The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a company is endowed with powers and responsibilities. A lot of marketers and sales reps struggle to get through the intermediaries to reach C-level executives for promoting their products. Establishing direct contact with the busy and experienced CEOs of a company is a challenging task. Along with the right contacts, businesses also need the right strategy to support their objective. It’s all about making connections. With a good network within the industry, selling to companies becomes convenient and easy.
To help marketers make connections with key decision-makers, here are seven useful tips to follow and implement for successful results.
Step 1: Research for Events and Conferences
Business events or conferences are an opportunity to connect with industry decision-makers like C-level executives, directors, and all other top rank officials. So, you need to do proper research to find out events that may help you to build connections with CEOs of top companies within your targeted industry.
Usually, the attendance cost of those events is quite high. However, another way is to become a volunteer of those events if that is possible. This will provide free entry and at the same time, will help fulfil your purpose. While volunteering, you can network with CEOs, managers, and directors and try to draw their attention towards your brand or project. So, before jumping onto any conclusions, research well about the event you wish to attain and accordingly find your way to make it in the events attendee list.
Step 2: Share Free and Useful Content to Establish Credibility
To get inbound leads from decision-makers, the best thing to do is establishing yourself as an expert in your field. With sharing useful and informative content via social channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, you can showcase your image and expertise as a thought-leader. You can create and share whitepapers, eBooks, and free guides that offer industry insights, technological knowledge, and market analysis. Instead of peaching your products with sales jargon to CEOs, you must first try to prove your credibility by sharing quality content, especially when you are targeting the B2B industry.
Decision-makers in B2B companies are well aware of the market and the products. You cannot fool them with marketing speeches. As your target is to win the attention of decision-makers, you must focus on creating useful content that they would love to read.
Step 3: Don’t Miss Opportunity to Network on Events
Throughout the year, networking events keep taking place where industry leaders and CEO of major companies come and share their success journey and valuable insights. Attending these events can help get to the vicinity of top CEOs. You may not get the opportunity, but at least you can get some contacts and who knows may even land up with some deals.
Business events are a great platform to let your industry leaders know about your presence, learn from their experiences, and try to network with them for future prospects. Especially try to attain breakfast networking events as these events are very popular among CEOs and are also excellent when it comes to generating leads.
Step 4: Get Media Coverage for Attention
Thanks to digital media, the reach and effectiveness of media have increased manifold. If you can give journalists an exciting scoop, they are ready to help you get your messages delivered to a broader audience. In this way, you can get free publicity and advertising. Featuring your business or brand in any publication can help generate leads. You just need an engaging and catchy story to share, and journalists are ready to publish and share that for their own benefit as well.
Most of the CEOs and other C-level executives are regular readers of business magazines and other publications. So, to get their attention, getting your brand story or product message published on these B2B magazines can prove beneficial. It will help you grab the much-needed public glare, especially that of your targeted decision-makers.
Step 5: Email Marketing Still Works Wonder
In the B2B industry, key decision-makers still prefer receiving business communication over emails rather than Facebook chats or Twitter interactions. CEOs do read your messages when they are engaging, relevant, and are compelling.
Make sure your emails don’t end up in the spam folder or at the wrong inbox. You can use emails to send educational content and other useful offerings to company CEOs and other decision-makers. If your messages sound purposeful to the reader, they will definitely open it and even read. Try to keep your email messages short of not more than 5-6 sentences and not more than 50 words. The message should be precise, to the point and address the reader concern; then the response is likely to be good.
Step 6: Make Use of Infographics
On professional networking site LinkedIn, the popularity and traffic for infographics are huge. This pictorial presentation of valuable content is liked and read by an increasing number of professionals and decision-makers. Hence, try to create and promote interesting infographics on the platform to expand your reach and engage with especially with CEOs among your other audience.
Step 7: Harness the Power of Referral Marketing
Referrals can help you win new business leads. When it comes to connecting with CEOs of popular companies or any other, try to use referral marketing tactics. Ask your clients to share their happy experiences with your business and promote those reviews and testimonials to let the world know about it. Let your existing customers talk for your business and help you get new customers.
Following this list of networking ideas will help you. However, as an entrepreneur, you must keep trying new strategies to come up with innovative ways to connect with the decision-makers. Getting quality leads of influential decision-makers can be a tough job if your approach is directionless. Know what your business objective is and accordingly plan strategies that suit your plan.
Angelina Smith is a marketing consultant with 15 years of experience in developing and executing marketing strategies for various organizations. She uses her rich experience to help startups and large organizations meet their expansion goals. At present, she works for eSalesData LLC, a renowned database service company based in Fremont, CA.