What role does a service station have in selling software subscriptions?
Accounting software company MYOB thinks that the petrol pump can play a big part in making its wares more attractive, by sending information about transactions straight into a general ledger.
Sending transaction data into MYOB is a new trick the company has made possible by inking with prominent vendors. As explained to CRN yesterday by MYOB’s general manager of products David Weickhardt, the company has worked with the likes of plumbing supplies company Reece and service station chain Caltex.
The service works by linking such vendors’ ERP systems to MYOB’s back end. When buyers make a transaction, they can link it to their MYOB implementation and potentially even arrange for client codes to make the journey too. With that data to work with, MYOB thinks it could automate billing – all a tradie’s purchases for a single client or job would appear on an invoice for that cusotmer!
Weickhardt said that kind of automation is appreciated by tradies and by the accountants and book-keepers that make up much of MYOB’s channel, as the latter aspire to advisory services rather than entering data garnered from shoeboxes full of receipts.
MYOB is comfortable it’s cooked up an idea that end-customers and channel alike will admire, but is now turning its attention to promoting the concept. Weickhardt said the company was recently approached by Caltex about how to communicate the offering.
The logic is simple: Caltex wants more MYOB users to fill up at its service stations, because offering the convenience of automated billing will help it sell more stuff. MYOB wants current and potential end-customers to have in-your-face reminders of the convenience its software offers when they shop. Natalie Feehan, MYOB’s executive general manager for marketing and direct sales, told CRN she feels that at-the-pump presence will also translate into “talkabilty” for the company’s products.
The kind of buzz should, in turn, nourish MYOB and its channel. And in a weird way, also make petrol stations, plumbing supplies shops and hardware stores an important part of its overall channel strategy.