IT Services Marketing

Indian IT industry growth in the last decade was fuelled by outsourcing boom. Indian IT industry has primarily derived their revenue from services with offshore outsourced services contributing majorly to the overall revenue.

The marketing function has been oriented towards offshore outsourcing business model leading to the function focused on sales support and lead generation. The marketing works in isolation from sales due to geographical distance and time zone differentials and also there is lack of collaboration with the technical team as well. The siloed functioning of Indian IT industry has prevented the holistic development and evolution of marketing function. The company management has been busy managing the growth and as such they had little time to focus for personal development and skill up-gradation of marketing and have followed a consistent approach for skill development of marketing.

Gartner has conducted a survey on B2B technology services buyers and their survey finding has highlighted the importance of marketing for technology services and the report mentions that client expectations now go beyond account management and basic support.

Gartner report has emphasized the need for skill up-gradation of sales and marketing personnel. The key points highlighted by Gartner report are

  • Improvement of sales enablement as buyers consider quality interaction with the front end personnel as primary influence on their technology buying decision
  • With emphasis on business solutions clients look to service providers on all the use cases and possibilities technology can bring their business today
  • The service providers need to translate technology into industry solutionsand value propositions and enable client to realize the benefits of technology in their business
  • Additionally the new buyer of technology services are operating department—HR, sales, development, marketing and hence technology services marketing and sales need to devise strategy accordingly

 The detailed report findings can be viewed at

Gartner Says Sales Organizations Must Upgrade Skills and Processes to Meet B2B Technology Buyer Expectations

Additionally the enterprise IT landscape is transitioning from the era of IT Industrialization where the emphasis is on processes to the digitalization era in which focus is on business models. This transition will drive the shift from technical skills oriented service capabilities to the business domain oriented service capabilities. As such the marketing and sales function needs to evolve to address assess and target the digital technologies opportunities.

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In view of this there is need for structured skill development program for marketing to address the current functional inadequacies and build competencies for future digitalization era.

The phase wise training program will enable gradual skill development and knowledge build-up of marketing resources in all aspects of IT service business focussing on digital technologies and develop them as expert technology marketers by 2020 when enterprise IT landscape would have completely altered.

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The three core units of the Foundation module of the program are:

Foundation:       IT Services Business Fundamentals

Core :                   Strategic Research

Competencies: Role Specific Skills

Foundation Unit

  • The foundation unit will cover the IT Services Business and will include topics of marketing concepts, IT service industry overview including verticalisation concepts, Introduction of ITservices marketing and IT services capabilities development through technology alliances and merger & acquisition.
  • The two most important elements in the foundation unit are Verticalisation and Service capabilities
  • The verticalisation aspect will focus on IT service industry evolution from technical centric to business domain centric organization and the path ahead. In this module for corporate workshop, senior executiveswould deliver session on verticalisation initiative of their company.
  • The service capabilities developments focus on alliances and merger and acquisition in IT industry covering both services and product acquisitions. Alliance is of special significance since digital technologies has produced many niche technology product/services companies with whom large IT service providers need to collaborate to service the emerging requirements of their client. The corporate workshop module will involve company executive highlighting alliances and acquisitions of the company in specific vertical or horizontal of their company.

Core Unit

  • The core unit focusses on building research capabilities which has assumed greater importance in the fast changing technology landscape. The research skills are essential for all roles in IT services marketing including sales. The modules included in the unit are introduction to research services in the context of IT services industry, development of business plan covering geographical market assessment and technology services market assessment, competitive assessment, technology trend and business trend analysis – how technology trend impact the business – and Offshore Outsourcing which will include high level overview of sourcing models, pricing models and client perspective on outsourcing.
  • Business Plan – IT Spend Forecast, Vertical technology spend forecast , Outsourcing spend forecast and emerging technology spend trend
  • Trends Analysis – Assessment of technology trends and business trends and resultant services opportunities

Competencies Unit

The third unit discusses different roles within IT services marketing and skills development for these roles. The competencies for the following four roles have been covered

  • Pre Sales – IT services Sales Process, Strategic Outsourcing Deal Sales and Database management (Hoover, iProfile)

Provider Deal Pursuit Process, Client Selection Process, RFI Case Study, RFP Evaluation Mechanism

  • Business Development – IT Services Demand Management, Account Management
  • Analyst Relationship- AARM Profile, AARM Functional Capabilities, AARM Organization Structure, Technology Research Organization and key proprietary reports, IT Outsourcing Advisory Companies
  • Marketing Communication- Marketing Communication Activities, Marketing Communication Channels, Brand Management

IT Services Marketing Skill Assessment Framework

The framework will assess the candidates capabilities in different marketing skills through a proprietary methodological and structured approach.

 

Download the “IT Services Marketing” Program Curriculum