“It’s not about my solution. It’s about the impact that I can have on their business through my solution.” – David Weiss in today’s Tip 146
How do you sell to VITO?
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Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today I’ve got a clip for you from my original interview with David Weiss back in episode 24 of the Sales Success Stories podcast. David has since become a really good friend and mentor to me and made some massive contributions to the Sales Success Stories book and the first Sales Success Summit. Before we get into David’s clip about specifically how he generates meetings with c-level executives, let me give you a couple of definitions that you may not already be familiar with. VITO or V-I-T-O is the Very Important Top Officer. This term comes from a book now in its third edition by Anthony Parinello called Selling to VITO that was originally published in 1994, and a KPI is a Key Performance Indicator. With that, here’s David:
David Weiss: How I sell to VITO? Two things I do a lot of mailers. So these are things FedEx envelopes with handwritten notes in them and or a note that I personally sign and I print out around business implications of the solution I’m trying to talk to them about and how I directly can feel it can help their business generate or protect revenue. Everything I talk about I see myself as a business person talking to another business person about their business. It’s not about my solution. It’s about the impact that I can have on their business through my solution. So it starts with a lot of understanding their key motives motivators their key drivers and most of the industries out there have KPIs or things like that that they’re trying to impact. If they’re large organizations they all have annual reports and that’s you know a godsend because it’s pretty much written all out there what they’re trying to do for their investors. And I take a lot of that and I massage it very very clear again all around business impact business case improvement to them and I send them a package. I often include a $5 gift card like you know let’s have a cup of coffee on me or something like that to get their attention. And then now I do a minimum of eight to 10 touches. And those are often emails. Those are often additional handwritten notes and those are often social media LinkedIn eMails or connections and reach outs. Phone calls are occasionally used, and in those cases, I’m not trying to. They’ll all have some degree of an executive assistant so I’m not trying to get past that person. Frankly those people I honestly believe are my friends and frankly, they are probably the most important person to the executive I’m trying to talk to you because they manage that person’s lives. So I’m trying to work with them and ask them how this person likes to be communicated within explaining what I’ve done in the business impact I think it could have and ask for their support and their help. So that is used probably the least amount but I do find it effective time and again. And then the other thing I do and this is not the first step. This is after numerous touches, is I’ll use Outlook and I’ll put an invite on their calendar even if they haven’t responded with a simple note of why I’m trying to reach out again. All about their business and the implications we can have to help them. All about them and put time on their calendar and the response rate from that after I’ve already done all these other touches is pretty high.
Scott Ingram: For more from David check out our David Weiss on Sales Success Stories Interview together on Sales Success Stories. As always there are links to everything at DailySales.Tips/146 You’ll also find a link there to David’s presentation at last year’s Sales Success Summit called Sales Process: Building Your own Formula for Success. If you join the listener list, you can get a free copy of that video or any other video from last year’s Summit, again that’s all at DailySales.Tips/146