August 13, 2015 11:00 PM
We have all endured presentations where the information being delivered was dry, boring and tedious. We sit there and daydream, disengaging from the speaker and wishing for the show to end – or for the courage to get up and leave before the end. Our original reason for going was to get information that would help us to do our job better or grow our business.
August 12, 2015 11:00 PM
We can easily get lost among the sexy, disruptive and company-changing analytics, automation, customer-driven content exploration and social selling tools that seek to own sales today. As both a heavy tech user and, previously, a software developer, all that innovation does excite me. But as new tech grabs much of the news, we’re letting ourselves become so focused on the digital side that we’ve forgotten it’s only part of the equation.
August 11, 2015 11:00 PM
Today’s sales professionals are expected to negotiate, close and complete deals while traveling as easily as they can when they are in the office. That was the promise that came first with laptops, then smartphones and now the cloud. And while main offices and managers believe that their sales teams can meet this expectation, reality is unfortunately much different.
August 9, 2015 11:00 PM
It’s astounding how much leeway salespeople are given in how they go about making calls and making their numbers each year. In many companies, selling is considered more an art than a science. Sales calls are as unique as snowflakes. I find it ironic, in light of the varied approaches to selling, that measuring performance is so precise. Seller achievement is calculated to decimal places throughout every year by dividing YTD revenue booked by YTD quota. The journey is uncertain but the desired outcome of clients paying invoices is clearly defined.
August 6, 2015 11:00 PM
Predictive analytics has been top-of-mind for marketers over the past several years. Yet, when it comes to innovation, there is often a lack of clarity on how exactly predictive science can fuel success of new product concepts. The key is in the granular approach to the idea in the context of its category, marketplace, and demand factors – breaking it down into components and using analytics to understand the concept’s evolution in the future.
August 2, 2015 11:00 PM
Companies are always on the lookout for their next top sales managers, and grooming new talent for a future in management is a constant preoccupation for sales leaders. After all, great sales managers can do more than just make quota – they can elevate the performance of the people around them and boost sales results from the entire team. However, many times, companies discover that it’s not always easy to tell which salespeople are going to be great sales managers. It’s not always as simple as taking your top-producing salespeople and tapping them to be sales managers.
July 30, 2015 11:00 PM
If you are a millennial searching for potential career opportunities, or a more seasoned professional seeking a mid-career change, you may want to consider a career in sales. Not because it’s easy ‒ it’s not. Building a successful sales career is challenging, but it can also be interesting and satisfying. And, if you are ambitious and highly motivated, the financial rewards can be unlimited. Best of all, in sales there are virtually no barriers to entry.
July 29, 2015 11:00 PM
In this era of Big Data, we’re inundated with messages to use data to drive personalized and predictive experiences for customers. But for many, the gap between this data-driven vision and reality is large and growing; according to Forrester Research, most organizations are using a mere 12 percent of their data to make marketing decisions.
July 26, 2015 11:00 PM
In a joint study on decision making, research psychologists Irving Janis and Leon Mann describe a wartime phenomenon called the “old sergeant syndrome” — when infantry on the frontlines, having witnessed the deaths of many comrades, are known to actually delay making decisions that might protect them from a similar fate. Though anecdotal, the old sergeant syndrome illustrates just how powerful the human preference for staying the course can be.
July 23, 2015 11:00 PM
Content is no longer exclusive to the marketer’s toolkit. There is a common need for good content to support both marketing and sales goals; content that spurs engagement, drives conversion and meets the needs of your customers.
Video is a powerful tool that can work across departments and across the sales cycle. For marketers, video is often a key component of the marketing mix. Its purpose is focused on positioning the brand, promoting products and services and generating leads for the sales team.
July 21, 2015 11:00 PM
It’s no secret that modern marketing campaigns rarely launch without being accompanied by a major online advertising push. The positions of digital marketer and social media manager have become standard at just about every large American company.
The question is: why?
July 19, 2015 11:00 PM
Today there is a phenomenon known as the “Google” effect. That is – technology advances are producing a society where people expect all their technology interactions to be as accurate, fast and reliable as Google. At the same time, consumers are more empowered than ever before, with the ability to research product reviews in milliseconds and competitors just a click away.
July 16, 2015 11:00 PM
While even the word “negotiation” can evoke fear, stress and anxiety for many, the intent is quite simple: to discuss and ultimately agree on a deal. Whether it’s a multimillion dollar contract or just deciding where to meet for lunch, life is rife with negotiations. The negotiation process is a lot like a chess game where strategy reigns supreme – one thoughtfully considered move at a time. Make a careless, short-sighted, ill-conceived move and suffer the perilous consequences.
July 12, 2015 11:00 PM
Highly effective field sales management is the single most important driver of overall sales force performance. We see it time and again: when a company with an average sales team brings on a great manager, that manager elevates the performance of the entire team. In military terms, an excellent sales manager is a “force multiplier” as he or she enhances the effectiveness of each individual rep, leading to significantly higher rates of incremental growth.
July 8, 2015 05:05 AM
For many B2B organizations, summer is an important mid-year turning point – a time to assess sales success, look toward meeting end-of-year goals, and/or plan for your new year. As social selling takes on greater importance in the sales process, organizations – including marketers, trainers and sales enablement professionals – can use the summer months to help sales teams get savvy about social selling, and lay the groundwork for strong sales, whether you’re wrapping up the year or gearing up for the new year.
July 6, 2015 09:13 AM
Sales and marketing professionals know that the bar for effective sales and marketing engagement has never been higher. We’ve responded with audience-focused campaigns, salesforce and marketing automation, and content targeted to each buyer who influences a sale. Many companies have invested in buyer personas, data mining apps and social media listening posts.
And yet it’s hard to find buyers who say that we’ve made their decisions any easier.
June 30, 2015 11:00 PM
In the ongoing battle for market share, brands pour over metrics and tweak strategies to increase customer loyalty. The stakes are high, customer acquisition costs are expensive and most businesses can’t afford to lose sales to competitors. With prices commoditized in many industries, today’s battleground is centered squarely on customer experiences.
June 30, 2015 11:00 PM
When you’re pregnant (or when your partner is pregnant), you start seeing pregnant women everywhere you go. Something similar happens every time we put together our annual summer issue, with its focus on technology’s impact on sales and marketing.
June 29, 2015 01:28 PM
Sales negotiations can go awry quickly, and in any number of ways. While there’s no surefire way to barter a positive outcome, avoiding a handful of common mistakes can decrease the likelihood of the negotiation getting derailed. In a blog post on HubSpot.com, sales management consultant Jeff Hoffman shared the four worst mistakes reps make when they negotiate.
June 29, 2015 01:41 PM
When people land on your website, you want them to do something — something that progresses your specific goals. Encouraging a prospective customer to take a desired action is one of the hardest tasks that markets face. “You need to focus less on beautiful design or amazing copy and more on creating a powerful and compelling call to action,” says blogger, author and social media strategist Jeff Bullas (jeffbullas.com).
June 29, 2015 02:13 PM
As technology continues its frenzied leap forward, you’ve never had more tools at your fingertips for reaching your market, engaging your customer, closing a deal or hitting your numbers. With so many products to choose from and limited time for research, you may be inclined to stick with popular, big-name solutions rather than trying something you’ve not heard of before.
June 29, 2015 02:19 PM
It’s easy to jump to the sales tool du jour in the hope that it will boost your numbers. Too many companies have discovered the hard way this is a mistake. Eric Estrilla of Sales Benchmark Index (SalesBenchmarkIndex.com) says the sales tools you implement across your sales operations should be defined by overall organizational needs, which are defined by your product, marketing and sales strategies.