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The Upside: Killer Sales Tips

5 posts from June 2010

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June 21, 2010

Overcome Fear of Cold Calling with These 5 Tips From Sales Experts

Hate cold calling? So do 95 percent of sales professionals. “Only 3 to 5 percent of all sales pros don’t have any problems doing it,” says Bill Grimes, president of Grimes Associates.

You heard right! They hate cold calling so much that, according to BSRP, the average sales person sells only 1.5 hours per day, and doesn't make a call until 11:00 am. Many sales professionals won't even call a prospect back a second time.

Yet, we all understand that prospecting is absolutely necessary to build any business. So why is it that this basic task becomes so overwhelming? And how can you overcome fear of cold calling?

Sales coaches will tell you that this fear goes back to common childhood fears of not fitting in, fear of rejection, and other deep rooted anxiety. Unfortunately, and by definition, prospecting has a crazy way of throwing all those fears and hurts you thought you had overcome, back in your face. And, the more “no’s” you hear, the more you develop further fear of rejection and dread of prospecting in general.

Here is great advice on conquering your fear of cold calling, from five of the wisest Sales gurus I follow everyday on Twitter:

1) Get Good Sales Training; and Keep Up the Personal Development. Starting out with great skills can help build your competence and your confidence, removing any fear of failure, any shred of doubt that you can succeed for yourself, for your company, and for your client. Personal development is the key to unlocking the confidence and the courage to succeed in sales. Your prospects and your dream clients will recognize these attributes and skills in you, because you recognize them in yourself. [Anthony Iannarino]

2) Start Out Expecting the "No". Sales is a world of "no" - 98% of your calls will result in "no". Get used to it; expect it; don't take it personally. Prospecting is simply discarding all the unqualified leads and retaining the "gold". [Steve Harper]

3) Prepare Better. Have a compelling reason for the call. Reference something relevant to your prospect's business, their industry. Use personalized, customized information in your openings and voice mail, coupled with on-target value statements. Practice your phone presentation. Tape yourself, and call others who will give you honest feedback. "Having a compelling reason and a compelling message can help reduce your fear big time!" [Paul Castain]

4) Break Your Call Blocks Into Small Chunks and Set Goals for Those Chunks. It is much easier to set a goal to make 10 calls than 100, or to dial for 15 minutes rather than an hour. It is much easier overcome your initial fears and trepidations a few calls at time. You can get your mind around these small chunks. [Jeb Blount]

5) Accept That You are Dealing With Their Reality, Not Yours, and you can get over your hang ups about rejection and objections. Prospects are not rejecting you, they rejecting what you represent, an unwanted interruption. The objection is not to your “value proposition”, but to being taken off track. Their response is intuitive, not intellectual, so it is up to you to deal with it on that level, rather than worry yourself about it and get hung up. The question becomes not how you can avoid it, but how do you use it to your advantage to get what you want, namely their attention long enough to get them engaged. [Tibor Shanto]

If you're one of the 5% of Sales Pros who are comfortable with cold calling, or you've figured out how overcome the fear, comment on our blog, drop me an email (marketing@glance.net), or tweet us @GlanceNetworks, and let me know how you do it!

-- Carla Gates, Director, Marketing

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

June 17, 2010

Glance 2.5 for Macs - Now in Beta | Download Today for Faster Screen Updates, Lead Capture, and Social Media Invites!

For our Mac community:

Glance has always been about quick and simple screen sharing. We're now taking "quick" to a whole new level. Our upcoming Mac release 2.5 (available today in beta) puts Macs on the same parity with the Windows version of Glance, and makes Glance faster than ever.

See for yourself how fast Glance sessions can be. Download the beta now. Give it a workout and tell us how it goes (email mac@glance.net with your feedback).

Glance 2.5 features include:

  • Faster screen updates
  • Snappy slide transitions
  • Present from any monitor connected to your Mac (click "G > Settings > Options")

Plus,

  • Collect guests' names and contact info for better lead capture. Your guests will now see three new optional fields: Name, E-mail, and Phone. You can see the information they enter, along with our estimate of their geographic locations, after each session. (Call us and we can make any of these fields "required".)
  • Invite guests to your session via Twitter and Facebook. When you start a session, you'll see two new buttons in the Session Info box. Clicking the Facebook icon posts a link to the session on your wall. Clicking the Twitter icon tweets a link to it. Both are great ways to build buzz about about your live events

If you're on a Mac and already a Glance user, give Glance 2.5 beta a try today (and let us know how it goes!)

-- Carla Gates, Director, Marketing

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

June 16, 2010

4 BIG Reasons to Align Your Sales and Marketing Organizations (or, Sales 2.0 + Marketing 2.0 = Smarketing = Business Success)

Over a year ago I took over the Sales and Marketing organizations here at Glance. The first thought that came to my mind was, “Cool: Smarketing!”

It’s been damn crazy ever since. 

For all of you VPs of Marketing who look at Sales Management and say “…you have no clue what I am doing over here”; and, all of you VPs of Sales who return the favor: “…you have no idea what it takes to fill our funnel”; I am here to tell you that you are both right!

The predominant part of my career has been on the Sales side, so at the start of all of this, I naturally drifted towards the Sales mentality;  I hadn’t a clue, particularly in today’s world, how hard it is to generate leads; to put it my Sales Guys terms - it’s a bitch. 

And I don’t mean for the market-leading, well-funded, everyone-knows-your-brand companies -- I mean for the majority of us, the working stiffs; tied in more ways than one, to the promise of hitting it big. So if you’re reading this, and your focused on one or the other, I feel you man!

In all seriousness I would strongly recommend to any CEO, to break down the cubicles, be innovative, and build a Smarketing Department. Allow me to provide some insight as to how this approach has benefited Glance (and how it will benefit you):

  1. Seamless Selling: As a SAAS company, it’s all about demand gen, downloads, and conversion rates. These functions are inseparable; our marketing message and our sales scripts must be one and the same. Integration of the two departments allows feedback to flow from customers mouths, to our sales ears, directly and immediately to our promotional minds; and then immediately back out to market via Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and the like.  There is neither gap nor debate about how, when, or why to respond. It is all simply seamless.
  2. Cohesive Culture: Marketing sits intermingled within the Sales department here, each is part of the others' meetings. Marketing needs to understand the Sales effort, and Sales needs to understand the lead gen effort. For us, this cohesive Smarketing culture serves two distinct purposes: it removes ego, and it allows the lead gen side to understand the Sales world, i.e. the audience we are ALL selling to.
  3. Fail Forward Fast: Decision-making is no longer hindered by opinion and ego; "what do the Sales Guys want", versus, "what do the Marketing MBA’s think"; of course there is some of that, there should be, its healthy; but in the end, because of our structure, the perspectives are not nearly as skewed as I have seen in a “standard” organization.
  4. Mutual Respect: Let’s call a spade a spade: some Marketing folks think they are smarter than Sales people; we can change this by showing Marketing how difficult a day in the life of a Sales Pro can be. And with Sales, they hear the demands made by management, the sheer volume of work placed upon their Marketing cousins, and recognize that there is much more that goes into lead gen than meets the eye. Close physical proximity allows an upfront and personal experience in everyone's trenches, resulting in a deeper understanding and respect for all.

In the end, as the Sales 2.0 market comes into its “early majority” state;  we see marketing tools integrating with Sales, sales tools to marketing, seamless analysis of the entire cycle, social networks turning into business networks, and awards for top tools, top producers, and top influencers. The lines have blurred -- who can tell where marketing ends and sales begins anymore? Simply put, it’s come completely together -- so we have adjusted our internal functions to reflect the market, its interactions, expectations, and patterns.

Maybe we’re too smart for our own good, but no big deal, I can always blame the guy that runs Sales!

-- Tom Scontras, VP, Sales and Marketing

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

June 10, 2010

Before Sales 2.0 there was Cycling 2.0 | Maximizing Sales Success with Metrics

Cycling is a relatively unknown sport here in the U.S. -– recently made hip by seven-time Tour de France winner, Lance Armstrong.

What many people don’t know, however, is that Lance changed cycling forever with his revolutionary and sometimes ridiculed training techniques, which included integrating technology and supporting tools, all geared to maximize his chances of winning the Tour.

Lance's results have produced a now-mainstream training process and integrated technology (called a PowerTap) which practically every professional cyclist and many amateurs now use religiously to deliver winning results. The core process is all about capturing and analyzing data to improve:

  • Power: the amount of wattage delivered with each pedal stroke to the rear wheel;
  • Cadence: the number of pedal strokes in a minute; and
  • VO2max: the highest heart rate where your body can maintain performance by removing lactic acid from your legs at an equal or greater rate than which it is created.

(I think I got that right.  Hopefully one of my cycling-geek Sales 2.0 mates –- like Umberto Milletti at InsideView -- will correct me!)

CYCLIST'S FIELD TEST

In this new era, cyclists perform something called a field test; they vary, but essentially these consist of three all-out 8 minute efforts – brief snapshots of work, but at maximum intensity.  Performance data from each marker is analyzed to determine the current condition of the cyclist and where any room for improvement may lie.

Only with this data can a detailed action plan be created, by providing the athlete with a very specific set of activities to be performed on each and every ride. No longer does a top professional pedal without a plan.  Otherwise, he’s just wasting his time (something in cycling known as junk miles).

At the end of every long day in the saddle, output from each key performance indicator is reviewed to measure actual performance against that days' goal. The ultimate objective is to find the perfect blend of production in all three areas in order to yield the optimal result.

Lance Armstrong pioneered this approach to cycling. He and his coach studied every one of the 21 stages of the Tour de France.  They looked at their nearest competitor’s results from the previous years and determined that if Lance could complete the entire race within a certain time, then he would win. 

Once they knew the ultimate target to beat, they simply reversed-engineered his daily activities, built his program, and began to execute the plan.  Get where I'm going?

SALES 2.0's FIELD TEST

With the onset of Sales 2.0, delivering top performance revenue results is no different.

As an elite Sales Pro, if you know what you did last year, and you have the sales tools and data to support it, then you should be able to, with pinpoint accuracy, determine precise sales activities which when delivered each day will produce winning results.

Here is what we measure at Glance:
  • Marketing Power: spend and lead-gen activity needed to stimulate required demand. This is critical; no power out, no power in. Our success this year has been predicated by our continual analysis of our output (SEO, PPC, Drip, social media, etc.) and the results it generates.  Realizing there is always room for improvement, we need the ability to make changes on the fly.  That’s why we recently became a Hubspot customer.  Hubspot serves as our very own “marketing power tap”, helping us to determine if or when to shift gears.
  • Sales Cadence: daily sales activity required in converting leads to closure. If our Marketing Power output is optimal, then the difference between delivering sales or not depends upon our Sales Cadence. How many times do we need to touch our prospects in a 7-day trial period?  Our lead nurturing campaigns? During smart dials?  How do we manage our multi-point customer relationships and deliver sales demos in an instant?  That’s why we have partnered with Fishnet Media, leverage InsideView, LinkedIn, track key contacts via social media with Gist and of course, use Glance.  
  • Organizational VO2max: this is the point of peak performance, which lies just beneath maximum output -- where effective demand generation and efficient sales output (demand, number of reps, closure rates, average deal size, average sales cycle, etc.) can maintain a pace to hit target in a consistent manner, also known as euphoria.  Rarely do organizations hit this riders' high.  Here, we’re dialing it in through strong sales and marketing analytics.  We use Hubspot Reports and Salesforce.com dashboards to monitor SEO results, social media success, daily trials, outbound sales activity, conversion rates, and more.

Recently I have read some criticism of Sales 2.0 process, tools, etc.  Who knows, maybe this sales 2.0 revolution is over the top, non-pure, and breaks with tradition.  Maybe we’re too serious about all of this measurement stuff.  I mean, is Sales 2.0 just a fad?

Just like they said about Lance, right? 

-- Tom Scontras, VP, Sales & Marketing

June 01, 2010

What’s in My Sales Stack? | From Bill Rice's Better Closer blog

Kaleidico CEO, Founder, and Chief Sales Officer, Bill Rice, is also one of our favorite Sales 2.0 bloggers. We regularly read Bill's thoughtful posts, tweets, and thought leadership from Better Closer discussing social selling and competitive intelligence. Bill Rice, Better Closer blog, Kaleidico, puts Glance at the top of hs sales 2.0 stack, Glance.net, Glance Networks

So we were honored when Bill's recent post featured Glance as a key tool in his recommended sales 2.0 stack (or toolkit) - a concept we live and breathe in our own selling processes here at Glance.

Here's Bill's post:

"Glance, one of the software tools in my Sales Stack, introduced a very interesting Sales 2.0 concept in  their post on Building a Custom Sales 2.0 Toolkit. They framed it in the analogy of the more traditional software stack. My simple definition: the combination of multiple software to create a full-featured, consistent, and stable platform on which you can build solutions.

I think they created a very useful analogy. It structures our thinking on how to enable our sales objectives, not just chase hope-filled sales tools. Using this framework you can quickly identify and setup your sales 2.0 platform and get to selling, confident you have the tools and the platform you need to win..." Read the rest of the post at Bill's blog.

--Carla Gates, Director, Marketing