customer.
Copper lines have been hanging from poles for decades and this is the traditional service that has been available in the market. Verizon copper lines support both the phone (voice signal) and the DSL service. The copper line has an electrical signal that runs through it and converts to the appropriate Voice or Data signal needed by the customer at the business.
When it comes to DSL (the internet connection), service is distant dependent. The further the signal has to go down the copper line, the weaker the signal becomes.
In select areas, Verizon offers Fiber Optic service, which is called FiOS. Fiber optics runs off a pulse of light that travels through glass, and Verizon is the only company who offers a 100% Fiber network from the Central Office all the way to the business or home where service is being installed. Because of this, there is absolutely 0 dependency on distant, and customers get the true speed they pay for. On top of this, FiOS is weather resistant and does not suffer during inclement weather that might affect copper lines. FiOS is the fastest internet service provider available in the market.
There are many companies out there that sell telephone service. In every territory, there is only ONE telecom provider available; in California, this is either ATNT or Verizon. So, where there is Verizon landline service, there will not be ATNT and vice-versa also applies.
In the field, we will run into a few competitors. A majority of our competitors are covered by the following categories: 3rd party resellers, cable companies, VoiP, and T1’s.
3rd party resellers are companies who rent Verizon line access, and then add a value of their own to the actual phone service to incentivize the customer to go through them instead of directly through Verizon. For example, Asian American Telecom Association is a 3rd party reseller who will give the customer the extra perk of speaking over 10 different native asian languages, making this an option for non-english customers to speak with customer service reps and have a conversation versus battling Verizon on the phone with their limited English.
Cable companies do not rent Verizon lines, but instead lay their own cable network which is also copper bundles of lines. Just like how Verizon FIOS is not available everywhere, cable service providers are also not everywhere. Also, just like Verizon/ATNT don’t share the market, cable companies also do not. An example would be TimeWarner Cable and Charter not being in the same market at the same locations.
T1’s are a level of service reserved for more complicated business structure. If a customer has this service, you are not expected to know all the product knowledge behind their technology and might not be able to provide the level of service they need. But keep in mind, often customer’s buy T1’s because a sales rep told them it’s the best thing for them when in actuality a T1 runs at a speed of 1.5 Mbps / 1.5 Mbps. This is not necessarily the best for customers who want a phone that rings and internet that works, so paying the extra cost for a T1 would not be the best option and we can switch them to FiOS or DSL and Verizon phone lines.
VoiP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. In other words, it’s a phone line that is running through the internet. The best way to understand this is relating to Skype calling. Skype calling is VoiP because there is not phone line hooked up to your computer dialing out, but you are able to make phone calls. This is because the signal is traveling through your internet. Some obvious challenges of this service: your phones depend on your internet, so no internet = no phones. This could be a problem with inconsistent internet connections.
Based on these slides, you now should have a good starting point for understanding the market. Please answer the following questions to demonstrate your understanding.