For small businesses, landing those big corporate accounts can seem like an impossible feat. How can they compete with those with a rolodex of contacts and deep pockets to cover traveling costs?
Never fear. We’ve enlisted the help of Patrick Mulvihill, Dashride’s own in-house sales expert. Learn how, with one foot in front of the other, to reel in those whopping business accounts.
In order to score an account, you must first believe in what you’re selling. Potential customers will be able to see right through if you don’t believe in the product. Who would want to partner with a company or service if the company itself doesn’t believe in what they are selling?
Perhaps your company just upgraded an essential product feature in response to the change in market or client feedback. Highlight that. Or better yet, pick your favored feature and let the customer know why you like it. Your passion will shine through.
Prepare. And prepare again. Be sure you know your product or service like the back of your hand. Be sure to showcase the value of your product. How is your product going to help this potential customer differentiate itself from their competitors? What value does your product bring them that could further elevate them from competitors?
Know what your product does and how it will prove worth.
Do you know who your competitors are? Doing a bit of competitor research before you craft your pitch can only help you in the long run. Explore what competitors offer and outline points of differentiation from your product. How is yours better? What do you offer that competitors can’t
Go the extra mile and even pose as a potential lead yourself. Ask for a product or service demo. This will really help you understand competitor products.
Take notes on how you can level up after the demonstration.
Understand the lingo before engaging in conversation. There’s nothing worse than using an industry-specific term incorrectly. You will come off as ill-prepared and uninterested If you don’t understand how potential customers “talk” in their industry. (No, SEO does not stand for synergistic expansion opportunity.)
Not sure where to start with the lingo? Look at the customer’s social media channels and sign up for their email newsletter for a sense of language.
Before you pick up the phone or send that email asking for a meeting, practice your pitch. Make sure you have confidence in your voice, with no show of nervousness. While being anxious is a normal human reaction, this may come off as unrehearsed and inexperienced. Two things that you are not!
Follow up and be persistent, but don’t cross the line of badgering. Business owners and decision makers are busy so it’s critical that you keep following up to nurture these leads and remind customers that you’re still there. But don’t follow up so much that you become annoying. There is no bigger irritation than hounding of emails when business owners are trying to run their business. Their time is valuable, so make it count in the early stages of outreach.
Pursue additional conversations in different ways. Offer to meet for coffee. Ask a potential customer to lunch.
Did you come across a tweet about their need for Stumptown? Offer to meet them for a cup. Did a brand new brunch spot open down the street from their office? Make a reservation and send a calendar invite.
These extra special touches will establish and show value in a continued relationship with you.
If you receive unfortunate news that your warm lead turned cold and they are no longer interested any longer, back step and take a look at the process of how you got there. Did you not follow up enough? Did you follow up too much? Did the lead pursue a competitor? Or did they just lose interest? These pain points and themes will help you further develop and refine your pitch in the future.
Do take the time to unplug and refresh. Find a new inspirational podcast to listen to while commuting to the office. Instead of an episode of Shark Tank, opt for Hidden Brain. Nothing boosts your brain more than listening to others that inspire you.
While selling to larger accounts can seem like a feat, once you perfect down the science, you will start to create your own art of selling. Now, go find a new favorite podcast and start preparing.
Do you have any tips or tricks you’d like to share? Tweet us: @dashride.