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The Competitive Advantage

September 18, 2018

5 Follow-up Strategies for New Sales Leads

follow-up

Suppose you decide to create and make a White Paper available for download from your website.

And suppose that 50 people – some clients and some ‘potential’ clients – download it in the first three days.

That’s great! Now what?

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September 11, 2018

Does Your Logo Really Make a Difference?

logoI was on an elevator this morning when the stranger who got on with me looked over and said, “Nice shirt!” I was wearing one of my polo shirts from The Masters Golf Tournament in Augusta, GA. This happens to me all the time when I’m wearing one of these shirts. The logo is such a recognizable image – even without the word ‘Masters’ written across it (see image) – that people seem compelled to comment on it.

What is it that makes this logo so well-known? While we can’t replicate the world-wide TV audience and golf superstars associated with the event, there still are several lessons – as business owners and marketers – that we can take from this:

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September 4, 2018

7 Sales Management Lessons for Leading Your Small Sales Team

I just got back from a 3-day visit with a client in the northeast, conducting an audit and assessment of their sales operation – staffing, structure, processes, etc. It was a terrific start to the engagement… and reinforced a number of sales management lessons we all should keep top-of-mind as we go to market with a business development initiative.

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August 21, 2018

Marketing is Not a Substitute for Sales

For years, I’ve said that ours is an industry that does not embrace sales & marketing. And even for those firms that employ marketing, rarely do they have anyone dedicated to selling.

Forgetting for a minute the incorrect assumption that, “Selling doesn’t work for a firm like ours,” when asked about it, the response is often, “We don’t need sales… we do marketing.”

Seriously?! Let’s think about that for a minute…

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August 14, 2018

4 Sales Reports You Need But Probably Aren’t Using

When tasked with managing sales, we often get into a certain rhythm – or maybe it’s a rut – with the way that we manage the program. And when it comes to sales reports, we have probably gotten used to the same ones… reports like:

  • Sales vs. goal
  • Sales vs. same period last year
  • Sales by sales rep
  • Basic sales call reports, etc.

And while those are a good place to start, let me suggest 4 other sales reports that you should add to your management arsenal… reports that will give you a deeper view of what’s really going on with your sales effort.

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August 7, 2018

Not blogging yet? Here are 10 reasons why you should!

I was having a conversation about marketing last week with the owner of a small firm… and we covered a broad range of topics. When we got to ‘blogging,’ he asked, “Why should I blog?” When I saw that he wasn’t kidding, it dawned on me that there may be many small business owners in the same boat – questioning the value of a consistent writing program like blogging.

So, for you, Mike – and small business owners everywhere – here are the top 10 reasons why blogging MUST be a part of your marketing mix:

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July 31, 2018

Planning for 2019? It’s not too early to start.

While it’s only the beginning of August – and we’re all in the middle of the summer doldrums – now is the perfect time to start planning for 2019 and thinking about your marketing & sales for next year. Five months may seem like plenty of time to get ready… but you’ll get busy this Fall, and January 1st will be here before you know it.

So, block of a little time RIGHT NOW to start thinking about improving your marketing & sales efforts for next year. And the absolute best way to do that is to make sure you understand all of the things going on in and around your business. What you learn will form the foundation for making smarter marketing & sales decisions next year. To help, here are 6 suggestions to get you started

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July 24, 2018

5 Ways to Say “No thanks” to a Proposal

Twice in the past few years, I’ve written a blog post about the frustration that I (and all people involved in business development) feel when not hearing back from a potential client after submitting a proposal… a proposal that they requested. I wrote about how any answer – even a ‘no’ – is better than being ignored. With a clear answer… at least I’ll know how to move forward.

Sadly, the practice of ‘responding with silence’ from potential clients continues to this day.

So, on behalf of all small business owners who do the selling, seller-doers and professional salespeople everywhere, I’ve taken the liberty of writing out actual email scripts – based on several different scenarios – that you can use when responding to proposals you don’t want to accept. I hope these help:

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