How to successfully sell to telecoms operators - ConneCt from CCgroup
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How to successfully sell to telecoms operators - ConneCt from CCgroup



We all known that the mobile industry is in a state of flux. ...

We all known that the mobile industry is in a state of flux.

Consolidation, competition, co-operation conspire to create new commercial and technological challenges. As a result, it has never been so difficult to sell to operators.

ConneCt is a project from CCgroup - a B2B tech PR agency in London - to reveal the communications platforms that drive vendor inclusion in operator procurement, the influencing factors when shortlisting and the critical factors in vendor selection.

The full white paper is available here:



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How to successfully sell to telecoms operators - ConneCt from CCgroup How to successfully sell to telecoms operators - ConneCt from CCgroup Presentation Transcript

  • © 2009 CCgroup© 2013 CCgroup How to successfully sell to Telecoms Operators July 2013
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Industry is in a state of flux – consolidation; competition; co- operation • Operators therefore face new business & technology challenges & opportunities • But vendors face toughest trading conditions ever – increasingly difficult to „sell‟ to operators Everything‟s changing in Telecoms
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Requirement to protect legacy investments increases integration complexity • Consensus buying behaviour means a larger number of purchase influencers • Reliance on analysts & consultants to inform/manage procurement process • Professionalisation of purchasing – formal supplier ID & RFX processes now the norm The way operators buy has changed… RFI RFP RFQ RFT View slide
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Our research suggests many vendor sales & marketing efforts are dated & disconnected - wasting time, effort & money • At worst, marketing campaigns: • Use ineffective platforms & channels • Provide content that doesn‟t engage customers • Create generic, unsubstantiated messaging • At worst, sales teams: • Don‟t provide proof points of capabilities • Neglect to share customer intelligence • Fail to use content or messaging provided …But the way most vendors sell hasn‟t View slide
  • © 2013 CCgroup • To understand how vendors need to change their sales & marketing approaches, CCgroup launched the ConneCt Research Project • CCgroup interviewed operator CEO, CTO & CTO group reps, plus senior advisors that consult to operators • Also reviewed market influence studies & industry research from respected sources • In summary, the project investigated and analysed: • Communications platforms that drive RFX inclusion • Influencing factors on RFX shortlisting • Critical factors in final selection RESEARCH: How do today‟s operators select vendors?
  • © 2013 CCgroup How operators identify vendors 0 10 Existing supplier relationships Peer relationships Internal business analysts Industry conferences & workshops Industry analysts Trade show exhibitions Articles in the press Direct marketing Webinars Advertising Social media The most influential communications platforms that drive RFX inclusion (from operator interviews) – scale of 1-10, with 1 being the least important and 10 being the most important
  • © 2013 CCgroup How operators shortlist vendors 0 2 4 6 8 10 Familiarity / existing or previous relationship Reputation / Profile Pure ability to meet criteria set out in RFP Perceived thought leadership / vision Recommendation (personal, consultant etc.) Price Greatest influencing factors when shortlisting vendors (from operator interviews) – scale of 1-10, with 1 being the least important and 10 being the most important
  • © 2013 CCgroup How operators evaluate vendors 0 1 2 3 4 5 Price vs. business case Ability to deliver goods or services as promised Demonstrates understanding of my business Roadmap for future solutions Post sales support Reputation Price alone Greatest influencing factors in purchasing decisions (from operator interviews) – scale of 1-10, with 1 being the least important and 10 being the most important
  • © 2013 CCgroup How operators evaluate vendors “…when I think about which vendor to select, I need to see a high level cost/benefit analysis. That analysis must show that if I deploy their technology, there must be a revenue or customer generating effect. I‟m amazed how often this doesn‟t happen – 90% of vendors just don‟t get this – it‟s what I need.” Telecoms Operator CXO
  • © 2013 CCgroup How operators decide… Unequivocally, yes Unequivocally, no Depends / not on its own “When finally making purchasing decisions, do you perceive thought leaders as a „safe bet‟?” “You can‟t judge on thought leadership alone – you need to know the foundation of the „vision‟ and claims. You need to see the product or service, and the execution plans for delivering a project.” Telecoms Operator CXO
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Core Messaging – often too weak and undifferentiated, lacking edge or vision • Content – often lacking in proof points because “the customer said no” and other Sales and Marketing content struggles to provide insight, show understanding of operators‟ needs or to help sales teach customers something new • Outreach – too much resource is dedicated to “brand-building” such as display advertising or spurious trade shows, which is shown to do little to help drive inclusion in RFX processes So how does current vendor marketing stack up?
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Reset – your expectations of how mobile operators buy • Rethink – your approach to lead generation & sales support • Reconnect – with your audiences in a more meaningful, powerful way Combatting inertia
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Use effective communications platforms: • Identify, gain access to & leverage direct, in- person platforms for sales execs • Support & reinforce through indirect platforms – analysts, conferences & media • Arm your sales execs with compelling content: • Insight & new perspectives on operator business functions, organisations, challenges or markets • Tie that content to strong company messaging: • Content that leads to the uniqueness of your company to solve operator problems • Make it „real‟ with proof points & references The solution for vendor S&M teams
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Successful sales & marketing teams should have high expectations of each other as they are mutually-dependent: Shared roles & responsibilities Marketing Sales What you say Messaging & positioning Customer insights, proof points How you say it Insight generation, sales collateral, campaigns Customer intelligence, customer research Where you say it Platform provision Front line delivery, feedback • Demands commercially-focused team with deep market understanding, proven experience and privileged access
  • © 2013 CCgroup • The full ConneCt white paper from CCgroup includes: • Details conclusions on what influences RFP inclusion, shortlisting and selection and how to make the best of each approach • Specific quotes from board level operator interviewees • Detailed advice on how to adjust vendor sales and marketing teams for best effect Where can I find out more…? Visit to download the full ConneCt white paper, or contact us on to request a copy
  • © 2013 CCgroup • We‟re not „normal‟, we practise commercially-driven PR • We use PR to support commercial objectives. That means we: • Provide new perspectives on your market & business; identifying your points of uniqueness and what sets you apart from the competition • Re-frame your audience problems to challenge, linking to your unique solution; teach them something new • Drive awareness across platforms, increase sales lead generation, boost organisational value We‟re the team you need
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Best mobile consultancy in EMEA • GSMA – 17 year relationship • Incredible client synergies – entire ecosystem covered • Unbeatable contacts in industry – media, analyst, consultant, spea ker, commentator • Dominate Mobile World Congress Telecoms & mobile
  • © 2013 CCgroup • Established „ConneCt‟ research: Demonstrates our privileged access & single-minded focus on our clients‟ commercial success • Embraced the „Challenger Sale‟ Cutting-edge approach to sales in highly complex, competitive environments – like mobile • Strategic partner for „Hot Topics‟: The platform through which global technology leaders, innovators & influencers connect, understand and shape the industry We‟re ahead of the „game‟
  • © 2013 CCgroup We‟re a PR consultancy with a strong commercial focus. We help our clients generate sales leads, demonstrate value and position for exit. The next few pages prove that via case studies & references. What happens next? We should present more detailed findings to you (and send you the full white paper). Then we should talk about how we can help you adapt & succeed in a changing world. Call us. Richard Fogg, MD +44 7887 845236 Paul Nolan, Head of Mobile +44 7717 723440 Duncan McKean, Dep. Head Mobile +44 7500 875614 Who is CCgroup?
  • © 2013 CCgroup “As a new player in a crowded market, getting our messaging and positioning right was essential for the success of our wider marketing efforts. CCgroup created a bank of key messages that truly differentiates Encap & positions our business as the natural solution to the most critical challenges in our target markets.” Thomas Bostrøm Jørgensen, CEO, Encap Kind words about us “Choosing to work with CCgroup was an important decision in achieving our company objectives. Not only did CCgroup‟s strategy help us develop our sales pipeline, it helped build the value of Fundamo and attract the interest of international investors.” Aletha Ling, COO, Fundamo, a Visa company “With strategic thinking and content, CCgroup exemplifies how PR can instigate & lead highly successful marketing programmes that unite digital, event & ATL. Just one „peak‟ during a CCgroup campaign generated 30 sales leads and directly impacted the Tellabs bottom line. This is an outstanding achievement in B2B marketing.” Sonny Waheed, former Head of Marketing EMEA & APAC, Tellabs
  • © 2013 CCgroup Challenge • Make a tech company interesting to the global business community; generate sales leads Creative • Worked with CTO to create unique story angle • Developed compelling content including supporting news angles and whitepaper Consequences • 25+ media briefings, 1,500+ global articles • 500+ tweets with 1.8 million reach • 100+ white paper requests, 25+ sales leads from customer & partner prospects (first month – requests will continue all year) Sales leads for
  • © 2013 CCgroup Challenge • Own & develop „smart mobile Internet‟ concept; deliver sales leads Creative • Linked „smart network‟ strategies to MNO stock performance; work with STL Partners to quantify returns • Launched integrated global campaign at STL‟s Telco 2.0 event with strong claim Consequences • NA, EMEA & APAC trade & business media covered story, carrying „smart‟ messages • 100+ downloads in first fortnight; more than 30 operator sales leads delivered Engaging content for
  • © 2013 CCgroup Challenge • Turn unknown tech company into „thought leader‟, prime market for attractive exit Creative • Sustained development of opinion & content; influencer relationship-building Consequences • Speaker slots at all key events; positive positioning in industry analyst reports • Blanket coverage in global business & trade media; multiple award wins • Acquired by VISA in June 2011 for $110m – PR called out as major contributor to exit Securing exit for
  • © 2013 CCgroup Just visit to download your free copy of ConneCt Download the full ConneCt white paper tel: +44 207 535 7203 email: