Telstra has launched three new managed services, taking it deeper into competition with the channel.
Revealed on Tuesday evening, the three services are:
- “Business Tech Services” – billed as 24/7 support covering networking, email, storage and backup, mobile and landlines, devices apps & hardware, e-commerce and security & data protection. The $60/month service also includes up to four annual “assessents” or “check-ups” during which Telstra will “review your tech system … to see where we can help make improvements”.
- “Digital Marketing Services” that optimise websites, social media, e-commerce and online advertising, starting at $60 on a month-to-month deal.
- Cyber Security Services that combine cloud-based defences against malware, phishing and ransomware, post-breach recovery, malware removal, consultation on network security and/or backup plans. Setup of anti-virus software and malicious software removal.
Nearly all of the above are delivered remotely, so Telstra can’t match small resellers that visit customers’ premises. But Telstra also has its network of stores, and has trained 3,000 business specialists who work there and created 28 Business Technology Centres to spread the word.
Telstra is not alone in using retail muscle to win small business work: in late 2019 Optus announced 220 Apple-centric small business zones in its stores. So it’s not as if smaller resellers should not be aware of the challenges that telcos pose.
Nor is the channel unaware of what it takes to win the kind of work Telstra offers to undertake. Good resellers (should) know how to build relationships that generate opportunities to discuss technology upgrades. Security vendors are queueing up to offer their products in a form easily consumed and delivered by managed services providers. And small resellers also have something Telstra does not: a willingness to visit clients on their own premises.
So while it is naturally concerning that Telstra is getting deeper into territory that raises plenty of revenue for CRN readers, surely there are also opportunities.