Sales & Marketing , Art or Science

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High tech start ups face a challenge as they begin to take their ideas to market. How can they get the market to buy their new product? They face a difficult transition from being R&D-led to becoming a business dependent on sales to fuel future growth.


This is an extended version (the original had 7 slides and 38 words) of a seminar delivered to the Harwell Oxford Technology Entrepreneurs Forum. There is also an A4 handout on my web site http://www.salestransformation.co.uk/insights.html .

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  • If you improve the effectiveness of each stage by 10% you more or less double your chances50%55%60%65%70%75%80%3.13%5.03%7.78%11.60%16.81%23.73%32.77%
  • If you improve the effectiveness of each stage by 10% you more or less double your chances50%55%60%65%70%75%80%3.13%5.03%7.78%11.60%16.81%23.73%32.77%
  • If you improve the effectiveness of each stage by 10% you more or less double your chances50%55%60%65%70%75%80%3.13%5.03%7.78%11.60%16.81%23.73%32.77%
  • Sales & Marketing , Art or Science

    1. 1. Sales & Art or Science?Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 1| sales transformation |
    2. 2. Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 2| sales transformation |
    3. 3. Electronic jewellery? An extreme focus on customer experience ► Obsessive attention to detail ● Watch the video on the latest iPhone salivating on the diamond tooling that produces the chamfered edges ► The thrill begins with the box before you get to your iPod ● Vastly over-engineered, with almost mitred corners ● A lid that overlaps the base so much that the box opens with a natural damping effectConsilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 3| sales transformation |
    4. 4. ...backed by a brilliant business model ► Everything you want in Apple’s secret garden ● Buy music on iTunes, you pay ● Buy music on iTunes, the artist pays ● It’s the same for the books, apps and the rest everyone pays Apple ► Result! ● Apple had the highest capitalisation on NYSE in 2012 peaking at $646Bn ● (Exxon regained supremacy in January 2013)Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 4| sales transformation |
    5. 5. Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 5| sales transformation |
    6. 6. The “Mac Book Air” of the 1970s ► Thiswas the portable typewriter of the 1970s ► Beautifully packaged ● Integral case in matching red ● Retracting keyboard to reduce the size ● Colour coded components ►I had just graduated with a degree in Architecture ► I wanted one!Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 6| sales transformation |
    7. 7. How would you sell the Olivetti today? ► Collectable? ● Yes ► Practical? ● Oh come on, the Amstrad word processor can do more than that ► Useful? ● Perhaps as a doorstop (or to prop up part of my bookcase as my sad looking old Olympia does)Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 7| sales transformation |
    8. 8. ► Don’t think like a businessman ► Think like the customer ► In this case think like a kid!Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 8| sales transformation |
    9. 9. Hey, that’s really cool, no power cords to lose, totally intuitive, you don’t even have to wait for it to power up; you just put paper in at the top and the words come straight out. I could use that while I’m backpacking across Bhutan on my gap year!Consilium Thanks to Richard Seymour of Seymour Powell for this idea © Consilium Consultancy Limited 9| sales transformation |
    10. 10. Smartphone warsConsilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 10| sales transformation |
    11. 11. How they compare ► A real keyboard! ► Really stylish ► Pushes email ► Does email ► Really good encryption ► Loads of apps … so good BBM is the ► Loads of cool features rioters’ smartphone of ► Intuitive choice! ► Designed to be an ► Designed to work with object of beauty corporate IT ► Lose it and you can remotely wipe your dataConsilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 11| sales transformation |
    12. 12. What it feels like: an unequal battle ► Logic ► Lust ► Work ► Leisure ► The office ► Home and holidays ► Work at the weekend ► Have fun while you or on holiday workConsilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 12| sales transformation |
    13. 13. But who wants this written on their gravestone?Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 13| sales transformation |
    14. 14. What? Most high tech start ups start with “what”: the product they have sweated to develop. Unfortunately most prospective customers are swayed by something else … this isn’t the place to start.Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 14| sales transformation |
    15. 15. What? How? Nor is this, even if you sweat blood!Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 15| sales transformation |
    16. 16. YES!Be clear why you are inbusiness. Make it clearyour mission is to help What?your clients solve aproblem, perhaps that thisis the first product of many.● You will supply How? additional services where they are needed, or forge alliances to deliver Why? “a whole solution”● You are interested in delivering a benefit to your customers● You are not just a “one trick pony”So start with why you are inbusiness, be prepared to explainhow you deliver the benefits, andthen explain what it is you areoffering Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 16 | sales transformation |
    17. 17. Sales & Marketing Process Once initially with occasional refreshes Idea Develop Position Launch Sell 10s, 100s, perhaps 1,000s of times Generate Proposal Follow up Negotiate Deliver Enquiry or QuoteConsilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 17| sales transformation |
    18. 18. Marketing and the devil A good marketing advisor will act as Devil’s Advocate to test your ideas, and then help you develop persuasive sales arguments. Idea Develop Position Launch Sell Having sweated blood, perhaps mortgaged your suggesting that your product is incomplete. house, you now have to get people to understand Worrying about the semantics of the exact way you what you are selling ‒ to the extent that they want describe things. Insisting on understanding the to buy. You’ve probably been advised to get a culture and habits of the customer. Questioning marketing specialist to help position your product how many customers there really are. and launch it. A good consultant will at times seem like your enemy ‒ playing devil’s advocate denying Obsessing about customers and their requirements that your brilliant idea is obvious. Perhaps pays ‒ think Apple!Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 18| sales transformation |
    19. 19. Six Sigma* Selling *Six Sigma seeks to improve the quality of process outputs by identifying and removing the causes of defects (errors) and minimizing variability in manufacturing and business processes. Source Wikipedia! Hardly anyone makes the perfect sales call. Let’s When you last lost some business did you call the assume most of us are 60-70% effective. If we can prospect to find out why? Better still did you get raise this by 10% at each stage over a five stage someone independent to ask why on your behalf? campaign we would end up about twice as effective. Continuous improvement really does work. Getting the message correct is important, delivering the message consistently can be even more Try it! important ‒ you are going to do this tens, hundreds, perhaps even thousands of times. Generate Proposal Follow up Negotiate Deliver Enquiry or QuoteConsilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 19| sales transformation |
    20. 20. Art or Science?Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 20| sales transformation |
    21. 21. Consilium © Consilium Consultancy Limited 21| sales transformation |
    22. 22. Determined to help my clients achieve the success they deserve. Simon Breese Business strategy Marketing strategy swb@salestransformation.co.uk Proposition development T: 01844 275430 Presentation coaching Sales coaching M: 07999 444193 Sales planning @betterselling Bids & grant applications Joint sales calls Sales performance improvement ConsiliumConsilium | sales transformation || sales transformation |

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