I was recently meeting with one of our enterprise SaaS companies. We were reviewing the company’s performance in 2015, a year in which the company has been very successful in acquiring new customers. I asked our entrepreneur what was behind the sales team’s success. My expectation was that his answer would highlight the company’s successful sales team recruitment and variable compensation strategies, as well as the strength of the company’s product.
While these factors were part of the answer, they were not the most important factor. The entrepreneur shared that the most important reason behind the company’s sales success was that each sales team member focused on making the person responsible for their customer’s buying decision look like a hero inside their company. This requires more than just a great product. Specifically, it requires that people inside the customer company know how great the product which the buyer purchased is.
To achieve this, our startup prepares case studies contrasting the customer company’s performance on relevant metrics before and after our startup’s SaaS tool is implemented. This is something that the buyer could prepare themselves, and the best buyers do prepare this output. However, many don’t. And even those who do may not present the performance difference as clearly as our startup. Our startup knows how to best convey the uplift from having prepared the same presentation for tens of other companies.
The result of this effort is that the buyer looks like a hero inside the company. And when the buyer looks good, they’re more likely to refer our startup’s product to buyers in the same role at other companies. They become advocates for our startup and this makes it easier for our startup to acquire new customers. They’re also more likely to renew their contract when the time comes, a consequence we’ll likely observe in 2016.
If you’re an enterprise SaaS company, making your buyers look like heroes is a cost effective way for you to acquire new customers and retain existing ones.