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What are successful chiefs of revenue generation gaining from social media?

September 13, 2011
  1. Qualified Leads
  2. Instant communication with prospects
  3. Real time engagement (feedback)
  4. Ability to be effective immediately and over time
  5. Know how search drives decisions
  6. Know what conversations are taking place
  7. Know the number of followers, likes, comments, actions, time spent on site and conversions
  8. What people are saying about their brand or specific product
  9. Information that is most interesting to customer
  10. Get information for the salesforce in advance of a sale

10 Reasons Why Sales Should Use Twitter

May 6, 2011

1.    Track a contact (many executives use Twitter)
2.    Way to know who they really are, who they follow, who follows them and who they have the most interactions with.
3.     Opening for communicating with them and possibly getting an appointment. You may want to send out a tweet mentioning their company or products and see what happens.
4.    Great way of knowing what is being said about them, their products , employees
5.    Track competitors
6.    Know what is being said about the competition from their customers, employees and vendors
7.    Learn about their product from who follows the brand and by what they say about the brand – possible lead for you.
8.    Great way to track positive and negative feedback about your company and the competition
9.    Research who really is on top by the value of the content in the tweets and number of RT (retweets) and responses
10.   Great  way for you to show your expertise in what you have to offer through your own tweets and answers to questions by folks who find you and or your content  interesting

FREE WiFi – Be very careful!

July 15, 2010

I often ask people when I see them using their laptops in libraries, coffee shops and airports how they are protecting themselves against hackers or if they know that they are vulnerable to hacking?  98% of the people I ask don’t know that they are vulnerable.  If they are using a MAC they usually tell me that they “don’t need any security software” because Apple employees at the Apple store said so (that’s a whole other story). If they are using a PC they generally say they have security software and don’t realize what is needed when using public WiFi. Both user types think I mean anti-virus/Internet protection software and not what is required to protect yourself using WiFi.

For those of you who don’t know about public WiFi vulnerabilities here are somethings you need to know. Hackers have software that allows them to access your computer easily.  They can read your email, watch what you do, look in your files, grab any valuable information like credit card or banking data.  I’ve watched many people pay bills on-line and purchase something while in public places using WiFi. As a heads-up, buying and banking on public WiFi is something you should never do even with protection because nothing is perfect. I know that all the road warriors out there are saying “What? I’ve been doing that for years” I know you have, but mark my words, you are not safe.

So what should you do to protect emails, surfing, etc:  Use HTTPS to secure emails. Google is best for this as they provide HTTPS which automatically encrypts when you log in and throughout the email experience.  “Google doc’s” is also encrypted. The other option is to use a VPN (Virtual Private Network). Most corporate users have a VPN, but for individuals not associated with a corporate network you may want to sign up with a company that provides VPN services or you can download software that will provide VPN capabilities. VPNs are the best protection.  There are several free products that make their money by delivering ads but I don’t know how effective they are as I’ve not used them.  In any case, make a decision and get protected.

Happy surfing

Best Tools to help the sales team garner BtoB prospects

July 14, 2010

The vendors mentioned below are placed in no specific order and I’m not making a recommendation but letting you know about current best products on the market.  If any of you have used or are using one or more of these tools please let other readers know your thoughts by commenting on the post. Thanks, Courtney

1)      Hoovers      http://www.hoovers.com

Good for building company target list

2)      OneSource  http://www.onesource.com

Good for building company target list

3)      Jigsaw   http://www.jigsaw.com

Comprehensive list of contacts within target list providing phone # and email address

4)      InsideView  (http://www.insideview.com)

Sales 2.0 and social CRM

5)      ZapData   (http://www.zapdata.com)

A D&B Company offering good for building company target list

6)      NetProspex  (http://www.netprospex.com)

User provided business contacts (varified) with phone and email addresses

George Steinbrenner, Mentor, Master Salesman and Marketer but most of all a LEADER

July 13, 2010

Did you know that George Steinbrenner’s original investment in the Yankees was only $168,000? He turned that into billions for investors, and helped vendors, marketers, and organisations of all types make hundreds of millions.  He gave the fans a riveting team to be proud of and emulate in a variety of ways.

No matter what you thought of Steinbrenner he was a master businessman.  He turned the Yankees into winners just 4 short years after becoming the owner (1973).  The Yankees won the world championships in 1977 and 1978 and again from 1996 through 2000 and in 2009. The Yankees won 11 American League pennants.

George was said to be a very complicated man – sometimes difficult and ruling with an iron hand and sometime giving to others without the PR benefit.  He had a nack for leading and picking winners because he himself was a winner and he understood execution and managing strong people. Very few individuals have the kind of success he had in sports or in business, but for those that do, they motivate masses.  While he was a mentor to some, he was a major pain to others but a leader he was non the less. No one has ever done what George did in the history of baseball. He changed a lot for the better and somethings for the worse according to his critics.

Goal setting, making commitments, confidence and drive are top qualities that George and other leaders share.  George was an expert at what he did, a real outlier.  Over the next few days, I’m sure we will be hearing a lot about George and his salesmenship, marketing abilities, business acumen but we will mostly hear about being a leader.

10 Things Managers should never do!

June 29, 2010

This is an old post from August 13, 2007 but I thought some new subscribers might find it of interest. It’s short and to the point.

1)Blame others

2)Play favorites

3) If your a sales manager don’t try to be one of the guys/gals

4) Berate team members

5) Be arrogant

6) Be disrespectful

7) Take credit for others work

8) Pit people against each other

9) De-motivate by being negative

10) Bully

Feel free to add your comments. I’d love to hear from you!

Sales Managers: A good old sales contest can help you achieve goals

April 22, 2010

If you’re looking to get the sales team fired up, develop a sales contest.

Over the years I’ve seen a variety of contest that created revenue and profit when you need it most.   In today’s economy I doubt that many companies other than banks, hedge funds can offer the types of prizes that we saw in the 90’s but you can offer things that the team feels are valuable, so why not find out what excites them and if you concur go from there.   Some things they may want: cash, iPad, a long weekend, a day at a spa, gym time, smartphone or individual sales or sales management training.

Since high achievers generally win sales contest, consider designing one that includes and engages all.

Things to think about:

1. Don’t ask for the impossible – don’t ask for things that can’t be achieved

2. Be crystal clear on how the contest works,

3. Make sure you discuss how long the contest lasts – Remember sales folks get ADD after 30 minutes and will move on to something else

4. Emphasize who gets rewarded and for what

5. Keep the team posted on the progress of the contest –make sure it’s frequently

6. Let team know the date when the prize will be rewarded – preferably when contest is announced

Sales Management Pet Peeve: Loose Lips Sink Ships!

January 28, 2010

Quick Tip:

I’ve been on many a sales call where sales people make the mistake of talking about the meeting they just had in the building of the prospect/client they just met with or they talk about it in some other public place without thinking a second thought about privacy. One place they seem to think they can talk freely in is the elevator –  even if other people are in it.  In no case should you ever talk about the meeting in the building where you had the meeting and you should never talk about potential deals in public places where others can hear you – including your own building. Many a deal has been lost due to careless communication in earshot of people who might find your product a threat, etc.  Until you have a check in your hand and the ink is dry, keep those loose lips whispering or closed.

Sales Managers that don’t let the sales person sell

December 30, 2009

Are you the type that takes over when going on a sales call with a member of your team?  You just can’t help yourself, you have to butt in and take control. Do you find yourself doing this frequently? If you do, you need to keep reading this post because by taking control your sales people can’t improve and you’ll wind up de-motivating, making them dependent on you and worse – you’ll fail in the end.  The only time you should have to take control in a sales meeting is when the sales person gets into trouble or ask for your help.

I’ve seen it happen over and over where the sales manager manages to make the client and the salesperson dependent on them in-order to close the deal.  In many cases, a salesperson never learns to close properly because this type of manager can’t lead properly.   Frequently, this type of sales manager fails to make the company goals because they are doing all the selling themselves and the quota is based on a team effort not a single person. You often find this style of managing with people who were the major producers before being made sales manager.  These types frequently need to be coached in letting go, leading and mentoring. If this sounds like you or someone you know or if your about to manage a sales team – ask your management to pay for a coach who can guide and mentor you away from this behavior.

STOP SELLING TO UNMOTIVATED PROSPECTS

December 15, 2009

How many times have you heard “I’m interested and will discuss with xxx and get back to you in a few days” or “We will take a look at this in a month” or “I’ll have my team review this and get back to you in a week”? This is often music to a salespersons ears. But there’s a problem if you keep hearing it from the same prospect and keep waiting for the deal that never comes. You need to wake-up, move-on and sell to a well qualified prospect. Funny thing is that many salespeople just want to hang in there even when they know they are being lied to. There are prospects out there that just don’t know how to let you know that they can’t buy, won’t buy, or have no intention of buying. It’s important that you validate the true level of interest early in the sales process or you may find a pipeline full of hot air. You will need to spot the time wasters early in the game. Here are some suspects you should be on the lookout for:

1) Suspect says that they are the decision maker but you never get a decision.

2) The person is in a learning mode and is using you to come up to speed. Yes, you are his/her subject matter expert and he has no intention of buying anything

3) Prospect is just interested in getting your pricing and has already made a decision on another vendor

4) Prospect is afraid of change and can’t get to yes. You need to uncover their problem and try to get them over the fear – otherwise move on.