How To Communicate ROI to Customers during a Pandemic


There isn’t a proven methodology or class to attend that teaches you how to sell in a world where30 million Americans have filed for unemployment between mid-March and April 30.


Marketing budgets have been hacked - in some cases by 70% or more, as we have learned firsthand from some of our customers in Silicon Valley. 


Hiring plans are on hold.


Investors and boards are suggesting that CEOs maintain 18 to 24 months or more of cash on hand, while anticipating customers will churn or delay payments.   Expect new deals to stall.  


A good read on this topic is thisSequoia Capital post, which suggests that budget owners “might even want to consider raising the bar on ROI for marketing spend.” 


If you’d like to take a peek at a tool we’ve developed to help budget owners with sensitivity analysis on their marketing spend, particularly considering virtual events, click here.


In this environment, how do you most effectively gain budget for a solution from an organization whose procurement policies are undergoing such dramatic changes?


[bctt tweet="The answer is easy to say, but can be hard to do:  you must show how your solution saves costs for your customer." via="no"]


See the chart below from ProfitWell, whose research across more than 10,000 buyers indicates a dramatic shift between March 2019 and March 2020: in March 2019, 11.8% of buyers cared about how a solution saved them costs.  In March 2020, 31.4% cared about cost savings.  


Here are four important ways your solution can allow your customer to reduce their costs:


1) Consolidate spend across vendors.  Does your solution allow your customer to consolidate spend across multiple vendors?  For example, if you offer a comprehensive HR platform, you likely allow your customer to reduce spend across point solutions for applicant tracking, employee scorecards, and other essential HR capabilities.  If so, this puts money back in your customer’s pocket.

2) Consume less.  Does your solution allow your customer to buy less of a given supply chain component?  For example, if you offer a vehicle fleet optimization software solution, you likely allow your customer to consume less fuel.  If so, this puts money back in your customer’s pocket.

3) Realize better prices from vendors.  Does your solution help your customers manage or optimize their spend across their various vendors?   For example, if your solution helps your customer keep track of IT assets and renewal dates, ensuring there is no redundant spend, this puts money back in your customer’s pocket.

4) Minimize reliance on expensive consultants or third-party resources.  Does your solution enable your customers to spend less with external vendors or consultants, so that they can accomplish more with full-time staff?  For example, if your solution allows your customer to obtain FedRAMP compliance without spending hundreds of thousands of dollars or more with consultants, this puts money back in your customer’s pocket.


Each of the examples provided happens to be a core value proposition of one of ValueCore customers.


If you’re not sure how much money your solution has saved your customers, we can help you determine this.  The first step may be a simple 7-minute “value survey” that is constructed and deployed to an appropriate set of customers.  It may include research on the prices of alternative solutions.


Once you have determined how your solution has saved your customers money, now you must equip your marketing and sales team to demonstrate this in a consistent way.  This is when the fun starts.  Let’s set up a virtual meeting and discuss.




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