Marketing Vertically Or Horizontally, Or Both


By Cheryl Salazar, The Partner Marketing Group


The Microsoft community is a unique industry in and of itself made up of Microsoft partners and ISVs each vying for their corner of this unique marketplace. Many partners choose to market horizontally, to the masses of businesses looking for modern technology. Others may choose to go vertical, also known as industry marketing, marketing to unique businesses or industry groups that are, similarly, looking for the modern technology that can solve their unique pains and drive growth. As indicated in “Industry Marketing: Is it Worth the Investment?,” written by Cheryl Salazar from The Partner Marketing Group, vertical marketing is unique but worth the effort. Here are tips for making it work successfully for your business:

  1. Know what you are getting into: Focusing on a specific industry can lead to stronger business relationships, expand your reach into new areas, and offer a repeatable, sustainable customer base.
  2. Choose your industry wisely: Consider which industry group you can satisfy the most, using available resources. Do you have consultants that have a unique experience or expertise, can you partner with an ISV to enhance your solution, or do you have a hosting partner that can offer cloud services on top of your on-premise services? Research your competitors and determine how you can set yourself apart while adding value to your customers.
  3. Show credibility: Talk with existing clients and understand their pain points and how they make or influence decisions. Work with the C-suite and end-users to understand what they need, love, or hate with their existing technology. Gather testimonials and referrals to show you understand the needs and challenges within that industry.
  4. Learn more about the industry: Dive deeper into your chosen industry segment to find out which associations prospects may belong to or the tradeshows they may attend. Relationship building is necessary for getting your foot in the door. Once you gain a few clients in this industry, you can expand your marketing deeper into the segment.
  5. Connect your teams: Marketing and sales teams need to be on the same page and understand your industry-specific goals and messages so they can be consistent when creating marketing campaigns or providing customer service. Unified, consistent communications across multiple platforms delivers a stronger message.

Focusing on a single industry can take time and effort but can provide great rewards. Contact The Partner Marketing Group for insight and support with creating content for marketing to the vertical or industry segment as well as marketing horizontally.

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