Ask yourself this question and answer it honestly, does my team actually enjoy our sales meetings? Is it one of the most valuable ways they spend their time each week? Do they leave feeling supported and filled with ideas to improve? If the answer is no, you might be running a meeting that serves the sales manager rather than serving the team. Here are 5 steps you should follow.
Don’t spend time talking about sales activity
If you find your sales meetings start with a ’round the table’ announcement of sales activity from each person, you’re not getting the most value for the time spent by everyone in the meeting. Your CRM, set up with the sales reports that are important for you to measure, already tells everyone on your team exactly what’s going on in the pipeline.Do not waste time in your sales meetings discussing the numbers
At one of our very first meetings, a member of our Board gave the following advice when it came to sales and marketing: “Pick one, maybe two bets, and go all in.” For a person who lingers for as long as possible at the craps table by playing the minimum bet on the pass line, this advice terrified me. It’s not my nature to go all-in when so much is at stake, but I’m working on changing that nature, and this wonderful thing called data sure does help.I earned my sales and marketing stripes a little over 10 years ago at a not-for-profit, professional theatre company, where we lived and breathed by the box office’s morning report of single ticket sales from the day prior. The sales report was fairly predictable. The Sunday prior to the run of a show, we could usually expect a feature story
Is it too late for a Star Wars reference?We kicked off the New Year talking about the 6 Dumbest Phrases Sales People Used in 2015, and the response was understandably lively. As sales people, we cannot afford to sound stale and fall into familiar rhythms that raise red flags in the minds of our prospects.It’s human nature, people running in the same circles start sounding like each other and repeating themselves with rhetorical shorthand and verbal crutches. We see it among athletes (“One game at a time”), politicians (“Folks…”), and yes, sales people.When we hear one of these phrases, it feels insincere and prepackaged. Our walls go up. “What is this person trying to sell me?” We don’t mind being sold to, but we don’t want it to feel like we’re being sold to. We want an authentic and transparent experience that at least appears
Lack of audience engagement in trade shows and conference presentations severely hurts your ability to communicate critical information about your company’s products or services.When your audience is not engaged, you are losing out on a huge opportunity to generate leads and build interest in your product.In collaboration with Diana Ohlhaver, we’ve put together 6 simple trade show tips that will go a long way toward making your next conference or trade show sales booth presentation more effective and profitable.
1. Engage with as many people as possible before or at the start of the event.
The talented Courtney Muniz during one of the conferences we attended this past year reached out to every single individual on the attendee list through Twitter, LinkedIn or e-mail before the event and was able to persuade over 25% of the attendees to come by our booth and learn about what we do at
In mid 2015, Datahug began the process of transitioning its sales team to an Account-Based Selling model. We know our market well, and wanted to capitalize on this understanding as fast as possible. The primary goal was to minimize friction in our pipeline by focusing on prospects that would get the most value from our product, while requiring the shortest sales cycle to close.
Selecting Target Accounts
To start, we had to identify what this sort of customer looks like. For Datahug, this means tech-forward North American companies with between 200 and 2000 employees, a sales team of 25 people or more, an average sales cycle of 45 days or longer, and average deal size of $30,000. Next we had to create the list of Accounts we’d prioritize over general prospecting. There are a few places to source this data. We’ve been in business for a while and are transitioning
It’s a tale as old as time. Well, maybe not as old as time,but definitely as old as business: As long as sales relies on marketing to help close deals and marketing relies on sales to get the company message out, there’s bound to be conflict.I often think of these two groups as frenemies. They both do mission-critical work, and they generally like each other. But if revenue numbers are missed and someone needs throwing under the bus, they’re equal partners in finger pointing. Not so many years ago, the shrift was usually about lead quality. Marketing automation pretty much eliminated that friction. Today, the topic has changed, but the argument remains. Sales and marketing are at odds again, this time over content.Content is expected to save the day. We have an insatiable appetite for it in the business world—if there’s a problem, an opportunity, an idea,
From Chapter 13 of Aaron Ross and Jason Lemkin’s new book, From Impossible to Inevitable.Sales culture is different compared to pretty much every other function in that it expects most people to fail or succeed almost totally on their own. Companies assume “We’ll hire 10 salespeople to sink-or-swim and a quarter to half won’t make it.”CSO Insights’ studies show average sales team’s annual turnover of around 25 percent (it varies by a few points year to year), with half quitting and half fired. That means out of 100 salespeople, 25 are lost every year. So you need to hire (and train, and ramp, and transition pipeline or customer accounts for …) an extra 25 salespeople per year just to tread water.But—what the hell? Would you hire 10 HR people and then expect to fire three to five? Managers? Supply chain people?
We all know that, traditionally, the “inspiration” offered to low-performing salespeople has been fear of getting the boot at end-of-quarter. After all, they’re low-performers, and your sales org doesn’t have time for that, right? Maybe though, you see something in them – a potential, a great culture fit, someone who just needs a push in the right direction – and you want to help. Or you’re concerned with for your org’s ability to find a suitable replacement – after all, the perception of you having “revolving door” is never good for recruitment – or they’re involved in other key business you can’t risk losing. Regardless of the reason, there’s always an argument to be made for not firing low-performing salespeople or, at the very least, making your best efforts to help them turn their performance around. Unfortunately, because everyone has their own motivations, that’s often easier said than
It’s no secret that the key to explosive growth is sales. It’s also not a secret that the key to sales growth is the partnership between sales and marketing. I work in HR Technology, where the cliché is, “your people are your greatest asset.” Yet, although most companies believe it, they don’t practice it. It’s the same in sales and marketing. We all know that there needs to be an air-tight partnership between sales and marketing where the two teams act as one and use the same playbook, yet this is rare to find.There are many ways that sales and marketing can collaborate, whether it’s through RFPs, pitching, objection handling, and much more. This is all considered sales enablement, which helps push prospects through the funnel.
Here are the top 3 sales enablement strategies your organization can’t live without:
My sales team and I did a lot of experimenting with the way we did outbound prospecting in 2015. By the end of the year, we moved from a “phone first” based outbound sales strategy to an “email first” strategy. The early numbers look like this “net” vs. “spear” prospecting strategy is paying off.Here are 5 lessons we learned about casting nets using cold emails.
1. Your goal is still to get on the phone
Let’s get one thing out of the way, I am not advocating that sales reps don’t get on the phone. As a matter of fact, the goal is to spend more time on the phone. The question is how do we get to more conversations not dials?During a busy day, have you ever had your phone ring, looked at the call display and then didn’t answer? Be honest, of course you have. In