Sales Engineers vs. Ordinary Salespeople
Sales Engineers are the most valuable employees in any organizations.
A sales engineer is someone who sells complex scientific and technological products or services to businesses.
They must have extensive knowledge of the products’ parts and functions and must understand the scientific processes that make these products work.
Sales engineering is a hybrid of sales and engineering that exists in industrial and commercial markets.
Buying decisions in these markets are made differently than those in many consumer contexts, being based more on technical information and rational analysis and less on style, fashion, or impulse.
The bottom line… they sell and provide income to the company… Period. Without Sales Engineers, your company will crumble like a cookie.
Startups Sales Engineers
Today, when we say startups, we think of tech companies; and rightly so, since most startups adapt technology and engineering to solve problems.
It is important to note though that there are no hard and fast rules on defining a startup since revenues, profits, and employment numbers shift drastically between companies.
However, it is universally acknowledged that startups are, in its essence, a culture and mentality of innovating on existing ideas to solve critical dilemmas.
Enter the heroes: sales engineers!
The Sales Engineers (Source: Close.io)
For startups to take off, it must be able to sell not just its product but also its brand. And this demands not just creativity and innovativeness, but also hard-core skills on making sales. So what sets startup engineers apart from your run-of-the-mill sales people?
Unlike sales people who are profit-oriented, engineers are more concerned about addressing the needs of the clients. This is why they are able to come up with the most mind-blowingly creative solutions possible. Engineers put the pro in problem-solving.
This how an average sales person would respond when asked about a feature that their product doesn’t have:
“We don’t have that feature, because we found ___ (some excuse/reason/explanation, e.g.: customers who think they need this feature often don’t really use it)…”
Meanwhile, this is how an engineer would respond:
“Ok, I get why this is important to you, I understand why you want this. We don’t have this feature, but I can offer you a workaround that accomplishes exactly what you want with the feature-set we have today. Here’s what you do. You use our API to blahblahblah [insert smart engineer speak]. This might be a little bit different to what you’re used to, but you get almost the same outcome.”
Brilliant, isn’t it? Sales Engineers are the ultimate solution-driven sales people and this is precisely why startup projects have taken the world by storm.