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When it comes to sales, if you want to reap big rewards you have to go after big targets. That much may seem obvious. But what happens if you don’t have a ton of sales experience or your portfolio is filled with little accounts and you’ve never actually attempted to land a big deal? The good news is there are proven tactics that you can apply, regardless of your background, experience or comfort level. Here are five such hacks for casting your line and reeling in a whale of a client.
Know who to target.
One of the biggest challenges of targeting larger clients is that there are often many layers of personnel to sift through. If you don’t start with the right person, your chance of closing the deal becomes much less likely. Do your homework and figure out who the key decision makers are. If you’re B2B, you may need to start at the top and work your way down. If you’re B2C, determining who your ideal big-fish buyer is will improve your chances of success.
Stand out from the crowd.
Chances are you’re not the only one vying for your target’s attention. Large companies are constantly bombarded with sales pitches and marketing campaigns. If you want to emerge victorious, you have to find a way to cut through the noise and stand out from the crowd. It’s not about color or flash. It’s about identifying a few areas of unique value that your product or service offers and positioning those things in a way that closely aligns with your target’s challenges and goals.
No, we’re not talking about actual politics, just emulating them. Think about it. When someone is running for office, they go out of their way to win as many votes as possible. This means making the right connections, nurturing those relationships and doing what it takes to remain top-of-mind. Similarly, when vying for a big account, you need to go above and beyond to make your presence known. Network. Send thank you notes. Stay in touch. Your efforts will pay off eventually.
Social proof can be a huge influencer of a big purchase. Knowing that someone else in their same industry or position benefited from your product or service can go a long way toward getting the attention of the “powers that be.” Gathering reviews and leveraging referrals can become your ace the hole when it comes to landing that big-fish client. Bonus points if you can get a reference from someone they know and respect.
Experts believe it can take from 6 to 8 touches to generate a viable lead. For whale-size clients, this number may need to be multiplied several times over. Landing larger accounts takes time and patience. Understand that there may be multiple players involved in making a final decision and, as such, you may need to put extra effort into moving them through the sales funnel. Even if you get a no, that doesn’t mean you should necessarily give up. Stay in touch without being pushy and you just might find that when the right moment comes along, your dedication will finally pay off.