income share agreements Post, tech sales Post, bootcamps Post

Mastering the Inbound Funnel: How to Become a Great Tech Salesperson

Dave Edwards June 10, 2019

Software as a service (SaaS) is a tech-delivery model where centrally hosted software is licensed and delivered to customer's on a subscription basis. Also referred to as cloud-software, SaaS has become today's dominant means of software solutions for virtually every single conceivable business need.

The SaaS market is growing fast; it’s expected to reach $185.8 billion by 2024. With an estimated 10,000 private SaaS companies, there is not only a SaaS solution for every conceivable business function, but moreover, there are seemingly multiple SaaS companies competing for every niche solution.

With such a wide offering and competitive landscape, it’s not enough to offer the best product. SaaS companies also need to have the best sales professionals.

The Need for a Strong Sales Team 

Even the most niche SaaS product is unlikely to find itself without stiff competition. -SaaS Mag

In 2018, the average company spent $343,000 on SaaS; a 78% increase from 2017. Gartner predicts SaaS revenues for 2019 will reach $85 billion

These trends — the sheer volume of available apps and the ease of their implementation and turnover — have led companies to distribute responsibility for SaaS across the entire corporate organization.

For example, the average midsize company has approximately 32 different billing owners responsible for SaaS applications. There’s often no single employee in charge of all SaaS purchasing, which means a tech salesperson may have to navigate up to 32 different people inside just one company to reach the applicable decision maker!

With over 10,000 SaaS apps and growing, it takes a special type of knowledge to cut through all the noise. Tech sales will be driven by salespeople that have mastered not only their product, but SaaS sales apps as well.  Mastering sales-SaaS is critical because it represents the 1% of SaaS that 100% of companies use.

ISAs and SaaS Academies – An Alignment of Interests

New educational models, such as coding academies…offer students ISAs in lieu of tuition bills. -Sheila Bair

SaaS sales professionals are in demand, and companies need them trained and ready to hit the ground running. The consistent and rapid SaaS growth has led to specialized and accelerated training as an alternative to traditional 4-year college education.

The most common type of certificate program is a coding academy, or “bootcamp,” which teaches students computer programming skills needed to pursue lucrative software engineering and web development jobs. Most academies boast high job-placement rates, and many provide assistance helping graduates find work.

Certification programs and bootcamps are often unaccredited, so students aren’t eligible to receive federal financial aid. This has led to a need for alternative financing options, such as Income Share Agreements (ISA). SaaS coding academies have found offering ISAs can be a critical trust-building tool.

Since ISA payments are commensurate with a student’s income after graduation, a bootcamp's revenue depends on how much its graduates will make post-graduation. This unites the incentives of school and student, and it signals to prospective entrants that the school has a stake in their future success. 

PreHired: The Tech Bootcamp for Software Sales Professionals

The demand for ready-to-work tech sales professionals is reaching a near-crisis stage. One company that figured this out early, created a bootcamp to specialize solely in tech sales. 

PreHired offers a three-prong, 40-hour online tech sales course with lifetime advisor mentoring. They use a science-based, success-oriented teaching method. Upon completion, PreHired members are prepared to begin a new career as a tech sales development representative (SDR), which generally commands starting salaries from $60,000 - $80,000 in the first year.  PreHired's course is typically completed in 30-60 days, though eager students have finished it in as quickly as 14.

3 Key Pillars of PreHired's Science-Based Sales® Training and Job Placement

In order to be the best, SaaS companies need to hire the best sales team, which requires mastering the three key pillars of tech sales:

1. Tools – Out of the thousands of sales-related software in various CRM categories, which do you use?  Great sales-pros are trained in leading:

  • artificial intelligence
  • lead generation/enrichment
  • productivity
  • sales automation

2. Sales Skills – Skills training based on what is statistically proven to work, such as:

  • closing the sale
  • discovery/demo calls
  • follow-ups
  • negotiations

  • overcoming objections
  • qualification calls
  • running sales meetings
  • writing compelling emails

3. Workflows – how to manage your time effectively using automated workflows:

  • a workflow is essentially a framework for every activity undertaken during the workday, broken down into each hour, day and week.  It's like having a master-blueprint for your sales strategy.

Investment in Tech Sales Matters More Than Product Development

Although only a year-and-half old, PreHired has already trained 350+ students, with a placement rate of ~96%.  The secret to their success? They are super-selective.  PreHired Mentors pre-screen and personally interview every candidate prior to acceptance.  To date, over 3,000 candidates have  applied, and been rejected. This makes PreHired alumni members of an exclusive networking community of other like-minded, successful, sales professionals.

If you're the next up and coming SaaS entrepreneur with a revolutionary app, but nobody knows about it, you might as well not even exist.  In today's overly crowded SaaS landscape, the ability to cut through the noise is just as important as having a superior product.  Companies may rightfully be frustrated when a lesser competitor takes their market share, but luckily, there's an easy fix.  Focus on your inbound origination to the same degree that you focus on your actual product, and hire the best sales team you can find.

Topics: income share agreements, tech sales, bootcamps

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