Blog | September 21, 2023

Selling To The C-Suite, Not Your Typical Sales Formula Book

9-27-23 Selling to the c-suite

At the top of our list of valuable, must-read books for B2B leaders, marketers, and sales professionals is “Selling to the C-Suite” by Nicholas A.C. Read and Stephen J. Bistritz.

Here’s why we recommend it.  

Most books intended to help organizations and individuals sell better, more effectively, and in ways that generate more revenue are written from the seller’s point of view. Read and Bistritz immerse the reader in the buyer’s point of view. Let that sink in for a minute! Consider the advantages of understanding the process your prospects use to make purchasing decisions. This understanding can be applied by sellers to develop marketing and sales strategies, create sales training programs, produce messaging that actually attracts the attention of buyers, and measure the results of the marketing communications activities.   

The book is based on empirical evidence and the filter of two professionals with over 80 years of combined sales experience. Read and Bistritz commissioned a research project that examined how leaders in 500 companies and governing bodies made purchasing decisions. They paid special attention to executive involvement in the decision-making process including when and how executives get involved, when and why executives are open to speaking with salespeople, and what executives find especially valuable when making B2B purchasing decisions.

Even though “selling” appears prominently in the title, there is an ample amount of helpful information about marketing. An entire chapter is dedicated to marketing to the c-suite. But be prepared to have some longstanding practices questioned as you discover what kind of content prospects are consuming as they navigate their buyer’s journey. Included are some interesting insights and case studies related to the search terms B2B buyers use to solve problems, not buy something. You may discover those expensive search terms are not delivering the ROI you thought.

Lastly, “Selling to the C-Suite” contains a big dose of reality for those who might be seeking short cuts to B2B revenue growth. The strategies and tactics used to engage B2B buying teams don’t come in simple sales playbooks, easy to regurgitate scripts, and cold calling techniques. There are no gimmicks or plug-n-play tricks. But when one plunges themselves into the world of the buyer and intentionally tries to help them throughout their buyer’s journey, the rewards are great, and you will create customers for life.