July, 2021 Northbound Team

Cray’s Roadmap to Reaching New Audiences

In business, reputation is everything but sometimes a steady and historical reputation can hinder the evolution and growth of a brand. We’re breaking down how Cray Inc., a global leader in supercomputing, was able to break its own mold and reach new audiences using an updated playbook from Northbound.

Known among research and government organizations, Cray Inc. had a long-standing history in the high-performance computing world, but there was an opportunity to bring its game-changing solutions to AI-ready enterprises. 

Broadening Audience Horizons 

Cray Inc. was in need of an evolution. From selling directly to public institutions to better targeting AI-ready enterprises through partner channels, Cray needed to expand its sales approach for business growth.

Arming Sales Partners 

Cray Inc. was in search of a collaborator that would analyze the market, conduct in-depth research and understand the needs of its sales partners. Northbound delivered. Working with the Cray Inc. team, we performed independent research through competitive audits, stakeholder interviews and more to discover how we could effectively deliver a playbook that met the needs of Cray and its partners. 

What we did:

  • Discovery
  • Competitive analysis
  • Stakeholder interviews 

We began by understanding the technical world of Cray – from cryogenic electron microscopy to AI-assisted optimization – to fully grasp the solutions Cray delivered to its partners. Then we dove into the minds of AI-savvy sales partners.

Through this immersion, we discovered credibility with customers was key. By first educating the outside-sales partners on the abilities and accomplishments of the organization, the team could effectively demonstrate the credibility and experience of the brand, and its solutions, to new audiences. To put this in motion, the playbook required three key elements: it needed to be actionable, easily navigable and clearly deliver a message of confidence to customers. 

Beyond a Sales Tool 

While we created the desired and useful playbook needed to reach new audiences, we delivered more than a sales tool for internal teams. We positioned Cray as a true strategic partner, not just a technology provider, enabling Cray to be seen as a key supporter in reseller and integrator success for the long term. 

What we delivered:

  • Messaging strategy
  • Content creation
  • Playbook design

Cray was empowered to reach new business channels. The Cray team not only experienced a high volume of partner downloads of the playbook and its active use in the market, it helped position Cray as a good partner for outside sales teams to successfully make headway with new audiences. 

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