Use Data to Convince your Customers to Upgrade

Use Data to Convince your Customers to Upgrade
Jillian Bateman — September 7, 2021

In January of 2015 I was driving home from work and my husband called. What I thought would be our normal “what should we have for dinner” conversation, turned out to be: “We have been robbed”. (I could have corrected him that we were actually burglarized, but I didn’t think it was a good time). He had gotten home with our two children, who were 5 and 7 at the time, and felt a draft going through the house. He realized that our patio doors were smashed in and there was glass everywhere. He immediately called 911 and then made sure that there was no longer someone in the house. We were victims of a typical smash and grab burglary, where they broke through our back door and quickly went to every bedroom looking for small electronics, cash and jewelry. The police believe they were in and out of our house in probably 5 – 10 minutes. In that time, they took 2 tablets, 1 phone, a gaming system, and all my jewelry. Initially I felt like the biggest loss was the jewelry as they took my engagement ring plus several keepsake items that my Mother passed on to me after her death. However, the biggest loss for the entire family was our lost sense of security. My husband and I were shaken by the event, but the amount of fear it instilled in my kids was heartbreaking. Six years later they still talk about the break-in and ask questions about the people who did it. 

I know the big question you are asking is, did we have an alarm system? The answer is yes, but like many alarm owners, I had forgot to arm it that morning. I was your textbook alarm end-user and I didn’t use the system as it was designed. Pretty common, right? Once we called our insurance company and a door repair company, we then called our security company. We had them come out and add more perimeter devices to protect our home. We upgraded our control panel so that we could arm the system via our phone app, activated geofencing so it would alert us if we left the house without arming, added a couple cameras, and glass break sensors. Essentially, we upgraded our security system to something we should have had from the beginning.  

My family’s experience, and anyone else who has been burglarized, is powerful information for your sales teams and installers. When we initially had the security system installed, the company showed us a few packages, went over the pricing of each and asked which we preferred. Being typical parents who were facing mortgage payments, car payments, childcare expenses, property taxes, etc, etc, etc, we went with the cheapest system. We didn’t get much push back from the security dealer and I don’t recall them explaining where we would still be vulnerable by our selection. I truly wish they would have as I could have made a more informed choice on the type of protection we were going to receive.  

To provide security dealers with more insight into the tactics used by burglars and the mindsight of the end user, ESA supported two studies on burglaries. Working with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, the research involved surveying both burglars and the victims and the data provided some fascinating insight into how alarm systems deter criminals, and how victims trust in them to protect them. One statistic I found helpful was that 73% of the burglars interviewed preferred not to burglarize a place with an alarm. Also, helpful was the actions that the victims took after the break-in: 35% installed a new alarm system, 30% has new outdoor lighting installed, and 20% had an outdoor camera installed. Excellent data points to help a sales representative to further educate their prospective customers.  

We know that full perimeter intrusion systems are more effective in deterring a burglary, but convincing your customers of this is not easy.  

Using data from these studies, and the FBI’s Crime in the US findings may change the way you approach your market, position your SAS services, and add revenue to your bottom line. For other helpful sales techniques, check out our array of sales training courses at, choose Shop All Training and then choose the filter for Concentration: Sales.