Commission only?

– Why it doesn’t work and what you could do instead.

Super sales people already have well paid jobs

I am assisting software companies with internationalisation.  What that comes down to is helping our clients acquire customers in a new market (bootstrapping), building a local presence (bridgehead) and heading for market dominance (scaling) [1].

Before jumping to the subject of this post let me clarify a few things.

The clients I am assisting all have high price/low volume type of software solutions.  They need to get sales people in front of potential customers in order to get the sales/purchase process rolling.  Sales cycles are highly unpredictable, but always somewhere between 6 and 24 months.

I often get approached by software companies who would like me to take their products to the market either directly or through a channel of value added resellers, systems integrators or maybe even a 3-tier model.  And they offer to pay us a share of the revenue generated through this effort.   Basically what they are saying is: “We don’t want to listen to all your consulting theory or read your nice reports; get us some customers and we will pay you with a share of the revenue you generate for us.”

This blog post will explain why this model is doomed to fail, at least in the western world and what you could do instead. Continue reading

Posted in on sales | Tagged , | 1 Comment

The Cloud – how far away is it?

At the CeBIT in the year 2000 A.D. I was interviewed by a German journalist about our expectations to the ASP delivery format.  How fast would it knock out the traditional (old economy?) license models?  What would the pricing policies be? How would we manage the cash flow issues? How could we guarantee availability? How could we guarantee client privacy? How would we manage customizations? Fortunately we were well prepared, because when the hype is running you better provide some answer or you will not get any air time. Continue reading

Posted in on technology | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Why do we need a strategy?

You want your business to grow, and you want a (sustainable) solid profit?  Why then, don’t we just go out there and get some customers, convince them to purchase our solutions at good prices (to us)? Why are you consultants always asking, “What is your strategy”? Continue reading

Posted in Fundamentals | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

iPad – I like it.

I got my iPad 4 weeks ago through our office in Germany (not out in Denmark yet). I took it with me on my vacation to Croatia and Italy and am exited about the Ding. Continue reading

Posted in on technology | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Helly-Hansen and online shopping – a sad experience

I am a passionate skier.  But my ski dress needs to be replaced.  I bought my ski jacket in New Zealand in 1995.  It’s a Columbia and it has served me well.  The ski pants was bought in Århus in Denmark in 1996 and they are Helly Hansen. Continue reading

Posted in on sales | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Selling software through a channel

Using a channel of independent companies to resell, implement and/or service your customers has a long tradition in the history of the software industry. For some software companies the channel has been a major contributor to global success, but for most software companies making it work is a constant struggle.

Continue reading

Posted in Fundamentals | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Internet Radio

Ever listen to Internet Radio?

Moving back to Denmark from Germany in 2001 I really missed listening to SWR1.  Great music, commentary and Verkehrsmeldungen (Stau, Stau, Stau).  One evening I did a little surfing on the net and there it was! SWR1 to be streamed directly to my speakers in Hillerød, Denmark.  Since then I have been a mega consumer of Internet radio.

Some time ago I came across the Atlantic Sound Factory and this is now my favorite station.  By making small donations you get CD quality sound through your media player of choice without any commercial interference.

If you like mainstream R&R, blended with some classical oldies and some new stuff, ASF is a super choice.

The Atlantic Sound Factory sends from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA and as I write this post 1.400 computers are tuned in to the station.


Posted in on technology | Tagged | Leave a comment

Which market?

Weekly I have meetings with software companies from around the world, where we discuss issues around internationalization. One typical question is which market (geography) to penetrate first or next.  I ask them the following question: “Assume that I know everything about each individual market in world.  Which questions would you ask me in order to assess and prioritize markets?”

Continue reading

Posted in Fundamentals | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

From good to great

I had lunch with a friend of mine the other day.  He had just finished selling a company he started 2 years ago for the neat sum of XX million Euro.  Now, how do you do that?

Well, his case is really interesting.  Had they invented a new gismo that people was lining up to acquire or a new material that could reduce the weight of automobiles with 25% or a new technology or some other thing new?


Continue reading

Posted in Fundamentals | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Winning Gold in the software industry

In general, companies are good at developing new products, but often lack the skills to make them internationally known. Unfortunately, not many have serious medal chances! The globalisation process is gathering pace all the time and in the case of the software industry it is galloping along. We have all heard the stories of companies that crash into the market like a bolt from the blue and in the space of a few years have revolutionised the field. These companies have laid the golden eggs that others have bought up at astronomical prices. Unfortunately, however, all too few companies are in the running for top international prizes. What could be the explanation for this lack of success? Continue reading

Posted in Fundamentals | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment