For almost a year now, Marc Vloemans (Eclipse Foundation) and I have been thinking/talking/planning a workshop on Sales & Marketing for SMEs that we are presenting at FOSS4G in Boston in August. It is coming together well, or at least we think so, and we are excited about it’s first airing. We both have a background in sales and marketing and have spent the last decade or more in geospatial, however the workshop is not geo-specific, it is applicable to any small tech business or start up, even a one man band, whether they are a product/service business or a consulting firm. We call this workshop Sales and Marketing 101 (we were going to call it S&M 101 until my daughter pointed out that not everyone connected S&M with sales and marketing!) it’s aimed at small business managers and owners who do not have a background in sales and marketing.
A lot of tech businesses, including open source geo businesses, start from a strong technical foundation. They are often founded by talented developers or consultants who decide to do their own thing and rapidly discover that they need to acquire a range of skills that take them outside of their comfort zone – finance, management, HR, legal stuff and of course sales and marketing. Early successes start to tail off, despite the business growing in size (revenues and employees) significant profitability always seems to be just around the corner. If that is your business then you might benefit from spending a day with Marc and me in Boston in August (I hope to run the workshop in London later in the year and I am open to suggestions to run it elsewhere in Europe as well).
This 1 day workshop is targeted at SMEs in the tech space, they may have a sales executive and/or a marketing person (mainly focussed on outbound marketing comms) but they would recognise themselves as being product or service driven as opposed to sales and marketing lead. Delegates will learn some key elements of strategic marketing and high level sales including Strategic Positioning, Value Propositions, the Pain Chain, Asking the Right Questions and Pricing for Profit. The content is based on proven methods and approaches used by enterprise technology businesses, what makes this workshop different is the way we have adapted these elements to be easily adopted and relevant to small tech businesses and in particular to their leaders. The workshop is very participative, delegates will be required to do some preparation/homework before attending.
If you are a freelance technical consultant or you run a small open source geo business and you are attending FOSS4G in Boston you should consider signing up for our workshop on Tuesday 15th August. I know that you will come away with at least one new tool or technique to help you increase your sales and profitability. Thanks to the generosity of the FOSS4G Organisers you will also get a free pass (worth $40) to the B2B session and networking reception at the end of the day. if you have any questions about the workshop, contact us here.
If you aren’t going to Boston and are interested in attending our Sales & Marketing 101 workshop in London in November get in touch.