Sales and Sales Management Blog

January 27, 2015

Do You Talk To Your Prospects and Clients or Do You Talk At Them?

Knowledge should be one of the most powerful tools in our toolbox. 

Knowing how to use specialized industry vocabularies should also be one of our basic and power tools.

In reality, for many of us, knowledge and specialized lingo are powerful—in costing us business.

Naturally a great many new salespeople are tempted to try to impress prospects and clients by demonstrating their product knowledge and slinging their newly learned industry vocabulary around.  They tend to oversell, answer questions no prospect has ever had, dazzle with words the prospect and client may not be familiar with.  They talk about the fine points of their product or service; discuss how their service or product will impact ROI; how best to onboard new employees or products or services;  how their product or service creates a new paradigm to address the prospect’s issues or needs; and the list goes on.

Impact ROI?  I see, you mean whether or not it makes me more money than it costs.  Onboarding new employees or products or services?  I get it, you mean purchasing and integrating a new product or service or hiring and orienting a new employee.  Creating a new paradigm to address issues or needs?  You mean a different way of dealing with the problem, right? 

You can say ROI, onboarding, or paradigm, or you could just talk to your prospect.  Some say that if you want credibility with your prospects and clients you have to speak their language.  I don’t have a problem with that in the least—if you’re actually speaking your prospect’s language.  But how many prospects actually talk about onboarding a new product or service or creating a new paradigm to address an issue or problem?  And there’s certainly something to be said about just talking to the prospect in plain English.

And very often new sellers butcher their newly acquired vocabulary and confound and frustrate their prospects with their enthusiastic demonstration of their knowledge of the minutiae of their product or service.  Many lose more sales than they capture because of their lack of discipline and their need to impress.

Unfortunately I’ve noticed over the past three years that this desire to impress isn’t confined to new sellers.  I consistently run across experienced sellers who should know better that are making the same rookie mistakes.  The only real difference between these experienced sellers and new salespeople is experienced sellers tend to have a better grasp of the industry lingo.

In the current tough selling environment even experienced sellers are falling into the trap of trying to oversell and to impress with their knowledge and ‘deep’ understanding of the prospect’s issues.  We tend to pull out all the stops and often end up losing our discipline and the prospect’s attention.  We try to force the sale.

Rather than creating new clients, we end up alienating them. 

Whether you’re a relatively new seller bursting with enthusiasm and wanting to impress your prospects or an experienced seller feeling the pressure to produce, you need to step back and relax.  Giving in to the pressure to oversell and force the sale is self defeating.  Address your prospect’s needs and leave the unnecessary demonstration of knowledge and the impressive vocabulary at the office. 

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August 12, 2014

Your Client has a Vested Interest in that Referral They Just Gave You

I hope you are generating referrals from your clients.  If you’re not you should be as referrals are one of the most effective, if not the most effective, way of growing your business.  But know that once you have gotten the referral your job is hardly done.  No, I’m not talking about contacting and selling the referred prospect, I’m talking about keeping your client in the loop.

One of the primary reasons clients are hesitant to give referrals is that they are afraid of being embarrassed in front of a friend, relative, acquaintance or co-worker by you not performing as you should.  So, when they do give a referral, they have a vested interest in what’s going on between you and the person to whom they referred you.  Their interest isn’t in whether or not the prospect purchases but in how the prospect perceives you and the value being referred by the client.

When a client gives you a referral, you learn a number of things:

  1. The client will give referrals.  Obviously, you just received one or more.
  2. How well the client understands what you do.  The quality of the referral will let you know how well your client understands what you do and who is a good referral for you.  The better the referral, the more the client understands.  The poorer the referral, the more work you must do to educate them for future referrals (and future sales to them for that matter).
  3. How much they trust you.  Generally, the stronger the trust relationship between the client and the referred prospect, the more the client trusts you.
  4. They have more referrals to give.  Seldom will a client give you all of the referrals they can make at one time.  If a client gives referrals, you can almost bet they have more to give—if you keep earning them.

How do you get those additional referrals?  Additional referrals are earned, just as the original referrals were earned.  You earn those additional referrals by:

  1. Giving your client the assurance that you’re trustworthy with referrals.  You must show through your actions that their trust in giving you a referral was well placed by making sure that the referred prospect has an exceptional experience with you.
  2. By keeping your client fully informed of everything that is occurring with the referred prospect.
  3. By continuing to deliver superior service to your client.

Does the above mean that you must perform perfectly with the referred prospect?  What if there was an honest mistake or miscommunication?  What if something out of your control happened during the course of the sale?  Will these incidents destroy any possibility of acquiring additional referrals?

No, not at all.

The keys to gaining additional referrals from a client are to treat the referred prospect exactly in the same manner you treated the client and to keep your client informed of what is transpiring between yourself and the referred prospect.

Your client gave you referrals because they understood that giving referrals was in their own best interests and because you earned them through the service you gave them.  You must now demonstrate that same level of service for the referral they have given you.  They expect—actually demand—you perform at the same level—or higher—for those they refer to as you did for them.  That level of service you gave them was what demonstrated to them that they could trust with a referral.  Anything short of that and they will reevaluate whether you should be trusted with additional referrals.

That having been said, most clients understand that mistakes, miscommunications, and problems arise in business.  A single issue during the course of the sale to a referred prospect, even a major issue, will not sever your ability to gain additional referrals from you client if you address and resolve the issue in an exceptional manner.

Clients don’t expect perfection, they expect exceptional service—both for themselves and for those they refer you to.  How well or poorly you handle the issues will be a major factor in determining your future refer-ability.

Keeping your client informed of the progress of the sale with the referred prospect reassures them that you’re doing your job—and that all is well.  It is also your source of informing them if there have been problems and how they were resolved.

It is critical that you let your client know of issues involved with sales to prospects they have referred you to before the prospect has a chance to relate the incident.  You can relate the circumstances and the resolution in the most favorable light—the prospect may not.  This doesn’t mean that you can lie or gloss over it, just that you can give the background and the full resolution without the emotional involvement the prospect will have.  Of course, if you’ve done an exceptional job of resolving the issue, the tale told by the prospect should also be impressive.  However, you always want problems to be related to your client by you—you don’t want to get a phone call from the client asking what happened.

Keeping your client informed doesn’t mean bombarding them with emails, phone calls, and notes.  A simple “thank you for the referral” card immediately after receiving the referral and the occasional call or email will suffice.  The object is to keep them in the loop and to reassure them that their referral was well made for both you and the prospect.  Even better than the occasional call or email is to explicitly ask the client how and how often they would like to be informed of the progress.

Clients are interested in what’s going on with the referrals they make.  They want to know the prospect is being taken care of in the manner the client expected, and they enjoy knowing that they have provided you with a quality referral.  More importantly, they want to know that they haven’t embarrassed themselves in front of an acquaintance.

Simple actions will earn those additional referrals your clients have—you just have to earn them.

July 30, 2014

Guest Article: “The Proven Best Way to Gain New Customers,” by Miles Austin

The Proven Best Way To Gain New Customers
by Miles Austin

Looking for the proven best way to gain new customers & grow your business?

Testimonials and recommendations are the answer. Testimonials and recommendations work. Many will argue that they are THE most successful way to attract new business. Entire business models like Yelp have emerged to leverage this truth.

It is a recognized fact that our customers are active in the selection process before sales ever gets involved.  There is disagreement about how far the customer typically has progressed down the buying path, but they have typically started the process before sales is engaged. Much of the time, this activity will take them directly to customer reviews or testimonials. Having them available at this stage can make a positive impact on their interest in you and your company. If they are absent or hard to find, you might not ever have the opportunity to compete.

Why are sales people not taking full advantage of this powerful sales influencer?

1. Don’t know how or are uncomfortable asking for them. 2. How to use them.

How to get references and testimonials.

If you are not asking for testimonials you are leaving money on the table. Getting past this hurdle can deliver a significant uptick in your revenue almost immediately.

It goes without saying that in order to get good testimonials you need to be delivering top-notch products and/or services. If you are new to sales, it can be effective to let some early customers know that you are at the beginning of your sales career and that providing a testimonial is one of the most important goals you have for the relationship.

The timing of asking for a recommendation can make all the difference. We have all probably received a LinkedIn request from someone we have never done business with but wanting you to give them a recommendation.  Need I tell you that this is a bad idea?  The best time to ask is right after they have told you that they have been able to accomplish their objective because of your effort.  They will never be more willing to provide the testimonial than at that time. This might be immediately after your work is completed or several months down the road. It is important to listen closely to what they are telling you and when the time is right – ask.

How you ask will affect your success as well. It is important that you keep the focus of the request on their situation and their results. A testimonial that says how awesome you are is nowhere near as powerful as when they tell everyone that they achieved their goal/objective because of selecting your product or service. Future customers will relate much better and be motivated to act because they can put themselves in the place of the recommending customer.

Make it easy for your customer to provide the recommendation by giving them some tips. Sharing other recommendations that deliver a compelling message has worked wonders for me. I get asked frequently if it is ok to write the testimonial for the customer. I personally struggle with that, but am happy to ask the customer to just jot down a few bullet points and then help them edit it to their satisfaction.

Make sure that you are able to use your customer’s full name at a minimum, but preferably their title and Company name as well. A photo is very compelling if they have one to offer. If not, ask if you can use their LinkedIn headshot. They work well for this purpose. Every company is different with how they handle this so maintain some flexibility with what you are asking for. I recommend that you not use the recommendation at all if all you are able to use only their initials vs. a full name. One of the powerful benefits of testimonials is the social proof that they can bring. Using only initials makes your testimonial useless for most purposes. It is also helpful for both you and your satisfied customer in many cases to include a live link to their website or profile.

How to use them

There are so many places to use testimonials today. Here are just a few:

  • LinkedIn Profile
  • Blog
  • Slide Presentations
  • Video’s
  • Collateral
  • Websites
  • Webinars
  • Tweets
  • Company or office lobby

Here are examples of some of my favorites:

  • In your slide presentations, include a slide or two with customer testimonials after key points. A testimonial with a photo that addresses how happy the customer was after using you for that exact point is a powerful influencer.
  • LinkedIn Profiles are a great place to highlight your testimonials. Once you get more than ten or more recommendations, I recommend you select only seven to ten, and hide the rest. Switch out and change which recommendations you show every two to three months to keep things fresh. Looking at a profile with 50 or more recommendations seems to be counter-productive in my opinion and experience.
  • Displaying testimonials on your blog/website will always yield positive results. I have actually had customers ask what it takes to have their testimonial highlighted online. That is a good indication you have this recommendation thing figured out.

Most importantly, after you receive a testimonial, say thank you. Let them know how much their efforts are appreciated and how it validates what you told them at the very beginning of the relationship.  “Their testimonial is one of the most important goals you have for the relationship.”

That is a great way to formalize what you have done for them now and positions you as their preferred source to provide similar products and/or services in the future

Miles Austin is recognized as one of the leading authorities on Web Tools for sales, leveraging deep experience in the selection, strategy and tactics necessary to maximize sales productivity.  Read more of Miles’ material at the Fill the Funnel blog.

July 22, 2014

Is There More to Social Selling than Just Hype?

Are you sick of the social selling hype yet?  Have you had your fill of the unrelenting BS that bombards you day in and day out about the miracle of social selling and how it makes selling so much easier, how it eliminates the horror of cold calling, the expense of advertising, the time consuming drudgery of attending networking events?

Or, have you bought into the hype and discovered that in reality it is nothing more than quicksand that will drag you down and destroy your business slowly?

The truth is there is a great deal of hype and BS going on about social selling.  There are promises of easy business, millions to be made quickly, and unlike prospecting and selling; it’s just all great fun.

But there is also a kernel of truth in all that hype.  Social selling does work—when recognized for what it really is and integrated into a comprehensive prospecting and selling process.

Despite what many preach, social selling isn’t meant to be a standalone business development strategy. 

It isn’t a panacea, freeing sellers from the day-to-day work of picking up the phone, of generating referrals, of attending networking events, and the other work of finding and connecting with quality prospects.

Social selling is an adjunct to traditional prospecting, not a replacement of it.  Adopting social selling as a part of your business plan doesn’t eliminate all of the traditional strategies you’ve used in the past, it simply makes those strategies a bit more effective while adding another way to find and connect with your prospects.

Finding and connecting with prospects is a complex problem for not all prospects are alike.  Your prospects will accept and respond to different means of approach—some will respond to cold calling, most won’t.  Some will respond to being approached through a referral—of course, that assumes you have a referral to them.  Some will respond to direct mail, others to being approached at a networking event, others through advertising, others through an email campaign.  And others will respond through social media connections.

It isn’t our prospect’s responsibility to respond to us in the way we want to connect with them; it is our responsibility to connect with our prospects in the way they will accept.  And that means we must employ a variety of strategies if we want to find and connect with a broad prospect base.

This is where social selling comes in, allowing us to find and connect with those prospects who prefer to connect via social media.

It also allows us to transfer or continue our relationship online with prospects and customers that are found through offline strategies.

Social selling can open many doors but it can’t replace our offline efforts to find and connect with prospects.  In fact, we should be spending only a small fraction of our time online—an hour or so daily.

Don’t buy the ridiculous hype being put forth by so many.

By all means embrace social selling, but don’t destroy your business by thinking that it will produce magical results and free you from the work of prospecting.

It won’t.

July 7, 2014

Guest Article: “Beware of Who’s Preaching that Prospecting No Longer Works to Develop New Business,” by Mike Weinberg

Beware of Who’s Preaching that Prospecting No Longer Works to Develop New Business
by Mike Weinberg

There is a lot of noise and confusion about prospecting in the sales world.

It’s always been hard to get salespeople to prospect for new business — even when proactively pursuing strategic target accounts was widely accepted as a valid method for acquiring new customers.  Today, the false teachers, many from the Sales 2.0 movement, loudly proclaim that prospecting is dead and completely ineffective for developing new business.

Be on guard when you hear people preaching that prospecting no longer works.  Be careful because it is exactly what your itching ears want to hear.  No one really likes to do the grunt work involved to prospect successfully, especially if it involves cold calling. So it is natural for us to gravitate toward those who tell us what we want to believe.  It’s the same concept our parents taught us:  It matters who your friends are.  Much of our subjective truth is based on the beliefs of those we choose to listen to.

Here’s what I’ve noticed over the past couple of years as a coach and consultant to business to business sales teams:   Those with the loudest voices boldly proclaiming that prospecting is ineffective and that proactively pursuing target accounts who aren’t coming to you is a waste of time, are not only wrong, but they also have an agenda.

There are two distinct camps of loud voices preaching the deadly advice that many in sales are excited to hear.

The first camp is filled with  your under-performing colleagues in sales.  These are the folks who survived, or possibly thrived, when times were good and there was plenty inbound demand for what they sold.  For the most part, they never had to prospect for new business. It came looking for them.  Or they were so skilled at account and relationship management, they benefitted from an abundance of opportunity at existing accounts during good economic times. These people did well without ever having to go out, turn over new rocks, hunt for new relationships, etc.  So, now, in tougher times, not only do they not want to proactively prospect for new accounts, truthfully, they don’t know how.  And because of their own fears, struggles and current poor results, they don’t want you to prospect either. You get it? They are failing and the last thing they want to see is you succeeding picking up new business when they’re not.  They’re scared, lost and confused.  And they figure that the louder they yell that prospecting doesn’t work that a) you will listen and agree, and b) they may not be forced to do it themselves.

The second group motivated to turn you against prospecting are those in the Sales 2.0 camp peddling products, services and content for Inbound Marketing.  Don’t over-read into that statement.  There are some incredible sales minds and great people delivering huge value to the sales community from the 2.0 group. And I’m as big a fan as anyone of integrating new media and smart inbound marketing into our business development initiatives.  But there is also a contingent of false teachers vehemently declaring that prospecting is passé, worthless, dead . . .  that “old” methods don’t work anymore.  And it just so happens that many of these same folks stand ready to sell you their solution so you never have to cold call again. Not exactly unbiased advice, is it?

We can embrace the new without discarding the old.  Social media and inbound marketing are great supplements to, not replacements for, our personal prospecting efforts.  Pay attention to who is telling you not to prospect for new business.  I bet there’s a good chance they’re from one of the groups described above.

Mike Weinberg is the author of New Sales. Simplified: The Essential Handbook for Prospecting and New Business Development.  Find more of Mike’s wisdom at The New Sales Coach blog.

November 25, 2013

Guest Article: “Developing New Business–6 Best Practives,” by Dr. Richard Ruff

Filed under: Uncategorized — Paul McCord @ 10:27 am
Tags: , , ,

Developing new business – 6 best practices
by Richard Ruff

In today’s B2B market a sales person needs an array of skills to be a top performer – they need to know more and know it at a higher level of proficiency than ever before.

But if you asked a whole lot of sales people from all over the world what is the one a competency they think they could most benefit from if they knew how to do it better?

A Survey of Sales Effectiveness: Global Research on what Drives Sales Success addressed that question.  The skill set that sales people felt was most challenging was: Developing New Business. As an aside, it was interesting that Establishing Relationships and Uncovering Needs was the area where the sales people reported they were having the most success.

Since developing new business has, as one might expect, surfaced before as an area that deserves attention, let’s look at some of the best practices for getting that done which have emerged from our work with B2B clients.

As to the nature of the problems and the best practices it’s necessary to pinpoint whether you are talking about new business with new customers or new business with existing customers.  For this discussion, let’s focus on the large B2B complex sale situations where one is developing new business with existing customers.

In the way of recognition, we would like give a tip of the hat to our colleague Mike Smith of Ohio State University who helped us develop these ideas.

Particularly when you are working with an existing customer you may be ahead of the customer in seeing an unfolding situation that would drive a new business opportunity. As a matter of fact this is one of the skill areas where top performers differentiate themselves from the pack.

In these situations, you can provide value by helping the customer see a future challenge.  You may also be able to help them formulate the need and response thereby putting yourself in a strong competitive position.  The most important skill in identifying future opportunities is the ability to see the relationship between observable events and knowing what actions and results they are likely to lead to and when.

For identifying these types of new opportunities, some specific perspectives and 6 best practices are:

  • Look at the current situation through the lens of the existing work effort. From time to time when you are reviewing an implementation – think back about the situation as it was preceding your solution. What things did you observe? What situations were present? Who did what just preceding the opportunity? New opportunities are a response to something.  What things were in motion before the opportunity occurred?
  • Look at how your customers are fairing against goals, objectives and metrics. With knowledge about goals, objectives and metrics, and a sense of how the customer is performing, what would you do to reach these if you were in their place?  What could your do that would enhance the customer’s success?  How will they demonstrate success to their leadership and stakeholders?

If you can see where you can add value, they may as well. If they don’t, but you do, it puts you in the best position of all, namely you are helping a customer understand an unforeseen challenge.

  • Assess organizational changes for clues. Whether a company is preparing to implement a planned strategy, merging groups or responding to a problem or opportunity, very often organizational structures are put in place before new work is made visible to the outside world. Teams of required skills are assembled, specific skills are reassigned or grouped, and units are disbanded or reduced.

Look at new and expanded organizations and what kinds of skills, and in what quantity, are being added.  Here it important to leverage the insight of your staff with a historical perspective of the customer, they can provide meaning to what specific changes may mean and not mean.

  • Observe what is happening in overall ongoing expense management. New efforts inside the customer organization cost money.  Is the customer experiencing any changes in spending patterns you can observe? Are expenses being restricted, or expanded?  Look for work that may foreshadow future work.
  • Don’t forget to tell your story. Be able to subtly, but clearly reinforce just what it is you do that is of value to customers. They don’t spend much or any time pondering what you do. They worry about what they need and when they do, only the organizations that are top of mind, come to mind.

Too often, if you do not share the range of things you do well, a customer might say, “Oh, I wish I had known you can do X, because you did such a great job on Y and, had we known, we would have used you.” Always have an up-to-date value proposition about your core capabilities and a new story about how those capabilities have been used by others.

  • Bring in fresh thinking. Think about leveraging literature, speeches, research, stories you’ve heard that relate to the customer agenda or you know are of particular interest to the individual.  Even if they don’t produce a lead today it builds relationships and often creates leads in the future.

Developing new business is one of the areas where top performers clearly differentiate themselves – they know it is hard to do and they learn how to do it.  It is also an area where creating best practice profiles based on what your top performers do makes extraordinary sense.

Dr. Richard Ruff and Janet Spirer launched Sales Horizons in 2011. The idea behind Sales Horizons is to leverage the lessons learned working with market leaders to create sales training programs that are effective and affordable for mid-size and small companies.

June 11, 2011

Understand the Four Pillars of a Referral and You’ll Get More and Better Referrals

At first glance, a referral is a pretty simple thing.  For most salespeople, managers, and trainers, a referral is just a name and phone number that a client has given the salesperson once the salesperson has completed the sale and has done a good job for the client.

Once a salesperson has received a referral, contacting the referred party is just as simple.  The salesperson either will call the referred party mentioning to him or her that the client, which they know, referred the salesperson to them, or will ask the client to write a referral letter to the prospect and then the salesperson will call the prospect after they have received the letter.  A very simple, straightforward process.

Unfortunately, this process is totally and completely wrong, and has been proven by millions of salespeople to not work worth a darn. Nevertheless, this is what is taught in almost every sales course in the world.  And not only is it a waste of time and effort, it deceives the salespeople who don’t succeed with it into believing that the fault lies with them, not with a “system” that doesn’t work.

Generating a large number of high quality referrals requires far more than “doing a good job and asking for referrals.”  It requires a systematic process of planting referral seeds, watering them at every chance, weeding out problems and issues, and then reaping the rewards. 

If you want to generate a large number of high quality referrals from your clients, you must understand what a referral is based on.

A Referral is Based on a Foundation with Four Pillars-and you can control 3 of them:

The relationship between you and your client:  you can control this pillar of the foundation.  By instituting the full client relationship building process in detailed in Creating a Million Dollar a Year Sales Income: Sales Success through Client Referrals (John Wiley and Sons, 2007), you can create a strong relationship with your client built on mutual trust.  Clients don’t give referrals because they like you or even because you did a good job.  Clients hate to give referrals and unless they have a deep trust that you will not embarrass them and that you’ll deal honestly with the prospect they refer, they won’t be willing to give quality referrals.

Your client’s purchasing experience: you can control this pillar of the foundation.  You must discover exactly what your client’s expectations and priorities are, then meet-, and hopefully exceed them.  You cannot afford to guess or “think” you know what these are-you must know exactly and you can only do that by discussing them with your client and then making sure you meet them or exceed them-nothing less will do.

The relationship between your client and the prospect: you have no control over this pillar.  Clients will refer you to people they have very strong, positive relationships with and people they have very negative relationships with.  If the prospect trusts and respects our client, some that trust and respect will be automatically imbued to you.  On the other hand, if the prospect distrusts or doesn’t respect your client, some of that distrust or disrespect will also be imbued to you.  Your job is to find out exactly what the relationship between client and prospect is and then plan you approach accordingly.

Your initial contact with the prospect: you control this pillar also.  If you have built your relationship with the client properly, your client will be happy to contact the prospect in whatever method you desire.  As outlined in Creating a Million Dollar a Year Sales Income, there are a number of methods of contacting clients, each with their own pros and cons, depending on the strength or weakness of the client/prospect relationship.

As seen above, you have control of the majority of the pillars upon which a referral is based.  If any of the above is weak, your likelihood of generating quality referrals will decline and the weakness must be made up elsewhere.  In actuality, if one of the first two segments is weak, you will not be getting quality referrals-period.  However, you can mitigate the affects of the last two.

If the relationship between client and prospect is weak, use a stronger contact method.  Moreover, if the contact method is weak, convert the method into a stronger one.  For example, if your contact method is a phone call to a prospect who has a weak relationship with your client, try to bring in one or two other clients the prospect may know by reputation to build additional credibility.  Better yet, try to arrange a conference call between the prospect and your client.

Generating a large number of quality sales isn’t done by chance or luck, and neither is generating a large number of high quality referrals. Just as you need a well thought out process to consistently sell, you need a well thought out process to generate quality referrals.   You can significantly increase the volume and the success of your referrals if you understand the dynamics that generate quality referrals and then control those dynamics.

October 10, 2010

Register for Free Masterclass on How to Bust Your Sales Slump

Tuesday October 12th 2010 1PM EASTERN

Are you or your sales team finding it difficult to bring in business?  If so, I suggest you take a look at my newest book, Bust Your Slump: A Dozen Slump Busting Strategies to Fill Your Pipeline in 30 Days, which has just been released.

Bust Your Slump isn’t another book that promises easy eternal success and delivers nothing but a bunch of fluff and hype with no substance.

My only purpose in Bust Your Slump is to lay out in detail 12 proven, effective, real strategies that will generate business for you fast.  Each chapter not only gives you the concept, it gives you a step by step process for implementing it, and then demonstrates what it can do by relating how one of his clients used.

Whether you sell B2B or B2C, are involved in a one-time close process or a long sales cycle, sell a commodity or a sophisticated product or service, you’ll find strategies that will work for you.

During this 45 minute Masterclass, I will provide you with a comprehensive overview of those 12 proven, effective, real strategies, so do be sure to join me – Registration is FREE, but places are limited.

REGISTER  here for FREE. 

October 21, 2009

Are You a Small Business? Take Advantage of the Current Populist Anger

Filed under: business,Culture,marketing,small business,trust — Paul McCord @ 10:35 am
Tags: , , ,

Polls show that more and more Americans distrust the government.   Other polls indicated that banks, insurance companies, multi-national corporations, and the recipients of government bailout monies are also suffering from distrust on the part of a large part of the American population.

Big in all its organizational forms is on the outs.

The distrust of government is nothing new; after all, America was founded on the distrust of large government.  There’s nothing more American than distrusting politicians and government, whether national, state, or local. 

Aside from government, look at who’s getting creamed in terms of trust issues:  banks such as Chase, Bank of America, Citi; financial services firms such as Merrill Lynch, UBS, any company with the word ‘insurance’ in it; GM, GE, Chrysler, Exxon/Mobile, Halliburton, McDonalds, Walmart, and dozens of others.

What do they all have in common?

Size.

These are all huge corporations that have attracted a considerable amount of distrust, some because of their financial weakness, others because of real or perceived greed, still others because of political correctness.  But no matter the cause, they’re currently on the trust hit list.

What does that mean for small and mid-size companies?

A void to be filled.  An opportunity to take advantage of.  A chance to penetrate markets.  A bit more level playing field—at least for a time.

Just because consumers don’t trust major corporations doesn’t mean that they don’t need and/or want the products and services those corporations provide. 

Banks are still needed.

Financial services too.

People still have to shop and eat.  They still buy cars, appliances, electronics.

If the politically correct turn from Walmart, where do they go? Possibly a local or regional retailer.

 If they refuse to purchase from GM but want a Tahoe, what do they do?  Possibly purchase from a local used car dealer.

 If they reject Chase and Bank of America, who do they bank with?  Maybe with a local or regional bank.

If they’re not going to McDonald’s or Burger King for lunch, where are they going?  Maybe they eat at a local or regional restaurant. 

Maybe they buy from you.

Big is out and it has to be replaced.  Why not by you?  Why can’t you step in and fill the trust void?

In today’s economy where those who seem to be thriving are doing so as much by cutting payroll and expenses as by maintaining sales and profit margins, finding and exploiting any advantage you can find is critical and taking advantage of the current populist anger toward big business can certainly benefit those small and mid-size businesses and their salespeople who recognize the advantage they currently have over their large competitors.

Rather than sitting back hoping to continue to survive, hit the streets and start calling on those prospects who didn’t think you were big enough, experienced enough, or had the financial strength to earn their business. 

We’ve certainly seen that experiece, size, and financial strength don’t mean much.  All those well educated and experienced Harvard MBA’s made a mint while destroying the companies they were supposed to be running.  Those old line companies were the ones ‘too big to fail’ that should have been left to fail.  Those financially stable behemoths were anything but financially stable.

Now isn’t the time to be hiding and hoping, it’s the time to be aggressively seeking new business because as has happened in the past, the anger at big business won’t last forever, so take advantage of it while you can.

August 14, 2009

Recession Buster Webinar

Recession Buster Webinar

4  Tremendously Powerful Strategies

4  One and half hour Sessions

1  Session Everyday for 4 Days

Monday, September 28 through Thursday, October 1

Each day from 3 PM to 4:30 PM Central Time (4PM to 5:30 PM Eastern; 2PM to 3:30 PM Mountain: 1PM to 2:30PM Pacific)

4 of the Most Powerful Strategies to Find and Connect with Quality Prospects:

Monday, September 28
The PWWR Referral Generation System

You’ll Learn:

^ Why what you’ve been taught about referrals doesn’t work
^ How to work with your client to generate a large number of great referrals
^ How to guarantee you get at least four great referrals from every client
^ How to continue to get great referrals from every client every year

 

Tuesday, September 29
The Best Damn Networking Process There Is, Period

You’ll Learn:

^ Why networking at the Chamber meeting or at the leads breakfast group never
seems to pay off
^ Where to spend you time that will really pay off
^ How to create and execute a realistic, profitable, business producing networking strategy
^ How to work a networking room to maximize your time and create relationships with prospects fast
^ How to set a telephone or in-person meeting with every person you want at a networking event

 

Wednesday, September 30
Never a Cold Call, Always an Introduction

You’ll Learn:

^ Why decision makers hate cold calls
^ Why calling and fishing for a reason to meet with a prospect will get you nowhere
^ How to discover REAL issues your prospect has that you KNOW you can help solve
^ How to guarantee you get past gatekeepers and get voice mails returned without being deceptive, evasive, or lying
^ How to make using the phone to prospect far more enjoyable and productive for both you and your prospects
^ How to make more money by spending less time on the phone

 

Thursday, October 1
Get the Phone to Ring: Become the Expert

You’ll Learn:

^ Why if you don’t have the reputation and image of an expert you’re losing and will continue to lose in the marketplace
^ What it means to be an expert
^ How to use the tools at your disposal to CREATE your image and reputation as an expert in your field targeted to your specific market
^ How to totally eliminate price as an issue
^ How to get your phone to ring with people who want to work with you and only you

 Who Should Attend?

The Recession Buster webinar is designed for anyone who sells in a relationship driven environment such as:

^ Business to Business sellers

^ Professionals: attorney, accountants, architects, financial planners, consultants

^ Business to consumer services such as financial services, personal services, realtors, travel agents, etc.

Whether you are struggling to establish your sales practice or you’re established and simply seek to add more business–or maybe the recession has really devastated your current client base, this webinar will help drive your business to new heights.

These aren’t the same old worn out “strategies” you expect to hear. You’re not going to hear some worthless drivel like “ask for referrals,” or “tell everyone you meet what you do,” or “set a goal to make 50 dials a day and you’ll succeed.”

You know and I know, that’s crap. That’s the same old junk you hear from every “trainer” who doesn’t have anything of value to say.

You don’t need some worn-out, worthless piece of advice, you need real, workable, proven strategies to find and connect with quality clients.

That’s what you get in the Recession Buster webinar.

Four real strategies that work. That produce results. That will get you business.

Why four strategies over four days? Wouldn’t it be easier to just lay out the one best strategy in one session?

It would certainly be easier on everybody involved. It takes commitment to take time out four days in a row.

True. But there isn’t one single “best way” to generate business. We have to have a business building matrix that gives us several avenues with which to connect with prospects. And in today’s marketplace where more and more prospects are rejecting the traditional methods sellers have used to connect with them, we need several ways to find and connect with them that they’ll accept, respect, and respond to.

That’s the power of the Recession Buster webinar
 

Early Registration Until September 10

1 to 4 attendees only $199.00 per person

5 or more attendees only $159.00 per person

Register HERE

Afraid you can’t make the session each day? 
Don’t worry.  Each session will be recorded and within 24 hours of the end of the session each attendee will receive a link to the recording.  Whether you missed the session or just want to hear it again, you’ve got it at your fingertips to listen to when you want.

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