Sales Strategy: Why Corporate Decision Makers Agree to Meetings

Learn why your sales strategy needs to start with a strong value proposition that gets corporate decision makers to meet with you.

January 13, 2014

What’s your go-to summary of why decision makers should make time for you in their schedule? If you don't have a quick, compelling response to this question, chances are your value proposition needs work.

Why? Your sales strategy should demand the attention of your potential buyers and create a desire in them to meet with you to learn more. Internationally recognized sales strategist Jill Konrath says, “Corporate decision makers will nearly always meet with sellers who offer tangible outcomes and measurable results.”

Expanding on Jill’s advice, here are three areas of focus that can help you schedule more meetings with corporate decision makers:

Sales strategy #1: Know your audience 

Today’s decision makers are busy and they want to be certain that spending time with you will be informative and worthwhile. Delivering a strong, personalized value proposition will let executives know you’ve given serious thought to how your product or service might help them solve a problem. Anticipate the questions they care about such as:

  • What results can I expect?
  • What is my expected investment and time to ROI?
  • How much investment is needed from internal resources?
  • How can your solution positively impact other areas of my business?
  • What are the risks involved?

Most will have a secretary or some other form of gatekeeper, who should be part of your plan when trying to make inroads and confirm a meeting.

A common mistake is to try to circumvent the gatekeeper to deal directly with your prospect. Gatekeepers know exactly what you’re up to, and when you undermine their efforts to ensure the executive’s time is spent wisely, you’re only creating an uphill battle for yourself.

Instead, think of the gatekeeper as your ally. They probably know the executive better than anyone. They are invested in making sure your meeting and initial conversation goes well, and they can help you understand what your prospect cares about.

Don’t forget, gatekeepers often hold at least some level of influence. Seek and value their opinion.

Showing them you truly appreciate their help by following up with a handwritten note can give you quick access to your decision maker throughout the sales process.

Sales Strategy #2: Talk about tangible outcomes

Corporate decision makers aren’t concerned with the features of what you are selling, they care most about the benefits and expected outcomes. Focus on language that clearly shows how your product will increase efficiencies, save money or drive revenue growth.

Do not rattle off a list of features unless you are prepared to relate each one to a tangible outcome specific to your prospect. For example, compare the following two statements:

We have an adapter that works with your CRM system.

We have an adapter that works with your CRM system, which will cut your implementation time by two-thirds and allow you to realize a return in less than six months.

Can you see how a decision maker would be more inclined to respond to the second statement?

Sales Strategy #3: Show measurable results

Measurable results add a dose of reality to your tangible outcomes. It’s one thing to say what your solution can achieve, but when you can quantify results (i.e. reduced run time by 31% and decreased energy consumption by 57%) your prospects will take notice because they can easily visualize what those results would mean for their company.

Then, when you offer proof that you provided those results to a similar company, you’re one step nearer the close.

How can you re-frame your value proposition to include more specific, outcome-focused language so that decision makers are inclined to say yes to a meeting?

Try reading through your company’s case studies and testimonials to extract the tangible outcomes and measurable results you can use to strengthen your value proposition.

Need more opportunities to use your value proposition? Learn how Sales Navigator can help you fill your pipeline with high-quality prospects.