Challenges In Selling Video Surveillance

Video surveillance has evolved into an essential technology for electronic security. Cameras are useful in all aspects of security, life safety and access control. Cameras installed on-site perform two vital functions: deterring would-be miscreants and...


Video surveillance has evolved into an essential technology for electronic security. Cameras are useful in all aspects of security, life safety and access control. Cameras installed on-site perform two vital functions: deterring would-be miscreants and re-assuring occupants that someone is keeping track of the situation.

Live surveillance leverages resources, enabling less manpower to achieve greater real-time patrol of multiple areas, and freeing up staff for targeted deployment and other management activities.

The latest networking technologies greatly enhance the wide area functionalities of surveillance cameras.

Live surveillance also provides an additional authentication factor by enhancing an alert or exception alarm into a data-rich visual report of an individual or event.

The latest on-board camera processing and video management software help to maximize data storage capacities, throttle bandwidth demands, and provide alerts if inappropriate behaviors are detected in the field of view, if a camera or system malfunction occurs, or simply to trigger recording and multistreaming if motion is sensed by a camera.

Recorded video provides a record of who was where and when. Video archives are counted on in criminal forensics, and have become a part of our digitally driven and enhanced society.

As is the case with most markets in which we locksmiths engage, the landscape has changed drastically and continues to change beneath our feet.

Public Perception: Thanks to aggressive on-line marketing, services such as Youtube and mobile appliances, and younger generations weaned on their video-enabled environments, the demand for video is there and growing.

Supply Channels: Video surveillance equipment is readily available through retail, wholesale, brick and mortar, and online vendors. Video hardware, as is the case with most commodities, electronics in particular, is manufactured offshore. The variables are Quality, Technology, Customer Support & Price. These are the common differentiators, and the locksmith must balance each to deliver his customers the best value in whatever market in which he competes.

Technology: Video surveillance technology is usually divided into two broad categories - analog and digital. Some Locksmith Ledger readers may have been in the business long enough to recall the early days of video surveillance, when it was referred to as Closed Circuit Television (CCTV). We still use this term, as it still applies; we view the camera images on a ‘television’ (a monitor); and we interconnect the camera and monitor over a cable (the circuit). That’s about where the analogy ends. The television is likely to be a flat screen, and circuit connecting the camera and the monitor is as likely to be a UTP cable, a piece of fiber, or the World Wide Web (that’s what they used to call the Internet)

Competition: The electronic security market has been invaded! Interlopers include Big Box Stores peddling DIY products, electricians trying to expand, network cablers realizing their market is saturated and has gone wireless, and telecommunications guys looking for additional work.

Again the differentiators come into play and they are nothing new to the locksmith. Quality, Technology, Customer Support & Price. It’s all about the art of balancing these to match your customer’s requirements for each specific application.

Applications: And the good news is that the demand for high technology, professionally installed and serviced video surveillance equipment is exploding despite an otherwise mediocre business environment looming over us for the last few years, opening doors for locksmiths and security providers.

Supply Chain Partners: New marketing channels are emerging constantly. One of my recent finds is Optiview, an independent video manufacturer and distributor based in Jacksonville, Fla., that provides its engineering support and products to dealers to wherever the Internet reaches.

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