Early on, I thought all you had to do was market like crazy and you would build a huge business. What I didn't take into account was if your sales team sucks, you are unable to really grow your business to the levels you could/should be at.
Over the last 9-10 months I personally have been working on my sales tactics and going through some training with the Kurlan team and Rick Roberge specifically. Rick is a great guy and excellent sales coach and author of Sales Anecdotes and Their Antidotes (download a free copy of this eBook if you're interested).
So what have we learned in the last 10 months or so? How to make our marketing more effective and more importantly how to close a deal that a year ago we would have passed up because we didn't know how to get the conversation leaning in our direction even when we go up against some competitors. At this point we are 6 months into the year and already we know this is going to be our best year in business. As a matter of fact we may double our best year ever the way things are heading.
The point here is this in my honest opinion marketing needs sales to work effectively. If you have one area working and the other misfiring then you never reach your optimum potential. Since we focus on marketing it is good to make sure our clients also have a strong sales team in order to knock one out of the ballpark!
So here's Rick's guest post…
In the old days, there was a local blacksmith, the general store, the saloon and all the locals pretty much did business with the local businesses. Those needs that couldn’t be filled by local business were sometimes solved by the mail order catalog. As the population and technology grew, so did competition and we found multiple auto dealerships, restaurants and department store vying for our business and as travel became easier, geographic markets grew. As geographic markets grew, so did those money magnets called shopping malls. So, newspapers and other print sold advertising. Media like radio and television were used to drive consumers to the malls and clerks were hired to help customers find their way to the items that were advertised. These clerks ranged from part time school kids to pointers (”It’s over there.”), to people that learned how to sell by watching the movies, to a variety of other ‘styles’.
My most popular post last year was Selling in the 21st Century. A year later, I have to say, it’s worse than that. There are no neighborhoods any more. “Buy local” may be your mantra, but if your website isn’t found before the guy in China, you’re not getting a chance. So, there’s a lot of attention and money going to inbound marketing and generating leads on the internet. Awesome! Everybody should. (That’s what this blog is all about.), but what if you generate leads and can’t close them. More and more companies are learning how to get found, but leads aren’t sales and most of us are gonna get one shot to differentiate ourselves from the millions of other websites that claim that they’re better than we are.
In that first contact, can you get past the shopper and get to the decision maker? Can you uncover the actual budget? Can you and do you learn why your prospect would buy and how they would buy? Can you make your prospect comfortable talking about money? Do you recovers from rejection? What are your self-limiting beliefs? Can you/do you get your prospect to agree to make a decision? Are there put-offs that you can’t handle? Do any of your proposals not result in a sale? Do your prospects not return your calls after they get the proposal?
Trying to wing it or selling by the seat of your pants when the competition is available with one click of the mouse is craziness. Sales training can be expensive and the schedule can be grueling. Brandwise, Hubspot and Kurlan have joined forces to offer this special, paced, On-Demand Sales Development Webinar Series and at a great price. Enter Brandwise or Dale Berkebile to get the partner/alumni price. It starts June 3rd on your own schedule. At the end of 12 short, fast paced weeks, you’ll have a sales process that will help you close those leads.