Chief Executive Officer at Hub.Inc, We help sales engineers, presales, solution architects and technical sales pros win more business.

Technical sellers have been around since the beginning of enterprise technology selling. Whether they’re called sales engineers, presales, systems engineers, solution architects or consulting engineers, they play a critical role in the enterprise technical selling of on-premises, hybrid and SaaS (software as a service) solutions.

Given the long history of technical sales working closely with enterprise selling, why should the C-suite of vendors selling technology to enterprises start paying attention to the role of technical sales? 

In a word: growth. To supercharge the growth of your business and optimize your margin, you must fine-tune your technical sales team. 

Without technical sales, you cannot sell. And without technical sales, you lose the glue that binds your sales representatives, product teams, marketing, customer support and partner teams. More importantly, without technical sales, you have no means of establishing your company as a trusted advisor with your technical buyers, even if you have a product-led sales motion. 

To view the impact of technical sales on growth, take a look at the Harvard Business Review (HBR) article, “To Improve Sales, Pay More Attention to Presales.” The authors, McKinsey experts who worked with leading companies around the globe, found that “companies with strong presales capabilities consistently achieve win rates of 40–50% in new business and 80-90% in renewal business — well above average rates.” 

The authors go on to say that enhancing presales improves conversion rates by five points, boosts revenue by 6%-13% and moves prospects through the sales process 10%-20% faster.

Even though this HBR article was written in 2015, it still holds true today. The impact of technical sales on growth will only continue to increase in the coming years. As the supply of technologies available to enterprises for purchases increases, so will the need for effective technical selling rise. 

What Can The C-Suite Do To Support Technical Sales And Spur Growth?

A Gartner report titled “Tech CEO Guide for Leveraging Sales Engineers to Drive Sales Effectiveness” offers recommendations to CEOs regarding technical sales roles, responsibilities, hiring, and sales enablement strategies. 

To build on this, here are nine additional recommendations for the C-suite on how to maximize growth potential for their companies:

1. Offer a seat at the C-suite table. Make sure that your technical sales leader represents observations on go-to-market. Technical sales are on the front line of buyer engagement and provide tremendous insights on opportunities that can accelerate growth. 

2. Invest in training and community. The right technical sales training and participation in communities can yield significant dividends. A few well-respected providers include, but are not limited to, trainers like Peter Cohen, John Care, Chris White and communities like Presales Collective.

3. Implement purpose-built systems. CRM systems are a great source of record for sales but are not optimized to drive productivity and provide detailed visibility into technical sales. Look at systems like Consensus and our company, Hub, which are purpose-built for technical sales and can complement your current CRM and productivity apps.

4. Detailed tracking of conversion metrics. Track technical sales’ ability to effectively filter out bad opportunities in discovery and improve conversion rates throughout the demo, presentation, solutioning, service and evaluation phases of the sales cycle. 

5. Unblock opportunity blockers. Technical sales provide tremendous insights into new features that should be defined by product management and developed by engineering to move opportunities forward. 

6. Improve buyer experience. Provide new tooling optimized for digital selling during the sales process to differentiate you from the competition, establish trust and improve buyer sentiment. 

7. Improve onboarding of new customers. Streamline account insights from technical sales to customer support and implementation to accelerate delivering value to your new customers.

8. Optimize renewal and expansion. Technical sales can play a key role in expansion and renewal efforts by leveraging preexisting relationships and familiarity with the account. Make sure that technical sales knowledge is transferred to your renewal and expansion teams.

9. Scale co-selling capabilities. Scale partner-related opportunities by enabling technical sales to develop joint playbooks and access experts to sell joint solutions. 

Today’s marketplace has forced industries of all stripes to integrate digital technologies. This new reality has fueled technology sales and elevated the importance of technical selling. 

Given this hyper-competitive world where buyer choice is abundant and company value is measured every quarter, it is critical that members of the C-suite focus on leveraging technical sales to improve their own enterprise selling. The sooner they do so, the sooner they’ll distance themselves from the competition and win more business.


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