In B2B sales, selling into the C suite can be one of the most challenging, and the most rewarding strategies. Time with the C-level executives can result in a massive deal, but making and maintaining contact with them is incredibly difficult. You are constantly stopped by gatekeepers, calls go unanswered, and messages are never returned. Top executives are very different than mid- and lower level employees, therefore if you need to get in contact with them, you need to adopt a different approach.
Start with a multi-channel strategy
Sometimes, the problem is far more straightforward than you may believe. The particular executive you are attempting to call just many just not have time for the phone, or perhaps they don’t like phone calls. A simple text message may be all it takes to get their attention. C-Level executives are extremely busy so in order to reach them, you have to be where they are. A multi-channel contact strategy is absolutely essential when selling to the top level, so use phone, email, and social all at once. Consistent, timely messaging also builds name recognition for both you and your brand. Eventually, your name will feel familiar to your prospect, and they will be open to a conversation.
Your prospect will respond in the channel that is best for them. The key is to individually tailor each one of your messages. Don’t use the same script you use for everyone else. It will require more research and effort, but the payoff is far greater.
Immediately provide value
You may believe that your voicemails, emails, and messages provide a clear value proposition and convey precisely how your product will help, but your C-level prospect might not find it as clear as you do.
If these executives don’t understand your message, they will likely just not respond. To increase your chances of making contact, try illustrating high level value. Don’t focus on features or singular benefits. Talk about overall goals that an executive would think about, like website visitors or lead generation.
Find a warm introduction
One of the best ways to earn a meeting with an executive is through a referral by someone they know and trust. Sort through your current clients and find if anyone knows an executive who might be interested and ask for an introduction. The most important thing is that you enter your meeting prepared to provide real value. Don’t walk in without any research or with your same old script. If someone risked a relationship for you, make it worth it.
Optimize your voicemails
The truth is that most people are terrible at leaving voicemails. They ramble on for too long, don’t include the right info, try to sound too friendly or too professional. Any C-level executive will disregard anything the most perfect voicemail, so ensure that each and every one you leave the right message every single time.
You can use tools like voicemail drop to guarantee every message you leave has the right tone, length, and information. The keys are to
- Keep it under 30 seconds
- Sound confident, eloquent, and professional
- Spark curiosity – never leave a full-blown sales pitch. Directly state the value you can provide and give them just enough info so they want to call you back and learn more.
- Make it easy to get back to you – include your phone number, name, and email.
If you stay consistent with your messaging, channels, and value proposition, eventually you will connect with an executive. Then, the most important thing is to be clear, concise, and confident. Tailor your meetings to the value you can provide and before you know it, you may be signing a deal with a C-level executive as your sponsor.