Are you marketing a product or service that requires you to persuade decision-makers and stakeholders in buying groups and purchasing committees? Are your calls going unanswered and your mail not being returned?
It is critical for organizations selling to corporate customers or B2B companies to engage the decision-makers who impact the purchase decision. According to a recent ITSMA poll, senior engagement is more crucial to sales strategy than it was two years ago for more than 90% of respondents.
Every salesperson’s goal is to connect with and receive a response from the C-suit executive, as well as to have a short sales cycle that generates profit. Many sales teams fall short of this target due to a lack of information and skills. Because the final decision-makers are the C-Level Executives (CxO), having a successful sales funnel necessitates meticulous preparation and execution when selling to these decision-makers.
According to a poll result from a 2012 Harvard Business Review article, more than 90% of C-level executives stated they “never” reply to cold calls or e-mail blasts.
Let’s take a look at the actions to take to increase your chances of connecting with and engaging C-level executives:
Connect, interact, and approach CxOs
Let’s get started.
Whom are you attempting to contact? Instead of focusing on 1,000s and failing miserably, it is preferable to focus on carefully selected 100s and excel at them. It is not a volume game to target the C-suite.
Who Should Be Targeted?
Create a profile of your ideal consumer. Define your goals. Determine who the right people are in your target accounts. Create a database of contacts for all of the relevant personas in each buying committee. To ensure that you are targeting the proper CxO, it is critical to understand rank, influence patterns, and organizational dynamics. With this information, you can identify the CxO who will get the most out of your product or service. Check your target account’s location, size, and industry. In addition, any additional factors that may indicate a proclivity to purchase should be considered.
C-suite and purchasing committees should be targeted.
Once you’ve determined who the best CxO to target is, the next stage is to become acquainted with the full team to gain greater insight. In B2B sales, executives place a high level of faith and reliance on their team of subordinates and managers to investigate and evaluate technological investments.
As a result, managers are the ones who have the greatest effect. As a result, it is critical to address the broader purchasing committee as well. There will also be gatekeepers. If gatekeepers recognize the value proposition of your product or service, they can become door openers.
You must establish or discover a relationship with the target persona! You may already have a relationship with them from prior efforts. If you don’t, then look for a relationship that does. For example, you may use a current customer or vendor connection to throw a dinner or executive event with them to bond with your target personas.
Good relationships with subordinates can help you conclude the present contract faster and may also be beneficial in future deals.
Commercial insights and value to them are more important to C-suit executives and the purchasing committee. You must explain how your product or service will assist them with their business needs and address their issues. The following factors are critical in business decisions:
To do this properly, extensive study is required. Investigating the following topics will help you attract and engage your target personas:
Learn about the C-level executive’s priorities as well as the company’s priorities.
It is critical to understand their pain issues and business concerns.
Investigate their industry, competitive dynamics, financial, operational, and customer drivers, and so on.
Understand the trends that influence CxO decisions and the company’s worldwide market position.
You can find this information by reading business periodicals such as Business Weekly, The Economist, or Harvard Business Review, as well as conducting a Google search. Follow them on social media to see what they’re up to. You can also look at ASIC filings and quarterly earnings reports, among other things.
Aspects of the C-Suite for Research
The study provides you with insight and information that will help you stand out. When they realize that you understand their business and their demands, they will have more trust in you and more credibility in your ability.
Standard demand creation methods are frequently insufficient when attempting to reach out to enterprise customers or B2B companies. Finally, keep in mind that “people buy from people”! Human to Human, or H2H, the connection is still the best way to close high-value B2B deals, and technology and tools merely serve as conduits or means.
You can contact the C-level executives and the purchasing committee in a variety of ways. Some of these methods are as follows:
To achieve your business goals, you must devise a strategy that coordinates many channels of communication to contact multiple people at target accounts.
Selling to C-level executives is a team sport. Various members of your team would be attempting to contact multiple users in the customer account. The idea is to assign the appropriate individuals to the appropriate duties. As a result, you must devise a strategy for determining who in your team is responsible for what in the customer account.
When you want to engage with decision-makers, you must combine several methods of communication, such as making a phone call, sending a human email, and connecting through social touch.
Email alone is ineffective for reaching the C-suite. It could be used as a backup or follow-up tool. Many times, direct mails that give a value proposition are more effective in capturing decision makers’ attention. Here are a few examples of direct mail campaigns:
When you open a box, you’ll find a tablet streaming a personalized video… Does this seem out of the left-field?
These acquisition campaigns will assist you in attracting attention. Because direct mail initiatives can be costly, it is best to try them in small batches initially. The main goal is to get noticed so that people remember your offer and product when you try to connect after the delivery is delivered.
Let’s look at an example of how to reach out to decision-makers and key influencers across multiple media. If followed correctly, these processes can yield excellent results.
Using a multi-channel method to connect with C-level executives
What should be recognized is that the number of touchpoints is similarly important across channels. Depending on the complexity, industry, and climate, we find that it takes between 9 and 25 touchpoints to engage an account’s buying committee and generate opportunities. The contact points listed above are simply guidelines and may differ from time to time.
Consider another scenario: you want to invite an executive to your event. Let’s have a look at how you can make it happen:
The invitation should be sent by an executive of equal or higher rank in your organization.
Make sure you have an SDR on hand. Create a personalized email and send it once it has been accepted.
After sending the email, make additional efforts to get them to the event by phone calls, direct mail, social media, and other means.
Eventually, you’ll get a meeting.
To achieve the best outcomes, combine the aforementioned strategies with appropriate marketing tools.
A brief description of the preceding four steps:
Step 1: You’ve defined the target account and know who the appropriate people in your target account are to contact.
Step 2: You’ve identified the buying centers and people, as well as the door openers.
Step 3: You’ve done your homework on the target account’s industry, competition, and decision makers’ pain concerns.
Step 4: You’ve begun to reach out to them via many channels.
Challenges and Priorities
When the world was plagued by the COVID-19 pandemic, a SaaS company was struggling and had a very thin sales pipeline. They came to Grow Digitally, utilizing traditional marketing approaches, which were insufficient to capture the attention of decision-makers. We used Account-Based Marketing to take a more targeted approach. We targeted their 170 target accounts and executed advertising centered on their consumers’ specific concerns. They were able to capture the attention of the C-suite and secure a $5.3M pipeline in 10 weeks.
The following are seven crucial considerations to consider when meeting or working with the C-suite and the purchasing committee:
Be clear about your goals and consider what their goals might be.
Demonstrate that you comprehend their point of view. Demonstrate how you can assist them in resolving their issues and earn their trust. Give samples of relevant stories for the correct person and stage of the purchasing process.
Pose intellectual questions. The questions should demonstrate that you understand what you’re saying and that you understand their concerns. It should guide the conversation and allow you to go deeper into their concerns.
Consider what questions they might ask and be prepared to respond to them. Be truthful and trustworthy.
Take notes with a pen and paper, and if necessary, present the idea on a whiteboard.
Discuss the next steps and decide on a point of contact to provide updates and resolve difficulties. Determine a time frame.
Follow-up as soon as feasible and strive to finish the commitments before the time limit expires. For example, if you mentioned you’d finish the assignment in two weeks, try to finish it in ten days.
Using ABM, you develop a plan for making targeted human contacts across your target accounts, which boosts engagement and ultimately drives sales at those accounts. Many businesses have employed the ABM strategy successfully and gotten excellent results.
Please contact us or schedule a customized growth session if you require any further assistance in connecting to the C-Suite of your Target Accounts or ABM strategy.
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