Last year, billions where spent on deals between the enterprise and emerging companies. Visa invested in Square, Jive partnered with SalesCrunch, Salesforce acquired Rypple and the list goes on and on. Partnerships, investments, and acquisitions seem rampant when you read the tech blogs, however, startups will tell you it’s not exactly reality. Finding the right guy and getting the meeting is tough, you usually have to enter through multiple touch points just to find the right person.
If you do your homework and know who to target, it can be easier. You have to leverage your network, search Linkedin and start “dialing for dollars”. If you find the right person, you’ll need to get their attention, this takes a good biz dev guy who knows how to ask the right questions and build relationships.
To be engaged in a conversation with an enterprise, there’s a lot that needs to go right. The first roadblock comes when startups can’t articulate their offering. Sometimes they are not asking the right questions and end up talking to the wrong people. There’s strategic value in knowing what a company and each unique team is looking for. For example, Vitaly Gordon, Big Data Scientist at LivePerson says he wants to partner with, “technology that is a game changer versus just a little better/faster/smarter.” Alan Boehme, Chief of Enterprise Architecture, from The Coca-Cola Company is looking for companies working on, “security, analytics, and social.” Paul Payton, Chief Systems Engineer at Visa says the number one thing he looks for in a partnership is, “Maturity in technology.” Knowing what someone is looking for on a basic level, will help the startup begin the right conversation with the right team.
If you land that first conversation, Peter Yared, CTO of CBS Interactive advises, “Tell me what business you’re in, how much it costs, and how I can get it – within 5 minutes.” Gordon of Live Person agrees, “Sell me on value instead of hype or features.”
Information is power, listening and asking good questions are mandatory to vet and qualify on both sides of a call. If you’re interested in talking to Gordon, Boehme, Payton, and/or Yared in person to learn more, they will be at the Under the Radar Conference on April 26th to talk to prospective companies and share their wish list of needs with you.
We’ve secured a $100 off your Under the Radar ticket price. Use using promo code “cloudtimes” when checking out. http://www.