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How to Prospect a CTO from a SaaS Company?

Prospecting a CTOs has become a common task for many BDRs/AEs at SaaS companies. The challenge with this persona is that they are (surprisingly) very hard to reach.

Prospecting in 2020 has changed.

You have to be relevant and (more importantly) genuine

I sat down with Michael Morockos – Airborne’ CTO.  The goal was to understand how he evaluates different technologies, vendors and what works when he is being prospected.

Here are some of the key takeaways.

CTOs are (very) busy

They are managing multiple people, deploying new code, attending other meetings and the list goes on.

As a rep you need to show some empathy

If you know a CTO is busy – then spend more time trying to educate them on your product/service or provide something of value. The goal here is to catch their attention and start a conversation.

Be Relevant in your Prospecting

We live in a data rich world. There is no excuse for not doing the necessary research on your prospects.

Check your prospect’s Linkedin, look at their website, use 3rd party tools to get insights, and/or review their competitors website.

Try to connect those data points to your value proposition. This is the hardest thing to do for a rep. The only way to get better is to keep practicing.

Non relevant emails will most probably be deleted or marked as spam.

Following-Up

If you have a genuine offering then consistently following up will help you break through the noise.  I am not talking about following up for the sake of following up – that is spammy.

Design a followup cadence where each touchpoint holds some relevance. Again think about insights, competitor intelligence alongside your value proposition.

Content & Social Media

CTOs are active on social media channels like Linkedin, Medium and Quora. 

They consume content (articles, webinars, etc) on these channels like any other person. 

How are you educating your prospects throughout the prospecting journey? 

Understand their priorities

A SaaS startup CTO has a very different set of priorities and problems than an enterprise level CTO. 

Think about that while you are doing your research. 

Look for the right triggers and contextualize your offering within all these parameters.

CTOs will Research You 

We live in a transparent world. 

Your prospect will most probably visit your website, check out the API docs, and/or sign up for a free trial (if applicable). 

It is important that your outbound messaging is aligned with your marketing. That misalignment can cause the prospect to sway away.

Final Thoughts

Prospecting a CTO is a skill. 

Your ability to do so becomes better over time.

In short – be persistent, genuine, relevant, empathetic and educational 

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