Reference customers: helpful or meaningless?
Okay, so, when you do an analysis of vendors, how much value do you place on their reference customers? A lot? A little? or somewhere in between? I have to tell you, we think it should be a lot. For some reason, carriers in the market for an interconnect voice platform don’t seem to put that much weight into using current customers as a reference, which completely confounds us. We have great customers. They’re some of the biggest and best voice service providers in the game. And yet, for reasons that escape our understanding, most new prospective customers don’t want to use our reference customers to help them perform the analysis. We believe this could be a mistake, and here is the most important reason why. These companies have performed the analysis before they purchased, decided to go with us, have been our customers for a long time, and continue to make investments in us. What better way is there to determine the value of a platform than to speak to carriers that are currently using the platform and have first hand experience with it?
Why do our customers offer to be reference accounts for us? Because we have solved so many of their problems that they are thrilled to be able to help their peers in the industry realize the benefits of a good, or even great, interconnect voice platform. These are companies doing over 1 billion, or even 2 billion minutes per month. They are retailers, they are cable cos, they are international service providers, U.S. domestic service providers, and wireless/wireline providers. They are representative of the entire industry, and yet, somehow, their feedback is dismissed or undervalued.
What’s crazy about this reality, which adds to our confusion, is that most people who buy products on Amazon leverage the “star rating system”. No one would ever buy if the vendor/product had only one star. Buyers feel better if the product was given a 5 star rating, even if the rating was given by an anonymous reviewer. Yet when it comes to a major purchase, like an interconnect voice platform, carriers are hesitant to look to customer reviews as part of their decision making process.
Definitely something to think about. More to come on this topic, but in the meantime, we would love to hear your thoughts on using reference customers. And of course, if you are in the market for an interconnect voice solution, didn’t know this option was available to you and would like to speak to one of our customers, just click below to ask one of our support team members.