In many cases, culture has been a boon and a bane for tech vendors.
And while a lot of today’s technology has managed to get along fine with the many cultures of the world, there are times when it still proves difficult. In the case of enterprise software, a prospect company’s culture is already enough to explain a narrow budget for technology.
You’ve probably been given plenty of reasons already about why understanding prospect culture is a must for marketing. However, its impact on budget isn’t discussed as often.
It still makes sense though. Conflicts in terms of spending priorities are tied to a prospect company’s values and way of life. And sadly, there are times when they obstruct the buying decision due to conflict. Plus, culture can also determine what a prospect organization finds relevant. And thus, anything that isn’t (including tech) isn’t exactly on their buying agenda.
One can actually argue that Facebook and its CEO are good examples. Back then, social media seemed like the territory of hipsters, college kids, and teens. Hitting Wall Street and staying there had it pulling out all the stops just so it could prove its B2B potential. While some had praised Facebook for representing a disruptive tech force, apparently it needed to bring all of it to bear to prove itself in the eyes of corporate culture.
So how do marketers go about proving itself when not everyone can boast Facebook’s resources and talent?
- Look for other ways culture restricts – Sometimes a culture restricts not just the budget but other freedoms. For instance, even a doctor’s constant reliance on paper can occupy more desk space compared to just digitizing information on an EMR system. These pain points can be another point of entry in case tackling budget first proves difficult.
- Understand the pros before cons – Sometimes going for the cons first will put prospects on the defensive. Look first to what benefits a prospect organization receives when it adheres to its cultural values. You can’t prove yourself better or even integrate those values if you don’t know what they are.
- Assimilate – And speaking of which, you shouldn’t necessarily have to play 100% conqueror. Even the greatest conquerors of old didn’t just destroy. They also rebuilt and assimilated the things were too valuable to throw out.
To put it simply, the ROI you present isn’t just the monetary kind. You need to let them know your tech is worth breaking certain values down. Or better yet, show much it can restore and still deliver beyond the old ways.