How the Cloud and Solutions Selling Are Transforming High-Tech Sales and Marketing

Ashish Vazirani

Video Transcript – Ashish Vazirani, Principal

I think there are two trends that are really impacting sales and marketing and that are driving the change in the technology industry. The first of which is driven by the change in technology. And that's obvious, the innovation's there. But what's not obvious is the impact that those changes in technology have on business models. As provision of IT solutions are being delivered through the cloud, that changes the way that sales and marketing professionals need to think about engaging with their customers and the types of partners that they utilize.

The second key trend is the shift from a product-focused approach to a solutions-focused approach. And that requires sales and marketing professionals to take more of a segment-oriented approach to think really about the way their customers buy and what they need.

For the sales teams, it means that they need to become much more segment-focused. And what that really means is that they probably need to have some form of industry specialization so that they understand the context in which their customers are buying these solutions. It also requires a change in the compensation model moving away from deal-based compensation to subscription-based compensation models.

Another impact on the selling model are the types of partners that technology companies will go to market with moving from a reseller model to a service provider model. On the marketing side, this requires a shift from product-focused marketing towards segment or solution marketing, which requires greater insight into the customer's purchase process. I think the big challenge is the degree to which the companies need to change. For some companies, they may only need to repackage solutions to put them more in a segment-focus and then enable their channels to sell those solutions. Other companies may require a wholesale change to their go-to-market function, a transformation of their to go-to-market approach.

Well, in this environment where there's continuous change, there's plenty of opportunity. So it's an exciting time to be a leader in sales and marketing in the technology industry. There's lots of opportunities. And this creates an opportunity for those sales and marketing leaders to create competitive advantage, to think about their go-to-market model, and to shift the go-to-market model in a way that creates competitive advantage. For example, by looking at a segment-focused approach and thinking about specific routes to market for those segments, technology companies have an opportunity to become much more solutions-oriented.