As software development innovation curves accelerate, more new disruptive technology applications are being introduced into the market.
When launching new disruptive technologies, you need to deploy a disruptive marketing and selling process in parallel to make your offering successful.
The high-tech world is full of case studies of early technology disruptive offerings that were incorrectly marketed that failed. Think CPM86 by Digital Research or Remanco Systems who launched the first restaurant computer Point of Sale system in the world.
Where are they today?
CMP86 was IBM’s first operating system choice for the IBM PC over Microsoft’s DOS but failed to react when IBM sought to partner with them first. Bill Gates moved quickly… and the rest is history.
Remanco Systems brought in outside investors, expanded too quickly and was crushed by NCR and Micros/Oracle because of cash flow problems.
Great technology, first mover position, but now gone.
The key to successfully market and sell disruptive technology is… it’s not first to market, but smart to market!
When building out your national go-to-market strategy for the sale of your disruptive technology or service offerings, there are multiple guidelines you need to consider to maximize your success. At Value Forward, we have coached over 100 technology CEOs and C-suite teams. Based on these experiences, we have created a master go-to-market scorecard as an operating template with over 155 business operating levers that need to be managed to increase new software and service sales and marketing launch success.
Here are 10 of those 155 levers (not in any particular order) that need to be managed when building your national go-to-market disruptive technology launch.
1. Too early to market may result in no adoption.
Sometimes being first means no market because buyers are not prepared to adopt. Is not just about technology – it’s also about fixing a problem that buyers identify needs to be fixed and are prepared to pay for.
2. Don’t let author’s pride guide your business.
Very common in founder CEOs who have a development background is author’s pride. Just because you wrote the code doesn’t mean buyers want what you sell no matter how great you think it is. Buyers don’t care about you or what technology you built; they only care about themselves and their needs. Make sure there is recurring demand for what you sell before you launch.
3. You need sales hunters who cold call.
Selling new disruptive technology takes sales hunters who cold call. Cold call by email, by telephone, by LinkedIn, by direct mail or walking floors at trade shows. Sales teams selling disruptive technology must be hunters. Networking works by its not a scalable, predictable process. Disruptive technology is about selling through a velocity market model and capturing market share as quickly as possible to build barriers of entry against the me-too competitors who will ultimately follow.
4. Your educational sale should be aimed at C-level executives.
Selling disruptive technology requires a corporate story on why the targeted prospect should buy. Disruptive technology is an educational sale that should be aimed at C-level executives who buy based on value. When selling in North America, managers with the title of directors or below buy technology and professional services based on feature, function and price. Selling directors and below is the commodity selling zone. Selling disruptive technology is a C-level sale focused on the value selling zone.
5. Your sales steps need to be linked to marketing content.
Selling disruptive technology requires unique marketing content to be attached to each sales step on your sales process ladder to support your revenue capture model. An educational sale drives thought leadership and shortens sales cycles, eliminates competitors and reduces buyer adoption timelines. Marketing needs to be tied in lockstep with sales.
6. Add value, don’t discount price.
Often when launching disruptive technology, IT companies seeking early adopters (and cash flow) discount their application to grab customers. This is a strategic mistake. If you truly have validated your offering’s value, then discounting contradicts your disruptive technology offering’s perceived position. To gain new business from new prospects or new business from existing customers when launching disruptive technology, add value to your offering (i.e., 13 months of SaaS for a 12-month cost) instead of discounting actual net price.
7. Create three-dimensional value that is believable.
When communicating the value of your disruptive technology to targeted prospects, you need to make your value declaration believable. Your value must be validated three-dimensionally. Are you using case studies, ROI, time motion analysis, employee body count reduction or accelerated report delivery? Whatever value your disruptive technology delivers, you need to prove it and make it believable.
8. Unbudgeted investments require analogy selling techniques.
Selling disruptive technology and services often means that your offering is a first-time purchase and an unbudgeted investment for your prospect. To help your targeted buyer understand why they should find funding for your offering, use analogy storytelling as a success tool. Unbudgeted investments mean C-level executives need to redirect funding from other allocations to buy your technology. To help your prospects understand why they need to find money for what you sell, use examples of regular purchases they make and compare its ROI to your ROI (i.e, to a transportation company C-level executive, “your annual SaaS investment with us is the same investment you make to buy one tractor trailer yet with our technology platform in place, you will be able to reduce labor costs for all 3,000 trucks you own”).
9. Disruptive technology success is 110% operational delivery.
Selling disruptive technology or services is all about early adoption, market penetration and revenue capture velocity. It requires you to over supply operational delivery. Disruptive implies new, and new value needs to be over validated. To accelerate your revenue capture success, supply your new customers 110% operational deliver, in every installation or project deployment.
10. Revenue capture is a company responsibility.
Technology and service companies are complex machines with many moving parts. Selling and marketing disruptive technology requires the whole company to focus in tandem on revenue capture. Product and service names, service delivery implementation methodology, client support approaches and development enhancements must be aligned with revenue capture. Revenue capture is a company responsibility. When sales and marketing processes are decentralized from the rest of the organization, disruptive technology velocity is slowed to a trickle and success is minimized.
Disruptive technology launches continue to accelerate worldwide. Successful technology launches are a premeditated thinking and planed process.
Do you know…
- Why your prospects will buy?
- Why your prospects will not buy?
- How to create value that prospects will believe?
Become a Microsoft, not a Remanco!