One of the common misconceptions in enterprise sales is that you need to use technical language and industrial jargon when selling to big companies.
But Chris Sacca, the founder of VC firm Lowercase Capital, and an early investor in Uber, Twitter, and Instagram, says that’s wrong.
“The key is, enterprise doesn’t have to be soulless,” Sacca said at “Dreampitch,” a “Shark Tank” style pitching event held at Salesforce’s massive customer conference, Dreamforce, on Tuesday.
Instead, every pitch needs to attach a narrative to a true problem you’re trying to solve and why you’re doing it better than everybody else. There’s no need to waste time citing meaningless statistics or using buzzwords from Gartner reports.
“When you walk up to a stage like this, you’ve got 3 free blinks before everybody checks out,” Sacca continued. “The decision maker on the other end is still a human being with a spouse, kids, who likes music and movies, so start with something that they can literally emotionally attach to,” he said.
Sacca’s comments were in response to the pitch made by Tal Frankfurt, the CEO of CRM Market, a startup that connects Salesforce consultants with other companies. Although most of the Dreampitch judges seemed to like CRM Market’s product, they weren’t particularly impressed by Frankfurt’s pitch — he started by citing a Gartner report.
Frankfurt was one of the three entrepreneurs competing in Dreampitch, a first-time event at Dreamforce that awarded $200,000 in funding to the winner. Each contestant was given 4 minutes to make a pitch and another 4 minutes to answer questions. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, Broadband TV CEO Sharzad Rafati, and the musician will.i.am were also part of the judging panel.
Frankfurt’s startup fell short, as a chatbot startup called Claire won the Dreampitch award instead. Still, Frankfurt received the loudest ovation, and perhaps, learned the most from the event.
“It was educational. It’s amazing to be out here,” Frankfurt said.