The Competitive Advantage

tag: sales management

July 18, 2017

The #1 Sales Activity You’re NOT Doing… or Doing Badly!

network67 Ideas for Improving Your Follow-up Process

See if this sounds familiar… you attend a conference where you, once again, prove your ability as a networker. You meet a number of potential clients (a.k.a. “sales prospects”), have several solid conversations and collect a pocketful of business cards. All-in-all, not bad!

Then you return to the office and are diligent about sending out the “nice to meet you” emails as soon as you can. And then… crickets! No one responds or says they’re looking for a new vendor. At best, you get a few “nice to meet you, too” responses – but nothing more.

When that happens – and it always happens – what do you do?

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April 11, 2017

Using webinars for marketing? Follow these 4 guidelines.

webinar1Webinars can help you achieve a number of marketing objectives… building awareness for your firm, positioning you (the presenter) as a Subject Matter Expert and, of course, generating sales leads. We like webinars so much, we started our own program this year.

And as we’ve gotten into this program, we’ve learned 4 key lessons that can be helpful to anyone with webinars in their marketing & sales plan.

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February 28, 2017

Hey Sales Rep… Your Manager Should be Fired!

I receive “cold call emails” all the time…. I guess as President of the company, I’m a magnet for salespeople. Fine… it comes with the territory.

But this past week, I received a sales email so bad that I had to share it (names are being withheld so they don’t die of shame!).

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October 26, 2016

Stop Setting Stupid Sales Goals… Think Small Instead

big-smallI had a boss (the company Founder) several years ago who would set the annual sales goals for our company… without much regard for what was really happening in the marketplace. The trouble was – and no surprise here – that he set ridiculously high goals (think 50%+ growth or more). Then, the rest of the team would jump through hoops to re-do all of the plan and budgets… all the while knowing that there was no way in hell we would come close to achieving those goals.

That’s NOT how to do it.

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October 18, 2016

Your Key Accounts Need More Love!

Here are 6 ways to make that happen.

Key AccountsIn the 4+ years we’ve been open, I don’t think I’ve spoken with a single research firm that doesn’t have 40-50-60% (or more) of its revenue tied up with just 3, 4 or 5 clients. Losing a small client is bad enough, but losing one of these ‘Key Accounts’ can be devastating. So, what can you do to ensure this doesn’t happen to you?

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October 11, 2016

The Secret to Sales & Marketing Success? It’s Right in Front of You.

Maximize revenue growth by leveraging your sales database.

look-at-computerThere are two kinds of sales prospects – those you know (and who know you) and those you have yet to meet. However, too many sales & marketing initiatives focus on trying to uncover more of the latter.

I submit, however, that the opposite (focusing on those you know) is a more efficient and more effective way to grow revenue.

Think of it this way… you’ve spent a ton of time, money and effort trying to increase the number of contacts in your sales database. Now it’s time to leverage all of that work.

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August 30, 2016

They’re not just clients… they’re people!

coffee3BThink about each of your top 4 or 5 clients. Collectively, they’re likely worth 50-60-70% of your firm’s revenue…. or more!  And I’ll bet you could tell me how much revenue each generates, which services or products they’re buying from you and some details about each of their last few projects. That’s good.

Now think about your key contact at each of those clients – what details do you know about them? No, not their title or their biggest challenges at the office – though those are important. But… are they married or not? What about kids? Their hobbies or favorite sports team? Where they went on vacation last week? And so on… and so on.

Don’t think knowing that kind of thing is important? You’d be wrong!

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August 16, 2016

Listen up salespeople… “Your voice mail messages are AWFUL!”

voice mail 1Last Wednesday, I came back to the office to find a voice mail message on my office phone. It was one left by a sales rep (and I use that term loosely) who wanted to connect with me. Without giving away the firm, here’s the message…

After introducing herself, she said, “We have a lot of experience working with firms like yours. I’d appreciate the opportunity to have a short conversation to see if we might be of service to you.” Then she left her phone number and hoped I would call back. That was it.

We can debate the value of leaving phone messages, but here’s what happened (or didn’t happen)…

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