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  • Writer's pictureCharlie Beveridge

Enterprise customers of scale-up SaaS don’t buy technical superiority, they buy this instead




I’ve seen some technically quite unsexy SaaS products do surprisingly well with Enterprise customers, and it prompted me to reflect upon why.


It was purely because they were speaking the right business language. Your SaaS product might be one of the technically sexiest on the planet (and if it is, that is genuinely exciting), but the unfortunate truth is that it’s actually the way you talk about it that compels Enterprise to buy it.


Why does this matter? It matters because as your SaaS business scales into the Enterprise customer space, your business experiences a paradigm shift. And being prepared for it is the only way to accelerate growth.


The more technically advanced your product is, the more excitement there might be about it within the startup and scaleup community - which opens important opportunities with early adopting customers, with venture funding and with hiring talent.


But in the Enterprise community, the focus is different. The more technically advanced your product is, the more removed or abstracted its technical benefits might be from Enterprise customer employees that class as “the business”.


And this is a problem because it’s “the business” who have the purchase power for your product. Budget is allocated to “the business” because they have personal annual performance objectives that have a material financial impact for the Enterprise. Even if Enterprise technical teams recognise your technical superiority, it would be unusual if they were able to purchase it without a leader from “the business” championing the business need for it - in relation to one of their personal objectives.


So, successfully convincing Enterprise to buy your product comes down to a single choice: regardless of how technically sophisticated or ‘back end complex’ your product is, how are you going to really resonate with your customer and their personal business objectives?


Perhaps your product is a data transformation or distribution tool that can transform and distribute more data, faster, than any alternative. Or perhaps it’s a continuous delivery application that offers the most advanced automation capabilities on the market. Or it might even be a network diagnostics tool that is able to identify more deeply convoluted risks or threats than any competitor.


Whichever your technical arena, there is likely a fantastic technical argument as to why your target Enterprise customers would be much better off with your product than any other product option they are considering. But every competitor is also promoting their own technical superiority - so how is “the business” to understand which option is their best bet?


You gain the competitive edge when you frame your story from the start with the ambition and capability to achieve your customer’s business objectives better than any other product. And your technical superiority may well be the reason that you’ll have a greater positive impact on those business objectives than anyone else, but you’re going to have to very simply explain how. How and why is it that your technical superiority generates a greater business impact than your competitors’ products?


If it is clear that you can shift the dial on your customer’s business objectives, and thereby increase the profit potential of the Enterprise better than any other product, it’ll shift the dial on their decision to purchase your product.


The bottom line is this: justify being the best choice product by explaining how your superior technical capability can drive more profit potential than any other product.


As someone who is excited by cutting edge technical advance, it can be frustrating when products that have no technical superiority garner lots of Enterprise attention. But it’s even more frustrating when technical sophistication is overlooked entirely because the business value isn’t articulated accessibly enough for Enterprise buyers to really get behind it.


So that’s the problem Expedeck solves - Contact Us to find out what we do and how we might be able to help you expand into more Enterprise customers.

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