What you learned in your executive sales training was right…to capture the attention of an executive you need to bring value. And that value comes in the form of insight or expertise.
Proper preparation for your sales meeting is critical. But sometimes you have little time between the meeting with your usual contact and the opportunity to meet with the CEO who happens to have an open 15-minute slot. Time is of the essence.
Here are your fastest and most readily available sources of information to help you gain the background you need to confer at the executive level:
- The Letter to Shareholders
Even though it is written only once it year, it is often a treasure trove of information on the external factors affecting the organization’s business, significant trends in their marketplace, strategic initiatives and predictions for the future. Pay special attention, too, to any business metrics they highlight so you can link your solution to the financial measures they care about.
- Financial StatementsLook for changes, up or down, that can present opportunities for investment in your offering. From the income statement, try to identify significant shifts in their product/service mix and sales by region, business unit or product. You should analyze the balance sheet to get an overall snapshot of the organization’s assets and liabilities so you know if they are growing or shrinking.