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“Cracking The C Code” ___________________ How To Effectively Engage And Communicate With C-Suite Level Executives Presented By Steve Penn
“Cracking The Cs” Penetrating the C-level requires exceptional commitment, determination and persistence on both the marketing and sales fronts. Relevant, effective messages must be constructed and delivered via a carefully orchestrated, well-timed mix of the following communications tactics . . .
“Cracking The Cs” Direct Mail • Voice Mail E-mail • Social Networking Groups Surveys/Polls • Podcasts/Blogs • Online Demos Executive Breakfasts, Retreats & Events
Things To Keep In Mind In this economy, access to the C-Suite has become more important than ever. Budget decisions that a were made by a Director or VP a year ago are now getting made by the C-Suite.
Things To Keep In Mind CEOs are under tremendous pressure to perform ___________________ CEOs are hungry to gain a competitive advantage ___________________ CEOs will listen if you give them actionable ideas .
2. Not having a thorough knowledge of their industry, their business and their competitive landscape
4. Just talking marketing and not process or enterprise-wide integration of services and departments
“Cracking The Cs” The Rules Of Engagement
“Cracking The Cs”Rules Of Engagement Be respectful of their time ~ but DON'T be afraid to challenge their assumptions and communicate controversial or paradigm-shattering ideas. Become a compelling C-level communicator in your own right.
“Cracking The Cs”Rules Of Engagement Speak their language, but don't use their jargon. Create your communications to address relevant business pain in the context of specific industry issues, trends and developments.
“Cracking The Cs”Rules Of Engagement Promise & Prove. Never “pitch.” Show them the “Promised Land” in an intelligent, thoughtful and compelling ROI-based value proposition. But keep the plaid suit safely stowed in the closet.
“Cracking The Cs”Rules Of Engagement Court the gatekeeper. Rather than regarding gatekeepers as an "obstacle" to overcome, successful marketers invariably treat them as respected players on the corporate team.
The “Noise Level” Out ThereAccording to a recent Wall Street Journal Survey, the business person is barraged daily with:52 phone calls 36 e-mails23 voice mails 18 postal mails14 faxes 18 interoffice memos13 post-it notes 8 pages of “other stuff”8 cell phone calls 3 express mail deliveries
But Wait, There’s More: Advertising Age recently reported that consumers are now exposed to a mind-numbing average of ...
“Use words everyone understands and everyone will understand what you’re saying.” Winston Churchill
Test your value propositions and messaging with an executive audience. Sit down with your own CIO, CFO, COO, or CEO and ask them how they would respond to what you are bringing to market. If you have an executive advisory council, now is the time to be using them.
Double your focus on sales enablement. Your sales teams need all the help they can get these days. Chances are they aren't accustomed to selling to the C-Suite, so they need to know how to talk less about product and more about value. They also need conversation starters, either interesting data about trends in the industry or stories about how other customers are weathering the storm. Remind them that the ABCs of selling (Always Be Closing) don't work in the executive suite. Instead, it's Always Be Creating (Value).
“Messaging That Matters”VP/Director, Manager • Looking good/smart to management • Tracking & managing day-to-day productivity • Recommending "better way" models
CEO/President • Increasing stakeholder value • Increasing incremental revenues and profit • Positioning the enterprise competitively
Chief Information/Technology Officer • Protecting technology investments • Managing systems for appropriate scalability • Evaluating/advocating industry-specific technologies
Chief Financial Officer • Saving money/managing cash flow & purchasing • Maintaining profitability/Going “Green” • Evaluating growth opportunities
A Word About Offers C-Level Executives respect fresh, innovative thinking: BUT it absolutely must communicate quickly and with relevance. The “Cs” don't like com- ons and “elevator pitches”
A Word About Offers “Beware of spinning weasels” Former Client