What's So Special About Milestone?

Author: John Honovich, Published on Nov 06, 2010

Milestone is one of the most well known companies in the industry yet neither its sales nor its technology is vastly superior to many other offerings in the market. While there is certainly something special about Milestone, it's clearly not revolutionary technology nor monster market share (e.g., their revenue is similar to Genetec's and their technology lags Genetec but Milestone's market 'awareness' far exceeds Genetec as well as many other larger competitors - DM, March, NICE, Verint, etc.).

The common explanation for this is simply better marketing (e.g., lots of press releases, contributed articles, ads, sponsorships, trade shows, etc). While there's no doubt that Milestone has an aggressive marketing effort, that's not especially unique in the surveillance market.

We think the key defining element is an 'open' go to market approach rather than the traditional 'elitist' approach in the security industry.

Most professional VMS/DVR providers focus on in-house enterprise salesman and a small network of loyal dealers and partners. Access to both product and information is tightly controlled.

Think about how Milestone is different:

  • All of their software (from low to high end) is available for free download (30 day trial)
  • Their basic software is available for free for permanent use (i.e., Milestone Go)
  • They have software versions for various deployment sizes
  • All of the manuals and in depth product documentation are available on-line
  • Becoming a Milestone dealer (at least for the lower two product offerings) is pretty easy
  • They seemingly partner with everyone (cameras, storage, analytics, etc.)

Even if the technology is no better than others, this approach makes it very easy for people to talk about, pitch, recommend, try out and learn Milestone's products.

There are downsides to this strategy - competitors can learn about their weakness, people like us can access and criticize their products publicly, dealers don't have a 'unique' offering, etc.

The upsides, though, is that they have acquired publicity, mindshare and access to deals that companies even 10x their size struggle to get. This is an application of a wider Internet phenomenon - reduce friction and leverage the web to reach a global audience faster and cheaper.

However, no other VMS/DVR company is anywhere close to executing such an 'open' go to market strategy. Worse, it's an approach that most incumbents find to be either wrong or scary. For a long time, the 'elitist' go to market approach was considered best. If this continues, that approach will make those companies less 'elite' than simply out of sight and out of mind.

Comments : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Most Recent Industry Reports

The Fastest Growing Video Surveillance Sales Organization Ever - Verkada on Apr 17, 2019
Verkada has the fastest growing video surveillance sales organization ever. In less than 2 years, they already have more salespeople in the US...
Door Operators Access Control Tutorial on Apr 17, 2019
Doors equipped with door operators, specialty devices that automate opening and closing, tend to be quite complex. The mechanisms needed to...
Securadyne CEO: IPVM 'Entertaining For An Ignorant Few' on Apr 16, 2019
Securadyne's CEO Carey Boethel is unhappy with IPVM's report - Failed Integrator Rollup, Securadyne Sells to Guard Giant Allied. Indeed, he...
Dahua Repositionable IR Multi-Imager Camera Tested on Apr 16, 2019
Dahua has released their first repositionable multi-imager camera, the Multi-Flex 4x2MP, claiming integrated IR, true WDR, and flexible...
Strong ISC West 2019 For Manufacturers But Concerns For 2020 March Move on Apr 16, 2019
ISC West 2019 was strong for manufacturers, according to new IPVM survey results of 100+ manufacturers, consistent with 2018 results. However,...
Axis Supports HD Analog on Apr 15, 2019
In 2017, Axis declared 'Everything is IP': Now, in 2019, Axis has released support for HD analog, with their new encoders.  Why the change?...
Alarm.com Favorability Results 2019 on Apr 15, 2019
The once dot com startup has evolved to become a core provider for home security and is now expanding into commercial. In their first entry in...
UK Camera Commissioner Calls for Regulating Facial Recognition on Apr 15, 2019
IPVM interviewed Tony Porter, the UK’s surveillance camera commissioner after he recently called for regulations on facial recognition in the...
ISC West 2019 Report on Apr 12, 2019
The IPVM team has finished at the Sands looking at what companies are offering and how they are changing their positioning. See below for 50+...
Pole Mount Camera Installation Guide on Apr 11, 2019
Poles are a popular but challenging choice for deploying surveillance cameras outdoors. Poles are indispensable for putting cameras at the right...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact