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BWW Media Group / How To Market Across Departments

How To Market Across Departments

If you market enterprise hardware and software to an organization, you likely consider the “IT department” to be the center of the action when it comes to implementation, and the brain trust when it comes to making tech decisions.

However, many organizations actually contain multiple IT operations — which can multiply savvy brands’ opportunities to expand their share of wallet.

To maximize your own marketing potential, consider the role of functional area information system (FAIS) technology.

Within most organizations, a shared technology infrastructure lets departments move, store and deploy business data and share it securely with vendors, partners and customers.

Meanwhile, however, individual departments likely have their own specialized technologies that support operations from finance to marketing to HR. Each FAIS has specific data and security requirements — and in larger organizations, they likely have their own IT administrator and technology budget.

So how do you solidify your relationship with IT buyers in an environment where different departments handle IT for function-specific tasks?

In fact, convincing multiple functional departments to adopt your product comes down to finding the right touch points within the company.

Here are a few tips for finding those FAIS entry points:

Learn how the organization buys. Where enterprise technology is distributed by FAIS, it’s likely that individual departments have a say in the systems they use to accomplish their functions in the organization. If you understand how department-level stakeholders influence IT buying decisions, you’ll be better equipped to speak to ways your technology can help specific corporate functions.

Consider existing VAR relationships. IT buyers are famously loyal to vendors and resellers they trust. Do different departmental IT pros have specific VARs and brands they rely on? Learning the marketing forces that have shaped each FAIS can help you tailor your pitch to functional tech specialists within the organization.

Get an internal advocate. Selling multiple departments on your technology may sound daunting, but remember: One department-level influencer can amplify your message across the organization. Taking the time to identify your brand’s fit on a FAIS-by-FAIS basis means a chance to reach different prospects within an organization; if you click with one, they can help you reach others.

Follow the money. To win the business, you’ll need to demonstrate cost-effectiveness. Use departmental priorities to your advantage! The more FAIS ecosystems your brand supports, the greater the efficiencies and security on the corporate level. And the prospect of charge backs to other departments can make your solution more appealing to departmental IT buyers.

Bottom line: In an organization with multiple IT buyers, identifying prospects may require more prep work — but just one successful connection can spread your brand’s message far and wide.