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Bridging to SaaS Success: A Basic Business Blueprint

Are you firing and forgetting or bridging?

Established and new ISVs, telcos, hosters and other tech providers are launching SaaS services at an ever-increasing pace, and that's great. However, many of these initiatives fail to attract leads and customers in the volume expected, resulting in management, market and shareholder disappointment. Why is this?

While organizations spend a LOT of time understanding the technical transformation required to build a SaaS service, they fail to understand that this is just the anchor of the transitional bridging they must do. In order to gain share and revenues they must deal with the remaining pieces of the bridge-to-service success, which are mindset, organizational structure and go-to-market tactics. Let's take a look at a basic blueprint for bridging to commercial SaaS success:

Mindset - Product to Service (P-2-S): Services require a mindset of continuous relationship management, not of spikey product delivery and transactions. Changing your organizational mindset is the first and foremost step to SaaS success.

Organization - Linear to Circular (L-2-C): Today's ISV structure is built to deliver products in a build and sell mindset. E ven organizations that have adopted Agile SW development paradigms still go to the rhythm of minor and major releases, quarterly sales cycles, etc. Lead to sale to renewal. All linear processes. Successful service organizations are circular, they surround the customer with experience, support and delivery from the time of first contact onward.

Go-to-Market Tactics - Evaluation to Experience (E-2-E): Today's go-to-market mix, pricing, channel and promotion are built to drive evaluation and transaction. Successful go-to-market service requires a shift to tactics that drive experience and satisfaction. Successful SaaS organizations shift their go-to-market tactics and investments and become experience, not product marketers.

Are you firing and forgetting or bridging?
If you know where you're going, but fire away without preparation and work, you are at grave risk. Even SaaS start-ups can fall into the trap when they build their organization and tactics with people who are not transitioned to this new world themselves. Firing and forgetting leads to poor execution and results. Start today by looking to see if you have bridged to a SaaS world or have fired away without changing your mindset, organization and go-to-market tactics.

More Stories By Ken Rutsky

Ken Rutsky is a Product and Service Marketing Consultant, and has spent 20+ years in the industry, launching his first Internet services while at Netscape from 1995-99. Since then, he has been CMO at several start-ups and ran Network Security Marketing at McAfee. Ken launched McAfee's Secure Web Protection Service, and his time as a consultant has included the launch of Nimsoft's Nimsoft On Demand service. Today, he is laser-focused on helping ISVs and start-ups understand how to bridge from the world of products to SaaS Services with their mindset, organization and go-to-market tactics. Follow him on Twitter @jayrutz, on Linkedin at http://www.linkedin.com/in/kenrutsky, and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/KJR-Associates/224894750772.

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