Presales and solution engineering are often perceived as a complimentary service, a misconception that can lead to a devaluation of its true worth.
This article aims to shed light on the critical reasons why presales should never be considered a free resource, highlighting the importance of proper valuation and investment in these vital activities.
- Dilution of Value: Presales is a crucial step in the sales process, requiring a significant investment of time, expertise, and resources. When offered for free, there’s a risk that its perceived value may be diminished. Clients might not realize the extensive effort and knowledge invested in presales, potentially leading to an undervaluation of the company’s offerings. Emphasizing the expertise and resources involved is vital to ensure clients appreciate its true worth.
- Inefficient Resource Allocation: Presales teams consist of highly skilled professionals with a deep understanding of the product or service. Spreading their expertise too thin across deals, particularly unqualified or unlikely to close ones, results in inefficient use of valuable resources. Strategic allocation of presales efforts is crucial for optimal utilization and effectiveness.
- Burnout and Employee Turnover: Continuous demands on presales teams can lead to burnout, dissatisfaction, and a higher employee turnover rate. The loss of experienced team members means losing valuable knowledge and skills, and incurs additional costs related to recruitment and training. Maintaining a balanced workload is essential to ensure job satisfaction and retain talent.
- Erosion of Bargaining Power: Providing presales services for free can weaken a company’s bargaining position during negotiations. Clients may feel less compelled to compromise on price or other deal terms, having already received valuable services at no cost. Being mindful of this dynamic and considering its long-term implications on negotiating power is crucial.
- Setting a Precedent: Offering free presales support sets a precedent for future interactions with clients. They may expect similar levels of support at no cost in subsequent deals, making it challenging to introduce charges for these services later on. Establishing clear boundaries and expectations from the start is essential to prevent this cycle.
- Reduced Focus on Quality Leads: When presales teams are stretched thin, the focus might shift from quality to quantity. This approach can lead to less time being spent on nurturing high-potential leads, potentially resulting in lost revenue opportunities. Concentrating on quality leads ensures that resources are invested where they are most likely to yield results.
- Impact on Innovation and Improvement: The time and resources spent on providing free presales support could be better used for innovation and improving products or services. Overburdened presales teams have less opportunity to gather feedback and work on enhancements, hindering the company’s ability to improve its market positioning and gain a competitive edge.
Presales is a critical component of the sales process, demanding a substantial investment of time, expertise, and resources.
Treating it as a free resource not only diminishes its value but also leads to inefficient resource allocation, employee turnover, weakened bargaining power, and missed opportunities for innovation.
By recognizing the true worth of presales and strategically investing in this area, companies can ensure long-term success and sustainability. Valuing presales as a vital investment in the future of the business is essential for achieving lasting success.