IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Gradient MSP Shifts from Go-to-Market to Sales Model

A layoff of channel engagement staff and a buildout of the sales organization are designed to get customer acquisition costs better aligned with revenue. By Colleen Frye

Gradient MSP, a provider of integration-focused process optimization solutions for managed service providers, has announced two new integrations to its Synthesize platform by Comet Backup and Zorus on the heels of a layoff of channel engagement staff, part of what company founder Colin Knox (pictured) calls a shift from a go-to-market model to a more traditional sales organization and sales process.

Knox discussed the staff cuts and change in business development strategy with ChannelPro during last week’s SMB Forum event in Los Angeles.

“A high spend of go to market and a high spend of cost to acquire customers as a business model can work really good if you have a high-cost solution or a solution that has great expanse for revenue growth within any customer you acquire,” he explains. Gradient MSP, by contrast, started by offering a free solution and is still relatively low cost. Downsizing the channel engagement team, Knox says, sets the company up for durable growth.

“We had to say goodbye to some of those people with the shift [from] the go to market and at the same time, tighten up the business a bit. I’m not going to use a crutch of the global macroeconomic climate, but there is a hint of that in there, where we need to prepare as a business to make sure that we are sustainable for however long or how prolonged that crisis might be. So we tightened up the business, we said goodbye to a few good friends, and yeah, now we've been hiring on the sales side.”

According to Knox, the company let go of five “road warriors” plus a few others who supported the logistics of events travel, and promoted Andrew McKeage from technology alliances champion to director of sales.

McKeage now has three account reps reporting to him who are responsible for converting leads to sales. Knox say the company just brought on three business development reps as well.

Next year, Knox says, Gradient will still participate in channel events, but likely more so in collaboration with its integration partners.

In terms of bringing on new integration partners, Knox says, “It's a really good cadence that we're on now. We've got a strong pipeline of vendor integrations coming online and say, by the end of Q1, we'll be circa 40 integration partners that are live and available and fully automated.”

One of the latest, Comet Backup, is offering both Gradient’s billing and alerts management solution, which was introduced in September, to its partners. Zorus has launched billing integration for its partners.

Knox says Gradient MSP just closed with a Fortune 500 company to build an integration with Synthesize. “We can't announce the name yet … They're kind of broad. We'll call it security.”

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