In the world of software sales, Cloud Marketplaces have emerged as a powerful channel for landing bigger deals, accelerating deal velocity, and tapping into new budgets. It’s not surprising that field sellers are looking for Marketplace prospects within and beyond their existing pipeline of leads.
Enabling sales teams to leverage Cloud Marketplaces is a critical step to a successful Marketplace implementation, and securing those first wins requires identifying the right candidates and opportunities.
There are several ways to arm sellers to talk to prospects about Cloud Marketplace. Our experts recommend starting early to find the best match. During the discovery process, ask probing questions to determine a prospect’s likelihood of buying through Marketplace. These questions should include:
- Which Cloud Provider are you built on? Most companies today are built in the cloud and likely have some level of partnership with one or more of the three hyperscalers— AWS, Microsoft, or Google. As you find out where your customers are most closely aligned, you can better determine if Marketplace makes sense as a transaction mechanism. (This is also a great method to use if you’re not on Marketplace yet; determine where your buyers are and use that as direction on where to get listed.)
- Who in your organization owns the cloud relationship? There is usually someone in the buyer’s org who manages the cloud relationship. It’s likely someone in an IT or Cloud Admin role or potentially someone in an Alliances, Partnerships, or Channel role. Identifying this person and encouraging your buyer to ask a couple of these questions early on in the process can mean a faster path with easier buy-in.
- Are you aware that a portion of your Marketplace purchases can be applied against your committed cloud spend? Each Provider has its own incentive programs but all three hyperscalers have some option for companies to leverage Marketplace purchases as a way to “draw down” on contractual spend. By purchasing your software through that Provider’s Marketplace, they can get what they need and draw down against their commitment.
- Would it be easier to buy our product as part of your cloud bill? Budgets everywhere are shrinking and have become continuously more difficult to access. One budget that isn’t shrinking? Cloud spend. Companies are spending more with the clouds than ever, and Forrester predicts that 17% of the $13 trillion in B2B spend will flow into Marketplaces by 2023. If a buyer can purchase your product via the Marketplace, they will leverage a budget that already exists and actually be incentivized to do so.
Tackle customers are landing some massive deals by learning about their prospects’ cloud commitments early. One reason: The commitment question often elevates the conversation to the leadership level, since buyers’ cloud budgets typically live with the CIO, CTO, or similar. This works in everyone’s favor
Connecting Their Dots
You may have noticed our discovery questions did not include, “Do you want to buy through the Cloud Marketplace?” That was intentional. Even if the buyer’s organization is built on the cloud, your buyer may not know what the Marketplace is, how it works, or how it could be advantageous for procurement.
As you learn about their needs and circumstances, educate buyers about why the Marketplace makes sense. Appeal to the preferences and priorities that make up their buyer journey. You may be the first to tell them about how the Marketplace helps them reduce their committed spend, how much faster deals can close due to simpler procurement and less legal involvement, or how easy it can be to have just one bill (the Cloud Provider’s) without a new vendor agreement.
Once you learn which Provider your prospect is most closely aligned with, try to get a deal registered through the Cloud Provider’s co-selling program, like AWS’s ACE Program and Microsoft’s co-selling program. Reach out to the Provider’s business development rep assigned to the account and share what you know about the prospect or customer. The Provider rep will most likely return the favor. In fact, you may also score some valuable intelligence about the status of your customer’s commitment, which could lead to an even bigger and faster deal. Plus, most Cloud Provider reps are incentivized to work with ISVs on Marketplace solutions so they are likely to be eager partners.
For more information about how Tackle can help your field sellers identify the best Marketplace prospects and close bigger deals faster, schedule a demo or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.