Attracting large targets: what enterprise clients need to see before they sign on

For an emerging business, there are going to be some clients that offer more ROI than others, and securing just one enterprise level contract can give a young startup the stability it needs to take risks, innovate, and depart from the status quo.

Once you’ve gained the interest of a global company or dominant force in the industry, you’ll be better positioned to focus on product and service development—not just making ends meet. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you set your sights at the highest level.

Regulation: aggressive reassurance

In 2018, data privacy and security have stepped into the spotlight, and most enterprise companies have no interest in taking risks or cutting corners when it comes to backing startups that handle sensitive data. Of course your GDPR compliance should be as tight as possible (even if you don’t deal directly with many European clients) and if you partner with any organization that handles private health information, your HIPAA compliance will also play a role in attracting larger clients. But don’t wait for audits and close inspections of your platform; boast about your airtight compliance and your willingness to go the extra mile. Data privacy has become more than a box to check off; it now reflects a company’s overall philosophy and approach to doing business. Be proud of the measures you’ve taken and share them proactively.

Develop thought leadership

Your business has to be a thought leader. Have a comprehensive social media strategy that includes content marketing, and make sure your executives are writing and pursuing speaking opportunities (even small local opportunities are excellent places to start). Find ways to position the company within view of your target audience and consumers. Consider every lead.


Invest in account-based marketing and vendor partnerships

It may cost more in terms of both money and time, but consider an account-based marketing strategy for enterprise clients. Instead of offering a standard service package, conduct research and tailor your product and contract details to meet the needs of one specific client at a time. While you’re at it, try to form partnerships with the company’s existing vendors in non-competitive areas. These already- established providers may give you an in or an introduction, and teaming up can give both of you the opportunity to present strategic discounts or service options.

By reaching out to the largest clients in your industry—and arranging meetings with decision-makers at the highest available level—you’ll cover vast ground at minimal cost. Reach out for more strategies that can set you up for rapid, sustainable growth.