3 in twin-pronged B2B attack


3 is to develop a two-pronged attack on the small business market next year via its direct and indirect channels.

3 will start to offer a range of SME tariffs in its store estate in 2010, it said. It will also ramp up activity within the dealer market, with a host of new business-focused MVNOs to launch also and sign customers on its behalf.

3 head of business Paul Foley said: “Since the business arm officially launched at the end of last year, it has developed massively. We’re planning to expand the reach of B2B sales next year and the most obvious way of doing this is by introducing it into our retail estate.”

Foley claimed the indirect channel remains the most important conduit for small business connections.

From November 2, 3 will reintroduce the ability for resellers to discount business tariffs by 25 per cent, after requests were made by 12 key dealer and distributor partners, including Fone Logistics, HSC and Business Phones Direct.

The discount was initially part of a campaign that ended in September, but Foley said dealers found it to be an important selling tool.

“It’s wrong for me to make all the calls all the time. We got feedback from the channel about how to execute the business proposition in the market and found that dealers wanted the discount back,” he said.

“We need to be flexible to meet the market demands. The sales slump during the time when the discount was not applicable was not significant. What’s more important is the fact we listened to our key partners and brought back a compelling proposition.

“In 2010 we will get traction in the business market.”

Meanwhile, 3 has launched a dealer incentive for the fourth quarter, running through December. Top prize is a European weekend break for the dealer who delivers the best quality business during the period.