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    Are Enterprise Deals Dead?

    October 14, 2014

    We have been reading a lot lately--and hearing from our customers who sell cloud-based solutions--about the demise of the enterprise deal.

    It's a hot industry topic. Last month, sales consultancy The Alexander Group hosted its first annual Sales Effectiveness Symposium on Cloud Sales. According to Dale Chang, a Director with The Alexander Group:

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    "Cloud organizations are adopting a 'land and expand' strategy to take that beachhead deal and gradually increase share of wallet. These shifts directly impact the primary selling motions. Progressive sales leaders are thinking about 'continuous selling' and multiple ways to generate revenue in the form of acquisition, upsell, cross-sell, adoption and retention. Cloud sales roles must adapt and align with these objectives and activities."

    Are you seeing the need for continuous selling in your business? We know we are.

    Recently we spoke with one of our customers, a cloud-based provider of data analytics tools, who is facing the same reality. One way they are addressing the challenge is to sell in at a higher level, by going directly to the CIO. Other customers are hedging their bets by winning big beachhead deals with Line-of-Business decision makers, then socializing success with CXOs who have the power to greenlight an enterprise deal. In a competitive environment, you have to work all the angles.

    This new sales scenario introduces a whole lot of complexity as well as a new category of decision makers--CXOs and LOBs. Speaking to this audience requires a level of business knowledge and acumen that can be lacking in your sales force. We have explored this topic in our recent posts on How to Have a Business Conversation and Nailing the First 5 Minutes of a Business Conversation.

    While your sales team is working all the angles, we like to think of ourselves as "the invisible hand" behind the scenes, feeding you specific insight that you can use to establish relevance and credibility so you can get the meeting in the first place, and preparing you to nail the first few minutes of that business conversation.

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    Sharon Gillenwater

    About the Author

    Sharon Gillenwater

    Sharon Gillenwater is the founder and editor-in-chief of Boardroom Insiders, which maintains an extensive database of the most in-depth executive profiles on the market, from Fortune 500 companies to independent non-profits, to help sales and marketing professionals build deeper relationships and close more deals with clients. Gillenwater is a long-time marketing consultant with expertise in marketing strategy, account-based marketing, and CXO engagement programs.