Not all deals are equal – 7 tips on how to land bigger ones this year
April 30, 2018
Securing a deal is great – but as any sales rep knows, there are deals and there are DEALS. Pilot projects, cautious investments, a buyer who’s ready to put his or her toe in the water and see how things progress: these are all well and good, but they are not going to get you towards your quota anywhere near as quickly as a business that goes all-in with your products and services. The question is: how do you turn those small deals into big ones?
LinkedIn has its own sales organisation – and as a sales organisation, enabling businesses to scale up to larger deals is an important part of our value proposition to them.
These experiences have helped us to identify seven key elements in securing a bigger deal. Time and again, these same techniques help to unlock more value from both sides of a transaction. Want to land bigger deals over the rest of this year? Here are the selling tactics that you should be leveraging:
- Make sure you’re engaging everyone with a say on deal size
In any buying organisation, there will be a range of people across different departments who can stall, slow down or downsize a deal. Building support amongst relevant people in procurement, finance and IT is at least as important as cultivating relationships in the specific function that’s buying from you. Using LinkedIn Sales Navigator to map out the buying committee can help to anticipate the questions and issues that these people may have – and remove the friction that might shave value off your deal. Leverage your colleagues’ networks for introductions. Multi-threading through different levels of an organisation is the key to controlling deal size.
- Find your champion
You may need buy-in from several different teams and people – but you also need a champion within the buying organisation who sees the value you can add and is motivated to drive full-scale adoption as a result. You need to identify, support and nurture the people who are willing and able to push deals through to completion. These are often people who have some prior experience of your solution – or more general experience of how a purchase or your type can drive business value. One shortcut to this is to use Sales Navigator to identify when someone who’s bought from you before moves to a new business. You may well have a new champion in place.
- Create a pitch that can be socialised
When you need to convince multiple stakeholders about the value of a bigger deal, it’s vital to create content that can express that value and be easily socialised amongst the relevant influencers and decision-makers. That means a proposition that’s concise, relevant and impactful – something your champions can share to help unlock the bigger opportunity. Ever had a deal go dark? With Pointdrive in Sales Navigator, you can track whether people in your client organisation are reviewing the proposals that you’ve sent across.
- Get granular with business unit benefits
Scaling up to a company-wide deal will involve demonstrating the value that you can add to a broader range of business units. You need to understand the particular issues that each unit faces and the drivers of value they are most interested in. Cultivating relationships will help here, of course. The content that different influencers engage with on LinkedIn can also provide vital clues.
- Make existing users your pilot for proving ROI
A pilot programme doesn’t have to be a substitute for an all-in deal. It can and should be a stepping stone towards it. Make it a priority to construct an ROI case from the individuals or departments that first use your solution. My preference is to use an AB test to demonstrate the impact and then extrapolate the value that a company-wide roll-out could deliver.
- Align your approach to the budget timetable
The bigger the deal you are targeting, the greater its impact on your potential customer’s budgets, and the greater the importance of aligning your approach to the budget timetable. It’s extremely difficult for a company to find a significant investment in the existing budget cycle, if that money has already been allocated. Make life easier for your champions and decision-makers and don’t repeatedly ask for investments they can’t make. Work together to plan how and when a roll-out can work and make sure it’s included in the budget for next year.
- Generate a sense of urgency
Ultimately, any major deal needs a trigger – a compelling reason why a business needs to make the investment sooner rather than later, in order to protect their position or tap a time-sensitive opportunity. Work on generating a sense of urgency by relating your solution to the imperatives of the business – especially any that are a part of its public-facing strategy.
Bigger deals don't just move you towards your sales targets more quickly. They are also more impactful in generating value for your customers, unlocking efficiencies and delivering the transformations that your solutions promise. Helping buyers to identify the value of going all-in doesn’t just produce more valuable customers for your business; it often creates happier customers. And that’s the best way of nurturing a growing base of champions and advocates who will help you land bigger deals in the future.