Automate Tasks to Simplify Workflows with Rev.io on Zapier

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Rev.io’s commitment to help service providers stay lean and grow revenue efficiently has greatly influenced our approach to integration options throughout 2018 and into 2019. We’re always looking for new ways to enhance our usage-rating and billing system. That is why we are extremely excited to announce our public launch on the Zapier platform. Zapier is a tool that allows you to automate tasks and save time by connecting apps you use every day. Using Zapier’s extensive platform, you can connect Rev.io to 1,000+ apps with the click of a button!

Now, you can save time and automate processes by using Zapier to connect Rev.io with 1,000+ apps.

What’s a Zap And How Do I Use It?

To automate workflows, you set up “Zaps” on Zapier’s platform that connect Rev.io with another available app, like Salesforce or ConnectWise Manage. A Zap is simply a series of steps that are configured to automate processes like adding a contact to a Customer Account in Rev.io when a contact is added to that Customer Account in Salesforce. You can also configure multi-step Zaps that allow you to link multiple apps together. Our app comes with pre-configured templates for “plug and play” ease of use!

What can I do with Rev.io’s Zaps?

What Does Rev.io’s App Do Today?

Today, Rev.io’s app will offer 4 Triggers, 1 Search, and 2 Actions. Triggers, Searches, and Actions (TSAs) are Zapier’s terms for the work the platform performs. From the Zapier Terminology guide, “A Trigger is the event that starts a Zap… An Action is an event a Zap performs…” and search is a search performed inside the Rev.io app. We’re expecting to expand Rev.io’s list of Zaps throughout this year, but you can always access the most updated list of TSAs on the Rev.io app.

Currently, Rev.io’s Zapier app will offer:

Triggers

  • New Customer
  • Request Status Changed
  • New Payment
  • Customer Profile Updated

Search(es)

  • Find Customer

Actions

  • Add Note to Customer
  • Add Contact to Customer

Where Can I Learn More About Zapier And Rev.io’s Zaps?

If you need more help with a Zap, take a look at our on-demand webinar recording, or check out the multitude of Zapier related resources:

You can get started today by logging into Rev.io and navigating to the user menu in the top right where you will see our newly embedded Zapier Widget or going straight to Zapier’s website to setup a Zap! That’s right, you can access our Zapier Widget directly from Rev.io’s usage-rating and billing system.

Access Zapier through Rev.io’s usage-rating and billing system.

Ready to get started? Check out our on-demand webinar recording for a tour of Rev.io’s zaps and functionality. Not a client or partner yet? Get in touch with us to learn more about Rev.io’s usage-rating and billing engine with integrated customer management, tax calculation, workflow processes, device inventory, custom quoting!

Part 2: Launching and Supporting an Effective Telecom Resale Channel

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Whether you’re managing an established telecom resale channel and looking to sharpen your sword or if you’re just contemplating adding a partnership program to your business, we’re here to help. The channel landscape has changed drastically due to the rise of SaaS, cloud, IoT, and usage-based offerings. In addition, new types of partner relationships are emerging to complement any offering and any industry. Building, piloting, and managing a resale channel is more important than ever.

In the first part of our Telecom Resale Channel blog post series, we discussed 4 Factors for Launching a Successful Resale Channel.

In the prequel, we answered these questions:

  1. Why build a resale channel?
  2. How to validate the market to be sure an indirect model will be a well-received resale strategy?
  3. What is a partnership proposition and why do I need to do this?
  4. Is my company ready for a resale channel?

(If you haven’t read the post yet, I’d encourage you to read it before you’re too far into Part 2.)

Now that we’re all caught up, we’ll dive into steps 5-8 in Part 2: Launching and Supporting an Effective Telecom Resale Channel.

Here are the key steps you should take to launch a partner program and improve ongoing channel management:

5. Product messaging and readiness

What good is an indirect resale strategy if your partners cannot clearly and concisely explain your product and how it fits into part of a comprehensive solution? If they can’t effectively communicate the benefits and features, then they can’t effectively sell it.

For new and existing products that you’re offering, ensure your team has gathered relevant information and packaged this up for your future partners.

Key elements of this package include:

  • Clear product messaging and scripts
  • Awareness of existing and emerging markets (with data)
  • Easy accessibility of product information
  • Competitive analysis and pricing
  • Your onboarding and ongoing support strategy

6. selecting your curated list of strategic partners

Now that you have your ducks in a row to deliver partners with the tools for success, let’s take a breath before we open the strategic partner floodgates. A critical success factor for your telecom resale channel model is picking the right types of partners. When you select this group of partners, you’ll want to be sure to fully vet these companies.

Make sure the partner is aligned with your company’s:

  • Culture
  • Values
  • Service level agreements
  • Vision for future initiatives

If they pass all of these initial tests, they’re a winner! Now let’s build a program that not only attracts new partnerships but also rewards partners for working with you. Defining your channel model for that particular partner should include a deep understanding of their sales models, what matters most to them, and how they are funded. Understanding your partner’s business will help you structure a customized, business proposition that’s too good to turn down.

7. training & ongoing channel management

Once you’ve established the need and your organization’s readiness to support a channel and put the various tools in place to support your partnerships, it’s time to create a strategy for new partner onboarding and build the ongoing management plan.

Structured Enablement

There should be an organized onboarding program for each new partner. This should begin the moment the partnership is finalized until they’re fully proficient and bringing you regular business. Depending on the complexity of your offering, this enablement program could be a month, a quarter, or a year.

Keep track of their enablement progress through key metrics.

These could be:

  • Number of trainings completed
  • New referrals
  • Signed mutual clients
  • Implementing a lead gen program
  • Participating in a co-branded webinar

Lastly, let them know when they’ve “graduated” from the program!

Ongoing Management

Like any relationship, communication is key. Proactively communicate with your telecom resale channel and establishing a regular cadence of meetings, emails, newsletters, annual reviews, etc. This should be predictable so that partners understand when, how, and where to go for information.

Provide these partners with additional resources in a variety of formats like videos, collateral, and lunch and learns that can be easily consumed. Many vendors will consolidate and streamline partner management with a partner portal.

Look for a partner portal that has critical components, such as:

  • Information center / file sharing
  • Visibility into new orders / support
  • Automated commissions
  • Accessibility to view mutual client usage, history, and payments

If you’re thinking that a system like this would benefit your business, check out Rev.io’s Agent Portal. We’d love to set up some time to share how your business could benefit from our platform.

Once you have your partner program up and running, think about promoting your partners in your marketing initiatives. Rev.io supports partners by adding them to our Partner Marketplace (on our website), joining up or co-boothing at tradeshows, participating in co-branded webinars, and inviting them to sponsor our client events.

Lastly, make sure you and the partner have a mutual understand of each others’ preferred methodology of referrals (who should these go to, what info is needed, etc.) and diligently track referrals sent to / received from each partner.

8. measure the channel effectiveness

The channel landscape can add incredible value to your business. Even after your telecom resale program is in place, channel leaders should consistently learn and evolve to need the changing needs of their partners and their market. An often overlooked factor of success is measurement. Rev.io’s Agent Portal can help you measure, engage, and support your agent relationships. Once the partner marketplace is launched, take a proactive approach to measuring, monitoring, and supporting your partners. Now that you’re ready to tackle an indirect sales channel, be sure you’re ready to bill your customers for their usage-based and recurring revenue offerings. Or, if you’re not sure about billing, stay in touch. We’ll send tips and resources directly to your inbox to help you improve your business and billing strategies. Of if you’re interested in joining the Rev.io Partner Marketplace, check out our Become a Partner page. We’d love to hear from you!

 

AT&T – Expanding into IoT with a Channel Leading Reseller Program

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Top Considerations for Adopting Usage-Based Pricing, Rating, & Billing

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Billing a customer based on how much they use might sound simple, but there are many complexities to usage-based pricing. Before adopting a rating engine and billing system, many service providers rely on pulling data from monitored systems into spreadsheets, reformat the data, and then load the customer usage data into a billing system once (or sometimes more) per billing cycle. This manual and tedious approach to creating end-customer invoices may work for low volume businesses, but as you scale your business, the billing process can slow you down exponentially.

Before we consider usage and rating, let’s cover the basics:

1. What is usage?

Usage is the ability to bill a customer for what they have used over a given period. Customers pay for what they use based on the service usage which could take the form of commission, discounts, licenses, messages sent, GB, MB, bandwidth, etc.

2. What is rating?

Rating is the charge or price for a particular event.

3. What is rating usage?

Rating usage is a process of converting the quantity of service during a period of time into monetary value for a customer. For example, the price of a 10 minutes call is $4 at the rate of $0.40 per minute. Usage metering framework tracks the use of any unit type and calculates the charges for the end-customer’s invoice.

When it comes to rating usage and usage-based pricing, there are several business impacts to consider before going “all-in.”

Here are a few things to consider:

  • Usage data collection – Think about how you’re going to gather the customer’s usage data and strategies for parsing it out by customer. Often this can be done with unique identifiers for each customer.
  • Pricing – With pricing, you have lots of options to choose from, including standard, tiered, flat-rate, volume-tiered, pay-as-you-go, and many more. Ensure scalability by selecting a billing system that can accommodate complex pricing models.
  • Multi-location customers – Consider ways that usage could be pulled across multi-location accounts and divided into different groups, based on your end-customer’s needs.

When the threshold for usage is crossed, overage charges or payments can apply mid-billing cycle. In order to accurately bill customers, use a flexible billing system that automates processes for calculating bills and generating invoices.

There are five stages of the usage lifecycle:

1. Acquisition – This is the process of acquiring usage data from the various source systems.

2. Transformation – Reformat the data for further processing.

3. Pricing/ Rating – Using your selected pricing models, this is how you monetize your offering.

4. Pooling – Usage data is pooled across resellers, company departments, or other attributed that impact the charged price.

5. Thresholding – Customer satisfaction is more important than ever. Will they be alerted when their usage crosses certain limits?

At Rev.io, our telecom billing platform will help you monetize and grow your billing business by managing offers, financial processes and customer accounts. For more information on usage and rating, please read our ATL Communications Automates Consumption-Based Billing post where we discuss a case study. If you want to know how to leverage our new REST API, please read our REST API Integration for Usage-Based Billing post. Reach out to us using our Contact Us form and let us help you grow your subscription business.

Leverage Rev.io’s New Webhook Framework to Streamline and Enhance Integration

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Rev.io’s commitment to help service providers stay lean and grow revenue efficiently has influenced our theme of Promoting Partnership this year. As part of our Promoting Partnership theme, we’re focused on making it easy for clients to build new integrations. That’s why we’re excited to announce the latest enhancement to our REST API platform – webhooks! Now you might be asking: what is a webhook?

A webhook is a feature that allows external users to subscribe to “events” that occur in Rev.io’s billing software, so users can be notified of that event and take action. You can think of it like setting a timer when you bake – instead of constantly having to check the bread in the oven periodically (a traditional API integration where one system “polls” another constantly) the timer goes off notifying you that the bread is ready for you to take the next step!

Rev.io announces the newest enhancement to their usage-based billing system and REST API platform – webhooks!

Already in 2018, we have been thrilled with the adoption rate of our REST API and we know that adding webhooks will help drive deeper, more robust integrations across various platforms. Now, clients using our communications billing software can utilize our REST API platform to build new integrations and save time.

CARING FOR EMPLOYEES, CLIENTS, AND THE COMMUNITY DELIVERS NEW FEATURES

After releasing our REST API and new developer portal earlier in 2018, Rev.io recruited a number of clients to participate on our first ever API “Accelerator Program.” Throughout the program (which took place in Q2 2018), we worked with clients to help them get new integration projects up and running while gathering their feedback about future enhancements.

Throughout the quarter-long accelerator program we heard extensively from our clients about the desire for a webhook framework to ease integration, reduce resource consumption, and deepen integration experiences – and we listened! Not only did we prioritize the webhooks feature because of client feedback, but we also began the third quarter project by surveying accelerator program participants, along with a number of other clients, to help us determine what key webhook events would help them most.

current and future webhooks enhancements

Now, you might want to know, what’s available at launch and what features are upcoming in the future? Well we’re excited to say we have 8 webhook events available today!

Here’s the list of webhook events currently available to Rev.io clients:

  • Bill Created
  • Charge Created
  • Credit Created
  • Monthly Recurring Charges (MRCs) Posted
  • Order Created
  • Order Status Changed
  • Payment Created
  • Rating Completed

Not only that, but Rev.io exists to help our communications and IoT clients grow revenue efficiently. So as you can imagine, we’re not stopping here! Now that the webhook framework is in place with our initial launch events, we are looking for additional feedback and ideas on new webhook events that we can add to help your integration needs. You can share feedback and suggestions on new webhook events using the Rev.io Ideas forum with the REST API Idea category.

Not a client or partner yet? Contact Rev.io to learn more about our rating engine, usage-based billing, workflow processes, device inventory, and customer management platform!

Rev.io Payments

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Embracing Transparency with Status.Rev.io

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Rev.io has partnered with Statuspage.io to embrace transparency during downtimes and more effectively communicate with our clients. Here at Rev.io, we’re very proud of our 99.99% uptime. But when incidents do occur, we want our clients to be the first to know!

Status.rev.io is our new incident communication tool that clients can use to check the status of our billing platform in real-time. We believe in proactive support, so clients who subscribe via email and/ or SMS will receive important alerts, like status changes, as well as a post-mortem update and an explanation of what occurred. We’ll even provide the steps we will take to mitigate future issues.

This modern platform is yet another addition to our suite of client services, but clients must opt in to take full advantage. In a recent Q & A with Matthew Robison, VP of Client Success, he provided insight into the importance of this tool and why you should opt in!

Q: Why is this tool important?

A: Status.rev.io provides clients with more transparency when there is an issue in the platform. It gives clients real-time updates on the status of Rev.io’s billing platform. From Rev.io Enterprise Portal to Agent Portal, your customers and agents rely on Rev.io! We take our responsibility seriously and want to provide the best set of tools that help you understand how your business is being impacted by downtime incidents and upcoming maintenance.

Q: How often are these metrics updated?

A: If there are any issues, the display statuses of independent functions will update in real-time. In addition, Rev.io employees will use the incident log to communicate the latest changes until the issue is resolved.

Q: How does this help clients?

A: Using Atlassian’s Status Page platform gives clients more transparency when they are having issues with our software and it also allows our clients to know if other Rev.io users are experiencing similar problems. We want to be as honest and upfront as possible with our clients.

Q: Do other companies provide this level of detail?

A: Some do, some don’t. Every company has varying levels of comfort with what they share. Here at Rev.io, we would prefer to overshare which is consistent with our value of Transparent Leadership. It’s each company’s choice to decide how to manage their operation and how they’d like to provide their services. Rev.io strives to provide extraordinary service to clients. This is just one example of how Rev.io’s Client Success Team goes above and beyond!

Q: Why did we create it?

A: One of our core values at Rev.io is Transparent Leadership.  If for some reason Rev.io is experiencing issues by our own fault or for other reasons, our ultimate responsibility is to serve our customers. This platform shows clients what’s happening in the platform in real-time and gives us versatility on how we communicate these issues (via text, email, RSS feed, etc.).

Q: Why should I opt in?

A: So you can be in the know! When you opt in, you can choose how you’d like to be notified if Rev.io experiences any platform downtime. With a 99.99% uptime, platform issues are rare, but being transparent offers our clients 24/7 peace of mind and assurance, knowing that our trusted staff is working quickly and effectively to resolve any issue.

Here’s a recent example of a real incident that many clients experienced on status.rev.io that includes a postmortem explaining what happened afterward. For more information, or to see how Rev.io can help you with our telecom billing platform, contact Rev.io today!

Rev.io Case Study – ATL Communications Automates Billing with Rev.io’s Consumption-Based Billing System

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Rev.io Ideas Collateral

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Adding New Revenue Streams with 9-1-1 Services

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4 Factors for Launching a Successful Resale Channel

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Whether you’re considering adopting a resale channel or your partner program just hasn’t taken off the way you’ve expected, we’re here to help! As one of the best IoT and telecom billing solutions in the industry, we’re excited to share how partnerships have helped Rev.io grow its business. But, before you go “all-in” on a resale strategy, it’s important to evaluate your market and company for some critical success factors.

In this two-part blog series, we’ll dive into the key steps you should take to assess the market, prepare your business, and build partner relationships that last. For Part 1, we’re sharing 4 considerations for your channel partner strategy that will help in launching a successful resale channel.

1. what is your reason for building a resale channel?

Typically, companies adopt an indirect strategy when adding more direct sales resources is not a practical option. However, there are other scenarios where your company could benefit from forming a business partnership:

1. Your product or service is not a stand-alone offering or it complement another offering

Ask yourself, “does my offering require other products, services, or companies to deliver a more complete solution?” If your answer is yes, then this is a perfect opportunity to partner with other businesses and provide customers with a combined solution. Look for companies that are selling their services to the same target market. A partnership here (or better, a partnership AND integration here) improves the experience for your mutual customers.

At Rev.io, we understand that our clients benefit from our partnerships with communications tax and compliance experts, GSA and Wolters Kluwer. In addition to creating a better end-customer experience, we’ve been able to send referrals to each other. It’s a win-win!

2. Your growth strategies include new geographies or new verticals

According to the Quick Start to Building a Channel Strategy from CompTIA, indirect business models are used by 80% of the IT industry. Hiring and managing a direct sales team in remote geographies is complex and expensive. Instead, consider leveraging a resale channel as a more cost-effective way to grow sales in a new region or to enter into new markets.

While Rev.io is already an established name in the Communications industry (as one of the best billing softwares in the market), we recently ventured into IoT billing. Before expanding into this vertical,  we relied on partners like AT&T Partner Exchange, Cisco Jasper, and KORE to help us get an initial foothold in the space. In addition to speeding up time-to-market, these partners helped Rev.io develop our new suite of IoT features and avoid some potential pitfalls.

2. validate the market opportunity

Now that we know why we’re building a resale channel, the next step is to validate the market to ensure the indirect model will be a well-received strategy. There are four key steps to validate your market opportunity:

1. Do market research

Determine if there is enough market demand to support a direct and indirect strategy. By researching the market and related studies, you’ll further your understanding of the market. Once you’ve confirmed that the market demand is there, your research will help you craft your partner business propositions and improve your channel credibility.  

2. Craft Your Customer Value Proposition

Develop a clear and compelling customer value proposition to quickly build your resale channel. Define the solution you offer and the benefits to your end-customer in this statement. Your customer value proposition should include your benefits and competitive advantage.

3. Create Your Client Profiles

Client profiles are important for a channel model. Before you approach your first potential partner, you should be able to clearly articulate your target customer profile. This will help you educate your partners and assist them with their marketing and selling efforts. Elements of a customer profile include geography, customer size, vertical, department, buyer, and number of employees.  

Clients using Rev.io’s billing and back-office platform can leverage our customer management and business intelligence reporting to gather relevant data and flush out these client profiles. Not a client yet? Contact us to learn more about our platform. We’re rated among the best billing softwares for usage-based and recurring revenue models.  

4. Understand Your Top Competitors

Zero in on your top three competitors and then look for your competitive advantage over these competitors. Knowing your competition and their market, product messages, go-to-market business model, and several target clients, will help you as you approach new partnerships. Ultimately, having these competitor strategies defined will validate your business and help you select the right partner type.

3. develop a partnership proposition

It’s imperative to validate the partner opportunity to make sure there are compelling reasons for both businesses to join the partnership. Partner business propositions are different from the customer value proposition and they will be different from partner to partner. These channel partner strategy proposals should address the key reasons the relationship is beneficial to the two companies. A successful partnership is formed when your goals and strategies align.

 

A partner proposition should be created for each potential partner and address the following questions:

  • How will this relationship affect their business?
  • How will this relationship improve their end-customer experience?
  • What are the financial benefits for the partner and which services would they be able to wrap around the partnership?
  • How would this relationship help the prospective partner differentiate from their competition?

4. is your company ready?

Several internal aspects need to be addressed to ensure your company is ready to engage with the channel. Before launching the channel partner strategy, here are some considerations to help ensure your success:

1. Executive Alignment & Support

Each leader in your organization must be in alignment with the channel strategy as an effective go-to-market model. If a single department head is not in alignment, it will upset the entire initiative.

2. Build a Channel Team

A key ingredient to your company’s readiness is having various methods of support for your channel partners. For most companies, this means hiring a new Sales Team role, such as a Channel Manager. In addition, one critical success factor is defining this role, the expectations, and their short and long term goals.

3. Channel Tools and Resources

Partner training and enablement is critical to building a successful relationship. Prepare for new partner onboarding with tools and resources, including product documentation, technical sales knowledge, industry application for your product, sales collateral, and product demonstrations. Building a mutually beneficial channel relationship requires both parties to be knowledgeable about each others’ products and services.

A partner enablement tool, like Rev.io Agent Portal, gives you the technology to improve agent relationships. Our all-in-one solution was designed to help streamline communication with agents, improve end-customer satisfaction, provide agents with their customer information, and share sales collateral and training resources from one, consolidated place.

4. Channel Escalation Paths

Before launching a partner strategy, a clear escalation path needs to be defined to capture missteps and address issues that arise with mutual customers. Think through these escalation paths and prepare for potential issues that could occur during the sale, as customers transition, and with ongoing support.

Now that you’ve established partnerships, it’s important to nurture this relationship. When serving your mutual customers, your partnership should appear as a united front and should never point fingers back and forth. Established channel escalation paths make it easy to work directly with a partner and solve issues on behalf of the customer – and, both of the companies and the customer win!

Now that you understand the initial factors for evaluating a resale channel model and the preparation steps for your business, stay in touch to receive Part 2 of this blog series! We’ll send other tips and resources to help you improve your business and billing strategies, directly to your inbox. Or, contact us if you think Rev.io is a potential partner for you! As one of the best billing softwares for usage-based offerings, we’re always looking for new partnership opportunities.

Don’t think you’re a partner? Well, you can always evaluate our billing platform, Bill-on-Behalf-of solution, and Agent Portal to alleviate your back-office and customer management challenges. Clients using Rev.io have grown by more than two times the industry average for four consecutive years. Get in touch today!

4 Plans for Monetizing IoT

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The IoT industry isn’t new. After all, we’ve been using connected devices for quite some time now to capture information and monitor statuses. But, despite forecasts from Bain Capital of annual revenues of $470 billion by 2020, many organizations who have invested in an IoT project have yet to capture any significant revenue from their solution. So how can you go about monetizing IoT? We’re glad you asked!

The current market for Internet of Things (IoT) reflects a growing focus on driving results using sensor-based data with the ultimate goal of solving complex logistics, manufacturing, services, and supply chain challenges. However, organizations will fail to see results if they continue without a clear strategy to generate revenue from their devices, services or data.

Here are our 4 plans for IoT monetization and IoT billing management:

iot household & consumer devices

Companies such as Nest have become household names for monitoring home security, managing energy consumption, and replacing “dumb” devices (think doorbell and smoke alarms) with “smart” ones.

Selling these devices at a premium, one-time charge and supplying the consumer with a better, app-enabled mouse-trap has made houses more secure, more sustainable, and safer. What’s even better, the end-user can adjust settings and monitor devices from anywhere.

The IoT monetization model here is a software-as-a-service model paired with physical products. The benefit to offering this type of pricing model is the scalability and one-time customer acquisition cost. That being said, a recurring revenue or subscription-based business is more predictable and profitable than flat-rate billing.

subscription & flat-rate iot billing

Subscription and flat-rate pricing models have become more popular among both B2B SaaS companies and consumer products. Subscription billing is common for consumers, easy to manage for providers, and allows companies to better predict revenue. However, flat-rate billing doesn’t take into account the fluctuation in end-customer usage.

Most businesses offer a few one-size-fits-all plans and rely on the customer to mold themselves into their desired choice. Whereas, a pay-as-you-go plan gives customers what they want – potentially increasing sales and decreasing revenue leakage.

That being said, connecting billions of devices and managing usage-rating, taxation, and inventory can be a lofty task. Fortunately, adopting a technology like Rev.io can alleviate these IoT monetization problems, automate usage-based billing, and collect payments.

usage-based iot billing & rating

Billing for a usage-based offering is not an easily achievable task but there are several companies disrupting the market and fully embracing consumption-based pricing. A recent study found that Generations Y and Z are more financially conservative than the Baby Boomers – these younger generations have developed spending habits that reflect those of the Great Depression (or the Silent Generation).

The fiscally conscious generations will not pay for what they don’t need and many will discontinue a service if they aren’t being billed fairly. Service providers must take note – the time is now to adopt a usage-based billing model and the infrastructure to support it.

The service providers that offer pay-as-you-go services will have a significant competitive advantage in the market. In the coming years, usage-based revenue models will overcome the Communications, cable, music subscriptions, GPS trackers, energy providers, and eventually transportation.

If this is your first time monetizing IoT or offering a new pricing model, prepare yourself for the change with our 4 Considerations of Consumption-Based Pricing blog post.

capturing & sharing customer & device data

Another way IoT companies can monetize their offering is through their data. Measuring and analyzing customer or device data will become a staple for IoT monetization offerings.

We’re predicting insurance companies, healthcare facilities, and car manufacturers to be big buyers for scenarios like tracking good drivers versus bad drivers, monitoring patients after a physical therapy session or checkup, and evaluating future opportunities for automobile design and manufacturing.

In order to capture and share data with key stakeholders, companies also need to track the amount of money they’re spending on data usage. This will help your organization’s IoT monetization strategy in developing a profitable price point and generate revenue from your data.

The good news? Rev.io does the heavy lifting on usage-rating and IoT billing operations, so you can spend time scaling your business. With existing integrations in place to seamlessly manage new orders, service usage, tax calculation, and support, Rev.io alleviates IoT billing and customer management pain. The proof is in the platform – Rev.io clients grow by more than double the industry average. Contact Rev.io to get in touch with our team of experts today to see what our subscription billing platform can do for you.

 

20 Steps To Usage-Based Billing

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Monetize Your IoT Offering

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5 Signs Your Business is Suffering From Revenue Leakage

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Could your business be losing money from revenue leakage? According to experts, the Communications industry saw estimated losses of $953 million due to revenue leakage. Don’t let your business suffer from this growing epidemic.Take a look at the following five signs of revenue leakage and see if any of these apply to your business.

1. lack of integrated usage-rating

Whether you’re charging a flat rate or billing for consumption, it’s imperative that you can view and manage customer usage in (near) real-time. A best-in-class billing platform automates usage-rating, giving you a pulse on your business and better visibility into your customers.

If you’re thinking about adopting a usage-based pricing model, take a look at our 4 Considerations for Consumption-Based Pricing blog post.   

2. spending time on manual processes

Communications and IoT service providers have experienced unprecedented growth rates in the last few years. The scalability of your business depends on the effectiveness of your internal processes. Whether you’re spending time calculating taxation, creating invoices, or managing payments, you’re losing hours that could be dedicated to growth.

Fortunately, a telecom billing or IoT monetization engine, like Rev.io, automates billing and improves customer service – so you can get back to building your business.

3. bill-run flexibility

Not all billing platforms are created equally. It’s important to know that the Billing-as-a-Service provider is evolving alongside your business. Before you trust any company with your revenue, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is your billing platform enhancing their software with +1,600 releases each year?
  • Can you make last minute changes on the spot, create ad-hoc bills, reverse charges, and run bill cycles on your own?
  • Does your billing system provide an open API to support new integrations?
  • Are there programs in place for ongoing training or unlimited access to support teams and resources?

If you answered “no” to any of these questions, your business may have outgrown your billing system.

Telecom Billing System

In 2017, Rev.io enhanced their usage-based billing platform with 1,845 new development releases.

4. Built-in and CUSTOMIZABLE REPORTING

Very few businesses can prosper without proper business intelligence. At a bare minimum, your billing platform should come with backed-in reports for managing un-billable calls, past-due balances, and at-risk customers. However, a growing company looking to stay lean, add new offerings, and beat their competition will also need advanced functionality, like Rev.io’s robust report builder.  

5. limited customer experience tools

Regardless of your industry, superior customer experience is the number one separating factor for top-notch brands. Look for a telecom billing or IoT monetization engine that helps you improve customer satisfaction and revenue retention. Rev.io’s integrated customer and agent portals reduce support hours, elevate user experience, and streamline internal operations.

Rev.io exists to help our clients grow revenue efficiently. With a consultative approach to providing IoT telecom billing solutions, we see your customers as our customers. As a leader in usage-based billing, Rev.io’s company values and mission drive our organization. Whether you’re a large, enterprise evaluating new billing systems or just starting out in the Communications and IoT space, Rev.io can help. Contact Rev.io to get in touch with our team of experts today to see what we can do for you.

3 Characteristics of an Intelligent Billing Platform

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Why is it important to have an intelligent cloud based billing platform? Particularly for Communications and IoT service providers, operating without an automated billing, usage-rating, and customer/ device management solution can inhibit growth.

In our most recent survey, The Current State of Communications and IoT, 73% of companies said they’re seeing at least a 20% annual growth rate. If you’ve found the financial health of your business suffering from revenue leakage, billing errors, or high employee overhead, it’s time to consider other options.

Communications Billing System

When evaluating billing platforms, there are several ways to separate the duds from the game-changers. Look for a cloud based billing platform that meets the following characteristics:

1. customizable platform with scalability

Adopting a new technology consumes one of your biggest resources – time. Before you make an investment, be sure to think about where your company is headed. Will you be adding a new offering? Expanding into a new market? Moving from an inside sales to an agent model? Be sure to consider the scalability of the new software and your future company initiatives.

 An intelligent cloud based billing platform should eliminate manual processes and make it easier to grow.  Look for a customizable IoT and Communications billing platform with built-in inventory management, integrated tax calculation, and workflow automation capabilities. The leading Billing-as-a-Service platforms allow you to consolidate multiple systems and provides a clear picture into your revenue and customers.

A good platform will not only meet your company’s needs but will also empower your customers. Complement your offering with a robust self-service customer portal for tracking usage, support tickets, locations, and new orders. At Rev.io, we think of ourselves as your billing partner – rather than just another software – and we’ve developed additional tools to help clients improve satisfaction and reduce churn. By coupling our intelligent telecom billing platform with self-enablement portals, our clients build lasting relationships with customers and agents.

2. intelligent billing & integrated usage-rating

Subscription and pay-as-you-go pricing models have changed the way modern consumers and businesses interact. In order to stay current, Communications and IoT service providers must incorporate usage-based offerings into their services. With the right technology, consumption-based billing becomes simple. Look for an IoT and Communications billing platform with an established network of strategic partners and integrations; this will streamline manual processes by populating usage-rating and automating new orders, service suspensions, and disconnects. For additional usage-based billing tips, check out our 4 Considerations of Consumption-Based Pricing blog post!

In addition to facilitating usage-based pricing structures, you can identify a top-notch billing system by evaluating your billing partner’s development roadmap, ease of integration, and internal team. Here are some questions to ask while your searching for potential billing partners:

  • What percentage of your revenue do you reinvest into R&D for platform enhancements?
  • Are your software engineers?
  • Do you have a REST API or other method to build new integrations? (Check out Rev.io’s REST API design documentation here)
  • What methods are in place for clients to share their ideas or influence your development roadmap?
  • How many enhancements were made to the platform last year?
  • How many integrations have you built to third-party platforms?
  • BONUS QUESTION: How can I create custom proposals in the billing platform to quote potential new customers or orders?

3. established onboarding and ongoing training programs

After spending the time to thoroughly vet a new software and deciding to implement the technology, the last thing you want is to fall on your face during the onboarding or training phase. Inquiring about the onboarding process can save you time and money (and possibly a huge headache). The best billing platforms have created a detailed implementation model and have knowledgeable, in-house onboarding and training teams.

When evaluating a billing partner, here are the best questions to ask about onboarding:

  • Can you share with me the full onboarding plan and detailed documentation about the process?
  • Will our company have an assigned, main point of contact that works with us during the entire implementation?
  • Do you have technical experts to help with migrating data from our old platform?
  • How will I be notified as we move through different onboarding stages?
  • Who will be training our team on how to use the platform and what’s the process for the getting additional training afterwards?
  • Will any of our training sessions be in person?
  • BONUS QUESTION: Can I speak to two references who recently went through onboarding your platform?

Whether you’re just ensuring you’re in good hands with your current IoT or Communications billing system or already evaluating new back-office technologies, we can help! And the good news is, adopting a new platform doesn’t have to be daunting. Subscribe to receive industry news and tips to help you grow, delivered straight to your inbox. Or, request a demo to see how Rev.io can help you achieve revenue goals.

4 Considerations of Consumption-Based Pricing

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Is a pay-as-you-go pricing model and billing strategy the next big industry trend?

As subscription and IoT service providers, you can’t afford to fall behind your competition or ignore key changes in the market. That’s why we’ve decided to take a closer look at consumption-based pricing and what it takes to successfully support a usage-based service.

Subscription-based billing models have become the go-to strategy for many industries. In 2000, Salesforce.com was among the first in the software industry to charge a per-user, per-month price. Today, industry leaders are looking further than a simple subscription model to adopting consumption-based offerings instead. In fact, a growing number of subscription and IoT companies are shifting from flat-rate monthly fees to pay-as-you-go pricing. If you’re looking to disrupt your market with a usage-based service, take a look at our 4 “gotchas” and avoid some of the potential pitfalls.

1. managing usage

One key element to offering a  pay-per-use model is advanced billing capabilities. In order to successfully create a consumption-based business, you’ll need to be an expert in managing customers, calculating usage, and billing operations. Rather than throwing people at a broken problem, look for a usage-based billing system that can take your back-office to the next level. Carefully evaluate each vendor’s ease of integration, existing carrier provisioning, and development roadmap for enhancements. It’s important to find a partner that will evolve with your business.

2. forecasting revenue

Subscription services are predictable – making it easy to forecast long-term revenue. When offering a pay-per-use service, one thing to consider is standardizing your revenue with a monthly minimum charge. Even a small monthly minimum fee will help you forecast and provide a baseline for the financial health of your organization.

3. avoiding bill shock

Alleviate the possibility of higher-than-anticipated bills by providing your end-customers with a self-service portal for viewing usage, creating support tickets, and monitoring new orders. The best types of customer portals come with built-in reports and the ability to create custom reports. In addition to avoiding bill shock, customer-facing portals increase satisfaction and retention.

4. consumption based technologies

Your success hinges on your technologies. Consumption-based pricing solutions require different technologies and processes than traditional flat-rate pricing models. When you’re looking for new or improved billing and back-office software, be sure your platform has functionality for real-time usage reporting, automated rating, built-in tax calculation, improving customer visibility, and billing flexibility. An intelligent usage-based billing system will complement your service offering – and make it easier for you to monetize any pricing model.

Don’t let a flat-rate flat-line your revenue, check out our full Capturing Recurring Revenue with Usage-Based Pricing eBook for more information!

LEARN MORE

Don’t leave your success to chance. Partner with the right technology providers to ensure successful pay-as-you-go pricing adoption. Rev.io’s all-in-one-solution can tackle billing, customer management, tax calculation, reporting, order and service tracking, and more. We would love to help you disrupt your market! Our usage-based billing platform is perfect for subscription and IoT service providers looking to scale – let Rev.io take your team to the next level! Contact Rev.io by filling out a quick form or giving us a call at 866-470-5502 and learn more today!

Improving Process to Fuel Growth: How AutomatIon Can Transform Your Team.

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The Current State of Communications & IoT

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The communications and IoT industry is constantly evolving. In order to keep up with competition, service providers must remain in-tune with new technologies, opportunities to expand, and differentiating strategies. That’s why we decided to launch our first “State of Communications and IoT” report. Rev.io, in conjunction with Altaworx, surveyed Communications and IoT leaders nationwide to explore:

  • Communications providers’ interest in expanding into IoT
  • The current technology landscape for Communications and IoT companies
  • Plans for growth and challenges facing the market

By surveying companies in the space, we hope to provide you with a pulse on the industry. Here are the key findings from our report:

iot expansion is a priority

The growing IoT buzz has caused a majority of service providers to pursue ways to complement their existing offering with an IoT service. However, not many in the Communications space have breached the gap to IoT. With plenty of green space in the field, we believe that those able to get to market fastest will be most successful.

IoT billing

differentiate with self-service technology

Communications and IoT providers are lagging behind other industries in the customer experience movement. With this movement, customers now expect service excellence and user enablement as part of all products and services. Unfortunately, our industry has been slow to react to this change. For service providers looking to grow revenue, we recommend differentiating from the norm by leaning into the user experience movement. We’re predicting that the service providers with the most customer enablement and self-service technology will win more deals and grow revenue, faster.

While the Communications and IoT markets are growing their portfolio of offerings, enabling customers through self-service portals and support technologies has not been a priority.

Telecom Billing

growth plans in place

Growth is stable across the board – a large majority reported annual growth rates of 20% or more –  and one-third of companies surveyed said they’re considering a merger or acquisition in the next three years. As companies prepare for an M&A in the internet of things future, it’s important to have clear visibility into operating margins and accurate BI reports. Rev.io recommends maximizing your valuation by putting technology in place today to manage financial, customer, billing, and tax data.

IoT Billing

Companies surveyed are preparing for growth through investing in new service offerings and improving customer experience to reduce churn. The team at Rev.io predicts many of those new service offerings to be in the IoT segment. Along with the migration towards pay-as-you-go pricing models, it makes sense for customer retention strategies to be top-of-mind. When managing a recurring revenue business, improving customer experience and reducing churn is important for predicting revenue growth for the internet of things future.

IoT Billing

manual processes & outdated technologies are hindering growth

Manual processes was selected by surveyors as the most common challenge in managing a recurring revenue business model. In addition, our report found that the lack of scalable billing and back-office solutions was the greatest hurdle for reaching business objectives this year.

IoT billing

Check out the full State of Communications and IoT infographic.

The good news? Rev.io does the heavy lifting on usage-rating and billing operations, so you can spend time scaling your business. With existing integrations in place to seamlessly manage new orders, service usage, taxation calculation, and support, Rev.io alleviates billing and customer management pain. The proof is in the platform – Rev.io clients grow by more than double the industry average. Click here to learn more about the Rev.io platform.

 

Overview: Rev.io Onboarding

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