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WHAT DOES SUCCESSFUL SALES ENABLEMENT LOOK LIKE?

sales_team_313_shadowFirst off, what is Sales Enablement?

I like the definition, and the goal, listed at SiriusDecisions.com:

“Sales enablement’s goal is to ensure that every seller has the required knowledge, skills, processes and behaviors to optimize every interaction with buyers.”

Pat Ruffio (from @lurniture) recently wrote a post titled, “Are Your Sales Enablement Efforts Working?” It addresses the question: “How can you recognize sales enablement practices that contribute to success?

Ruffio does so by looking for clues in the areas of:

  • Teamwork
  • Customer-Centric Sales
  • Communications
  • Content

The rest of the article is essentially written in bullet points, and in this case I like that. The information is work organized and the success indicators are well-thought statements.

I don’t want to give you everything here, but I’ll give you a taste so you’ll definitely want to read the article for yourself:

COMMUNICATIONS
Your sales team members bring new insights to your customers proactively.
  • This is information that customers might not have considered previously.
  • Some of these insights might challenge customer assumptions.

I recommend reading Ruffio’s post to take a temperature of your sales team.

Those bullets generated some of my own thoughts. It’s vital that sales management at your organization creates well-thought perspective changing questions and answers in order to ensure the entire sales team is completely prepared to get more sales:

  1. In a scenario where a prospect can likely solve their problem by purchasing from multiple options, the seller needs to create  a line of thinking the buyer has not yet considered.By empowering the buyer to ask themself a great, new question (or create a new perspective), and have them agree your offering is an answer to that question, you’ve helped them refine their research, giving you an advantage over your competitors (either momentary or through the finalizing of the sale).The new question itself may also be able to knock out or knock down one or more other solutions.

    The right question, the new question, can make a lot of progress for you, in a short time, toward eventually gaining the sale.

  2. When you’re selling a product or service, it’s easy to be drawn into the search for more and more things upon which you agree with the buyer.Unfortunately, it can be very effective to insert an idea into the conversation that challenges their current thinking, and may even appear to take your own offering out of contention, but not enough sales professionals take advantage of this opportunity because of the perceived risk.There’s actually nothing but upside.

    If that challenge eventually drives the buyer toward agreement that your product or service is a viable option in the challenge scenario, again, you’ve helped the buyer refine their research and have gained yourself an advantage.

Your actions today in sales management, are either leading toward sales enablement for your reps or, through a lack of preparation, toward sales barriers. Even actions understood to be neutral are not active selling time, which creates barriers to everyone creating more sales:

A good thing becomes a bad thing when
it takes the place of the best thing.

Clear barriers from the path toward sales for your team by ensuring consistent moments of sales enablement are in place at each step.

Thank you for this thoughtful post, Pat. I’ll be sure to keep an eye on your new blog at Lurniture.com. I really like your strong focus on the topic of sales enablement.

[Reading Time for Ruffio’s Post: 2 minutes]

QUESTION ::: Is the topic of sales enablement a topic of discussion within your organization?

Let’s talk about it…

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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FRIDAY SALES GROWTH LINKS ::: TOP REPS, POST CALL TIPS & SALES TEAM BOOSTS

Team_Work_308_shadowThis week’s links cover what top sales reps do outside the office, what you need to do after a sales call and two resources to help you boost the overall strength of your sales team.

Come back and visit this blog every Friday for my Friday Sales Growth Links feature where I filter online resources to help you grow in your sales career:

WHAT TO DO :::

The Peak Sales Blog
What Top Sales Reps Do Outside of the Office
Eliot Burdett (@eliotburdett with @peaksales) put together this clear understanding of 2 kinds of sales professionals. If you aren’t already in the group described as Top Performers, here’s a clear map on how to do what you need to do to get there.

KEY QUOTE: “…the top performing reps kept working while the majority of reps, come 5pm, would leave the office and not touch any work until 9am the following morning.

While unplugging at the end of the day isn’t necessarily a bad thing, I noticed the best reps were unique in the sense that they did at least one and usually all of these 5 things outside the office.”

Choose now. #whichoneisyou
[Reading/Listening Time: 1:30]

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Sales Performance Blog
5 Things to Do As Soon As You Hang Up a Sales Call
Justin Zappulla (with @janekpg) offers one way, which works for him, to begin a plan of making the most out of every call in order to improve your customer and prospect relationships as well as being more effective on the next call you make.

KEY QUOTE: Ultimately, it’s good business—and very satisfying—to have a post-call plan and be deliberate about carrying it out. It will not only help analyze the call you just hung up from, but will make your next call even more dialed in.

This is an intentional process requiring discipline, but it’s not a big commitment. You can do this. #getdialedin
[Reading/Listening Time: 2:00]

IMPROVE YOUR SALES TEAM :::

Sales Initiative Toolbox
12 Power Questions For Rapidly Improved Performance
René Vidal (@goalsexpert) offers some excellent diagnostic questions that get down to the heart of some sales performance issues you may already be facing.

KEY QUOTE: At the end of the day, personal and professional success belongs to those who start with a specific plan, then exert the daily self-discipline to finish. Game over.

Don’t skip this one. You’ll definitely find at least a few great questions you’ll know you need to answer right away. #performanceenhancing
[Reading/Listening Time: 1:30]

++++

NextGen Leads
Eight Experts Reveal How To Boost Morale On Your Sales Team
Logan Strain (@lm_strain) really did a great job pulling together many important insights from these 8 sales experts. It’s vital to keep your sales team motivated, but simply being a cheerleader is NOT what they need from you this week.

KEY QUOTE: Only YOU can motivate you. With that said, I can certainly de-motivate you.

Which of these recommendations will you put into practice first? #bemorethanacheerleader
[Reading/Listening Time: 6:00+]

 

>>  View past posts for Friday Sales Growth Links  <<

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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CAN YOU SPOT A SALES LEAD ON TWITTER?

twitter_leads_295_shadowHave you ever been reading an article or a list and one of the items, a phrase or some wording, seemed to jump off the page at you?

After a little practice, this may begin to happen for you on Twitter with warm and hot prospects jumping out at you.

Emma Snider (@emmajs24), she’s a name you’ve heard before in previous blog posts, has another winner of a post with “How to Spot a Lead on Twitter [Flowchart]” from the HubSpot Marketing Blog.

Let’s start with some stats she offers:

To many salespeople, “social selling” equates to “LinkedIn.” According to a survey conducted by PeopleLinx, 76% of reps understand LinkedIn’s potential for sales, but a scant 16% see the value in Twitter for social selling.

What if there’s more prospecting opportunity in Twitter than you’ve realized? If there is, then don’t get discouraged…get excited! You have an essentially untapped resource you can now use to increase your sales.

That’s a great thought, but it doesn’t mean anything unless you learn how to spot a sales lead on Twitter. That’s where Snider’s blog post, focusing on the flowchart (created by @LeadSift), offers help with that.

The flowchart has a little fun in the process of helping you determine the temperature of a potential lead. It all begins with looking at followers, then their activity, then the type of activity.

There are a few red flags in the chart to look for to ensure the various Twitter profiles really are heading toward some level of a quality lead. Then the questions begin directing themselves toward any recent connection you may have had with them. It builds from there.

Now, a reality check…

Is this flowchart the be-all and end-all that will make your wildest prospecting dreams come true? No. Can it help you better understand some of elements that are present when a lead is warming for you on Twitter? Yes it can.

Snider also says as much:

While it’s not a perfect science (I’m sure there are some decision-makers out there who like Justin Bieber), this graphic can aid you in parsing out the tweets to pay attention to from the ones you can safely ignore.

Get what you can out of it and put it to use this week.

QUESTION ::: Do you currently, or have you in the past, used Twitter as a lead generation tool? Has it directly or indirectly led to any sales?

Let’s talk about it…

Read more »

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FRIDAY SALES GROWTH LINKS ::: RECOVERY TIPS, CASTING OFF, NETWORKING & RESPONDING WELL

Boss_308_shadowThis week’s links are about recovering well from a lost sale, casting off unhelpful things, how most networking efforts are useless and what to do if you have a bad manager.

Come back and visit this blog every Friday for my Friday Sales Growth Links feature where I filter online resources to help you grow in your sales career:

PROFESSIONAL GROWTH :::

MarrsCoaching.com Blog
What Happens When You Lose A Sale?
Pierce Marrs (@piercemarrs) offers a valuable blog post with the option to listen to Marrs read the text to you. I highly recommend it. The post offers direction on what to do, and understand, after losing a sale.

KEY QUOTE: “…I respectfully told him the truth. I could not meet the deadline and that he should buy from my competition. It was a difficult decision but the right one for him. I have no concern about having a chance when he does another project because I treated him the way I would want to be treated and he understood that. I did not lose my customer. I just lost that sale. There is a big difference.”

You won’t win them all, but you’ll win more sales if you recover from the losses the right way. #winthenexttime
[Reading/Listening Time: 3:30]

++++

TheSalesBlog.com
The 7 Things You Must Leave Behind to Get Ahead
Anthony Iannarino (@iannarino) is back again this week with a new resource. It’s a challenging one, even for me after all of my years in our industry.

If you approach this blog post with an open mind and willingness to be honest with yourself, the two minutes you spend reading this will give you an excellent  ROI:

KEY QUOTE: “… to say you believe something without acting in accordance with that belief is the same as not believing it.”

I wish I was handed this list back when I started my first job in sales. I really do. #takethechallenge
[Reading/Listening Time: 2:00]

++++

Harvard Business Review
99% of Networking Is a Waste of Time
Greg McKeown (@gregorymckeown for @HarvardBiz) boldly titles his latest article, but he has some great examples to back up his claim told to him by a man known as “Mr.Davos” because of his incredible ability to effectively network at the highest level at every event he attends.

KEY QUOTE: “Opportunities do not float like clouds in the sky. They are attached to people.”

Now you can be incredibly effective during your next conference, even if half of your colleagues have no idea why you’re doing all that you’re doing [or not doing]. #networklikeyouowntheplace
[Reading/Listening Time: 3:00]

++++

EyesOnSales.com
Six New Ways to Handle: “I Need to Talk to My Boss/Partner/Corporate” Etc.
Mike Brooks (@top20percent) has a real knack for putting together detailed nuts and bolts posts about what to say and do in specific selling conversations. This post is no exception.

KEY QUOTE: “these techniques won’t always work at overcoming this stall (sometimes they will, though!), but they will let you know how much of a stall this put off is, whether or not it’s a smokescreen, and how much of a shot you have at overcoming it, side-stepping it, or setting yourself up for a successful next call (or if there should even be a next call with a prospect).”

>> Be sure to bookmark his extremely valuable archive of posts. #dontmissthisresource
[Reading/Listening Time: 4:00]

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO :::

Score More Sales Blog
When You Have a Bad Sales Manager
Lori Richardson (@scoremoresales) once again appears in my weekly list of links with this recent post. She gives excellent advice to determine your next steps and what they should be depending on your situation.

KEY QUOTE: The number one reason someone quits a company is because of his or her direct supervisor.”

Bookmark Lori’s blog so you don’t need to wait for me to highlight her next valuable post. #badmanagergoodadvice
[Reading/Listening Time: 2:00]

>>  View past posts for Friday Sales Growth Links  <<

 

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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LEADERBOARD MOTIVATION: CONNECTING THE U.S. OPEN WITH SALES SUCCESS

us_open_leaderboard_306_shadowYour sales team needs more than pep talks and contests.

The leaderboard at the U.S. Open is the central hub of the most important information at the event. It’s constantly viewed by the professional golfers. both on and off the course, by attendees at the event and by a worldwide audience viewing it on TV, Internet and in print as well as those listening to or receiving scoring updates via radio.

The leaderboard is constantly being updated during event hours, then it’s discussed, stressed over and dissected every evening of the tournament to predict any number of possible outcomes after the final round. We can sometimes do that with our sales team leaderboards as well.

Yes, the leaderboard informs, but most of all it motivates.

In business, particularly in the sales industry, feeding off of the proper motivation is key to get the most out of a sales professional. Although there may be different ways each representative prefers to be motivated, I would posit that competition between colleagues is a universal motivator…whether we like it or not.

For many decades, inserting a leaderboard into the mix of sales players has been a fairly effective motivator within a sales team. The only problem with what has always been done is that the traditional leaderboard isn’t ever-present.

The motivation derived from the leaderboard’s competitive element may be felt more at the beginning and the end of each workday after each day’s updated rankings, but those sparks don’t always keep the flame burning hot throughout the moment by moment inner battles with doubt, confidence and belief within each sales professional throughout the entire day.

Enter SalesFitRx.

The SalesFitRx web and mobile app was first and foremost created to solve the problem of extracting hidden non-selling time in your day and giving you the opportunity to reinvest that time into more selling time.The real-time leaderboard is just one of the elements built into the sales tool to help keep your motivation flame running hot, leading to you getting the best out of yourself day after day.

ring_the_bell_311_-_shadowI guarantee you’ll feel a bit more fire when a colleague “rings the bell” in the app and you’re made aware they just jumped ahead of you on the leaderboard. You’ll have a bit more focus and effectiveness walking into that next sales meeting or when you make that next call with a prospect or client. It’s human nature, so use the motivation to your advantage.

SalesFitRx certainly isn’t the only sales tool out there with a real-time leaderboard for sales teams. This level of gamification is present in quite a few tools on the market today. But what other tools do not possess is the level of actionable data that SalesFitRx not only collects and organizes, but also gives you, the user and/or the sales manager, a variety of ways to easily and effectively determine where non-selling time lurks.

I’d tell you more about it, but we created a brief video to both show and tell you how it works.

Please view the video then determine if you have absolutely no doubt you’ll come out ahead of your sales goals if you keep doing what you’re currently doing as a sales team, or if SalesFitRx’s real-time actionable insights may be able to help you improve upon what your sales team is already doing.

And yes, this award-winning tool fully integrates with SalesForce.

Don’t let your competitors gain this edge over you.

Contact me today to get started: Karl.Gustafson@salesfitrx.com / 602-427-2399

 

Ask me about our FREE 30 Day FREE Trial

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EFFECTIVE SOCIAL SELLING REQUIRES SYNCING YOUR EMAIL WITH THIS ESSENTIAL TOOL

Social_Selling_3_-_321_shadowI have 4 great reasons why you need to read the rest of this post if you want to be more effective with your social selling efforts…more on those reasons in a moment.

Far be it for me to take credit for something I did not create. And, that’s not what SalesFitRx expects me to do for this blog. My role is to find resources like this one from Celina Guerrero (@socialtosales).

Her very extremely helpful blog post is titled, “4 Reasons To Sync Your Email With LinkedIn.”

If you’ve read this blog before, even a little, you know that I don’t give you all of the points of someone else’s resource so there’s no real reason to visit the original post. I want you to read Guerrero’s post in full (either now then come back to read the rest of my thoughts on it, or read it after you read my post).

The original author always says it better in the context of their entire post.

What I will share is a taste of the importance of syncing your email with LinkedIn. So let’s do it…

I haven’t heard it put exactly this way before, but this is a perfect description of the reason for being a member of LinkedIn:

The reason for being on LinkedIn is to be able to take your relationships off of LinkedIn. As Important as LinkedIn is in building relationships, it’s equally important to eventually take those relationships offline, and communicating via email is often the next step in that process.

Okay, but why is syncing important?

In addition to LinkedIn’s existing CRM-Lite features, syncing your email allows you to track your activity with connections on LinkedIn beyond the LinkedIn message and social engagement.

Guerrero then explains how to sync your email with LinkedIn. Keep in mind that your IT department may not allow this. Check with them to make sure this will not violate a company policy by your employer (if you’re your own boss, then have at it). Most likely they’ll tell you it’s not a problem to do so.

What comes next in the post, under the heading of, “Benefits of Syncing Your Email with LinkedIn” is the real secret sauce that caught my attention enough to get me to stay up later this evening to write out this blog post for you.

I won’t steal Celina’s thunder. Again, you need to read it yourself. But, I will say that very few of you know about all 4 of these benefits. If you do…congrats! You’re definitely ahead of the curve (and me).

For the rest of you, this is one relatively simple thing you can do today to quickly become more effective in your social selling efforts.

QUESTION ::: If you could sit down for coffee with one of the foremost social selling experts, what would you ask them?

Let’s talk about it…

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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FRIDAY SALES GROWTH LINKS ::: TRIGGERS, DEPARTURES, BUYER FRUSTRATIONS & EMAILS

Idea_Lightbulb_300_shadowThis week’s links cover becoming the sales trigger, recovering after a sales team member leaves, things your B2B buyer is tired of and some key emails you need to have ready for the right situations.

Come back and visit this blog every Friday for my Friday Sales Growth Links feature where I filter online resources to help you grow in your sales career:

EARN MORE SALES :::

TheSalesBlog.com
Be the Trigger Event

Speaker, author, and sales leader Anthony Iannarino (@iannarino) always has a good word to share, and I genuinely appreciate that he seems to consistently write his posts only as long as they need to be. Brevity is a great quality in a sales professional.

Iannarino may give you your latest “A-HA!” moment for your sales career in this post.

KEY QUOTE: You are the trigger when you know how to share the implications of political, technological, economic, and cultural changes in a way that allows your client to see around corners, avoiding hidden dangers, and taking advantage of new opportunities.

There should be at least one idea in reading this post where you’ll honestly feel more empowered. Keep writing Anthony. I enjoy making time to read what you have to say. #feelthepower
[Reading Time: 2:30]

LEADERSHIP :::

BizLockerRoom.com
3 Steps to Pivot Through a Key Employee Departure

CEO, columnist and author Marissa Levin (with @salesgravy) crafted this blog post for a fairly specific, yet common situation. I really like knowing this resource is out there for us. It’s helpful, efficiently written and encouraging for those sales teams who have recently lost a key colleague to another company.

KEY QUOTE: Leadership is never really about the needs of the leader. Leadership is about the followers – your employees, customer, investors, and partners. It’s about the entity and the community that you are building. However, to put yourself in the shoes of your stakeholders, you must have a strong sense of self-awareness. You must know your own triggers and reactions, and then adjust them accordingly. As a leader, your reactions to situations are being watched and evaluated.

What you do as the sales leader of your team matters a lot…especially in the little things. If you’re not in this situation at this time (and I hope you are not), bookmark this for yourself or for a peer who will eventually deal with this potentially difficult challenge. #leaderslead
[Reading Time: 2:30]

CONNECTING WITH BUYERS :::

RAIN Group
5 Things Your B2B Buyer Wants You To Stop Doing
B2B sales trainer, coach & consultant Ago Cluytens (@acluytens) posted this very helpful article with a video to accompany it. So, either watch or read…how many online resources give you that option?

What I really like about this is how well Cluytens puts us in the shoes of the B2B buyer in order to drive home some very important points.

KEY QUOTE: It’s not me versus you. It’s us versus the problem.

Just in case you glance at the 5 points and think you’ve heard it all before, I urge you to click on the video and listen to Ago explain his case to you. It’s worth your time, then pass it on to someone else. #dontbethatguy
[Reading Time: 4:30]
[Viewing Time: 4:59]

IanBrodie.com
[VIDEO] 3 Powerful Emails You MUST Have In Your Toolkit
Ian Brodie (@ianbrodie) has a series of videos he calls his “5 Minute Marketing Tips.” This week’s tip runs a bit longer than 5 minutes, but all is forgiven because he’s right about the importance of having these 3 emails written and ready in your arsenal.

KEY QUOTE: A lot of the big corporate email systems as well, are looking at system wide engagement rates. If you’ve got lots of people who aren’t opening and clicking your emails, they kind of mark you down, and they’re much more likely to push your emails into the spam folder or the promotions tab, or somewhere else. So the people who do want to get your emails might not see them. You don’t want people not opening and clicking your emails.

The video transcript is available below the video player, but Brodie will connect better with you about his tips if you watch him. Besides, you can’t hear his great accent if you read it yourself. #emailisnotdead
[Viewing Time: 6:54]

>>  View past posts for Friday Sales Growth Links  <<

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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SALES PRODUCTIVITY & THE 5 DATA ANALYSIS TRAPS

Data_299_shadowBeing busy and being productive are two different things.

I’m not the first person to say that, but a couple things happen when your finite sales time possesses busyness.

First, in order to put on busy work (whether you identify it as being non-productive or not), something else needs to be put off. What’s put off is something productive.

Second, you steal selling time from yourself [and your organization]. More active time selling will bring about more sales.

Paul Bilodeau (@PaulBilodeau) wrote an interesting blog post last month titled, “Sales Metrics: When Are You Measuring Too Much?” on The IMPACT Sales Training Blog. In it, he hits the nail squarely on the head regarding a number of key events when we are wasting time by doing unproductive things with data.

The post centers on the 5 signs that you’re simply measuring too many sales metrics. I’m not going to rehash his entire post here, you really should go read it yourself, but I will give you the first two signs.

The first sign is: When you don’t know what to do with the data:

“Just because you can measure something, doesn’t mean that you should.”

It should be clarified that sometimes you’re given data and there’s a period when you don’t know exactly what to do with it, if it’s valuable, for a certain period of time. A bit of efficient research can help determine whether your data contains truly actionable data.

Find out by researching ways to use metrics xy and z. There’s a lot written about true key performance indicators, even by industry. Don’t force yourself to use specific data somehow. That will quickly lead to misapplication. That’s dangerous.

Instead, choose a small handful of key metrics and truly analyze them to extract recommended actions whether they be bold moves or options to test.

The second sign in the post is: When You Can’t Trust the Accuracy of the Data.

There are times when you want certain data to be true so much, simply because it tells the story you want to tell, that you fail to completely vet the data’s accuracy. That’s also extremely dangerous.

Bilodeau astutely guides us here:

Do one thing, and do it well (or in this case, do 5 or 6 things, and do them with accuracy). Trying to juggle too much information can lead to inaccurate data and wasted time spent deciphering your own measurements. Inaccurate data related to one metric can create an internal perception that all of the metrics are suspect.

I would like to repost his takeaway paragraph here, but it’s far better if you go and read his entire post to, through the post’s full context, help the takeaway information really stick.

Once you discover your own ways to put off busy/non-productive work, you’ll gain back time. But, be warned that time can very easily be misused in other ways. So pour it into someplace effective.

I strongly recommend putting all of that found time into your active selling time. Increase that, and you’ll be able to use your growing bank account as all the motivation you’ll need to keep focused on productive selling time every single day.

QUESTION ::: Of the five signs, which do you believe is the most common trap? Are you guilty of any of them…c’mon, at times?

Let’s talk about it…

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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WHAT SOCIAL SELLING IS & IS NOT


Social_Selling_2_-_294_shadowSocial Selling is useless and is a complete waste of your time.

That’s what one [shrinking] camp would tell you. The other side would show you example after example of how beneficial it has been in growing their sales.

Social selling is for real. It has an important role in a certain percentage of sales that are closed every single day across all industries.

The larger debate is around agreeing on a clear description of social selling.

I came across a pair of resources last week. One was from HubSpot’s Sales Blog, and the other was from HubSpot’s Marketing Blog. Between the two of them, we can further define what social selling is and is not.

First let’s look at Emma Snider‘s (@emmajs24) post titled, “The Sales Professional’s Go-To Guide to Social Selling.”

Snider offers a solid definition and then adds this important reality check information:

“Instead of a hard closing tactic, social selling more closely resembles lead nurturing. Therefore, social selling isn’t for reps seeking quick wins or a silver bullet. Salespeople have to be willing to put in the time and effort to engage with their target buyers on an ongoing basis, and even then, there’s no guarantee that their efforts will pay off.”

The post then moves through a strong case for social selling (“The Power of Social Selling”), and then proceeds on with these topics which are described quite efficiently and very effectively:

  • How to Get Started With Social Selling
  • Optimizing Social Profiles for Social Selling
  • Working Social Selling Into Your Day
  • [Asks the question…] Is Social Selling Creepy?
  • Measuring Social Selling Success

This post really is a comprehensive look at the closely aligned topics of what social selling is and how to do it well. [Great work on this feature Ms. Snider.]

Next, let’s run through Jill Rowley‘s (@jill_rowley) post, “What Social Selling Isn’t.”

Rowley writes this feature as a straight-shooter with 15 different statements, all beginning with: “Social selling isn’t…”

Some examples include:

  • Social selling isn’t outsourcing to marketing.
  • Social selling isn’t immediate.
  • Social selling isn’t the new channel for spam.
  • Social selling doesn’t replace phone and email outreach.

…and:

  • Social selling isn’t right for everyone.
  • Social selling isn’t about selling.

Each claim is described and the entire post makes a strong case for its thorough understanding of what social selling is not. Read it all now. You’ll be glad you did.

And thank you, Jill, for this excellent resource for all of us to bookmark.

QUESTION ::: After reading both posts, where do you personally see opportunities for improvement?

Let’s talk about it…

Click here to download our free guide:
2015 Guide to Sales Optimization: Restoring Sanity to Sales

Read more »

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FRIDAY SALES GROWTH LINKS ::: WRITING IT DOWN, SECRETS OF BARISTAS & DERAILING THE SALE

Coffee_342_shadowThis week’s links are about having greater effectiveness through note taking, the metaphor of the barista, the power of FREE and 5 great ways to lose a sale.

Come back and visit this blog every Friday for my Friday Sales Growth Links feature where I filter online resources to help you grow in your sales career:

BE MORE EFFECTIVE :::

The Sales Heretic
Eight Ways Taking Notes Boosts Your Sales
Did you know there are at least 8 beneficial reasons for taking notes during sales meetings? Don Cooper“The Sales Heretic”(@doncooper) put together this list that’s both efficient and effective in explaining why you need to be taking good notes during every sales call.

KEY QUOTE: “Reviewing your notes after the conversation can enable you to make connections you previously missed and trigger questions that didn’t occur to you at the time. This gives you a great reason to follow up later with meaningful questions and valuable ideas.

Personally, I used to simply write on the notepad in my portfolio, but I switched to a more premium moleskin journal. I believe it has been yet another way to improve a prospect’s perception of me, and I’ve been asked about it many times at the close of meetings. #noted
[Reading Time: 1:30]

Sales Equity Blog
How Your Client Experience Can Rock Like A Barista Does
We have an inherent desire to be known by others. Not by everyone, but by a select few. The barista connects with customers on this very foundational level. The simple act being known by name and by our coffee preferences connects us to a brand like few other things do.

We need to be those kinds of top-notch baristas to our customers.

I enjoyed reading and later thinking about this post by Fernando Ramirez (@fredlistens). I believe you will as well.

KEY QUOTE: “For a Barista, it is as simple as recognizing customers by their first name or how they like their coffee. Be the barista that customers care about and know. Remember, customers aren’t just buying a cup of coffee. They are paying for the experience & your expertise that comes along with your product offering.

“Focus less on the transactional aspect of business (product features, pricing, etc.), and more on your clients’ business challenges and the kind of help you can offer them. It’s the relationship that matters the most.”

What needs to change in order to make your customer relationship experience less like a salesperson and more like a barista. #grandequadnonfatonepumpnowhipmocha #cancelthat #takeitblack
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CLOSING THE DEAL :::

Saleskick Blog
5 Tips to Making a FREE Offer to Close a Sale
Depending on what you’re selling, giving something away free, even for a limited time, may not be possible or the best thing to do. But, there are some situations, perhaps some you haven’t yet thought of, where the right free offer seals the deal.

Jim Logan (@saleskick) writes about the importance of timing, using the right offer and delivering full customer service to prospects who accept your free offer.

KEY QUOTE: “If you build the case for your product or service – benefits, difference, reason to believe – and close with an offer to try it for FREE, it demonstrates supreme confidence in everything you’ve presented. If you open and push the FREE offer, you run the risk of appearing desperate. Sad, but true.”

Again, this isn’t for every situation. What might you be able to offer that you haven’t yet been offering? #youarefreetoclosethesale
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WHAT NOT TO DO :::

The Center For Sales Strategy Blog
Derail the Sale? Five Sure-Fire Ways
Steve Marx (@SteveMarx) offer 5 strong reminders worth reviewing [every week] before setting off to make the most of your sales week.

KEY QUOTE: “In some cases, you can learn about specific challenges they’re facing or opportunities they’re chasing. And information about specific people at the company that you might approach? If you want to stay in the dark about them, be sure to steer clear of LinkedIn.

Not only is it easier than ever to qualify a prospect, but these days many of the best prospects are raising their hands and qualifying themselves. But never mind all that: Derail your sale by investing gobs of time in an unqualified prospect.”

Be honest with yourself and look for ways you may be guilty of 1 or more of these, at least in part, then make the changes needed to be more effective at what you do best…getting the sale#salesFAILs
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