Since I have been pretty forthcoming about our journey to build Microsoft I.P., I am now getting questions in my email. One question that seems to pop up frequently, is how to figure out what to charge for your I.P.. Guess what? I have opinions on that! What a surprise.
Many partners and customers are under the impression that gaining user adoption (a/k/a Active Use) is very hard to do. History supports this, at least based on the most commonly used approaches to this challenge. But I will tell you that it is actually very simple.
It is the heat of the political season, so in the spirit of that, I’ll need to “walk back” my post title. Success cannot be Guaranteed; even “Or Your Money Back” simply means you failed. The best that anyone can do is set you up for the best possible chance …
I keep hearing lately, that the customer is in control of the technology sales conversation today. Former First Lady Nancy Reagan, who recently passed, was well known for her “Just Say No” anti-drug campaign. I want to hijack her slogan for Cloud Sellers.
Okay, well I knew it couldn’t last forever. We created the first “Packaged Deployment” model available only through Microsoft Partners; RapidStart CRM. Now there are few others, so I have to write that “Why Us?” post.
According to Microsoft, they currently have 112,388 employees. That is a big ole company. As companies go, it qualifies as an Aircraft Carrier. My former brother-in-law was the commander of the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis, and he said it was hard to turn fast.
There is an interesting battle taking place down in the trenches of SMB. Microsoft and Salesforce.com are peripherally aware of it, because both of these major CRM platforms have expressed some interest in SMB, but the opposition ranks are growing.
We are witnessing something quite amazing; the unstoppable force of Cloud Subscriptions, meeting the immovable object of commissioned sales. Unfortunately… somebody’s gonna lose.
The best I.P. ideas begin with a wide view; making sure as many possible challenges are being solved. The best ideas, are by definition, the “Best” ideas, but they have to withstand the cyclical nature of business.
Okay, I can hear the Microsoft Partner community thinking “Why on earth would I ever Down-Sell, and how on earth would that Increase profit?” Okay, got it, you’re from Earth. Before I explain my rationale, let’s quickly cover a few sales techniques that you are already familiar with.
Firstly, I would like to apologize for being the reason that Microsoft added two more nouns to their CRM lexicon: “Packaged Deployment”, and “Opportunity Management”.
So you built yourself some I.P., and had some success selling it directly, and now you want to scale up with a Channel Model. You are in the right place, because based on our recent experience, I can share a few things to do, and a whole bunch of things …
While building some unique Intellectual Property (I.P.) that solves a worthwhile problem can be difficult, getting it to market can often be even harder. Depending on what your I.P. is: App, Solution, Service or combination, will have a lot to do with what makes sense in a go-to-market plan.
First of all, I am well aware of Microsoft’s push for trials ever since their entry into the SaaS space. Even though Microsoft is relatively new to the Free Trial game, apparently it has been successful for some products, but not as successful for others; CRM falling in the latter …
I my past several posts I have been discussing Intellectual Property, and this idea that you can create Repeatable I.P., that could possibly be offered on a Recurring basis. According to Microsoft, this is the Holy Grail for Partners going forward, and all Partners will soon be valued based on …
If you are a Microsoft Partner, then you are part of their channel. As a member of their channel, once you start selling some products, you will eventually pop up on the radar of someone at Microsoft. This may be a Partner Development Manager (PDM), or a Partner Sales Executive …
We obviously have a vested interest in the I.P. game, and so I listen to a lot of people. A couple of people in particular are Brent Combest (@BrentCombest, Microsoft’s Minister of Profitability) and Dana Willmer (a consultant who adds analytical beef to Brent’s proselytizations).
In my last post, I started a discussion around I.P. for Microsoft Partners. In this post I want to provide some examples of I.P. that partners have developed, in hopes of sparking your imagination.
As a Microsoft Partner, who is not living under a rock, you have no doubt heard the Microsoft drumbeat around “Recurring I.P.. To listen to Microsoft, if you don’t have this, you may not be around very long, or at the very least, your business won’t be worth very much.
My old buddy Albert Einstein once said “If you can’t explain it Simply, then you simply don’t understand it well enough”. Al kind of sums up CRM selling pretty well right there. CRM is a complex and powerful beast, and even seasoned CRM Partners are sometimes challenged to “Explain CRM …