March 9, 2023
The 5 Point Framework I Used to Close Three $50M Deals
Today I’m going to reveal the heart and soul of my own personal Mega Deal framework.
It’s the exact model I used to close three eight-figure deals in my career as an individual contributor enterprise seller over just eight years.
I call it the…
Two Mountain Model ™
The model is somewhat counterintuitive and very front-loaded in terms of effort and brain cells required, but I’m telling you now, if you master it, your selling reality will change forever and it will only be a matter of time until you land your own mega deals.
Unfortunately, virtually no reps are taught this method in its entirety today.
Traditional sales strategies don’t require executive participation and mine does.
You can’t do Mega Deals without executives. Period. The risk-averse nature of most players lower down the food chain (and lack of influence and budget control) all but necessitate having at least one champion at executive level.
Other reasons reps aren’t already doing this because:
- They are managed to transactional sales metrics
- If they engage executives at all, they do so too late in the sales cycle
- They don’t know how to develop a value story that resonates with executives
So the Two Mountain Model™ is your way to escape run-rate selling for good.
So let’s get into it.
The model is built on the analogy of a mountain. The goal is to ascend the mountain as quickly as possible because the summit is where the senior executives are (who hold all the budget and decision-making power). Halfway down the mountain is where mid-level managers live. And the folks who actually do the hard work, who I lovingly call worker bees, live at the base of the mountain.
The faster you get to the execs at the top, the faster you’ll know if you have a shot at a Mega Deal OR you’ll fail fast – an excellent outcome compared to working a nine-month sales cycle with lesser players only to get rejected by executive decree late in the game.
The two mountain model graphic below shows the progression of your deal from left to right.
Here is the rundown of the phases:
Phase 1: Deep Research And Discovery
We start our Mega Deal journey by doing deep research of our target account by combing through all publicly available documents, articles and videos to learn about a company’s core imperatives and big problems.
Here’s a real-life example:
Ron Masi, a senior seller at Seismic (and a member of the Enterprise Sellers community), is a master at account research. When he was selling to Disney, he watched every single Squakbox episode and Youtube video of Bob Iger, the then CEO. Ron noticed that Iger repeatedly talked about Disney’s need to “get closer to our customer,” mainly parents and kids who watched Disney movies. He created a video which was a series of clips of Iger talking on this topic and sent it around his deal team and executives to help them see the mindset and core imperative set by the CEO.
You can do the research part on your own but the next part – discovery – has to be done in partnership with your customer stakeholders because it is the process of revealing the non-public realities they face in their business in terms of stories, scenarios, data and metrics.
Phase 2: Executive Meeting #1
Here’s where the Two Mountain Model™ takes a radical turn from typical sales motions.
The Mega Dealer preps and executes a plan to get to power fast. Most sellers start a deal pursuit by cold-calling worker bees or mid-level managers and then work their way up the chain. At best this approach takes forever, at worst you’ll never access power because worker bees and mid-level players tend to block your access to people above them.
Avoid all of that wasted time and drama by finding a path to senior leadership at the beginning of the sales cycle. The details on how to do that will be in an upcoming newsletter edition or you can read about the strategy now in Mega Deal Secrets (link to free copy funnel).
The agenda of meeting with the senior executive who has ownership of the line of business you want to sell into is to present your value hypothesis – the transformative business benefit the customer could attain by working with your company. The conversation is not about your product. You should never utter the word software or the name of your offering. It should be all about their current business process and the capability needed to reengineer that process to produce a radically better business outcome.
The objective of the first executive meeting is to gain buy-in to do a serious evaluation of your value hypothesis by executing a Proof of Value exercise.
Phase 3: The Proof Of Value Exercise
A Proof of Value exercise (PoV) can be as simple as a customized demonstration or as heavy duty as a full-on Proof of Concept with live data. The goal of the PoV exercise is exactly that – to prove value. The reason this is a pivotal step in a Mega Deal pursuit is because it is your best chance to avoid doing all this work and only getting a small land-and-expand deal out of it.
The results you need from a PoV are numbers. If you can show that in the customer’s operational reality (behind their firewall, on their shop floor, among their users, etc.) your offering makes a measurable, significant improvement to (or transformation of) their current process, now you have something tangible that answers the senior stakeholder’s biggest question – “will it work for us?”
The magnitude of the improvement your solution can bring, and the clarity with which you can show the path to realizing the value, the great chance you have of doing a deal of size in the first transaction.
Phase 4: Executive Meeting #2: The PoV Readout
The next step is to deliver the second executive meeting, the PoV readout. This is a super-important meeting because it is the final delivery of a ton of work from you and your entire deal team. When done right it is the best pitch you can have, because you are proving that your solution works in the customer’s environment and showing the large and measurable impact your solution can have on the executive’s line of business, or their entire enterprise.
It’s important to call out that you need to be expressing the PoV findings in terms of improvement over the status quo, which requires that you actually get the current metrics from them in advance. This is no small feat as many worker bees and mid-level managers are not typically open to sharing data. That is another reason for developing strong relationships with executives early – to get agreement on access to relevant metrics up front.
“The proof of concept reduced your production time from 28 minutes per unit down to 16 minutes, a 42.8% improvement.”
Phase 5: The Close
Once you have achieved executive buy-in to your quantified value story, your attention turns to consolidating that support across all other relevant stakeholders, negotiating price and terms, fulfilling security and compliance requirements and producing signed signatures. Don’t let the brevity of this list fool you, each of the points are a body of work on their own, so this stage is not a foregone conclusion.
The key point is that with executive buy-in, you have a powerful asset to help bring other stakeholders into the fold and to push forward with a greater sense of urgency and purpose.
So there you have it. The Two Mountain Model™.
Phase 1: Deep Research and Discovery
Phase 2: The First Executive Meeting
Phase 3: The Proof of Value Exercise
Phase 4: Executive Meeting #2: The PoV Readout
Phase 5: The Close
It has taken years to refine the model. It’s brought me millions. Use it to make yours.
And if you want to go deep to learn how to execute every step, schedule a call to see if you are a fit for my Mega Deal Secrets masterclass.
Three Ways I Can Help Enterprise Sellers:
1. Score a free copy of my book, Mega Deal Secrets.
2. Apply to my Enterprise Sellers Community.
3. Book a strategy call to see if you are a fit for my ten-week Mega Deal Secrets Masterclass.
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