Targeting and gaining access to key executives is challenging, yet we’ve all been told we need to do it in order to be more strategic and sell larger deals.
"Yes, but I need to meet with the real decision-maker" “I’m stuck with a lower-level contact and they don’t want to give me access to their boss.” “If I go over my contact’s head, I’m afraid I’ll ruin my relationship.” As sales professionals, I’m sure we’ve all had these thoughts go through our minds as we pursue new opportunities. Getting access higher in the organization can certainly be challenging, but insinuating that the person you’re talking with isn't empowered or important enough for your presentation isn't a great way to build trust and rapport. And it’s not a good excuse to give up on the deal either. You need another approach.
If you sell technology solutions, you know that meeting with Technology Officers early in the sales process can dramatically improve your odds of success. CTO’s set the technology strategy for the organization and then send the marching orders downstream. They also understand how your solution can potentially impact other departments within the organization—critical information in situations where you are navigating a complex sales process.
When navigating a large, complex sales opportunity, one of the most important relationships a sales rep can cultivate is the "customer coach."
“Do you mind if I ask you a few questions to understand your needs better?” This is the go-to line most salespeople use as they transition the sales call from building rapport to discovery. But is this the best approach for selling to senior-level clients?
Inevitably at some point during a sales call, the customer will ask, “Who else have you done this for?” What they’re really asking is why they should believe or trust you. This is why it’s essential that early in the sales process, you establish credibility.