We talk a lot about the importance of developing a solid Cloud GTM strategy and how it can drive revenue for ISVs. And for good reason: Tackle’s State of Cloud Marketplaces Report indicates that more buyers are coming to Marketplace, more budget is being allocated to the clouds, and more sellers are following the money, evident in the fact that 83% plan to put more or significantly more focus and investment on Marketplace as part of a Cloud go-to-market strategy this year.
But the grease that keeps the Cloud GTM gears turning is essential: private offers transacted through Cloud Marketplaces. Companies that have nailed Cloud GTM know that leveraging technology to get Cloud Marketplace deals done right is essential.
One of those companies is CrowdStrike. Victoria Celis, National Alliance Manager for CrowdStrike, is well-versed in the private offer sales motion. In this blog, she shares her experiences with us on automating the seller workflow and how CrowdStrike has scaled to support the growing businesses over time, and we also show how we here at Tackle lean on our own products to guide our Cloud GTM strategy.
Learn more: Tackle Customer Story: CrowdStrike
How Tackle uses Tackle
First of all, at Tackle, we’re big fans of drinking our own Kool-Aid (or champagne—pick your favorite drink)! We leverage our own products to drive revenue through Cloud GTM, and to help us identify which buyers to target.
Roughly 90% of our deals get done through the Cloud Marketplaces, so automation of the sales process is just as crucial to our team as it is to our customers. Tackle Offers saves both time and manual work. For us (and our customers), Tackle Offers keeps everyone on our sales team informed and aligned through each stage:
- Creating an offer: Tackle Offers simplifies the creation of Marketplace private offers across multiple clouds. Create offers directly in Salesforce or in Tackle’s application, and keep the data in sync by sending it to the Cloud Providers.
- Tracking offers: With Tackle Offers, we can track private offers from creation to acceptance. Email notifications keep all stakeholders informed as the offer progresses through each stage.
- Booking the deal: Virtual purchase orders, pricing details, contract value, and entitlements are centralized, along with critical metrics such as booked and disbursed revenue.
In short, Tackle Offers is the centerpiece of our seller workflow, reducing the number of steps needed to complete a private offer and ensuring that sellers and their stakeholders have deal visibility at every stage with automated, real-time notifications.
Visibility is key
Visibility is a common pain point expressed by both buyers and sellers. Victoria, who has played a vital role in CrowdStrike’s tremendous Marketplace growth, has seen the sales process evolve over the last few years. Initially, CrowdStrike opted to build and maintain their own Marketplace integrations but quickly realized it would take more valuable engineering resources than they could part with to scale and meet their operational needs. Tackle took over their Marketplace integrations and has been an integral partner since.
“Our team appreciates the notifications and Slack integration, so we know immediately when a deal has closed.”
“Tackle gives us a lot more visibility into the status of the private offers our team creates,” she noted. “We can see all Marketplace sales activity in one dashboard, and our team appreciates the notifications and Slack integration, so we know immediately when a deal has closed. It’s a better sales experience, improving internal adoption of the Marketplace while reducing the friction in the buying process for our customers.”
Private offers at scale
For both Tackle and CrowdStrike, scaling through Cloud Marketplaces is a cornerstone of what we do. That means putting the right resources behind it.
Over the past couple of years, Victoria has watched her Alliances support team expand. “We started adding Marketplace operations support after our 100th private offer, and once we reached 1,000, we fully built out the team. Ultimately, we want to have operations support in each region to support the growth.”
Read more: CrowdStrike’s Five Year Journey to Cloud Marketplace Success
Indeed, building out an adequate team to handle the Cloud GTM sales motion becomes more critical as companies scale. Tackle’s State of Cloud Marketplaces Report found that, as they scale, ISVs traditionally implement dedicated or specialized Marketplace teams—58% of our respondents said they have some version of a specialized team in place already, whether that’s an overlay team, a deal desk, or a dedicated Marketplace sales team. And 91% of sellers say they plan to put the same or more focus and investment into building an internal Cloud go-to-market team this year.
Leaning on technology helps ISVs to better handle growth—and to ensure that nothing important falls between the cracks as companies scale. For example, our Salesforce Connector syncs opportunity data from Tackle into Salesforce (and vice versa), eliminating unnecessary and redundant data entry. The Salesforce Connector allows sellers to continue working in their system of record while extending existing direct sales processes to Marketplace opportunities.
Seller enablement for the win
What’s more, seller enablement is central to properly building resources behind Cloud Marketplaces and Cloud GTM. Tackle’s State of Cloud Marketplaces Report also notes that Cloud GTM requires new skills of sales teams and leaders, and those that aren’t able to learn the ins and outs of cloud selling and how to “speak cloud” with their buyers will struggle for relevance. Further, the report goes on to say:
“Buyer demand is teeming and the opportunity for sellers is clear, but sales leaders, field sellers, and operational teams need more support to be able to lean in. Cloud selling is a new skill for salespeople, and we hear sales leaders from our customers are starting to target salespeople in their hiring processes that already have Cloud go-to-market strategy skills.”
Just over a third of our survey respondents said that more than 31% of their sales organization has received proper training and are effectively leveraging Marketplace as a revenue channel. This indicates that companies are starting to understand the impact of properly investing in their B2B sales teams’ knowledge and skills for selling on Marketplace.”
Fostering this kind of sales enablement has been key to CrowdStrike’s growth. “Even though we have seen success with private offers, it’s a relatively new process,” Victoria said. “It’s an ongoing effort to educate our teams about the Marketplace, its value, and how to sell there effectively.”
Read more: 5 Steps to Enable Your Sales Team for Cloud GTM
At Tackle, we encourage sellers to introduce Marketplace early in the sales process. Capturing the buyer’s goals and cloud spend commitments helps us understand how to optimize the deal for both parties—and in the long run, that spells success for everyone involved.
Interested in seeing what a seamless solution uniting co-selling, buyer intent data, and Marketplace solutions can do for you? Schedule a demo today.