April 26, 2022
Nothing succeeds like success. And nothing hampers long-term results more than an inability to achieve quick wins.
If you’re entering an unfamiliar market, don’t know where to begin, and can’t seem to gain traction, you have few accomplishments to build on and no clear path forward. If, on the other hand, you have verifiable market intelligence, a time-tested go-to-market strategy, and a proven execution playbook, you’re well on your way to achieving positive, repeatable outcomes.
That was both the challenge and the opportunity for CloudCover, a promising provider of cyber solutions. CloudCover is unique in that it’s both a cybersecurity innovator and an insurtech trailblazer, combining robust cyber safeguards with effective risk management.
With U.S. government organizations spending close to $19 billion, a year on cybersecurity, CloudCover recognized an opportunity to target the public sector. But as the company discovered, pursuing government contracts can be complex, time-consuming and costly. It requires accurate market intelligence, connections with the right decision-makers and contracts, and a clearly defined sales plan.
Fortunately for CloudCover, Carahsoft recognized the up-and-comer’s unique potential and connected it with Marion Square. Carahsoft and Marion Square are now empowering CloudCover with a detailed market assessment, go-to-market plan, and playbook for winning in the government space.
CloudCover’s CyberSafety CC/B1 Platform provides intelligent threat management delivered in a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) model. With automated security assisted by artificial intelligence (AI), the solution offers millisecond detection speed, 99.9999999% verified accuracy, and “firewall everywhere” orchestration.
But what makes CloudCover really stand out is that it has created a new market category: end-to-end network cybersecurity plus insurance. The company’s CyberSafety Insurance Coverage portfolio includes a ransomware warranty, a cyber liability and business interruption product, and a network data insurance offering. Coverage is based on risk scores generated by its CyberSafety Registry service.
CloudCover knew its offerings could benefit agencies. But it faced two challenges. First is that there are dozens of smaller cyber providers vying for a piece of the market. Second is that it lacked a reliable gameplan for identifying government contracts and connecting with government stakeholders.
That’s where Marion Square comes in. Carahsoft and Marion Square recently announced a partnership, to provide market intelligence to emerging-tech companies. Through a shared-cost model, companies in Carahsoft’s emerging-tech portfolio can work with Marion Square to complete a market assessment that identifies product fit and growth opportunities.
While CloudCover’s offerings are unique, the challenges it faces are not. Many smaller vendors have limited resources for business development and few contacts in the public sector. They might send out thousands of untargeted emails or hold meeting after meeting with prospects, but no business results from their efforts.
Marion Square takes a more effective and refined approach based on decades of proven success. We started by working closely with CloudCover to understand its offerings and business model. We then canvassed the marketplace to identify the best opportunities and the most effective ways to pursue them.
Next, we provided CloudCover with a plain-English market assessment that would give the company a clear, pragmatic road map to success. We identified opportunities for both shorter-term quick wins and longer-term strategies to invest in over time.
For example, in the long term the company plans to pursue contracts with larger federal agencies. But in the short term, its biggest opportunities lie in the state, local and education (SLED) market. Many of these organizations have had challenges with cybersecurity that make it difficult to obtain cyber insurance. CloudCover’s approach, combining intelligent threat management with insurance based on a cyber risk score, offers an attractive solution.
While Marion Square’s market assessment framework is built on proven best practices, we tailored the approach to CloudCover’s unique needs – as we do for all clients. That’s crucial, because not every vendor should enter the government market in the same way.
In fact, there are cases when we determine there are no current opportunities for a vendor in the space they’ve been targeting. In those situations, we advise on the most effective steps to break into a different market. That might mean targeting the Department of Justice instead of the Department of Defense, for example, or first achieving FedRAMP certification. The goal is to focus resources on the efforts most likely to derive outcomes.
CloudCover now has a well-defined sales execution plan. Marion Square holds a sprint call with the company every week to make sure it’s executing to plan and tracking opportunities. Carahsoft is adding value by leveraging its vast business network to connect the company with agencies and contracts. For CloudCover, long-term success will come over time. But at least it now has the tools to start succeeding.