So who do you look for when trying to crack into new companies?

Do you start low, at the safe, comfortable, non-intimidating lower levels?

Or, do you aim high, starting at the top?

Many reps start low. And they stay there, perhaps getting lots of sales cycles started. And, as a result, getting many bogged down, stretched out, delayed, and eventually killed because their contact could not, or would not make a decision.

On the other hand, selling at high levels means you are talking to people who can and will make decisions without wasting time, if they see value.

And they don’t get hung up on price if they see value.

So why do not more reps aim higher within companies?

Oh, perhaps they’re intimidated. Maybe they are not confident with what to say. They might not know how to speak the language of higher level buyers.

For members of my Smart Calling Online Inner Circle, a recent Audio Seminar addressed How to Prospect at the Top Management Level. I interviewed sales expert, Paul DiModica, author of the book Value Forward Selling.

Paul shared an unbelievable number of how-to’s regarding how to get through to and sell at the highest levels. Here are just a few of the valuable ideas he shared.

Creating Your Sales Value Proposition (SVP)
This is what makes you unique, and sets you apart in the executive’s mind from someone who is a simple vendor.

It’s the sentence that explains the business results you deliver, which will deal with the business problems they face
on a daily basis, and fix the pain they encounter.

DiModica suggests several ways to develop your SVP.

-go to the websites of 10 of your customers and print out ten pages from each of them. Circle the repetitive words they use in the copy. This will help you use the language that is important to those in their industry.

-read the press release sections of your prospects’ and customers’ sites. Pick out any quotes from top executives regarding what type of pain they are trying to manage.

-if selling to public companies, go the the “Letter to Shareholders” from the CEO. Usually it discusses what problems or pains they desire to fix.

-go to the trade association websites for your prospects’ industry. Again see what words are used and and what problems are being targeted.

-use the word “specialist.” Management does not buy from generalists.

-use words that imply how your product or service increases income, decreases expenses, or manages risk.

-when selling into a specific vertical market, use that vertical’s name.

A couple of examples:

A company that provides marketing programs to casinos would be Specialists in Casino Player Retention.

An IT salesperson providing software to the hotel industry would be a Hospitality Customer Profit Improvement Specialist.

Starting with your Sales Value Proposition is key. Then, you expand on it in your opening statement in order to further stimulate interest and attention.

For example, “…we are Milestone Management Specialists for the manufacturing industry. We help CFO’s of manufacturing companies reduce operating production expenses and deliver production runs on time and on budget.”

I encourage you to develop your unique Sales Value proposition. Do the research, stretch your brain, and be different.

That’s the beginning of what it takes to sell to the top levels.

If you now sell at, or would like to sell at the top management level, I have a video for you that explains a package of resources I’ve put together for you that shows exactly how.

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