It’s a whole new world for selling the cloud, requiring new tactics to reach customers who are ready for adoption.
That was the message conveyed during the panel discussion titled, “5 Killer Ways to Cloudify Your Sales Pitch,” at Cloud Partners, a Channel Partners event, on Wednesday in Boston. The five tactics pinpointed include: social matters, content is king, mobile is the meet-up, buying is easy and buyers love to brag.
Andrew Pryfogle, Intelisys‘ senior vice president of cloud transformation, served as moderator.
“Making sure your website is mobile friendly is important,” he said. “There are more people visiting your website today via mobile devices than via laptop or desktop computers. So many websites have not yet made that pivot, and I see a lot of sales partners out there who haven’t figured out how to make their website in a responsive design or contemplated how are my customers actually going to view this information.”
In terms of website content, traditional search-engine optimization “is dead,” Pryfogle said.
“How do you find content that can be compelling for customers and can help establish you as a thought leader with your own customers?” he asked. “There’s lots of sources for that, and even simple things like a selfie video on your smartphone after you walk out of a meeting with a customer to say ‘hey, I just left a meeting with a client, they’re in this space, here’s the problem we uncovered and how we’re addressing it.’”
In addition, social media is playing an increasingly important role in attracting customers, whether via LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook.
“These are becoming platforms where customers are making assessments of potential solutions, and actually going through and making decisions,” Pryfogle said. “As consumers, we buy stuff all the time in social media, whether it’s a very targeted ad on Facebook, which by the way is not very expensive relative to how targeted you can get, and the same kind of thing on LinkedIn.”
Also, it’s important to make buying cloud as easy as possible for customers. And once you have a buyer, they “love to brag,” therefore adding to your sales pitch, Pryfogle said.
Randy Jeter, RapidScale’s CEO, served as a panelist and suggested sending gift cards or some other benefit to customers who provide testimonials.
Scott Lee, Matrix’s channel chief, another panelist, said it’s not difficult to get testimonials because “these guys have egos; they want to be a cloud leader.”