Cloud-Services have given companies access to software, storage, security components, and other resources that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago. It’s safe to say that cloud services are a vital part of modern business. Today, cloud services are essential for enterprises that want to transform their business.
Cloud sales expert Chris Koch describes the cloud as having “the potential to transform businesses similarly to electricity when it became widely available.”
But that doesn’t mean that selling it is easy — or even possible for everyone. Here’s how you can successfully use your knowledge of B2B sales and customer relationships to successfully sell cloud services in 2023.
Start at the beginning with security and reliability
● Security: First, your potential clients need to be assured that your cloud-based solution provides the same level of security as they would expect from an on-prem solution. If they’re already using other cloud services and trust those providers with their data, then it should be easy for them to trust you too.
● Reliability: The next thing your customers want to know is that their data will be backed up — and not just once or twice a year — but every day, automatically, and continuously. In addition, they want assurance that your cloud services have no single points of failure; if something goes wrong with one part of the system (for example, a hardware failure), users across all industries who rely on these services daily should still be able to access them from other parts of the system without loss of functionality or downtime.
● Pricing: Pricing is one of the most important factors in selling cloud services. Customers are often concerned about the cost of your offering and whether it will fit within their budgets. To effectively sell cloud services, you must ensure that your pricing is competitive and consistent with what the customer expects from a service like yours.
Understand the B2B sales process
The B2B sales process is arguably the most important step in selling cloud services. The successful implementation of a cloud solution can be the difference between business growth and stagnation. If your marketing and sales teams aren’t working together, you’ll end up with an inefficient process that takes too long to get results. If you want a full pipeline, you need a strong marketing team or hire a great marketing agency to create and publish a lot of quality content on Google, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat and other social media platforms as possible. There is no magical number, but you should publish at least three times a week to build your brand and when you get a call, the sales that should explain what you have and how it brings value to them. Content is king, it is vital to every business, especially if you are trying to build a brand with a positive reputation.
Here’s a breakdown of what it takes to establish an effective B2B sales process:
● Identify customer needs: Before selling anything, you need to understand exactly what your prospects are looking for. You should have already researched them, but now it’s time for in-depth conversations with key decision-makers about their goals and objectives and their current pains and frustrations with existing systems or processes (if any).
● Develop a customer-centric approach — This means focusing on how your products or services will meet customer needs rather than pushing products on them without understanding their problems first. It also means creating the necessary sales collaterals, including one-pagers, video demos, calculators, and other materials to help push the sales cycle forward.
● Don’t sell one cloud service, sell an E2E solution if you want to bring real value to your customers. One cloud or feature is worthless to customers, they are looking for a complete solution.
● Next-Generation of cloud products or services — you need to spend a lot of time and resources on the future of your products/services, you should ask yourself what the world will look like 5 years from now or what is going to happen in 5 years from now, how cloud computing will change how people work, how the apps are going to look like, you will be amazed how much you will be able to accomplish by planning 5 years strategy. You need to predict the market and what your customer will need, and what their challenges would be a few years from now.
One way to think about it is as a buyer’s journey, which is usually broken down into three phases: Awareness, Consideration, and Conversion.
Awareness phase: The buyer knows the product or service you offer. They may have heard about it from an ad they saw on TV or an article they read online, or they may have been referred to you by someone else who has already purchased your product or service.
Consideration phase: The buyer begins to look into your product or service for themselves. They may search for reviews on Google or even ask their friends for recommendations on Facebook.
Conversion phase: The buyer makes a purchase!
Educate your customers
Customers need to understand the benefits of the cloud solutions that you are trying to sell; you should remember, don’t try to see their product or your cloud services; instead, sell them the value it brings. Example: how they can’t get a better ROI, how they can reduce the time to market, how they can reduce cloud cost, etc… Essentially you need to focus on its value for the customer. Think about it this way. You have something they want, but they don’t always know how it will save their business money, make them more competitive, or improve their business.
They need to be educated on why cloud services benefit their business and why now is the time to take advantage of those benefits as opposed to later.
To do this, you’ll need an effective sales approach that teaches customers about all aspects of your offerings — from what your service does for them right away (e.g., reduce costs, protect customer’s data, etc..), all the way down to long-term challenges like security and compliance requirements (or other reasons why not buying now may mean missing out later)
The cloud sales journey is a two-way street
Cloud sales are a two-way street. It’s important to listen to your customer’s needs and be proactive in meeting those needs, but it’s equally important that you remain responsive, flexible, honest, and helpful.
If you want your cloud services to succeed in 2023 and beyond, then you must treat them as if they were your own investment. The best way to do this is by actively listening to what your customers have to say so that you can provide the best possible solution for their problem or need.
This doesn’t mean simply sitting back and waiting for their call — it means going out into the field yourself (or having someone else do so on your behalf) so that you can directly observe their needs firsthand; even if this isn’t possible initially because of location constraints or other logistical hurdles — such as time zones — try contacting potential clients through phone calls or video conferencing software instead until such time as an actual face-to-face meeting becomes feasible!
Now that you’ve got the basics of cloud sales, it’s time to prepare for your first meeting with a prospective customer!
You want to ensure their experience is as positive as possible, so you should think about how best to engage this person before you even start talking about business. For example: Is there anything else they might need from us besides our product? Are there any other products or services we can provide that would make them happy? How can we make sure they feel comfortable asking questions?
Once these questions are answered, all that remains is for you two to get comfortable chatting about what matters most: what problem does this cloud solution solve for my company? What does success look like when addressing these problems? And how will I know if we accomplish those goals together?
You need more than just a good product and a plan to successfully sell cloud services and software. You have to effectively engage your target audience, utilizing all available technologies to determine customer interest and capabilities while using your sales and marketing staff to explain and promote your offerings in ways that resonate with customers.
The key to this process is understanding your prospective customers, their needs, and how they prefer to buy. Doing so allows you to develop a sales strategy that will address their needs while integrating seamlessly with other marketing efforts.
Hi, I’m Oren, founder at BIGINTRO, a content strategy agency that helps B2B companies drive growth. We develop search, social, PR, and content marketing strategies tailored to business goals. I also have a dog named Milo.