Sell Differently to Corporate and Entrepreneurial Accounts

Most b2b sales people charge into an account and sell the same way to everyone. Well, this is fine if you…

  1. Sell only to one type of person, or
  2. Sell only to corporate accounts or to entrepreneurial accounts.

However, one size DOES NOT FIT ALL in sales.

This is the main reason I continually tell my clients – the b2b sales position requires the most sophistication of all the jobs in an organization. Why? Because the b2b sales person has to be flexible and open to all types of people and circumstances – in both the customer organizations as well as within their own organization.

While there are large volumes of research on the subject of the differences between the corporate types and the entrepreneurial types, I want to only focus one the fundamental or major difference.

Corporate Decision Makers are in to safety and security. Therefore, they take no to little risk, actually preferring to share the risk with others by the use of committees. And, the gauge the risk by asking themselves this question – Would other responsible executives sign off on this decision? Also, is it in the current budget? Resources come from planning and budgeting processes and are not available at random.

Entrepreneurial Decision Makers are in to calculated risk taking – if it differentiates them in the market place. Remember, this person is doing what they love to do and they enjoy the independence of making their own decisions. They are always thinking about their people, their assets and their money, cash or resources. They enjoy controlling their own destiny and the destiny of their company.

The key points to each of these decision makers for the b2b sales person.

One, the corporate type will want proven solutions and take NO unnecessary risks. You must offer them a quiet and seamless transition to your solution or they will not buy from you. A key terms are  “proven process” and “low risk provider,” which indicate safety to them.

Two, the entrepreneurial type will look for advantages in the marketplace. They may want to be first to try something if it sounds like it will give them a better return on their resources. By the way, they tend to take bad decisions poorly since they believe they are using their resources rather than some form of budgeted asset. They are fast decision makers and once a decision is made – it’s a done deal.

Finally, think about who your customers are currently. If you are like me, when I learned this information, ALL my accounts were entrepreneurial with few corporate type accounts.

When I learned about the two types of accounts, I modified my entrepreneurial messages to relate to the corporate buyers. Surprise! I actually tripled my business for three years in a row due to the larger business results in the corporate run organizations.

Success comes sometimes due to a simple change of words used to sell. Getting the decision makers to relate to the messages, allowing more objective dialogue and more b2b sales success for my company.

Take this information, use it to sell the right way and join the ranks of the b2b sales superstars today.

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Voss Graham

Sr Business Advisor / CEO at InnerActive Consulting Group Inc
Your Knowledgeable Partner for Business Success and Achievement. Dedicated to helping others get to their next level of success. Award winning business advisor; coach to executives and business owners; Business Growth Strategist; and experienced using assessments for hiring & selection, evaluation of teams and improving communication. Voss is available as a Speaker for your conferences or company meetings contact him at 901-757-4434 or use the LinkedIn or Facebook direct messages.

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