Lexmark’s A4 Evolution is now the A4 Revolution

 

Today, I declare like the patriots in Boston back in April of 1775, The Revolution has begun. So, let the A4 battle for market dominance begin.

I had the pleasure to share the BEI Services data at the Lexmark Roadshow in Boston. As the Copy/Print Industry continues to modify, BEI’s data highlights some of the reasons A4 equipment is driving much of the many disruptions coming to the print services deliverable.

The battles of this A4 Revolution will be fought in the conference rooms of the complacent, there will be skirmishes between salespeople trying to push yesterday’s technology as the end-user customers try pulling what their predefined needs. There will be sacrifice demanded from service providers as yesterday’s extensive services are replaced by new technologies which are more and more void of service.  

“In the future customers won’t evaluate how good your service is, they will buy products that don’t need service.”

The revolution has been long coming, and many have been hiding way too long behind those “Big Paper Drawers.” This A4 Revolution will cause A3’s mortality to finally see its end. Print Equipment Manufacturers will be struggling as their dealer’s orders for A3, are replaced by the end-user customers’ demands for A4.

Soon dealers will be throwing over the preverbal ship into the preverbal harbor the boxes of old sales manuals filled with old billing models, the parts and supplies from old A3 models, and the boxes of the undeveloped aspirations of production print. Yes, the A4 Revolution has started and those who believe that the oversized systems stand of the A3’S Army will prevail against the speed, agility, and price points of the A4’s Militia, are not listing to the sounds of the cannons as they practice for the celebration when 80-85% of all A3’s are defeated by the merits of A4 Melita.

As many manufacturers continue with their stubbornness in making more of things they want. Instead of making things the end-users want them to make. Organizations like Lexmark can and will seize the moment. Lexmark is not getting sidetrack into assimilating A4 into an A3 world like so many other manufacturers.

The Revolution has started, and there is no going back. The Imaging Channels current circumstances will modify continuously, and there is no stopping the A4 militia, soon the A3 warriors with their big paper drawers will sink to the bottom of that preverbal Harbor called Too Stubborn to Modify.

Don’t fall victim to the disruptor become the disruptor.

“You can be the vendor with the greatest relationships and lose to the new unknown innovator who delivers a better experience.”

R.J. Stasieczko

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Another nice feature of the new Lexmark models is the tiered billing feature for the color units.  This feature (similar to some lesser brands) can be set up and used on the full line of Lexmark a3 and a4 mfp's.  A great tool to retain and gain customers..

I think it is fairly well documented that A4 product dominates 80% of the marketplace. I just have not experienced it to be growing.

I understand you believe in big data but I believe on what is in front of me on the street everyday grinding out cold calls.

I just do not seeing A3 product going away anytime soon especially if you are a sales rep who lives on commissions.

Why lead with a less robust A4 box and make less money?  Customers buy copiers generally once every five years.   A4 boxes usually have a higher breakeven cpc cost than a A3 product.  When doing a total cost of ownership calculation for customers who make 3000 copy/prints a month or more, usually any A4 savings are not that significant.

SalesServiceGuy posted:

A4 copiers are caught in battle between product quality and low price.

Other than lower costs there are no big reasons why you should buy an A4 MFP over an A3 MFP.

Many customers prefer A3 copiers because they feel comfortable with the build quality and reliability.  Price is not necessarily the highest priority for them.

I have yet to see an A4 copier from any vendor that has a document feeder that even comes close to the build quality found on A3 copiers.  As scanning keeps on becoming an increasingly key feature to buyers, A3 copiers will continue to win the day at higher price points.

I do not think any sales person wants to keep on placing MFPs at lower A4 price points with lower commissions.

I have yet to see any major RFPs in my territory from gov't offices that allow A4 MFPs to be supplied in the majority of machine placements.

I think Ray has been drinking a little bit too much of Lexmark's Kool-Aid.

Oh, it's not the Kool-Aid, it's the data. The world of print is also a world of data. and the data says that over 80% of the market could easily transition to A4. Soon the end-users will decide on A4 through new channels or transitioned old channels. It seems that most of the arguments for not selling A4 are based on legacy sales strategies and outdated sales compensation models. Either of which end-users care about. The reductions in print volumes, and the reduced value of print to end-users will cause many old strategies to be replaced. The Imaging Channel will find it hard to prosper on 20% of a market if their stubbornness keeps them from modifying the delivery of the other 80%. The coming competitors are going to replace a whole lot of Great Relationships with their Better Experience.

Ray      

SalesServiceGuy posted:

I have been replacing A4 copiers with A3 products for awhile now.   3-5 leases are beginning to expire on A4 product and buyers are electing to upgrade (sometimes early) to A3 product because of less than happy experiences with A4 product.

A fast A4 print engine is not necessarily better than a slower A3 product with a superior Doc Feeder and a lower cpc charge.

Do not get me wrong, a successful copier sales rep has to sell a mix of both A3/ A4 product to earn a decent income these days.  I both like and sell Lexmark low end A4 MFPs and printers but lead with A3 product.

That's awesome than you can sell the A4 Lexmark's. I'm stuck with Ricoh A4's and we don't have one A4 device with a stapler (color or black).  We did, however Ricoh decided that they would re-label the A4 Kyocera (50 & 60ppm).  Personally I thinks it's calculated move to keep A3s moving.  Ah, maybe one day 

I have been replacing A4 copiers with A3 products for awhile now.   3-5 leases are beginning to expire on A4 product and buyers are electing to upgrade (sometimes early) to A3 product because of less than happy experiences with A4 product.

A fast A4 print engine is not necessarily better than a slower A3 product with a superior Doc Feeder and a lower cpc charge.

Do not get me wrong, a successful copier sales rep has to sell a mix of both A3/ A4 product to earn a decent income these days.  I both like and sell Lexmark low end A4 MFPs and printers but lead with A3 product.

SalesServiceGuy posted:

A4 copiers are caught in battle between product quality and low price.

Other than lower costs there are no big reasons why you should buy an A4 MFP over an A3 MFP.

Many customers prefer A3 copiers because they feel comfortable with the build quality and reliability.  Price is not necessarily the highest priority for them.

I have yet to see an A4 copier from any vendor that has a document feeder that even comes close to the build quality found on A3 copiers.  As scanning keeps on becoming an increasingly key feature to buyers, A3 copiers will continue to win the day at higher price points.

I do not think any sales person wants to keep on placing MFPs at lower A4 price points with lower commissions.

I have yet to see any major RFPs in my territory from gov't offices that allow A4 MFPs to be supplied in the majority of machine placements.

I think Ray has been drinking a little bit too much of Lexmark's Kool-Aid.

I completely agree with the document feeders on the A4 vs A3 devices.  Heck document feeders use to be an option and those documents feeder used to cost just as much as a higher end A4 device.

A4 will only become popular when manufacturer use the A3 cost per page model along with A3 features such as folding, 200 sheet or higher doc feeders, booklet making,  stapling and more

A4 copiers are caught in battle between product quality and low price.

Other than lower costs there are no big reasons why you should buy an A4 MFP over an A3 MFP.

Many customers prefer A3 copiers because they feel comfortable with the build quality and reliability.  Price is not necessarily the highest priority for them.

I have yet to see an A4 copier from any vendor that has a document feeder that even comes close to the build quality found on A3 copiers.  As scanning keeps on becoming an increasingly key feature to buyers, A3 copiers will continue to win the day at higher price points.

I do not think any sales person wants to keep on placing MFPs at lower A4 price points with lower commissions.

I have yet to see any major RFPs in my territory from gov't offices that allow A4 MFPs to be supplied in the majority of machine placements.

I think Ray has been drinking a little bit too much of Lexmark's Kool-Aid.

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