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The Upside: Killer Sales Tips

3 posts from May 2010

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May 24, 2010

Join Glance at Boston's Sales 2.0 Conference East, June 28 | Gain Valuable Insight on Winning More Deals by Using Sales 2.0 Tools and Techniques

Sales 2.0 Conference is coming to Boston's Renaissance Waterfront Hotel, Monday, 28, 2010. Sponsored by Selling Power Magazine, the Sales 2.0 East conference sets the standard in learning about Sales 2.0 technologies and processes.Sales 2.0 Conference East Sales Productivity in the Cloud

The West Coast held their version of Sales 2.0 on March 10, with over 600 sales and marketing leaders in attendance. 

Sales 2.0 Conference East highlights will include:

  • Sales & Marketing Alignment
  • Compensation & Sales Performance
  • Sales Process Management and Metrics
  • Increasing Sales Opportunities without Increasing Headcount
  • Trigger-Based Selling Tactics
Register today!

See you there,
Carla Gates, Director, Marketing, Glance Networks

Follow Glance Networks on Twitter and Facebook for daily tips on Sales and Marketing 2.0.

May 20, 2010

You CAN (and Should) Use Twitter for Sales Leads

A recent survey on Twitter usage in the US by Edison Research/Arbitron Internet shows that your prospects and customers are out there on Twitter, and if you're not, you're missing an opportunity

Twitter Usage in America: 2010, conducted this past February and released last month, concludes that Twitter is more of a broadcast channel than many realize. The majority of users don't post...but they are definitely reading and clicking.

Highlights of Twitter usage include:

  • 87% of all Americans are now aware of Twitter (the percentage of Americans who are aware of Twitter actually supersedes the percentage of those who have Internet access (85%))!
  • That 87% is compared to just 26% who knew about Twitter's existence last year. (By comparison, Facebook had 88% awareness among those surveyed, with 41% saying they had a profile.) 
  • 42% of respondents are using Twitter to learn more about products and services, and 41% are using it to swap reviews.
  • 28% are using Twitter to look for discounts and sales, and 21% are using it to purchase products and services.
  • 19% of Twitter users are out there seeking customer support.
  • When asked "Do you follow any brands or companies on social networks", 51% said they follow brands on Twitter.

Highlights of Twitter demographics include:

  • Twitter users are well-educated (30% attended a four-year college, compared to 19% of the general population; 63% have a college degree) and relatively well-off (nearly half have a yearly household income above $50,000.)
  • Twitter users index very highly for technology ownership (49% own iPods, 23% own iPhones, and 28% own a Blackberry).
  • 53% of Twitter users are women; compared to 47% men.

In summary, although the name is goofy, and the channel is often disparaged for it’s frivolous number of tweets, the fact remains that many intelligent, well-educated consumers are leveraging Twitter for their buying decisions. Buyers are consuming information on Twitter as an alternative to traditional channels;  and this shift is a huge sales opportunity.

(And BTW, if Twitter is still a black hole to you, go to amazon.com and buy this book right now, title not necessary to mention.)

- Carla Gates, Director, Marketing, Glance Networks

Follow Glance Networks on Twitter and Facebook for daily tips on Sales and Marketing 2.0.

May 19, 2010

Truly Lovely Customer Service, or Why Are the Brits So Cheerful?

There's an old joke that goes like this:

Q: What is the difference between American and British manners?

A: The British have them...the Americans don't.

Joking aside, the "British politeness factor" seems to be borne out in market research: in a receEven the British street signs are politent poll carried out by international marketing company GMI, more than 25,000 people from 35 countries rated UK citizens to be "the most polite and best educated"

Consider our recent experience here at Glance:

A customer of ours, Bill Boardman, was using Glance's screen sharing tool to collaborate with a colleague, sharing CAD  drawings.  Bill was using Glance to view his guest’s screen, and called to report a problem viewing some of his colleague’s images.  Debby, one of our fabulous engineers, got on the phone with Bill. Debby got Bill’s guest on the phone, changed a setting, and voila, all fixed.

In Debby's words, "There was nothing new there – most support issues we deal with are minor and readily fixed with a few minutes on the phone.
"The remarkable thing was that from the start, Bill was amazingly cheerful and seemed to genuinely enjoy the process of picking up the phone and talking to a human being.  We had a great conversation and while Bill came away with a solution to his problem, I came away with a glimpse into his design work, a recommendation for a new car (Subaru diesel), and a big smile on my face.

"As soon as I got off the phone our CEO, Rich Baker, who had overheard my half of the phone call, asked: 'Brit?'"

How could he tell?  We’ve noticed around here that our transatlantic customers just seem to always be having a blast and it’s a lot of fun to take their calls. In fact, Bill's first words when we answered the phone were, "Is this the wonderful Glance Networks of Boston, Massachusetts?!"

Wow. Can we learn something here?

My guess is that Bill started off his tech support call assuming he had a decent chance of getting his question answered; and his cheerful tone and words reflected that presumption. Consequently, we responded with stepped-up enthusiasm (and here at Glance, we're pretty enthusiastic to start with!), determined to fulfill Bill's request, no matter what. See how that works?

What we learned from that interaction with Bill was this:

1) For consumers requiring support: Throw out the baggage you've acquired from previous unsatisfactory customer service experiences and be optimistic about your next call. Let your words and tone to the service rep who answers your call, reflect that. See if the service rep responds similarly.

2) For businesses giving support: Answer calls with human beings (and cheerful ones at that) instead of letting it go into the queue - if we're asking consumers to go out on a limb and be cheerful, than you've got to do your part by making their customer service experience positive.

Give it a try. What have you got to lose?

So, what does your business do to ensure cheerfulness on both ends of the call?

-- Carla Gates, Director, Marketing, Glance Networks

Follow Glance Networks on Twitter and Facebook for daily tips on Service, Sales and Marketing 2.0.