November 7, 2022

How customers react to proposals during recessions

Howdy! ๐Ÿ‘‹ Times have become a bit harder recently, have they not? We stay optimistic and are sure the world is heading towards a better direction now, but some challenges need to be tackled on the way there - how does this affect YOU, though?

Fear is not always rational

We're currently entering a big recession, an economic slump of sorts. Many metrics indicate this, and even if this was not the case or you don't see any signs at this point in time - it does not really matter. The sad truth is, recessions are self-fulfilling prophecies. If enough people say and believe that one is coming - it will come.

There's a variety of factors contributing to the current mainstream view on the world's economies: (unaffordable) houses, (still unresolved) Ukraine, (often bad) new ideas of big tech corporations, (raging) inflation, (unstable) currencies, (only rising) interest rates. It's a complex issue we will not pretend to fully understand or predict, but we want to focus your attention on 1 detail: in mass preception, this crisis is also about tech.

toilet paper software house
"This could serve as a funny illustration of the recent price hikes, if not for the fact that toilet paper is also prohibitively expensive nowadays"

An understanding of this is crucial: you may be 100% sure that your current or potential customer should not be affected by the crisis too much or at all. You may know for a fact they will not have any budget problems in the near future. You still should assume they will think differently than before, though.

A mind journey

A crisis is coming ๐Ÿคฏ

Money will be harder to come by ๐Ÿ’ธ

I may have enough now ๐Ÿ˜ฎโ€๐Ÿ’จ

It would be wise to save some or reduce spending just in case ๐Ÿค”

Worst case scenario, we will have some leftovers to splurge after the crisis ๐Ÿค‘

That's your customer. Right in their head.

angry software house customer
"And that's your customer when they see your proposals. Hopefully not."

How to position yourself?

For most software houses, digital shops, aspiring crypto advisors and marketing agencies there is 1 way you can still win the customer.

By investing into your tools, they can usually save money.

When customers send you offer requests, they usually have a problem. They wouldn't be looking for solutions to said problems if it was not affecting the bottom line. A CRM system may cost $500K, but if it automates the work of 10 salespeople, each with $6K monthly salary, the savings might be considerate. In extreme cases your tools will be replacing people altogether, and system upkeep is cheaper than manual labour.

"Steve, are you sure we need this guy to replace our accountant? He is cool but seems slightly unwieldy and not entirely gas-efficient."

Always underline the bottom line. Clearly estimate and state how much work your soutions automate, replace or improve efficiency. Don't say upfront "By buying X you will save X", but try to make it obvious and clear.

If your product or service is not essential and does not produce much of a tangible benefit to the customer's bottom line, in the next few years you can expect to lose more of such cases due to budget reasons - real or imaginary.

Apropo will save your firstborn

Now let's practice this on an example! Apropo is a proposal software tool specifically for software development & digital products companies. The whole point of Apropo is to reduce developer input from creating the proposal to just verifying it and quick, small corrections where needed.

We promise that you will see a SUBSTANTIAL reduction in proposal creation time - and therefore improve your efficiency and free up staff hours. Here's some actual data from long-term customers, with and without Apropo implemented:

Company A: 20 min vs. ~2h = 6x faster
Company B: 36 min vs. ~5h = 8,33x faster
Company C: 40 min vs. ~2h = 3x faster

These values are not ballpark figures or wishes: they're actual times measured by both parties and logged on our servers. We see and demonstrate the value, because it is here. It will most likely help your company. And we're sure of it.

Save him/her NOW

Apropo is free to trial and we offer help in implementation. Contact us below and let us get back to you. We will get you and running in as little time as possible, usually around 30 minutes to 1 hour. If you don't see enough value, we will not charge you a cent and won't pester you with marketing newsletters.

Thank you for reading - be well in the current times! ๐Ÿ‘‹


Michael Grubka
CEO at Apropo

Professional Salesman and Negotiator. 7 years of experience in IT sales with more than 70 deals closed and 500 estimates done. Co-owner of award-winning software development company.

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