Marketing Matters by Barb Levisay, Owner, Marketing for Partners
How To Strengthen Your Service Delivery Team
Last time, we talked about helping the marketing and sales teams get on the same page. But how about your professional services team? On the front lines with clients and prospects every day, your services team should also be in lockstep with the marketing team.
You can help your service delivery team add value to customers and the company using several simple pointers.
1. Billable resources don't have time for marketing. Each member of your professional services team is likely evaluated on his or her realized billable value. (Compensation for sales and marketing activities is a whole other topic that we will save for a different time.) But you can help your professional services team contribute more to the top line by giving them additional tools to:
- upsell and cross-sell existing customers,
- develop marketing content and
- build referral business.
2. Upsell and cross-sell tools. Keeping up with Microsoft's new product offerings and promotions is a daunting task for both customers and services professionals. Help the service team sort through the clutter with:
- a monthly newsletter highlighting license promotions sent to customers and internal teams,
- monitoring and filtering the Microsoft sales and marketing webcast invitations to forward only those that apply to each professional's area of interest, and
- regular conference calls or in-person meetings where the professional services team can share success stories.
3. Content creation is key. Your professional services team is creating content through proposals and presentations every day. The marketing team can find a wealth of material for blog posts and newsletter articles when those documents are shared. Include your marketing team on the service team calls to help them understand the value of the services that you deliver.
4. Empower your consultants to wow. In a previous post, we talked about how extraordinary service is what motivates customers to refer business your way. Give your professional services team the authority to go above and beyond for your customers. Acknowledge and reward team members who add customers through referrals.
5. Here's a controversial concept: Feature your professionals on your Web site. Your Web site and marketing content should be a true representation of who you are as a company. As more and more prospects choose vendors through online connections, you want to build confidence quickly. What better way to convey to prospects the expertise you will bring to them than to introduce them to the professionals that will implement their Microsoft solution?
Partners that are uneasy in advertising their consulting team -- for fear that headhunters will hire them away, for example -- might consider another perspective. What higher form of flattery is there for your employees than to be introduced on the Web site as the company's jewels? Partners trying to attract talent may soon be at a disadvantage if they don't feature their professionals on their Web site.
Do you include your professional services team in the marketing process? Send me a note and let's share the knowledge.
Posted by Barb Levisay on June 22, 2011 at 11:57 AM