The Federation of Communication Services- FCS - is the UK Trade Association for the communications services industry representing businesses delivering products and services to customers by radio, mobile, fixed and IP telephony. FCS was established in 1981 and is the stable force at the heart of the competitive and liberalised industry providing a voice for the competitive companies that deliver innovation into the UK market. The FCS website provides an invaluable source of information on all aspects of the industry, the work of the Trade Association, its objectives and the benefits of membership.
FCS What's happening? - CEO Blog
Take control of a new market opportunity
At FCS Comms Installer on May 9, I showed the prototype of a new venture for FCS’s installer members: a new website to try and capture members of the public who have maybe seen those awful D-Love digital radio adverts on TV and are wondering if there’s maybe not something a bit more bespoke out there than what they can find at Halfords.
We know such people do exist. Maybe not in huge numbers, but they’re growing. If they go on-line at the moment, then depending on what they type in, they’ll either end up at suppliers’ websites, enthusiasts’ websites or ifitstuff. None of which, let’s be honest, are really written with non-technical members of the public in mind.
We believe there is a major new opportunity here for the installer community to create and influence a new customer base. Things like the digital radio switch-over and the coming e-Call emergency call functionality are opening the door. But once the door is open, it’s like an in-car Aladdin’s cave in there: everything from audio system upgrades to daylight running lights; from tyre pressure monitors to alarm systems. This industry has access to an endless portfolio of totally cool stuff which can enhance the user’s in-car experience. Best of all, this industry has the technical skills to take all the risk and worry out of getting it fitted to your car.
That’s the message we’re trying to get across in our new site: www.accredited-vehicle-installers.co.uk . What we’ve got so far is simply a starter for 10: it’s just a sparsely-populated template to try and map out what we think are the big things consumers are interested in, to encourage them in their search, and to find easy ways to prompt them to find out more by contacting professional installers. Come back next month and see how it’s improved. Better still, drop us a line and help us improve it to meet your needs.
It’s nice to be in on the start of a brand new market. And it’s especially nice to be launching that rarest of commodities: a website which doesn’t have a profit-generating sub-plot built in.
FCS wants the public to have confidence in professional installers who take pride in their professional competences and who don’t feel ashamed in setting their prices to reflect their experience. The more we can raise the public’s expectation of a fair price for a fair job, the easier it will be to cut out the cowboys and raise the bar of professional installations. And the more likely it will be that professional installers see the commercial justification for being members of the FITAS accreditation programme.
The public will still go looking, whether we at FCS do this kind of thing or not. But we owe it to our industry not to allow uninformed members of the public to fall prey to get-rich-quick wallahs. At least, not without demonstrating there is an ethical, professional and properly insured alternative. Yes, it might cost a bit more. But then again, it ought to.
Chris Pateman. CEO.
Chris can be contacted via e-mail email@example.com
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