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Syndication

Sometimes sellers trust too much of our sales process to autopilot, and we lose sight of the fact that even the best sales tools can’t replace you

 

We get distracted from the things that matter most and we miss out on opportunities or ruin relationships because we forget the importance of the most important component of the sales process. 

 

Sales tools

 

Sales tools help us promote or sell a product. They could include CRM, which helps us sell by allowing us to track information. These tools may help us understand more about the prospects who are working in the organizations we’re pursuing. 

 

Tools might include your email account, your LinkedIn Sales Navigator account, your BombBomb account, your cell phone, or your Hubspot tools. There are countless tools you can take advantage of that will help you promote or sell your products more effectively. 

 

Sometimes I rely so heavily on those tools that I effectively take myself out of the cockpit. I’m unable to guide the sales process because I’ve trusted my tools to automate it. 

 

Where to automate 

 

Automation without oversight can leave room for errors.

 

While it’s good to use tools like prospect.io to automate your outreach, the problem emerges when we fail to personalize the process. If we set up generic emails and then blast them to hundreds of different people, you won’t get the results you’re seeking. People can immediately sniff out bulk outreach. 

 

If you rely on it, you’ll discover that very few people read your emails and even fewer responded. You may even discover that some unsubscribed from your communications. 

 

On the other hand, if you use merge tags to personalize your messages and you focus on a specific industry and you address a specific problem that this industry faces, you can create a message that speaks directly to that industry. 

 

Reaching out 

 

While I’m emailing these prospects, I’ll also reach out to them on LInkedIn via an invite, and I’ll comment on some of their relevant content. I’ll also use personal phone calls as well as text messages or possibly even Twitter. 

 

Unlike the generic situation which was devoid of my personal involvement, this option leaves room for my own personality. The prospects have a chance to interact with me in different settings because I’m actively involved. I’m present, and I’m overseeing the process.

 

People want to be treated personally. 

 

Don’t lose focus on the human side of your connections. Make sure to differentiate yourself from the competition. 

 

“Sales Tools Can’t Replace You” episode resources

 

You’re a savvy salesperson who wants to learn and grow. Check out audible for thousands of titles, plus a free 30-day trial, plus a free book. 

 

If you haven't connected with me on LinkedIn already, do that at Donald C. Kelly and watch the things I'm sharing there. I’m fairly easy to connect with. Just comment on something about my podcast. Send me an email.

 

You've heard us talk about the TSE Certified Sales Training Program, and we're offering the first module free as a gift to you. Preview it. Check it out. If it makes sense for you to join, you can be part of our upcoming semester. You can take it on your own or as part of the semester group.

 

If you and your team are interested in learning more, we'd love to have you join us. Call (561) 578-1729 to speak directly to me or one of our team members about the program.

 

This episode is also brought to you in part by mailtag.io, a Chrome browser extension for Gmail that allows you to track and schedule your emails. You'll receive real-time alerts anyone opens an email or clicks a link.

 

I hope you enjoyed the show today as much as I did. If so, please consider leaving us a rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility. When you share your experiences with the show, others will read the reviews and give us a listen.

 

I truly appreciate you and appreciate your reviews and your subscription, and your willingness to tell your friends and anyone you know that's in sales about the podcast.


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Direct download: TSE_1127.mp3
Category:Outreach -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

The sales landscape is always changing but by gathering insights from other sellers we can determine how to handle major challenges when selling

 

Brandon Bruce is co-founder of Cirrus Insight and he’s going to address how to we can get out of our own zone, where we focus exclusively on ourselves and our companies, and seek opportunities to interact with other people. 

 

Evolving sales

 

The world of sales is constantly evolving. One of the challenges Brandon sees with sales right now is an unspoken push that exists. Because there are a bunch of companies at the growth stage, and a bunch of companies just starting out, there’s a tremendous amount of energy in the sales industry. 

 

There’s a premium on hitting numbers. Everyone is hustling and trying to find a way to build a better mousetrap. On the negative side, sellers might be hyperfocused on closing deals so that they forget to prioritize the personal connection. Because connections take time, and sales reps get antsy, we sometimes try to speed things along. 

 

We don’t want to close a deal next month; we want to close it this month. 

 

Brandon believes there’s a happy medium to be found. We must work to focus on building sustainable relationships even while we focus on making our numbers. 

 

Long-term success

 

Companies that focus too narrowly on numbers will likely struggle to achieve long-term customer success. The customers won’t stay as long because the deals were one-time kinds of relationships. It’s easier for customers to walk away when the customer doesn’t know us well. 

 

Brandon remembers buying a countertop, a one-time purchase, from a company that worked to develop a relationship with him. They were struggling to find exactly what he wanted, until they discovered an unused countertop in a storage area. It was exactly what he needed, and it was something a previous customer decided against using. And the company sold it to him for 50 percent off. 

 

He calls it a great selling experience because they listened to his needs and they thought about how they could best help him. And even when they had a chance to make more money off the deal, they sold it to him at a great price. 

 

Even though he won’t be in the market for a countertop anytime soon, they created an evangelist in him. If anyone should ask where to buy a countertop, he’ll absolutely recommend that company. 

 

They closed a deal, they moved product, and they build a sustainable relationship. 

 

Evangelizing

 

We should probably remind ourselves to focus on doing the right thing, and sometimes allowing ourselves to take the easy option. We’re tempted to feel like we should push a little harder, but sometimes we can take the easy deal that leaves the customer feeling satisfied. 

 

Every now and then, take the deal that the customer can say yes to immediately. You might leave a little on the table, but everyone feels good moving forward. #Evangelizers

 

Your customer will become an evangelist for your company. You might have missed a chance to get a little more from them, but because you gave them more, you’ll have the opportunity to earn more from them. 

 

Building customer relationships benefits your long-run philosophy. 

 

Raving fan

 

I joined an organization that gave its sellers to the book, Raving Fans, as part of its onboarding process. It helped us understand the value of customers who bought our solution and then stayed with us to upgrade and buy more later. 

 

It’s valuable to have a customer who likes your product and who will promote you on social media and leave you reviews. A raving fan might take you to their next three jobs, or mention you on their podcast. 

 

It has less to do with building a predictable sales machine and more to do with building a fan base who is passionate and who might do unpredictable things. 

 

Reaching out to prospects

 

It’s getting harder and harder to reach prospects, and sellers use a variety of tactics to do it. 

 

Ecommerce has gotten huge, and statistics show that buyers have done a tremendous amount of research before they engage in the sales process. Despite that, there’s still room for a lot of outreach and prospecting. But how can we bridge that gap if we have buyers who are already doing a lot of the work themselves?

 

Begin by making it really easy for your customers to have a conversation. Brandon’s company puts its calendars on the website so that customers who want to schedule time with them can immediately see what is available. Once they schedule a time, it will automatically appear on the company’s calendar. It’s buyer-driven versus seller-driven.

 

Prospects come to them more often now asking for a demo. Meeting them part-way helps to bridge that gap. 

 

Another option they use is the ability to place bulky slides in a web portal and then provide a link to it instead of putting the slide in an email. It’s useful because they can click on it and view it online. They don’t have to worry about malware or about a bulky attachment loading too slowly. 

 

They also get real-time analytics about their slide deck: they know which slide people are most interested in, and where they abandon the slides. The team can then offer to follow up with a demo.

 

Meeting halfway

 

Brandon calls the process meeting halfway, which he said is how the best sales always happen. It’s a buyer saying, “I’m ready to buy,” and a seller saying, “We’re pretty interested in selling to you.” It creates a partnership where everyone brings something to the table. 

 

Persuade by sharing insights. Many people have a distaste for sales because they perceive it as a seller trying to trick a buyer in buying something he doesn’t need. But that’s not selling. That’s trickery. 

 

Sales is an art and not a science. It can’t be reduced to an algorithm, at least not yet, because it involves nuanced decisions as part of the relationship. In his own case, the company was looking to make a purchase, but the VP of marketing was skittish because the company wasn’t pushing for the sale at all. It left her with the sense that they don’t really want their business. 

 

The art results from trying to find the right amount of positive pressure to get the deal closed. It’s figuring out what your buyer needs and wants to hear, telling them, and moving the conversation forward. 

 

Email outreach

 

Email outreach is difficult and it has gotten harder over the lifetime of Brandon’s company. As with any trend in technology, as more and more people come on board with automation, there’s simply more volume. Those on the receiving end are overwhelmed by it, and it’s hard to overcome the spam filters. It’s difficult to break through. 

 

Short emails work the best; perhaps two or three lines long with single sentence paragraphs. It must be super easy to read at a glance because people don’t tend to read deep content. 

 

Clearly state what you do and provide a link or two. Make it very easy for the user to click and say, “I want to learn more.” They’re much simpler than the newsletter-type emails that are rich in image and video. Google and other filters often knock those out. It’s a simple, text-based email with an intriguing subject. 

 

Recognize that vanity metrics might get you a 100-percent open rate, but they don’t drive conversations, and conversations drive sales. 

 

Consider asking other people in your industry for feedback. Brandon likes to send ideas to other tech founders and ask if his ideas seem insane or totally off-base. Because it’s a very giving community, people often write back to offer thoughts and ideas. 

 

Keep the excitement

 

Sales will always be a hustle. It won’t ever be easy. It’s a nice idea to think that you can create some kind of machine that will keep the money rolling in, but it isn’t realistic. We must keep putting our heads down, hustling, and meeting the customers halfway. Make deals that are easy to say yes to and that leave your customers feeling confident about the decision. 

 

Let your audience know that doing business with you is easy. 

 

“How to Handle Major Challenges When Selling” episode resources

 

If you’d like to connect with Brandon, you can email him at brandon@cirrusinsight.com, or you can find him on LinkedIn

 

Connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com.

 

Try the first module of the TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free.

 

This episode is brought to you by the TSE Certified Sales Training Program. I developed this training course because I struggled early on as a seller. Once I had the chance to go through my own training, I noticed a hockey-stick improvement in my performance.

 

TSE Certified Sales Training Program can help you out of your slump. If you gave a lot of great presentations and did a lot of hard work, only to watch your prospects choose to work with your competitors, we can help you fix that. 

 

Tools for sellers

 

This episode is also brought to you in part by mailtag.io, a Chrome browser extension for Gmail that allows you to track and schedule your emails. It's super easy, it's helpful, and I recommend that you try it out. You'll receive real-time alerts anyone opens an email or clicks a link.

 

Mailtag.io allows you to see around the corners. You can see when people open your email, or when they click on the link you sent. Mailtag.io will give you half-off your subscription for life when you use the Promo Code: Donald at check out.

 

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Direct download: TSE_1126.mp3
Category:Outreach -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

You’re more than likely listening to this episode because you want to improve as a seller or a marketer. You’re seeking education so you can get an edge on your competition. There’s a tool that many of us are failing to embrace, and it could begin a video revolution. On today’s episode of The Hustler’s […]

The post TSE 925: TSE Hustler’s League-“Video Revolution” appeared first on The Sales Evangelist.

Direct download: TSE_925.mp3
Category:Outreach -- posted at: 8:16am EDT

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