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Reduce Your Sales Headcount … and Double Your Revenue?

Double revenue

Can you actually sell more with fewer salespeople? Michael Schmidtmann and Salwa Scarpone think it’s possible.

Schmidtmann and Scarpone argue that the sales landscape has changed drastically and partners need to evolve. The firms that think outside the box will find revenue pouring in from places they never expected.

The two experts will head up a sales and marketing session called “The Revenue Engine of the Future” during the MSP Summit, collocated with the Channel Partners Conference & Expo, Nov. 1-4, in Las Vegas. Schmidtmann is the managing partner of Trans4mers, which gathers sales executives for peer groups, training and coaching. Scarpone is a marketing and event consultant that the channel knows well for the many events and programs she’s helped host and launch.

Here, Scarpone and Schmidtmann talk about the “seven customer acquisition and development stages” in an interview with Channel Futures. You’ll need to attend the session (Nov. 1 at 4 p.m.) to get the details, but the Q&A below is a preview.

Channel Partners: Your session deals with adapting to a changing marketing and sales landscape. How would you summarize the way that landscape has changed?

Salwa Scarpone: The revenue-generation landscape is changing all the time, and will continue to evolve and innovate in the years ahead.  Traditional salesperson-based account acquisition is increasingly costly and ineffective compared to newer methodologies.  Sophisticated marketing, sales-force automation and role segmentation are delivering better results for less money.

It is not uncommon for forward-thinking sales organizations to double or triple revenues while reducing sales headcount.  With fewer salespeople selling more, chronic costs such as sales recruitment, training and retention are reduced.  Employee retention and skill levels increase.

Emspire's Salwa Scarpone

CP: How has the revenue generation process changed?

Michael Schmidtmann: There are two major changes that have evolved over the past 10 years.  In the past, sales organizations grew by adding salespeople. These salespeople were involved in virtually every step of the sale, from lead generation to opportunity development, to demonstration to proposal, to sale to implementation and beyond.  

The revenue-generation process can be broken down into seven discrete stages, and each stage can be worked by a specialist in that area. Each stage can be quantified, measured and optimized for maximum effectiveness.

Trans4mers' Mike Schmidtmann

CP:  Could you share an example of a partner who has revolutionized its revenue engine?

MS: One mid-Atlantic IT reseller with a large managed services practice has grown monthly recurring revenue to over $4 million per month while reducing the outside salesforce by 50%. The sales headcount was replaced by specialists in video, event marketing, content creation, SEO and technical sales overlays.

SS: Telarus is also an example of how companies have grown their marketing teams to help increase revenue. In 2015, the Telarus marketing team, spearheaded by Amy Bailey, consisted of four people. Amy has grown the marketing team to a total of 22 with specialists in email marketing, social media, content, SEO, event management, etc.

CP: What do you hope partners take away from this session?

SS: We hope attendees will look at the revenue-generation process in a different light.  They will learn how to maximize revenues and profits by optimizing each of the seven customer acquisition and development stages.

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