The Sales IQ Podcast

One Champion Is Not Enough, With Nate Nasralla

August 3, 2022

The Sales IQ Podcast

Join us as host of the show Luigi Prestinenzi talks to thought leaders from around the globe about the art and science of sales and marketing, personal development, and the mindset required to sell more everyday. Luigi is a master of creating pipeline and breaking down targets, he specializes in helping sales professionals build the mindset to achieve greatness and #bethebestyoucanbe.

A champion is one of your deal's biggest assets, selling change in the places you aren't allowed. But is one champion enough?

In this episode, Luigi is joined by Nate Nasralla, Founder at They discuss where to go to deeply but quickly understand your customer's shop, the value of establishing a problem statement early, why you need to understanding the personal metrics of your stakeholders, how to add more champions without insulting your first, and 3 easy mistakes to avoid with a deal champion.


Connect with Nate on LinkedIn. Find the blog here.

Join the Sales IQ Community here to watch Nate's session.

Connect with Luigi on LinkedIn.

Sell more with the Create Pipeline course from Sales IQ Global here.

Nate Nasralla
Founder @

[00:00:00] Luigi Prestinenzi: By the Sales IQ Network, this is the Sales IQ Podcast. I'm your host, Luigi Prestinenzi, and each week we'll be going on a journey that will inspire you, motivate you, and help you be the best sales professional you can be. Our focus will be on mindset, tactics, and the strategies that will enable you to create more pipeline, and win more deals. 

Welcome to another episode of the sales IQ podcast. I'm pumped that you've decided to join us for what is gonna be a very strategic episode. And I'm really excited to share this content with you today because it's gonna help you think differently about the way you approach your opportunities. It's gonna help you think differently about the way.

You don't just run your discoveries, but the way you ask questions and help progress opportunities from that point of first conversation, right through to that point of close. So I'm pretty excited to bring today's guests to life, but before we get into it, I just wanna say if you're a first time listener, thank you for joining us.

We really excited to have new listeners and we hope you take some content away. That'll help you be the very best you can be. And if you're a long time listener, thanks. I just wanna say thank you for always showing. And helping us on our journey and on our mission of helping sellers be the very best they can be.

And why are we trying to help sellers be the best they can be? Because as we, you know, we are moving towards the back end of 2022, there seems to be common problems and challenges that keep rising. A lot of sellers have been losing their jobs, a bit of a downturn in the market. and, and what we're actually seeing, we're seeing that flow onto opportunities.

We're seeing opportunities are starting to stall deals are taking longer to close and more people are getting involved in in the decision making process. So we know the power of the buying committee is now really something that's impacting a lot of major opportunities that many of us are working on.

And I just wanna actually talk about something that I've, I've recently experienced a really interesting experience that I've had. And I, I wanna, I wanna ring my sales be because I closed that opportunity yesterday, but a couple of weeks ago one of my old clients reached out to me, but not the person that I was dealing with a CFO.

she was CFO of a client that I was working with a couple of years ago. And in her current organization the conversation came up around sales training and sales enablement. And she reached out to me on LinkedIn and said, Hey, I'm not sure if you remember me, but you did some work for us at company X.

And I'm like, yeah, absolutely. Remember. And we had a conversation and she wanted to know if I was interested in, in talking to them about some training requirements and you know, and all my years of selling in this space, in the adult education. Enablement space. I've never had a CFO reach out to me. So this, this is what I found really interesting.

And what I also found interesting is that during the entire sales process Sh the CFO was driving it. The CFO was coordinating people within our organization to come to our meetings, our discovery meetings and scoping sessions, et cetera, and even driving to the point of proposal and facilitating the conversation internally around the business case.

And yesterday we had our business case or our proposal accepted and we are moving forward, which is, you know, giddy up. I love it. And again, the sales cycle was quite short, but we did have multiple touch points. And this just goes to show why, when we're engaging with particular opportunities, that's sometimes timing.

Sometimes it just all comes together and you're able to take what usually takes us three months. From a sales cycle perspective, we actually wrapped it up in two weeks. There was a real reason for change. It was a real compelling reason that they were looking at this particular initiative. We had the economic buyer in the conversation.

So tick, we also had the other senior decision makers in the conversation. So from a buying committee, but again, what I'm finding interesting, and I'm seeing this more and more in the opportunities that I'm working with, especially the larger ones as well is the buying committee, the CFO. Is involving themselves in those key decision making process, right.

And why this episode is really important. And, and why I'm really excited to talk about this is because as we, as sales professionals, try to navigate through the buying journey with our prospects, right, is we need to be thinking a little bit more strategically. And if deals are, if you have got deals in your pipeline that are starting to stall, maybe ask the question.

Have I engaged with the entire buying committee. And if I haven't, what will I be doing to try to bring them into the process? And if you have got proposals out and again, they're just sitting there and they're not moving, ask yourself a question. What have I done from a business case perspective? Does my proposal meet their business case requirements?

And if not, how do I get my proposal into their business case? If they don't have a business case? How can I maybe facilitate the process to give them a business case? and again, these are, these are questions that we need to be asking. We're not selling to someone we're selling with someone.

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[00:06:18] Luigi Prestinenzi: That is the purpose of this particular episode today. And we have an incredible thought leader that is joining us, Nate Nasralla who has a ton of experience working in the enterprise sales space, working on complex opportunities. And we will be discussing today. How do we apply different thinking to the sales process?

How do we apply different thinking so that we're not selling to someone? We actually partnering with someone. We're helping them navigate through the process. We're helping them make sense of things. They might not know how to make sense. And this is that whole paradigm shift that we're seeing in our profession.

So this is a great episode. And actually I've, since, since I recorded that episode, I had Nate attend one of our community sessions and run an incredible session around this staff. And we dived a little bit deeper around the business case. So if you do wanna see the follow up to this particular episode, check the show notes because we'll, we'll give you a link to go and jump into our community as subscribers to our podcast, as listeners to our podcast.

You don't have to pay to access that content. Right? So this podcast, we really do talk a bit about that buyer enablement piece, but in that community session, we even go one step further. So if you do wanna learn more about it, check it out. It's in the show notes, because as we start to navigate through this next stage in 2022, The complexities around deals is it's, it's gonna become more complex, right?

But that's not gonna stop us from achieving our outcome. That's not gonna stop us from progressing opportunities because if we know that they've got a problem and they need help and our solution can help them fix that problem, then it's our role to help the buy through the journey. And we, we wanna avoid the deals and our good friend, Jen Allen talks about from challenger, the 39% of decisions end up in no decisions, right.

Deals end up in no. We wanna avoid that. And we avoid that by guiding our buyers through the journey. We avoid that from happening by helping them build that business case for change. So this will be a great episode. We want you to tune in, really listen to some of the things that Nate talks about. And if you wanna learn more about the stuff that he talked about, jump into our community, there's also tons of other.

And we are producing this because we have one focus in mind. We love the sales profession. We love you, and we wanna help you be the very best you can be.

Welcome to the show, Nate.

[00:08:45] Nate Nasralla: Thanks, Luigi. Good to be here.

[00:08:46] Luigi Prestinenzi: Yeah. Really excited to have you on man. I've I've seen your content pop up. I've seen some of the, some of the people that I follow. Engage with you various podcasts, various piece of content. So I'm really happy to have you on our show to talk about, I think what's a really, really, really important topic today around how do we actually.

Sell and, and actually engage the buyer. So sell with the buyer versus selling to the buyer. Cuz I think just the way that that's framed is actually a very different process, right? So I'm looking forward to diving into that topic. But before we dive into that topic, we'd love to know how you started in this world of, of, of sales.

[00:09:23] Nate Nasralla: So I got into sales by a way of building products. So I'm a former and a repeat startup. And I learned pretty quickly that if you wanna keep building a business, you gotta focus on sales. It's the revenue, it's the lifeblood that makes everything work. And as I started to go kind of deeper and deeper into figuring out how to sell and sell well, I realized that many of the things that I love doing on the product side of the business, talking to users, understanding problems, figuring out how to solve those together.

It really isn't too different from the job of sales. And so I, I fell in love and then kind of made. Right turn and kind of went very deep into that side of the business and then in subsequent roles, building sales teams. So that was kind of how I stumbled in it. I have always kind of been equal parts, creative as anything else.

And so I, yeah. First started on the product side, but then fell in love with sales very quick.

[00:10:15] Luigi Prestinenzi: Okay. So you went from products, which is really interesting, right? It's an interesting transition to go from product to sale. You mentioned that there was a lot of similarities between the. I just wanna touch upon the, the user experience and understanding that user experience and something you said to me in the green room as well.

I want to, I wanna talk a bit about, but why is that important in sales to really understand the buyers or the people that are using your product and how, you know, how your product helps them or how your product impacts them?

[00:10:45] Nate Nasralla: So at the end of the day, the product is just the bridge. And to build the bridge in the right direction, in a way that somebody's actually gonna walk across it.

You need to first understand where are they today, some type of problem that is painful. What makes it painful? Who else does it impact? And then ultimately, where are they trying to go? You're trying to move them from a problem today to a payoff tomorrow. And when you can understand the outcome that they're trying to get.

Then, you know how to build a bridge and in the world of product design, it's thinking about, okay, how do we help them get their job done in a way that they can't without this today? Yeah. And in the world of sales, that's how you figure out and frame a fit. and it's, it's the exact same journey for the customer, from the buyer's perspective, either way, the product is just the means they're trying to get from a problem today to a payoff tomorrow.

[00:11:35] Luigi Prestinenzi: Yeah. I love that. I'm I'm taking notes. Right? I actually love that. I think that's a, a great way to think about a problem today. Payoff tomorrow, it's the bridge to help 'em get there. Right. I actually, I love that analogy, right. Hey, but I wanna, I wanna go back because obviously, you know, unfortunately a lot of people that start in sales.

They spend a lot of time, especially whether they're a new company. And I was talking to a cl a client last week and he said, you know, a lot of their onboarding for, for their reps is all product. It's all about. These are the features, these are all the things that our product does. Right. And this is a very reputable, very well known brand globally.

But unfortunately, because that's such a, there's such a focus on. They're not really talking about outcomes and commercial outcomes that are important to the client. Right? So they get a lot of deals get stuck into that, no decision zone, because they don't see that. Or they fear that the pain of change is gonna be more than the pain of same.

Right. And you know, the, the way that you talk about the champion and stuff is all about reframing. So where, when we think about the sales process, How should we be starting the sales process and where should we be? We engage first in the org, in the org structure so that we can have a champion really coach us through why change and why now?

[00:12:59] Nate Nasralla: So I think there are, there are two pieces to it. One, the first piece that you were talking about was onboarding, how do you train and develop a rep from day one when they join the team? And then when it's day one, as it relates to interacting with the prospect, how do you work with them?

So I think the starting point. And this was your point as well. It's often so focused on product training with a new rep is helping them understand and live the customer's job first. And so in all of the onboarding programs that I've put together for new reps that I hired one, it starts with shadowing, actual customers.

And when we were selling into one of the companies that I I co-founded was focused on selling fundraising software to nonprofits. And so nonprofits were the. Yeah. Think of it kind of like a HubSpot for nonprofits type solution for fundraising. And they would actually go and work in the customer's office for a week period.

They, we would loan 'em out to the customers and say, give them anything that you want them to do so that they can understand and learn the life that you're living a. Different way that we would do that more during COVID when you weren't traveling and things like that as much is they would shadow CSMs.

Yeah. People working with customers was the first point. It wasn't, it wasn't the sales manager. It was people on the front line talking to customers every day. That's where they would start. So from day one, you're shifting the framing to go very deep in understanding the buyer's shop. Now. Yeah. The second piece to that, this was your other question.

when you're beginning to develop and work with a champion on the very kind of front piece of the sale, where you go oftentimes, and especially in the context of a complex deal, where you have a ton of different contacts who are gonna be involved in the deal over time. We skip past that first piece in the journey, the problem in favor of getting to the product fast.

But we miss the chance to set up a very sharp and clear problem statement with that champion. And the reason why that's important, then kind of what, what it is. The problem statement is the foundation for everything, because you're always gonna have conflicting opinions on what's actually going on.

What's the true nature of the issue. How you frame that then sets up the solution space that you can begin selling into. But it's very common that different, different buyers, all on the same committee will have different views of what's actually going on. What's driving the issue and therefore what they should do about it or how they should prioritize even doing something about it at all, which was your other point on.

The fact that oftentimes it's the status quo that you're competing against. Yeah. And so this problem statement that you're shaping and then giving to your champion to repeat over and over again, internally to get more interest and traction in the deal is this idea of there's kind of a two different formulas that I like.

But one is basically saying, despite trying something, you know, you've done something every frequency, like how, how often are you facing this problem? we're unable to do X the job that you're trying to get done, which is costing us. Y like there is a real way to measure this. Yeah. And that means some type of consequence, like, because organic marketing driven leads are down.

Our spend and C is rising, which is putting us behind in front of investors in our next race. Like, there's a very big consequence. And so within that problem statement, You've baked a ton of discovery into it. And you've enabled your champion to go give a clear message to other people on the committee to get them in line and even saying, okay, we should do something.

[00:16:23] Luigi Prestinenzi: Yeah. You know what it's interesting in, in, in a couple of minutes, you've kind of identified a whole range of different topics that we can go to in the past, because, you know, I love the fact that I love what you've spoken about around the onboarding piece of a new seller. Really getting them into the, into the eyes of the buyer.

Right. Getting them. and empathizing and understanding exactly what's happening in the buyer's world so that they can have a better understanding of a problem that's impacting them. So they can start to frame up exactly how you can help 'em. So I love that. Right. But the second part to what you've said, which is really interesting is, and, and we know and Jen Ellen, who I, I'm a massive fan of Jen Allen from challenger who talks about 39% of, or 38 or 39% of decisions are.

End up in no decision, right? The status quo. Right? Because they can't, obviously it could be a range of things, but often alignment with the buying committee is where things fall over because they're not all on the same page around, is this the problem we want to solve? And is it worth our time and energy to solve this problem?

Right. So I love the way that you've explained that, but I just wanna go back a step for those that might not understand the champion model. Can you just describe. You know what the actual term champion means when selling into a, into, into an enterprise opportunity.

[00:17:44] Nate Nasralla: Yeah. And I'll, I'll, I'll frame it up. Based on a conversation that I had with Jen at challenger two weeks ago, and the parallel stat that she shared was anywhere from 10 to 15% of a buyer's time during the whole buying process is spent with sales reps.

All of it is working internally or the majority of it is working internally with their own team. Yeah. And so the champion is the one person who's in those meetings advocating for a certain product to change and overcome the problem. So they're the one that is controlling the majority of the narrative or the messaging.

And so the idea of a champion based sale is that you can't just optimize for what happens in a sales meeting between a sales rep and a buyer that time has to be spent creating a champion who can then sell with you when the rep isn't in the room. They're in those internal meetings, talking to their own team in their own words.

[00:18:33] Luigi Prestinenzi: Yeah, this is, and this is, this is great. So it's about. Really allowing you to have someone, if you can't get a seat at the table, which is of often, you know, what the goal should be. Right. But if you can't get a seat at the table, it's making sure you've got somebody there that can represent you. But tell me, right, because I know that, you know, I've, I've sold into enterprise before sold into big deals, and I understand the complexities and also understand the political environment, right.

That you can sometimes go into because there's conflicting priorities. You've got. Your champion who has a real need for this, but then somebody else on the table is, you know, they, they're looking at this opportunity as, because it's an unbudgeted. Usually these type of projects are unbudgeted. So they're buying committee is seeking to get approval to get the funds.

And sometimes what that ha what happens is. Somebody else on that buying committee sees as a, as an opportunity to get budget for something they want to do. Right. So there's a bit of internal conflict. So yeah. Walk us through, like, when you're talking to the champion, you're looking at the strategy that you're trying to implement.

How do you identify the risks? within the buying committee that could stop the deal from progressing.

[00:19:47] Nate Nasralla: Yeah. And I'll, I'll go back to a piece that you said earlier too, is earning a seat at the table. Yeah. And champions oftentimes are laying the groundwork for you to come to the table. It's not the fact that they are selling without you you're selling together, but often there are a lot of internal discuss.

That can derail the deal internally to where the table just disappears. And so there's nothing for you to sit at to start with now, one of the ways to de-risk. Th that is one, having a champion who clearly understands up at an executive level, what the different sets of priorities are because oftentimes there's an incredible amount of debate and decisioning going on.

On, in the words of Reed Hoffman at LinkedIn, what are the fires that we're gonna let burn? , there's all these different things that we can be solving. And so, which do we choose to ignore? And which do we actually act on and priorit. and that's where the, the champion they're setting the table to say, Hey, this is the problem that is worth solving.

We gotta put this one out. Yeah. And let's have a conversation. And so they're setting the table for you to join them. In and have a conversation around one of the, kind of the second pieces to the question that I'll just touch on briefly. And this is part of the profile of a good champion is when it comes to the metrics that are tied to the way in which each individual is evaluated, compensated, promoted, which you'll notice about a champion is there's always a personal win that's connected to the broader executive level company win there's something in it for them.

That is keeping them tied directly to the deal. And for people who are working against the deal in favor of a different priority, let they're saying, let's put out this other fire. Yeah. Their metrics look very different. Personal metrics look very different from that of the champion. And so you have to figure out how is this person incentivized to work against the deal.

Because that's what the behavior is going to be. And if you don't know that it's gonna be very challenging to sell against that.

[00:21:39] Luigi Prestinenzi: So this is, you know, this is really interesting, cuz again, I put myself back into that, into that mode of, you know, when I am selling into those complex opportunities, you know, what are some of the, the challenges that I've experienced?

Right. So I'm trying to use real life circumstances here. But again, I know that decision makers, right as now with the new world of buying committees, there's often not just one person making the decision. Mm-hmm . There needs to be consensus across a buying committee. But where does a champion usually sit on the org hierarchy?

Right? Are they a, are they the traditional decision maker or are they reporting in to the sea level?

[00:22:16] Nate Nasralla: So they, they can be sea level executives themselves. Yeah. So just because they're an executive doesn't mean that you need a champion at a lower level, they could be your champion. Okay. But they're, there are three different traits that you're looking for, characteristics that are evidence or some type of behavior.

The first incentive, which we were just talking about. There's something that is directly in the deal for them that keeps them working with you. The second is influence, right? They have to be able to affect change in some degree. And that's where you may have an analyst who clearly wants, and the deal would be very good for them, but if they can't affect any change, There's no influence there.

And then the third is information. There's some type of hard to find, deal intelligence that they're able to share with you. Like, Hey, we're gonna come into a conflict with this person because their personal metrics are such, how do we develop a message, you know, for this? So you have to have all three of those different things to become a champion.

And so again, it could be a C level. It could be a director level. As long as there. Evidence or behavior showing you those three things in the deal.

[00:23:18] Luigi Prestinenzi: Yeah. Okay. This is good, right? Because now you're helping, you know, helping determine exactly what are the characteristics of make a good champion mm-hmm and I like what you've just shared, you know, the making sure that there's a personal benefit for them.

There's something that could improve. Their world, their life making sure they have the ability to influence, which is a key thing. Right. And then getting deal intelligence. So I re I really like that now, but what do you do when you champion becomes the blocker?

[00:23:45] Nate Nasralla: Well, ideally you're talking about champions in the plural.

And so you're not only looking at a single champion, but you're developing multiple different champions, especially the more complex deal. Like I've done multiple deals that are affecting four, five different business units. Yeah. And they're really transformational deals. You know, they sit across P and LS and they touch different people all around the company.

And so in that case, especially you want champions in multiple different ways so that you don't have a single point of failure with one champion.

[00:24:16] Luigi Prestinenzi: It's really interesting. And, but what do you do? Right. So you you're listening to this episode, you're working on a deal, a complex deal transformation you're months into the sales cycle and you're listening and going, oh my God, I'm single.

Point sensitive. Now there's a big risk in my deal. I've put a lot of time and effort into one champion. Mm-hmm how do I go about now trying to get multiple champions in a deal that I've already invested so much time and already invested so much time in one person.

[00:24:45] Nate Nasralla: So there are a couple different ways.

One is with that one person. Yeah. You might begin to raise some questions, like, Hey, it seems like what we're working on may impact and then do some. Yeah. You know, Caitlin. it feels like her job relates to X. Would it be helpful for us to bring Caitlin into the conversation? Yeah. Do you think she might have a perspective or some feedback to add, and now you begin and you continue that and you ladder out into different conversations.

Another practice is what I call the affordable email. Startup founders use this all the time. Sure. And it's basically the idea is that you're not writing an email to the person that's receiving it, but to the person that you want them to forward it onto. So it happens with investors all the time happens internally.

With business units all the time as well. So if you're talking with, let's say Luigi is your champion. Yeah. And Caitlin is the executive running Luigi's business unit. You would write in a way that says basically Caitlin's priorities and goals are front and center. Mm-hmm makes it very easy for Luigi to just press forward and say, Hey.

Wondering if I could get your opinion, happy to share some more context in our next one-on-one otherwise got a call with Nate scheduled for next Thursday. You have to join.

[00:25:53] Luigi Prestinenzi: Yeah, that's good. I love that. Right? Because that, that, that's awesome because you're really thinking about that strategy around, well, I want to get to X, so I want to develop it in a way that they'll just simply send forward on and that brings them into the process.

And I also love the way that you framed it up because you know, often when I'm doing call calibration or dear reviews and I'm listening to calls. on the various platforms, right? You sometimes hear a seller will say you know, are you the decision maker or ask questions around? Who else should I be talking to?

And that can kind of come across a little bit. I wouldn't say condescending, but it's kind of, it can be a little bit insulting, right? Because nobody wants to be shared with you that, Hey, I don't ultimately have the decision making power here. You know, it can create a little bit of tension in the buying process.

So I actually love the way you frame that up about talking about other people that this could be impacting and a bit of a softer doesn't make sense for us to bring them into the process, to get a better that's right. Understanding of how this impacts them.

[00:26:56] Nate Nasralla: That's right. And it's a spin on the traditional account mapping, exercise that especially in the enterprise you're, you're traditionally doing, but it's being even upfront before you really get deep in the deal is being intentional about.

Who's gonna care about the deal and who will we impact? So that let's say for example, you're selling some type of HR software. Yeah. And you know, that your main point of contact is gonna be, you know, that chief people operations, that business unit. Yeah. But in the past, the deal is gonna roll out to other people, leaders in sales and marketing and operations and so on.

And so you may, from the outset, identify who they are and then raise early in the conversation is, Hey, When we're trying to do X I've seen other people, organizations really value input from the leaders who are gonna be affected by this, like, you know, Caitlin, Sarah and Johnny. Would it make sense to have their perspective earlier in the conversation rather than later?

[00:27:49] Luigi Prestinenzi: It's good about, but it's, and you know, what's often, often I find interesting as well and love to get your perspective on this. So when a, when a lead comes inbound, right, the organization Seeked you out, they've said, Hey, you know, we need to look at, you know, you spoke about HR software because of ABC. You can then kind of guide them through the process.

You can say, okay, Hey, you know, based on this and talk a bit about the problem statement, frame that up, perfectly, get people in. let's talk about outbound, right? Because, you know, we know at only any given time, there's only a small portion of the market that are looking for what you sell, but that doesn't necessarily mean there's a, another portion of the market that doesn't have the problem that you can help solve.

Right. Mm-hmm for me proactive outreach is essential for any business that's trying to grow and scale. So you've reached out to a prospect. You've got the meeting. , you know, what is the strategy that you've used in the past to start to build the champion structure so that you can then, you know, start to influence and get the buying committee engaged in the sales process?

[00:28:58] Nate Nasralla: Yeah. So the majority of enterprise selling that I've done has been outbound over my career. And what I found is from the very first conversation that you're setting up, how you're framing that in the email outreach, the types of topics that you're raising, what you're beginning to do is collect a point of view.

Yeah. And identify how you're going to frame the problem by taking what buyers are sharing with you in those first convers. Putting it down on paper beginning to write it out and sharing it out with them. So after the very first discovery call, you're playing back, what you discovered yeah. And saying, Hey, here's my understanding of the challenges that matter most to you right now.

Mm-hmm and based on what we've seen with others that we're working with, how the industry is perhaps changing or shifting your view on where you need to go. Curious, what do we need to either correct. And build out a little bit more, or what you just wanna affirm is like right on. And we need to share this with other.

Yeah. And do translating that first conversation into a written form and collaborating on that from the very first call. That's the start of the business case, right? Yeah, I love this. And so you are already laying the groundwork to enable that champion from, you know, moment one conversation one.

[00:30:09] Luigi Prestinenzi: This is great. Right. And then I use a very similar practice. It's a, it's a consultative selling talk technique. Yeah. Where you are confirming your understanding, making sure sometimes you haven't got the right understandings. So it allows them to start to contribute and say, Hey, yes, you've understood this, but we might need to change X, but just wanna ask, like often, sometimes you have that meeting.

because it's not something the entire like, because it is an outreach call. Mm-hmm , it's not something that's been on the top of the list from the buying committee's perspective. They might have shared some commercial and confidence stuff with you, and they might be reluctant to share that with the wider group, because it's not something that has been a major priority for them.

And they're trying to establish. The they're trying to establish the reason to get the buying committee together to start to scope. What this could mean for them. Right. What do you do when that champion sort of has shared some commercial in confidence, but he is reluctant to then go and share that with other people, because it's not a priority for them.

[00:31:14] Nate Nasralla: Well, and that's where it goes back to the very first piece of that analogy that we were talking with. Where are you today? What's the problem. Yeah. And if people don't agree on where you actually stand and what the highest priority problem is, there's no point in talking. The products or starting the journey over that bridge.

And so that's where I would start is back at that problem statement and saying, Can you get a problem statement that either challenges the current perspective, because people see it very differently yeah. Or confirms and amplifies and plays up what some people are maybe feeling, but they've never seen put into words in a way where they can say, oh, that's right.

That is exactly what we're experiencing. Let's go further in the conversation.

[00:31:54] Luigi Prestinenzi: This is good. I think, you know what? This is, I'm listening to this. I'm going, this is, this is great. This is, this is. Some great content, because again, you are taking it back. And if we summarize some of the key points of air episode today, you're really making sure that before you progress any conversation, you've affirmed and you've got consensus with the person that you're talking to around that problem.

It's saying this is a problem worth investigating further. It can potentially deliver a strong ROI. And this is something we wanna now. Go wider and deeper within the organization. And, and, and I love the way that you've really shared some tactics about how do we go wider and deeper. So, and I know that we're coming to a point of, you know, which I could talk to you for hours mate, but.

I just wanna ask, what are some of the risks that, you know, you've seen when trying to engage a champion that others should avoid?

[00:32:48] Nate Nasralla: So there, there are a couple different ones. One is going over the Champion's head because you're frustrated by lack of progress. And oftentimes, especially those who are jumping into enterprise selling first.

Underestimate the amount of time that it takes to move a deal forward internally. Mm-hmm, where a champion may actually be working for you. They are waiting for the next scheduled one-on-one meeting to slide your points into the existing agenda because they know it's when they get time. Just as an example.

Yeah. Or the reality of like calendar Tetris, trying to line up. Across multiple different time zones, different people for a meeting, right? And so you get antsy and you start believing that the champion isn't doing something to move the deal forward. So you take it into your own hands. That's number one.

It, there are multiple different ways to avoid that. But I'll, I'll go into the second one is relying on the champion to build the message for you. And what I mean by that is most reps when they follow up on a convers. They do what I call link stacking. They put a bunch of different product acts and marketing materials, all stacked up and a bunch of links to 'em.

Yeah. And it forces the buyer to go through and hunt down the different lines that are actually relevant. Put it in their own format, translated into something that their team will care about. And you're putting the work back on the champion, which also means you're putting the message outside of your control back onto them.

And then the third is I'll just emphasize or highlight the one that we were talking about earlier. Which is you have a single point of failure. You're thinking about champion in the singular and not in the plural.

[00:34:19] Luigi Prestinenzi: Okay. This is awesome. These are great techn. And I think you're right, because, you know, we're, we, we, we want to control the flow.

We want to control. the deal stages, et cetera, but then you're right. Sometimes we go, well, here's all the information and they've gotta actually do the work to take the key pieces of information to share that with their colleagues. And that has so many red flags on it, right? Because they might misinterpret something which could CR then create certain objections, which they're not able to answer.

And that'll kill the deal early in the process. Mm-hmm not because they haven't had, they, they're not, they haven't got consensus on the problem, but purely because. They've MIS misheard or misread something. So I love the fact that you talk about control the messaging component by really giving them and enabling the buyer or the champion to have what they need to go wider and deeper.

So I think that's some incredible, incredible feedback and, and advice for sellers. So make, before we wrap up, where is the best. For our audience to engage, find you and learn more about some of the concepts that you've spoken about today. Yeah.

[00:35:25] Nate Nasralla: Well, place number one. It's exactly where you and I met Luigi, which is on LinkedIn. So if anybody's on LinkedIn, Nate Nasralla on LinkedIn, I'd love to, to connect with you there. And then the second place is on our blog,, and I write long form posts on this topic. Every other. Put out new pieces and that's also where we post our enterprise sales playbook, which goes really deep on how to create and then enable champions.

[00:35:48] Luigi Prestinenzi: Awesome. We'll make sure we share those links in our show notes. So it makes it easier for you to connect, but I just wanna say, mate, thank you for the contribution you make to our community. This type of content for me is awesome because it, you know, continues to challenge and, and get your thinking a little bit differently.

How to engage with enterprise opportunities. So just wanna say, thanks mate, for what you do and thanks for coming on the Sales IQ podcast.

[00:36:10] Nate Nasralla: Well, thanks for building such a good community Luigi. And for having me really enjoyed the conversation.

[00:36:16] Credits: This show has been recorded remotely produced by Sales IQ Global, audio editing and music production by Stefan Malliate. Show notes by Victoria Mathieson and graphic design by Julie Marshall. Don't forget to leave a rating and review on your podcast player. And if you want to find more about the programs that we offer at Sales IQ, head to

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