Arecont's Try And Buy Program. Innovative Or Tired?

Arecont is promoting a try and buy program, something more commonly seen by startups or companies trying to grab recognition in a market.

Is this a clever way to get products in front of customers?

Buy today.

Try for 30-days.

Return in the next fiscal quarter.

Innovative Channel Stuffing.

Innovative Channel Stuffing.

Not sure I agree. It would be hard to stuff a channel by limiting to a single unit per end-user site.

Fair enough, but it does book the sale in this period and the return in the next. And since the promotion itself is encouraging people to try without worrying, one would expect that those sales will have a higher rate of return than normal sales.

Which overstates the sales number this quarter at the expense of next.

Well they're privately held so, scratch that theory anyway.

Privately held, but what if they are trying to sell themselves. Just sayin....

Failed Arecont China Acquisition

The question is "what do you provide when you "try and buy?" Do you provide dealer name direct to Arecont and possibly customer? Could be a way just to find out end users and dealer contacts to go around distribution. If that's the case it could be considered clever, but not innovative.

Sounds like you don't have to talk to them unless you want to return the product:

Note the end "stuff" date. Notice also how you can return for a full return at the END of the promotional period, i.e. March 31st, not before.

The regional rep contacted me about this program some time ago. Maybe this has been around if you asked and they just never advertised it? A number of times over the years I didn't know if a particular product was appropriate. Some of those manufacturers did a memo billing to do the "demonstration to buy" and allowed the return if it didn't work. Two of the three times I did it, the product was purchased. I think this is smart if you are using a product you are not completely familiar with and are willing to invest the labor.

In this case, if they are trying to overcome the poor quality issue, this is smart.

The messaging in this ad is clearly (imo) designed to erode their market-perceived poor quality issues.

I think it works on 2 levels:

1. It's kind of an un-vite... i.e. I don't think they really expect many VARs to take them up on the offer - unless, as Chuck pointed out, a VAR had a customer who needed a specific thing that maybe this camera could work for based on whatever (specs, cost, combination of, etc). And - if the quality is acceptable - they will keep it most of the time anyway. So, actual costs to support the campaign should be negligible.

2. Those that don't buy their stuff now - but used to - will (hopefully) be convinced to come back to mama. If the VAR used to sell their stuff based on picture quality (which I have always heard has been excellent), but switched to another provider based on technical quality issues, this ad says 'we've solved that old stuff - please come back".

I could see this being one of two benefits for Arecont:

1) Direct contact with the customer when you return the product

2) Direct input from the end user about how to improve the product

These are useful if you are truly concerned with your end users opinions and want to be able to get the info directly, no filter. The Arecont rep could follow up with the customer with additional products or updates to satisfy their needs.

This would seem to target integrators. The offer has the appearance of completely isolating Arecont Vision from the end user (emphasis added):

"That's why the New TRY & BUY Program allows an integrator to install any of our SurroundVideo(R) 180° and SurroundVideo(R) Omni cameras in their customer's environment at no risk. Arecont Vision is so confident that customers will want to keep the camera that if the customer is not satisfied the integrator can simply return the unit for a full refund, no questions asked!"

My read: as written, end users cannot take advantage of this offer without the involvement of an integrator. Arecont Vision is reinforcing the channel.

ha ha i would never give arecont a try, their product is junk. i have a customer who is mad because his previous company installed all areconts 2 years ago and they are failing left and right and hes having to replace them all... these are the quads.