I was driving home and reflecting on the fact that my two year stint working as a marketing director for two computer consultants consecutively had just abruptly come to and end. My mind started drifting to some negative thoughts full of doubt when the quote from the Liam Neeson movie Taken flashed into my mind.
There is a scene in that movie where Liam Neeson’s character is talking to the kidnapper and says, “I do have are a very particular set of skills. Skills I have acquired over a very long career… I will look for you, I will find you…and I will kill you.” This is when I got my second wind and developed my new motto going forward. I also have a very particular set of marketing skills which I acquired over a very long career. I will look for IT leads, I will find cloud computing prospects and make them sign with your firm!
Read more to find out about my particular set of marketing skills and how they could translate into greater success for your IT company.
I have fourteen years of experience performing traditional IT lead generation for computer consultants under my belt; but four years ago I took my 10,000 hrs of industry knowledge and innovated cold calling into the ultimate IT marketing system. At the outset this system was able get more appointments 10 times faster and dramatically increase the quality of these business meetings. In one of the last campaigns performed for a consultant in New York all ten appointment promised were set in just two days and every one of these meeting held!
Fast forward to when I become the marketing director for a managed services firm in San Antonio and I was able to implement this same system again and during this process I learned some valuable real world lessons that allowed me to enhance the program and achieve even more spectacular results! The series of modifications I made to this concept allowed me to speed up the sales cycle. Over the year and a half that I spent embedded with this local MSP I was able to set hundreds of appointments.
In fact, the last campaign I undertook expanded this San Antonio based consultant into the Austin market. Over twenty appointments were set up in Austin through this now enhanced system and It allowed me to close two new cloud customers in less than 30 days. Yet in the midst of this last campaign I was lured away to work for a Houston computer consultant and left seven solid opportunities open from that last campaign. These prospects had all worked their way through the entire sales cycle and were in the final stages of contract negotiation.
Selling Cloud Computing
The other skill that I have, “acquired over a very long career” is the art of selling both managed services and cloud computing! In the beginning of my career I just focused on setting IT sales leads but it wasn’t long until I realized the symbiotic relationship that existed between lead generation and selling. In fact, you can provide all the appointments in the world to a computer business but if they don’t know how to ‘sell’ then the whole process ends up being a waste of precious time as all the leads will get burned. It was at that point that it dawned on me that the skills required to make contact with a decision maker and then persuaded them to set a face-to-face appointment was the same ability needed to actually close the sale.
This is when I decided to offer sales training along with the appointment setting service and this step took me all over the country making sales presentation to end users on behalf of IT service providers. In the process I developed a battle tested slide show and oral presentation that I have given literally thousands of times in front of actual end user decision makers. However, when I became the director of marketing for the San Antonio computer business I persuaded the owner to move into cloud computing and suddenly was in the position of having to revamp this presentation so it would address cloud services.
I can report that I have eloquently made this new cloud presentation to hundreds of prospects in the San Antonio, Austin and Houston markets and successfully reached hearts and minds to change negative attitudes towards cloud computing until they felt enough confidence to migrate all their applications and data into redundant data centers. My real skill lies in working with these two computer firms that were starting up their cloud offering from scratch and helping them both get their first customers to sign up with out any references or testimonials. My sales skills include both the mastery of communicating the benefits of the cloud so that the message is persuasive along with building massive rapport with all my prospects.
I could continue to elaborate on my experience but I believe that what I have already written should be tantamount to throwing bloody meat into a shark frenzy; as these are the two skills most cloud providers are sorely lacking. I have always been surprised how quickly most consultants will admit this and if your are one of these owners that have taken and honest assessment of your strengths and weaknesses then you should be taking careful notes about what I am saying.
The truth is that finding a true sales professional to work for a computer business and/or finding a real marketing system to generate enough leads has been elusive. This is where my ‘Particular Set of Skills’ can come in handy for those that are paying attention and have read this article. My new business model has changed so that I will be combining both lead generation and sales. Yes not only will I set up 20 or 30 appointments in a wicked fast campaign but I will come down there in person and use all my experience to make these cloud presentation on your behalf. Of course, my bandwidth to provide such a service will be very narrow as I represent a very scarce commodity. Therefore, I will only be able to provide this enhance sales and marketing service for only a handful of clients each quarter.
So remember that I also have a very particular set of marketing skills which I acquired over a very long career. I will look for leads, I will find cloud prospects and make them sign with your firm! Call me if you want to find out more, 210.396.9734 or email me at email@example.com