Thursday, January 3, 2013

Using Referrals to Sell to Executives

Referral selling is a powerful, and greatly underutilized sales tool to gain access to executive buyers.

An executive referral means that you receive an introduction to a target executive buyer. An introduction is very different than just “getting a name” from a friend or colleague.

Remember, when you contact someone who doesn't know you, and doesn't expect your call, you are making a cold call from their perspective. This does not work with executive buyers.

Here's a more effective executive selling scenario:

  1. Introduction: You receive a personal introduction from a common connection.

  2. Willingness: The executive you want to meet takes the time to talk to you based upon the recommendation of your common connection.

  3. Get the Meeting: You arrange a meeting where you can identify their most pressing needs, link your solution(s) to their challenges, and articulate your value in a way that makes sense to them.
Referrals allow you to get meetings with powerful C-Level buyers, significantly shorten your sales cycle, fill your pipeline with more qualified leads, and close more than 50% of your pipeline.

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