We are are excited to offer our customers the option of displaying their sales leaders and metrics on large TV screens. If your office has large TV screens and you want to showcase your sales leaders in a real-time format, this is a great option for you. This feature is currently in BETA so your patience and feedback is appreciated.
If you would like to install our free leaderboard application for Salesforce.com, click the button below:
FACT: If you speak with the decision maker directly, you’ll increase your close ratio substantially. But let’s face it, how often in an opportunity are you actually pitching the real decision maker? The real decision maker is defined as the person who writes the check. If the person you are pitching cannot write the check, then you’re NOT talking to the decision maker.
The reality is we mostly sell to influencers and product users. That is not a bad thing. These individuals are usually the ones dealing with the pain of solving problems. Their jobs are at risk and they have to hit specific goals and metrics. If your solution is a potential answer to their challenges, then you have a pretty good chance of the real decision maker speaking with you or at least seeing your offering.
The key to getting to a decision maker without ever speaking to them requires one key element – Coaching. You need to coach your influencer or product user and enable them to sell your solution without you in the room or on the phone. This is certainly no easy task but, this is how a majority of deals get done these days. Disagree? Great, use the comment section below to have your voice heard.
So how do we coach our influencer or user to put them in a position to win us the deal? First, you need to ask your prospect what their boss uses as their buying criteria. Be sure you understand how the decision maker makes a buying decision. What type of data do they need? Case studies? References? Estimated return on investment? How long will it take for you solution to produce measurable results that impact the business? All these questions and more can certainly be part of a decision maker’s buying criteria. Your job is to produce this content and frame it in a presentable way. Not for yourself, but for your influencer. In part 2 of this article, I will explain how to frame content so your influencer or product user can sell you product to their boss.
#10 – Standing for 9 hours in a corporate polo with khakis is played out.
#9 – Collecting business cards in a fish bowl does not mean you’re collecting sales leads.
#8 – Wi-fi services cost $200/day.
#7 – Your main role is to giveaway pens, stress balls, smart phone holders and coffee mugs. Did I miss anything?
#6 – Talking to people hung over who have ZERO interest in your products or services is painful.
#5 – Waving to people uncomfortably as they walk by your booth is lame.
#4 – Scanning attendee’s badges to build a “list of leads” is not really building a list of leads.
#3 – You have to fly cross country to build a trade show booth to then only take it apart and package it up again.
#2 – You have to talk to people who only visit your booth to get your free giveaway.
#1 – When you get back to the office you have to answer the question, “how was the show?” at least 20 times!
Feel free to add to the list.
Here we are again! Last week of the month and as a team you're only 50% to your monthly sales goal. Talk about stress, pressure, anxiety and just the all around unknown. Why as sales reps and managers do we allow this to happen? Yes, why do WE allow this to happen? Don't blame the prospect - blame yourself. Remember, you should be controlling the buying process not your prospect. Here is how you can control the buying process and move at least 70% of your new business sales to the front of the month rather than the last week of the month.
Your Buyer is Educated and Trained To Buy This Way: Your buyer has been buying things either during the last week or last day of the month since they became a buyer. The don't know any other way to receive discounts, have leverage and stress urgency to their executives. You can change that by simply educating your buyer on the advantages of buying between January 1 - 15th vs. the 16th - 31st. I use a discounting scale that decreases over time. It looks like this:
15% Discount off Licensing if you sign between the dates of January 1st - 7th.
10% Discount off Licensing if you sign between the dates of January 8th -15th.
5% Discount off Licensing if you sign between the dates of January 16th - 25th.
0% Discount off Licensing if you sign between the dates January - 26th - 31st.
"But wait! My competitors are going to offer a heavy discount to purchase month end. If I am offering 0% I will lose the deal" You won't lose the deal if you present your discount program on day 1 and frame it so the customer understands that you reward commitment vs. false urgency and month end discounting gimmicks. Imagine how many cars a dealer would sell if the buyer knew the best time to buy is during the first week of the month. How much pressure would the dealership take off themselves if they had 60-70% of their monthly revenue on the books by the 15th of the month?
One last tip regarding your competitors offering last minute discounts. When this happens (and it will happen), ask your prospect this very simple question: "Mr. Prospect, if company X was so committed to earning your business then why didn't they just offer you a commitment discount 3 weeks ago like I did?" Crickets............
I would love to hear you feedback on this topic as I am always looking to learn new ways to handle this common problem.
Good luck finishing the month strong!!!
Across the world, five days per week, inside sales reps are "throwing up" on their prospects. If you've been in sales for some time, you most likely know what I am referring to. If not, "throwing up" refers to the practice of telling your prospect every single feature and benefit your product or service offers. Often times, inside sales reps do this before discovering if the prospect has pain, need, budget or time. What you essentially end up doing is creating false hope for yourself and failing to uncover whether or not your prospect is a qualified opportunity. Here are 3 ways to reduce your chances of throwing up on your prospects:
1.) Use Your Mute Button: I am dead serious about this one. Ask your prospect a qualifying question like, "Mr. Customer what keeps you awake at night?" Press your mute button and listen to your prospect. Take notes and listen.
2.) Remember Your Knowledge Is Your Biggest Asset: Why is this prospect talking to you in the first place? Perhaps they have a problem and are looking for a solution. Why give away your most valuable asset (knowledge) before first discovering if the prospect is worthy of your time? Continue to ask questions to uncover pain and problems. Be sure to understand the consequences for the prospect should they decide to do nothing. After collecting this information, only share a few tips from your valuable bank of knowledge. Wet your prospects appetite. Ask more questions and listen.
3.) Only Share The Features That Are Applicable to The Problem: Have you ever had someone give you advice even though you didn't ask them for it? That is the same as telling a prospect about a feature your product offers that addresses a problem they don't even have! Don't do that! Instead, follow this formula - Hear a problem -----> mention a possible solution.
Frankly, I could have given 25 reasons to reduce your chances of "throwing up" on your prospect, but who has time to read a blog that long?
Feel free to hit me up with any question in the comment section below. Or, send me an email to email@example.com.
Are you about to launch a sales contest in the near future? If so, what are the parameters for the contest? How will your sales reps be ranked? Which metrics will you use? How will you know when the contest is won? What is the prize for winning the sales contest? All great questions to ask yourself but the real question you should ask yourself is "will this sales contest work?"
I have been a sales professional for 12 years and have taken part and orchestrated in many sales contests. Some I have won and others I have bombed. The contests I've won usually included a form of public recognition that went outside the sales walls. For me, motivation and drive came from the satisfaction that I was helping the organization as a whole. After all sales = revenue = growth. Growth effects the entire organization not just the sales department. Being thanked for a job well done by a CFO, HR administrator or tech support person has a powerful effect on sales people. Sales people are all about pride and recognition more than gift cards and points. The point I am trying to drive home is to be sure you use public recognition as a component to your sales contest. Don't keep the sales contest results isolated to just the sales team.
In summary, I do believe sales contest work. The important thing to emphasize with any contest to act as a cheerleader for the participants. Send out daily emails to the team with the most updated scores. Send a company wide email congratulating sales reps who win sales contests and thank them for contributing the growth of your organization.
Ask 10 sales people what they think of whitepaper leads and I guarantee you get the same response. “They suck”. Let’s face it, 98% of website visitors are simply doing research. Researchers download stuff and want anything they can get for free. Salespeople hate calling on people who download whitepapers because they believe they are a waste of time. Frankly, I used to believe this assumption to be true until I realized how difficult it really is to get a person’s contact information. Here are TWO ways to look at whitepaper leads in a positive way:
1.) The goal is to convert a website visitor into a lead – Sales people want leads and marketers are responsible for generating them. Obtaining a visitors contact information is pretty difficult so offering free advice to visitors increases your chances of getting their contact information. Contact information allows marketers to send targeted messaging campaigns to people who exchanged their email address for that new e-book you just published. Use this opportunity as just that, an opportunity. Call the prospect, thank them for downloading your whitepaper and ask them a specific question about their 2013 initiatives. Here is an example: “Hi Bob, thank you for downloading our whitepaper on Boosting Team Morale With Leaderboards, what are your plans for accomplishing this in 2013 and beyond?” Look at whitepaper downloads as doors being opened just enough to get a peek inside the room ( in this case the prospects mind).
2.) Follow up a whitepaper lead with another piece of free content - Call the prospect and say this: “John, thank you for downloading our free e-book on “Using Sales Contests to Drive Overachievement”. What contest do you have in place today to accomplish the goal of crushing your sales numbers?” In this example, whitepaper = conversation starter. Once the prospect answers you, let them know you’ll be sending them another free e-book on “Sales Spiffs Reps Love”.
I hope my advice helps you get over the frustration of whitepaper leads. Stay positive and seize every opportunity you get. Remember how difficult it is to get someone to give up their contact information.
Hey everyone. Since we launched in 2010 RepTivity has been through a ton of experiences. Most of these experience have been awesome however, some were "challenging". One thing I always told myself from the start is that I would share my experiences whether they be good, bad or ugly. This would be my way of paying it forward. What you'll see below is a slide I put together shortly after making the decision to offer RepTivity free for Salesforce.com users. I tried to highlight the important lessons learned, but feel free to email me anytime with questions. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lastly, make no mistake. I intend to kick the shit out of our competitors and disrupt their business while achieving my #1 goal - providing sales teams across the world with a fun place to track sales metrics and compete in a healthy, fun and competitive environment.
Look, I get it. Cold calling 5 days a week is draining, especially in the age of voice mail, e-mail and social media. For the majority of inside sales environments, number of phone calls is the most highly tracked KPI there is. The dreaded "phone report" makes many sales reps cringe. So what can you do when "hitting the phones" starts to become literally hitting the phones?
Here is a quick list of action items that may help you:
1.) Sign up for a Twitter account - If you're a sales professional you better be using Twitter as a vehicle to echo your message. Don't get crazy with sharing product promotions at first. Simply start out by 'Following" the companies and people you want to sell to. You'd be amazed at how much information you can obtain on companies via Twitter. Be sure to "Retweet" pertinent industry information that can help increase your Twitter presence and boost your following. Also include # tags when you Tweet and "Retweet". For example: #Salesforce, #Chatter, #ZohoCRM or #Microsoft. Here is a link to a great article: The Power of Retweeting: The 7 Reasons RT on Twitter
2.) Keep your emails short and sweet - Please stop sending your prospects long winded, three paragraph product pitches via email. You are wasting their time and most importantly your own. On average, it takes you fifteen minutes to draft an email and about two seconds for your prospects to delete it. Instead, compose an email with an attractive subject line and a body no longer than two sentences. When sending prospects emails, think mobile devices. What is your goal and purpose of the email? Example -
Subject: Regarding next Wednesday 10/26/11
Body: Mr. Thompson, are you available on 10/26/11 at 10AM EST to discuss implementing your trial of RepTivity? Should only take about 15 minutes and a great way to keep our momentum going.
That's it folks. Send an email with a goal and increase your chances of getting a response.
3.) Write a blog - A great use of your time is establishing yourself as a knowledge expert. Writing a blog not only promotes your personal brand it also promotes your company's product line. Provide quality content and you'll see an increase in readers and followers. The real reward is when your readers engage in conversations through "comments". For some excellent tips on writing effective blogs visit: http://www.problogger.net/how-to-write-great-blog-content/
I'm not a self proclaimed sales expert, sales ninja, sales trainer, sales coach or sales guru. I'm a guy in the trenches just like you. The above tips work for me and I really hope they work you! Email me anytime to vent or to bounce around ideas. email@example.com.
Ryan Lallier is CEO & Founder of RepTivity. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org