If you ask most computer consultant marketing people what the sales cycle is on a typical managed services opportunity; they would probably say that it can range between three to six months. This would be the correct answer, according to most IT industry standards.
However, what if we told you that a managed services firm closed a sale, with a signed contract and check in hand ,with in two weeks? The clock on this time frame started from the first technology telemarketing appointment to the final meeting, when the salesman received the contract.
Furthermore, the prospect had been completely happy with their technology consultant right up until the first meeting with our client took place.
What does a vertical market have to do with this scenario?
This story contains several good lessons; but the most important one would be why it so important for Technology firms to spend time developing vertical markets.
Clients that are happy with their current situation, when it comes to IT, can be ‘switched’ if they allow any opportunity for IT telemarketing to set an appointment for you to meet with them and show them a better way.
Keep in mind that no matter how good your new IT marketing offer is the current guys always has an edge. He knows their system and the prospects are always deathly afraid of the “learning curve”. However, when you approach a managed services prospect as a computer consultant that is focused on their vertical Industry, carrying many references from other firms in their industry and able to demonstrate working knowledge of their key programs, then you can tear down the most critical barrier to making the sale.
In fact, as in the case with the example we sited at the outset, sometimes the prospect can walk away from a meeting like this, feeling that your firm actually knows their system BETTER than whoever is maintaining their network currently.
So we can throw out the standard sales cycle and expect quick closes, if you are working within a good vertical market!
How do you develop a good vertical market, if you don’t already have one? We will address this in the next blog posting.
John Black is the Marketing Director at MSP Telemarketing and has over 10 years experience marketing for IT providers and VARs to help them get more IT leads that turn into IT sales!