Technology Buying Cycle Challenges Sales Momentum
After a merger or acquisition, there is a desire to get sales organizations integrated as quickly as possible, especially for publicly-traded companies.Sales and marketing leaders from both companies in mergers and acquisitions (M&As) must proactively engage a broad constituency to capitalize on opportunities and prevent competitive disruption, but many struggle to do this in light of the new technology buying cycle, according to a report from IT research firm Gartner. While the head of sales and the chief marketing officer (CMO) are critical to the due diligence process, they are, by design, further removed from the prospects and customers and cannot offer the perspective that comes from either the salespeople with direct relationships with customers and prospects or the product marketers that support those salespeople. "The job of selling technology is already more complicated for a number of reasons. Provider salespeople, especially those selling more complex and/or higher-value solutions, already deal with the realities of the new technology buying cycle," Todd Berkowitz, research director at Gartner, said in a statement. "Adding the complication of an M&A event to this already disruptive buying cycle shift can make a difficult job even harder, especially if acquisitions are larger or are likely to force salespeople to go out of their comfort zones to be successful." The report noted that after a merger or acquisition, there is a natural desire to get sales organizations integrated as quickly as possible, especially for publicly-traded companies.
While in theory, the faster the sales forces can sell each other's solutions, the more quickly revenue goals can be achieved, in reality, faster does not always mean better, and in some cases, the risks significantly outweigh the benefits.