4 tips to improve your sales success in a cloud world

Last month I blogged about why revisiting your sales strategy is key to success as you build your business with cloud offerings. As a follow up I want to share and encourage you to read a blog post from Jen Sieger, Senior Business Strategy Analyst in the Worldwide Partner Group at Microsoft. Jen’s post talks to 4 specific areas to consider when developing and selling cloud services. These align to topics that I’ve raised over the last few weeks and I’ve summarised them below:

  • Differentiation – as you develop cloud offerings it’s important to consider who your specific target audience is. This could be by industry vertical, segment, line of business or even geography. It’s particularly key when building your own IP using your expertise with a specific audience and could enable you to charge higher fees due to the added value of your experience and expertise.
  • Lead with the business problem – cloud solutions has opened the door for the decision on IT solutions to be made outside of IT and budgets are continuing to shift in that direction so now more than ever it’s critical to consider that you will be selling into a business audience. They will be searching for a business solution to a business problem, not technical.
  • Minimise the time to value for your customer – as you build out specific packaged offerings with cloud services this can enable you to have your customers up and running quickly so they can experience the benefits of the solution early on. This can open the door for additional offerings. During the sales process make sure you have a clear plan and timeframe to have them using the solutions built into the plan with the customer.
  • Consider the lifetime value of your customer – key to this is crafting offerings that will provide ongoing recurring revenue such as packaging up managed services offerings. This can also provide regular contact with your customer and cement an even stronger ongoing relationship with them and a deeper understanding of their business. Potentially enabling you to position additional service offerings that can support their organisation.

To help guide you in driving change across your business we’ve put in place a series of business training workshops below. This includes a full day sales workshop which will deep dive into some of the concepts in this blog post and help you build a plan for our organisation.

To sign up for the workshop’s you will need your Microsoft Partner Network login to access the details via the URLs above and sign up.  If you’re not yet an MPN member take a look at Jack Pilon’s blog post on MPN 101 which highlights the benefits and how to sign up.  If you are already an MPN member and having problems with your login you can reach the Regional Support Centre on 13 20 58 (option 2, 4, 1).  If you have any further questions please email partnerau@microsoft.com.