This session from the 2022 Sandler Partners National Summit is about talking to your customers and starting the conversation and sales process to get a quick sale that leads to something more. There are technologies that you can use to get in, get everyone excited, and move things along quickly. Learning about and communicating these key technologies can have a huge impact on your business and your revenue.
I was joined onstage by Michelle Labern, Regional Channel Manager, and Vincent Helfrich, Director, Channel, Metro New York. I’ll be summarizing what was said, introducing you to the topic. For the details, and to find out which one of us interned at NASA, you’ll need to watch the whole video.
Every organization is looking to build their house — all the categories of technology that can help them be efficient and secure, increase capabilities, and eliminate headaches. I’m all about eliminating headaches; let’s make things as easy and streamlined as possible. Today’s “house,” from a technology perspective, is going to be made of these key areas: Cloud Compute; Voice and Collaboration; UCaaS; Contact Center; Mobility, Wireless, and IoT (Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning AI/ML); SD-WAN; Network; Security/Cybersecurity; and Managed Services. That’s a lot of opportunity to get your foot in the door! Someone is going to sell this, and it might as well be you getting the commission, protecting your customer, and knowing that they’re getting the best solution for their requirements from your 200+ Sandler Partners Provider portfolio.
Every organization of any size in any industry and at any stage of maturity is going to need these solutions. It’s what helps them grow and remain competitive. Do they have everything in place? Maybe, but probably not. You can help jump-start their IT approach and get it moving or revitalized.
I like to use the analogy that you fill the general contractor role, just the same as if you were building an actual house. This professional, while being knowledgeable about the process, brings together the framers, drywallers, electricians, painters, and plumbers. They guide the process from planning through to completion. Your sub-contractors are the networks, solutions, and systems that make up the technology house.
But I’ve teased you enough. Let’s touch briefly on the “Foot in the Door Technologies” promised in this blog and session title. Strategic, complex sales are becoming more common and a lot easier to pull off. They can, however, have long sales cycles, and we’ve experienced many occasions where that includes working with many people on the customer side (committees are very common). But you can kick-start some of these conversations by starting small and doing what I like to call “Land and Expand.” So let’s get your foot in the door or open it wide enough to walk right in, with:
- Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Microsoft 365 & Teams
- Colocation & Datacenter Firewall Management
- 4G/5G Wireless of Satellite Business Cell Phones
- Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) Email Security
- Cybersecurity End User Awareness Training Helpdesk and IT Support
- Video Collaboration (Zoom, GoTo, Teams, ETC.) Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS)
- Vulnerability Scanning & Security Assessments
So that’s your customer’s potential shopping list, even if they aren’t fully aware of it. To break the ice, try asking three simple questions. What are the main business applications that you use to run your business (Teams, Sage, Salesforce, etc.)? Where do they reside (on-prem or in the cloud)? Who is responsible for managing them (internal staff or a service provider)? How they answer and what you see are going to go a long way towards taking that next step and making a solution proposal.
The replay for this session goes deeper and provides context for the conversations. We also outline how starting with just one of these very specific solutions can lead you and your customer down the path to expanding the sale across multiple categories, while reinforcing your importance to your client as their technology expert.
Gerry Davis is the Senior Vice President of Sales Engineering. Gerry leads the Sales Engineering team at Sandler Partners and works hands-on driving education within our Partner community, driving revenue through customer discoveries, and developing customer facing solutions with our agents. Leading technology authority and subject matter expert–a position he maintains with infinite curiosity, and shares with tangible excitement.