Four Tips on Selling to C-level Executives

It’s a question that keeps all salespeople up at night. How do I pitch C-level executives and offer a presentation that will blow their minds? Kevin Dorsey, Vice President of Sales and Development at SnackNation, breaks it down for us in a few easy steps. Kevin spoke about what he has learned in his years of experience selling to C-level executives in the webinar: “How to Really Sell to Executives, VPs and the C-Suite.”

Even seasoned sales executives can agree that talking to C-suites might sometimes be intimidating. But go past the title and the suit, and you will find just another human being. A professional who is ultimately interested in increasing business profitability with the least amount of effort and investment.

Close-up of Kevin Dorsey from SnackNation - tips on selling to C-level executives

SnackNation specializes in food delivery for small businesses and has seen explosive growth since its inception in 2014.

How Will My Business Improve If I Buy Your Product?

Aside from affordability, a C-level executive will first be interested in the real business results. This is why you need to explain how your product helps with this from the get-go.

“What is actually going to change or improve at my business, at my company, in my department? How significant are those changes going to be, and how does it happen? Most demos go the same way. […] Very rarely are sales reps actually showing me what’s going to change, what is going to get better, specifically, by using your product,” said Kevin Dorsey, during the webinar hosted by XANT.

The SnackNation VP suggests that, when creating a presentation for the C-suite, you should include metrics for measuring business performance. These will be different for each industry and department, he adds. You should focus on the metric which will have the most impact for your decision-maker.

How Much Time Is This Going to Take?

When making a business acquisition, executives will ask questions about the time it takes to implement the solution. They will also assess how easy it is to use it and how quickly they will be able to see results after adopting it.

“If your product is going to take a month to implement, and hours of my time and my team’s time, sometimes that alone is enough to push people away from it. So, you need to answer this for your prospects: ‘How much time is this going to take, and how quickly will I see those results?’,” added Kevin.

However, some enterprise business solutions may take weeks, even months to implement. If your prospects are not going to see results for months, you may be able to break that down into smaller units. This way, you can highlight progressive success, shows Kevin.

What’s the Possibility of This Going Wrong?

Nobody wants to think about the possibility of a project going wrong, but it always pays to have a plan B. Executives will always think about what’s the possibility of the acquisition going wrong, and the costs involved. Being able to articulate solutions to any problems that might pop up is key to this conversation, said Kevin.

“You need to be able to talk to me about if it doesn’t work, here’s what we’re going to do,” says Kevin. He adds that if sometimes the solution does not fit, companies could propose ways to improve the product, or offer a money-back guarantee that the customer can fall back on.

“I know in the SaaS world especially, everything is the annual contract. […] That year agreement, with no way out of it, has a lot of repercussions for the people trying to sign up. And do you really want that disgruntled customer for 12 months?” asks the SnackNation VP.

Will I See a Strong ROI From This Product?

Return on investment (ROI) is a metric that is usually missing from most sales pitches, says Dorsey. And it is precisely the number that C-levels are looking to see, when considering an acquisition.

“[…] Even if you’re not selling to CEOs or CFOs or VPs, say you can only work up to the director level. If you can help the director see that for every one dollar they spend, they’ll make five back, that’s a very easy way for them to get approval,” shows Kevin.

If you’d like to see the entire webinar hosted by InsideSales and learn more about selling to C-level executives, you can see it here:

Watch the Webinar!

XANT offers the sales industry’s first comprehensive sales acceleration platform that creates high-performance sales teams with breakthrough technology. InsideSales webinars include prestigious guests from the sales industry. They cover topics like lead prospecting, pipeline management or forecasting and best practices in the sales field.

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