This is a story of growth / success and the Top 9 Brandwise Marketing and Sales articles.
Use this info to help you find the right sales and marketing people and tools.
I have been having fun recently on some sales calls. As you may know I have been a serious student of sales for the last 3 years or so. I feel there is a transition going on and I and starting to master this stuff or at least moving to the next level.
I personally am pretty good at sales, I'm not trying to brag, just enjoying a learning moment I had this week and excited and happy to see my own personal growth in this area. I also wanted to share this learning moment with others. So as a sales person you do a lot of things. The student of sales digs in and learns what their problems are and then works on correcting them. Over the last 3 years I have done much introspection and internal work. This is great and important stuff, but it is also important to look at the outside world from time to time.
Because I sell marketing it is important for me to only work with a company that has a proven track record. In the past I allowed prospects to tell me they had a good sales team. I took their word and got started. Then 6 to 8 months in realized their sales team was weak and ineffective.
What I have learned from this is that everyone's idea of good salespeople is different. I am now understanding the importance of being on the same page with my prospects and customers. This week I was able to step outside of my own self-development and focus on the client and their problems. Basically my prospect told me he had to RESEARCH this stuff I was telling him. As a matter of fact he wanted 3 of my top competitors. Wow! Talk about an unsupportive buy cycle, he not only wanted to do research, but also wanted my help.
As we continued the conversation I found there was also things like:
- an Unsupportive Buy Cycle
- a Need For Approval
- getting emotionally involved
- and excuse making
The point here is this. I was able to start to recognize sales weaknesses in others through our conversations. This is a big win and a big step forward. Because now I can qualify or disqualify not based on whether this prospect needs my marketing help, but if the problem is much bigger. It doesn't matter how great my marketing efforts are if the sales team planning to work my leads is going to muck them up.
Now I am able to say… Look here is what I think the real problem is. In order to fix it, marketing itself is not enough. You need a sales evaluation for you and each sales member and for anyone you plan to hire in the future. If the prospect says no! I'll move on. If they say Yes, then guess what… we are going to know it out of the park and hit their $500K in sales growth for next year. But I now know what was holding me back and I certainly now know what is holding this prospect back.
If you would like to get a better understanding of this stuff for your business check out these 9 sales and marketing articles and start looking at where you stand. I'll share some notes I gave to this prospect as well.
- Inbound Marketing ROI Calculator - good overview of the sales process we will use for the web lead generation on your site. Play with some of the numbers to find your best fit.
- Inbound Marketing vs. Outbound Marketing - excellent infographic! - article offers an infographic that really outlines the marketing side of what we do from the marketing perspective.
- What is an integrated marketing strategy? - covers some basic stuff, but also delivers how I look at things and the approach I take with marketing to deliver the best results.
- Why it is important for CEOs to understand a website redesign - at the end of this article is my most recent eBook. Download it and read it. This will really make website ideas clear and tell you what is important.
- Why static digital brochure web sites are dead! - this is an old one, but it covers some of the concepts well.
- Web Sales Goals & Inbound Marketing kill the sales roller coaster - this outlines setting sales goals with the inbound marketing calculator tool as well as gives some great tips in the slidedecks of a presentation I gave a few years ago. Click through the slides, there is some great info.
- How to go from Zero to 60 leads in 6 days! - this one is kind of a client case study. We got this client 90 some leads from one email push in a three week period. Sadly the sales team sucked and they never converted one lead into a sales conversation because they just didn't know how to do that. This is my mistake for not going after the real problem. This is why it's important for us to be talking about the sales stuff first. Once things start working, I want your team to run with what we create. This is how I can tell you with confidence we will hit the type of numbers we are talking about, because I know sales are solid (because the sales team's been evaluated, hired, fired, trained to be successful) and I know my inbound marketing efforts deliver results.
- Do Cold Calls give you the Chills? - Marketing & Sales Tips - not sure how much cold calling you or your team does, but this is something that can be a powerhouse when added to your mix. One it is done correctly it really works!
- Timing is everything when it comes to sales & marketing. Right? - this hits home our conversation. Did I get the ol' "I'm not sure the timing is right" or "I'm not sure this is something we want to do, right now". Yep. Maybe this article will help.
- Bonus Article: How to Spot People Who Can’t Sell -this article is written by Steve Bruce, but touches on sales issues pretty well. These 5 topics really drive my message home.
I hope these articles help you understand the importance of sales to your marketing process and you get a better understanding for what makes a good sales person and what to look for in a bad one. For the marketers reading this, you may want to get to know and understand the sales team better. If you can pick out poor sales people it might work to your advantage. The same is true for sales people looking at marketers. These articles should help you find both great sales people and great marketers. Add them together and get GREAT RESULTS!!
I know this stuff works because I live it everyday. I want to thank Pete Caputa over at Hubspot for all his ongoing support as well as Rick Roberge for teaching me the ropes of sales! These guys are great and I have been blessed to have them be apart of my team!