Fanciful title really translates in simple English as this:
We are (read I am ) a bootstrapped, cash strapped startup and I need to employ the services of outsite experts but want to a). minimise any impact on my short term cashflow b). get results (that generate actual income ) for any fees I pay to said expert. I have a definite skill set - which happens to exclude anything remotely to do with sales and marketing. In all other areas though, I am good - VERY good. I have identified a business opportunity, and I am creating a business to satisfy that need.
Up until now, I thought that you "build a better mousetrap, and the world would beat a path to your door". That is patently not true. I have built my website, and realized that no one is beating a path to my door - simply because they don't know I exist.
Ok, so the reality is this: I need someone/a team with marketing/branding expertise to help do the inbound marketing, and general branding/sales/marketing related activities - which I am not good at.
However, since I am funding this from my own hard earned money, I hate the idea of forking out my hard earned life savings (thats right!), to some smooth talking sales guy/woman, who charges ridiculous fees for doing something "arty farty" that can't be quantified and measured, and then simply "waltzes off" into the sunset, leaving me with a (totally avoidable - in my view) cashflow problem.
Don't get me wrong - I LOVE paying for results. I have no problem with paying for work IF and only IF, it results in results (pardon the pun) - i.e. site membership registrations, member conversion into customers etc.
I want to work with someone/a team who is creative in their approach to new work, who don't mind putting their money where their mouth is, and share the risk with me - so that they eat ONLY what they manage to hunt (in a manner or speaking).
Finally, I have two questions:
At a very high level who is the customer? A retail online surfer or a corporate account. Can your product be sold online without a face to face sales call or does it requires an involved multi stage, multi month sales cycle. If I stumbled across it online would I buy it?
If you can sell it online, there is a lot of material out there on developing your customers. Even if you are not selling online check out Steve Blank Customer Development Page and you should be able to answer a number of questions yourself as well as get comfortable with the sales process.
Like development, testing and requirements gathering sales is also a process that needs to be managed. Ultimately to assess the effectiveness of your sales partner/team, you have to sell yourself. Otherwise it will always be some dark magic that you wouldn't get. Given the picture you have shared, I would recommend that you start pitching first till you find someone who can deliver and perform.
If your product is good, designed in collaboration with customers and in demand, I am sure you can find a sales professional who is willing to work on a revenue sharing basis. How and where you find them is a function of your location, your market and your customers.
What you are looking for is a partnership with another company. Try and find a company where you offer a non-competing but complementary product. Something where they can feed you leads and pay you from those leads. If you are really lucky you may even be able to strike an affiliate deal. The better your product the more options you should have. In this method you are leveraging the marketing resources that another company may have spent years developing or is simply better at doing.
Here are a couple options:
If you want to create an agreement than you just have to figure out what is actually measurable and use those as your metrics to pay the person. Assuming you both can agree on what is reasonable and what should be paid for certain results it shouldn't be too painful.