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How IT providers can improve their sales game

December 12, 2019

How IT providers can improve their sales game
powered by Sounder

Most IT providers can admit that sales and marketing aren’t always our forte.
If we ever had the choice, we’d choose to discuss features over budget every time.
Alas, the sales and marketing bits are what make businesses grow. They are simply unavoidable.
That’s why it’s so helpful when a professional like Erick Simpson joins us on B2B Tech Talk. In this episode, guest host Logan Lyles of Sweet Fish Media catches up with Erick – the creator of the MSP Mastered™ methodology – at Ingram Micro’s ONE event.
The two discuss:
  • How to bring up budget with a potential buyer
  • The power in offering three options
  • The three different types of tech buyers

Bringing up budget

It can be awkward talking about budgets with prospects. Making it seem natural is a skill that takes some practice to nail down.
"Marketing and sales are the IT solution providers' Achilles heel." - Erick Simpson
Nonetheless, Erick encourages sales pros to bring up the budget as early as the qualifying stage. His tip to IT providers is to not make it seem like a big deal; it’s just a conversation, after all.
Always ask about the budget with questions like, “How will our initiative be funded?”
Never ask, “How much budget do you have?”
If it ends up that the prospect doesn’t have the required budget, propose that their company phase into the solution, paying a little bit at a time.

The power of three

Also in the qualifying stage, Erick suggests offering the prospect three solution options. This strategy turns the prospect’s mindset from making a decision about buying or not to making a decision about which option to buy.
To do this, show the prospect solutions with additional features. Erick lays it out like this:
Option No. 1: Includes everything the buyer needs and is in the agreed-upon budget.
Option No. 2: Includes all the features of No. 1, but adds more qualitative value.
Option No. 3: Includes the features of No. 1 and No. 2 with more additional features.
If the proposal is constructed properly, the buyer will choose:
Option No. 1 15% of the time
Option No. 2 60% of the time
Option No. 3 25% of the time

The three types of tech buyers

Erick highlights the three types of tech buyers IT providers need to consider. These include: 
  1. Technology Strategic Buyer. These are the best kinds of clients. They understand that investing money into the right tech will give them a strategic advantage over competitors.
  2. Technology Dependent Buyer. These types of clients are not as strategic, but their businesses depend on tech so they’re willing to invest.
  3. Technology Adverse Buyer. These clients don’t see technology as a driver of their business. They wait until something is completely broken to invest in new solutions.

By understanding the three types of tech buyers, the power of three options, and the right ways to bring up budget, you’ll be running with the sales and marketing pros in no time.