Instead of dominating a single technology and depend on others for additional parts, some industry leaders want the entire enchilada and are building a single integrated technology stack optimized for dynamic infrastructure.

Instead of dominating single or multiple technology layers and depend on others for systems integration and additional parts, these industry leaders want the entire enchilada including the operating system, virtualization layer, networking, server hardware, and storage- a single integrated technology stack optimized for dynamic infrastructure. Surprisingly, cloud computing will run on modern day VAX clusters with an integrated stack similar to what Digital offered back in the early 1990s.

The nature of an organization’s infrastructure can make or break its attempt to deliver an optimal experience for prospects and customers across an increasing number of touchpoints and channels. Shortage of integration decreases the chances of delivering seamless customer experience. On the other hand, it can also be hard for marketers and other employees as well, who want to go about their jobs without useless restrictions in their ability to retain, acquire, and delight customers.

With an ever-increasing number of technology point solutions in the market, its no surprise that many organizations are struggling to develop the kind of unified platform that is increasingly a prerequisite for success.

The rise of the marketing cloud owes much to higher levels of co-operation between the information officer (CIO) and the chief marketing officer (CMO), and valuable relationship axis that can define the success of the CX technology setup and marketing. Meanwhile, the senior stakeholders need to be united in recognizing the value of an integrated technology stack in enabling a better unified tactic

to data and seamless customer experience across different points of engagement. The established rule for personalization and a common customer profile need to be available seamlessly, and within a technical environment that is secure, without any latency across touchpoints and campaigns.

The integrated technology stack won’t be achieved overnight, but it seems very clear that the industry leaders are headed in this direction. What does this mean for the rest of the industry and IT? The following are some thoughts on this;

  1. Infrastructure intelligence shifts to virtual machines. In the world of the integrated stack, every physical server3 will have hundreds of servers running on several network segments. This transition simply means that all of the physical appliances manipulating IP packets along their way will have to run in software like virtual machines. This will greatly help the environment but it changes the approach IT and software infrastructure is developed, priced, delivered, and supported.
  2. Operation and marketing take on a complex physical-to-virtual flavor. The networks available today are maybe complex but configuration changes, new devices, and upgrades still need a real person to connect the wires into ports. When virtual alternatives replace physical devices, all hell could break at once. Tight IT operations processes will definitely help but invisible IT problems like network design, IP address management, and traffic management get a heck of a lot more complex.
  3. IT skills merge rapidly. And in the future, IT professionals having integrated technology stack expertise will worth their weight in gold while those hanging on to networking, horizontal system, and storage skills will find very few jobs available.
  4. Applications have to learn in order to play. Applications tend to believe that they own all of the system resources, but this won’t work when dynamic capabilities and virtualization are included in the integrated technology stack. Service level agreements (SLAs), application requirements, and resource needs must be shared with the integrated technology stack so it can be responsive to the applications and finally the business.

With customer expectations growing all the time, no company can risk resting on its laurels. Rather than a destination, digital transformation is very much a journey, so the onus is on CIOs and CMOs to ensure they have technology in place and a clear roadmap for the rest of 2019 and beyond.

Many organizations don’t have an opportunity to sell into an account at all unless a specific technology is available.

Example; if you’re in SAP consulting you wouldn’t want to target business using Oracle products.

Read on the following to understand how tech stack data can be used to:

  • Target compatible good-fit accounts, and boost your win rate
  • Displace competitors and boost your win rate
  • Discover companies with a level of maturity that fits your product or service, and boost your win rate. (Notice a trend?)

What is the tech stack?

Tech stack is the combination of all the technologies a company uses.

In B2B marketing and sales, a company’s installed technologies; their marketing or sales tech stack includes the following:

  • Software products
  • Web servers
  • Marketing automation tools, and more
  • Sales enablement software
  • Cloud-based products
  • Hardware
  • Databases
  • Email programs
  • Programming languages
  • Applications
  • Integrations

The technologies in every company’s unique stack are usually chosen based on their integration capabilities and compatibility.

How big is the average tech stack?

As many technologies you know your company uses- multiply it with 10. Majority of the people underestimate this number, which is growing all the time.

The popular annual Martech Landscape included 6829 different technologies in 2018, for marketing alone.

There are a lot of potentials and a lot of money for disruption here.

How effective is targeting the tech stack?

One of our clients recently dedicated a subset of their AE team, deemed their “raccoons”, to go through their calls that didn’t convert or the accounts that were initially dismissed as “bad fits”. It’s a highly effective approach to bubble up companies using specific technologies that work especially well with them, and re-double their effort towards those accounts- instead of trying to cover all of the ground evenly.

Even though their account executive dismissed the company, they may not have taken the prospect’s tech stack into consideration. Knowing about tech stack uncovers opportunities that may have been dismissed otherwise. This is where the raccoons come in.

Now, what about the accounts that are good fit?

Let’s say if a target account has X marketing automation system, X CRM, and SRD tools like Tellwise or Outreach, and they are in the right industry? Then they are 3X more likely to convert.

How to use the tech stack to displace competitors:

A lot of effort undergoes into choosing which accounts to pursue. It’s a given if they are using your competitor. And then you know for sure that they’re a good fit.

Step 1: Meet your new target accounts

Select your 4-5 competitors, and find companies who use them.

Begin by analyzing your competitors’ websites: they usually prominently show the logo of their biggest clients.

Step 2: Run targeted displacement campaigns for closed-lost accounts

Work with your marketing team to develop programs:

  • Build a targeted drip email campaign to keep your company top of mind
  • Invite influencers and decision-makers to an event
  • Differentiate your offering from your competition
  • Challenge the effectiveness of the current competitor

In our client case, pursuing accounts that they know are using their competitors mean they’re more likely to appreciate the value of good data. It’s one of the best proven ways to segment.

When our client is looking for companies to go after and they look at closed-lost accounts with a timestamp of seven months ago. Their SDR call these accounts and ask; how’s that working out for you?

These are the opportunities that they lost to one of their competitors, and they are time stamped. Their SDR will begin to strategically work on these accounts, 7 to 8 months after they lost the deal, by asking; how is ABC tool working out for you? talking about other compatible technologies they use and how they build, integrate ground swell with multiple stakeholders.

Our client is working on a way to automate that distribution, so the closed-lost accounts before seven months just bubble up in the SDR’s list.

Step 3: Engage with client’s voice

Don’t mention the tech stack, so that you don’t creep out your prospects and customers by acting like a stalker. You should work in the tech-stack – plus your competitor’s weaknesses – in your client’s voice.

The client voice formulating is what you’re saying is not coming from you, but rather as your client. This enables your prospects and customers to not feel challenged by what you’re saying and they’re more likely to respond in a positive way.

Now, let’s take this a step farther.

If the incumbent company- your competitor- lacks any feature that you offer, then you can ask your prospect or customer how they’re going achieving the value your feature offers.

Our client does this by simply asking, how are you enabling your team with sufficient direct dials on decision makers on fit accounts for them to call all day? Since none of your competitors can achieve that.

Here’s another example; if you were selling marketing engagement platform and strength is really intuitive analytics.

You could just ask:

You don’t even have to talk about the target tech itself. In any sales conversation, you want to be a thought leader. And if you’re hitting every pain points by magic, you’re cementing that authority. So, you know that they already can use a solution like yours, they already are.

How to use the tech stack to target fit accounts

Maybe you don’t want to replace your competitors. Instead, you just want to land new accounts without wasting your time.

Here’s another great way to target with the tech stack.

But, first, add installed technologies in your buyer persona.

  1. Reverse-engineer your all-time top 10 best accounts: select those who renew every year, who have the largest deal size, and who gets the most value from your offering.
  2. Then, identify the installed technologies on each of those 10 accounts
  3. Find the technologies that are most common among those 10 accounts
  4. Next, identify technologies that you integrate with or are compatible with your product or solution.

So, if the final list is too long, then prioritize the top 3-4 technologies.

And then include those technologies in your buyer persona and account scoring model. Now, you can start to target companies with those installed technologies.

The Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) is especially important for startups. A startup can easily create an ICP, identify fit accounts, and start account-based marketing (ABM) campaign, even with a limited scope. That’s all you need to create a pipeline as a startup.

Where can you find a company’s tech stack?

Before you begin, you should first understand that it’s not something a Google or Bing search usually turns up, but you can find it yourself.

  • Look on your prospect’s website: Many companies list their partner technologies
  • Look at the prospect’s website code. There are many tools available that make this quite simple: Lookup Helper (Salesforce App), Builtwith (Google Chrome extension)

Additional information makes the tech stack an even valuable tool.

What if you could know when someone searches for those technologies, doing research to buy, or learning to use it effectively, in real-time? Or even better, what if you could quickly run a list of companies that have the qualities of your best customers, and then cross-reference that against companies currently your solution or similar solutions?

It’s not complex to get started with this sophisticated sales prospecting technique. Majority of the tech stack isn’t hard to find, and with a little tactic, returns – a 300% increase in conversion rate! – is huge.

Go ahead and elevate your plan with these sales tips today:

  1. Target compatible good-fit accounts
  2. Displace competitors
  3. Discover companies with a level of maturity that complements your product

Or you can easily choose to take a shortcut. It’s entirely up to you.

Categories: B2B Data

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