How to Land Your First Enterprise-Level Client: Beginner’s Guide
Securing an enterprise client can be a game-changer for small businesses. It offers revenue security, opens up cross-selling opportunities, and attracts other high-value customers. However, landing an enterprise client is no easy feat. In this article, we’ll explore how to overcome common obstacles and win over your first corporate customer.
1. Know Their Business
Understanding your prospect’s business is essential to success. You need to have remarkable insight into their operations and strategy, their objectives, and the mechanisms required to achieve them. Start by researching publicly traded companies and looking at their investor relations departments or Google their name and look at their News results for up-to-date information.
2. Articulate How You Can Add Value
When you get face time with decision-makers, steer the conversation towards the specifics of how your product or service will benefit them. Demonstrate how you can make their lives easier, more profitable, and how you can protect them from unique industry risks. Speak their company’s language, and prepare smart, insightful, non-generic answers to preempt every single question they may throw at you.
3. Fine-Tune Your Company Image
Ensure your company’s public-facing presence is up to standard by involving a branding specialist to audit everything “out there” that could shape the public’s perception of your company and its reputation. Your website, social media accounts, news mentions, press releases, blog content, even the online profiles of your management team should all be up to par. In some cases, position your CEO as a thought-leader in your industry by speaking at a conference or taking part in a round-table discussion with other experts.
4. Be Prepared for Scrutiny
Large organizations are risk-averse and cautious when integrating their systems with an external party. Be prepared for lengthy audits, particularly in the digital security arena. Start by involving a consultant to assess your technical environment and ensure your cybersecurity measures are up to standard. Don’t be surprised if negotiations kick off with an Enterprise Security Questionnaire that will scrutinize your commitment to cybersecurity.
5. Understand the Impact of a Long Sales Cycle
Be prepared for negotiations that can go on longer than expected, tying up your resources. Never base any predictions on having the deal finalized by a specific date, and avoid becoming dependent on closing the deal with an enterprise prospect. Signing a large corporate client requires patience, effort, and internal changes to align your operations with regulatory needs.
In conclusion, landing an enterprise-level client requires exceptional effort, attention to detail, and patience. Start by understanding your prospect’s business, articulate how you can add value, fine-tune your company image, be prepared for scrutiny, and understand the impact of a long sales cycle. The benefits of succeeding in your pursuit of an enterprise client are immense, but the sacrifices involved must be known and prepared for.