Author: Andy Yen, is a GTM consultant for startups and advises on go-to-market options with SAP Startup Focus; and a 2nd year MBA student at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business.
Market Enablement team members Deepak Aher and I represented five of our top healthcare HANA innovations from the SAP Startup Focus program (Core Mobile, Datric, Next Principles, Convergence CT and United Software Associates) at HiMMS 2014 in Orlando, Florida. HiMMS 2014 is the premier healthcare IT conference the US, attracting more than 37,000 healthcare IT professionals and is held annually at the Orange County Convention Center (ironically the same place as SAP SAPPHIRE NOW Orlando)
It was the first time for SAP Startup Focus to attend HiMMS and we successfully engaged, demoed and discussed our healthcare solutions to 60+ customers on the Big Data bus over the three days. We were fortunate enough to have two of our startup partners join us – Datric and CoreMobile. The days went by quickly and we generated several leads exchanging business cards with VPs and IT Directors of several large healthcare organizations. The decision-makers who visited the Big Data bus gained a stronger understanding of HANA and were amazed at the use cases and applications that many of our startup partners have developed on the HANA platform.
This weekend I took some time to reflect back on all of the customer meetings, interactions and networking, that took place over the three days of HiMMs. I have created a list of 3 things that each of our startup partners could do to be more effective when working with SAP at future customer facing events:
- The “Powered by SAP HANA” certification goes a long way. Don’t present yourself as a startup. This is much easier said than done, but at most customer meetings the VP or IT director is looking for you to communicate the business value of the product; unfortunately they are not interested in the startup story (no matter how cool you are).
- Present your solution as a non-competing product to SAP. If your solution is complimentary to existing products the particular industry/line-of-business, you will get the attention and leverage the scale of SAP. The Market Enablement team in the SAP Startup Focus program will take startups from one continent to another – we just want you to create the best possible product.
- Demos go a long way. Customers want to see the latest and greatest at these conferences. Spend some more time on your demos and limit them to 2 minutes. The demos help capture the attention of the customer. Only after you capture their attention will they listen to the business value of your product.
I look forward to working closely again with our startup co-founders, SAP value engineering teams, and the SAP field marketing team to drive new value for our customers.