Norwegian IT company Crayon set up its first Asian office in Singapore in December 2013. Since then, Crayon’s Southeast Asia CEO Sandeep Angresh has led the company to remarkable growth with approximately 300 customers, a 30-member team across Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines, and more offices opening soon in the region.
He shares his views on building relationships and the importance of direct contact with clients in this interview.
What are some of the challenges your company faces and how do you solve them?
Angresh: We operate in a competitive marketplace with limited differentiators as we are in the business of selling somebody else’s intellectual property. To combat this, we have built a rich portfolio of services focused on specific aspects of a customer or partner’s technology adoption life cycle, and we are able to deliver a best-in-class customer experience as a result. Around half of our workforce comprises consultants who help us deliver on this promise.
How do you network or build new relationships for your business?
Angresh: We host events twice a month for our existing customers to showcase our services, provide a valuable opportunity for outreach and introduce the latest technology. For new customers, we use social and digital media extensively to reach out and build relationships. We also participate in relevant industry events such as Cloud Expo Asia and CXO conferences organised by IDC to grow our presence in the market.
How would you prefer someone to reach out to you?
Angresh: Most of my new contacts are via LinkedIn. I use social media quite a bit for work. My contact details, including my email and phone number, are available on social media and on our company website. I encourage customers to reach out to me directly.
In addition, we also get contacts through our company website, where people download our white papers or case studies, and leave their information for us to get in touch.
What is your most effective tip for increasing the sales of your products and services?
Angresh: Since our products and services are used by businesses, participating in industry events is a great way to increase sales and improve the visibility of our company. We also get a lot of referrals from satisfied customers who are happy with the job we do, and word gets around.
What is your most effective tip for improving your own productivity?
Angresh: Personally, I believe in leveraging technology. So my tip is to utilise the tools available to manage your workday more efficiently. Our company has found Office 365 and all the features within it to be helpful, such as SharePoint and Skype, which allow us to collaborate and communicate effectively internally.
What do you think about a business card management service such as Sansan?
Angresh: I think such a service is really good, especially for small and medium-sized businesses that can’t really afford a full-fledged customer relationship management package. Sansan allows teams to collaborate across the entire organisation. This is something that has universal attraction.