Category Archives for CRM

Sales Tips from Resa Gooding

TSE 1230: How To Ensure Your Sales Teams Actually Have Time To Sell

Sales Tips from Resa GoodingAll organizations, no matter what size, need to know how to ensure your sales teams actually have time to sell

Resa Gooding is a partner in a Hubspot certified agency and they mostly help companies, especially startups, in Israel. As one of the top three agencies in Israel, they primarily work with startups and other traditional companies such as agriculture and manufacturing. They are helping them understand the value of CRM and how to effectively apply it to their companies. 

Challenges salespeople face

The most common problem in the sales force is the lack of training given to the sales team. This lack of experience causes inefficiency as the companies throw their sales reps in deep waters and expect them to swim. 

Many companies are so focused on the technology or the product they’re producing,  they don’t spend adequate time sharing the value and benefits of their product with the sales force.  An untrained team ends up spending more time on the administrative tasks instead of selling. They need to be given the information and the tools to effectively sit down with a new prospect. 

If management fails to offer the sales team a way to stay accountable to the workday activities, management can mistakenly think their team isn’t working. There has to be a system in place so the sales team can report their activities and successes.  Having this in place also gives management a tangible way of seeing the work their team is doing. For example, how many calls they’ve made in the workday. 

Resa set up marketing campaigns for her clients but began to see that if salespeople didn’t know how to work with the prospects that came from the marketing, the efforts were in vain. She saw that to make marketing effective, the salespeople needed to be able to summarize conversations properly and sales reps needed to reduce their time spent on administrative efforts. They needed to be equipped to spend their time selling. Resa aims to give salespeople the time to study their product, set up appointments, and communicate with prospects effectively, instead of spending their time doing administrative tasks. 

Ensure that your sales teams are having the time to sell

Sales reps need training in order to be successful and reach their goals. Sales processes they can follow have to be set up so their efforts can be checked by management.  This promotes accountability. There are three tools that can be used to ensure that sales teams are getting more time to sell their company’s products.

Connect your email inbox to your CRM software

You can use HubSpot, SalesForce, or other similar CRM software. At the end of the day, what matters is that your sales team is more efficient in their work. The first thing you can do is connect your email inbox to the CRM software you’re using. 

This is efficiency at its best.  Using this software allows your manager to see the emails exchanged between you and prospects or customers.  Enabling the manager to view this communication directly eliminates the need to summarize conversations at a later time.  Leave that to your CRM. 

Both marketing and sales today can be measured through this software. Managers and the sales team no longer have to meet each time reports need to be made. All aspects of the sales process can be viewed as needed and everything is measurable. 

Earlier salespeople, like the ones who sold door-to-door, had to write down all their data or write a report about their sales day. Today, the salesperson just needs to connect to their email inbox on the CRM platform and reports are immediate.

Using CRM increases the sales reps’ available time up to 21% compared to doing the reports manually. 

For example, when you attend a conference, typically you have to wait until you get home to input information manually. You can potentially delay communicating with the contacts you made at the conference up to a whole week.   This is valuable time wasted in a world where transactions can happen so quickly. 

When you are using CRM software, you are able to reach out immediately by asking for their email and starting a conversation while still at the conference. This is a huge advantage to setting up CRM software and free up so much time in the sales process. 

Connect your Calendly to your email communications 

The second way to ensure your sales teams are getting the time to sell is to connect your Calendly to your email communications. This is an efficient way of setting up a meeting with prospects and clients. Hubspot has an amazing tool that can help salespeople connect with speed. It’s suggested that you also embed three specific times a client can meet with you.  It’s more efficient when they don’t have to work as hard to figure out a time or date you’re available. It cuts down on the emails that have to be exchanged to firm a meeting which also saves valuable time. 

Use templates effectively 

Templates are ways to streamline the time it takes to write and send an email while it makes communication customizable.  This can be set up in HubSpot once your inbox is created and by simply clicking a button, it will copy all the text and bring it straight to your HubSpot. You can then change the information and content to make it more personalized and unique to your prospect or client.  

Resa has observed that this feature is especially helpful for salespeople who may not be strong in written communication. This is where the marketing team can be especially helpful. Marketing can set-up the templates for salespeople to use. 

After emails are sent, the software can then track when it’s opened by the recipient.  Having this information helps salespeople become more efficient about timing and targeting the callback or follow up.  It’s much easier to build a rapport with someone who has already shown initial interest. The recipient won’t get any notifications that you’ve seen them open the email.  It’s just a helpful tool for you to time the response. 

These three tools help make your sales team more efficient as it reduces their time on administrative tasks.  Using Hubspot also allows access to reports summarizing all the activity as well.

HubSpot is free so businesses can check it out and test it in their own sales systems. This is a good platform for startups that don’t have the budget to invest in programs and software. 

Many startup companies that Resa has helped have seen positive results when they use her three suggestions for saving time. 

“How To Ensure Your Sales Teams Actually Have Time To Sell” episode resources 

You can message Resa via her LinkedIn account. You can also check out her website: www.cacaomedia.co

For more sales information and questions, you can also catch up with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for any sales concerns. 

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a course designed to help new and struggling sellers to master the fundamentals of sales and close more deals. Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561) 570-5077. 

This podcast is also brought to you in part by Reveal the Revenue Intelligence podcast. It’s about utilizing data to make business decisions instead of just guessing your way through major sales decisions. Visit gong.io for their podcast. 

We’d love for you to join us for our next episodes so tune in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can also leave comments, suggestions, and ratings to every episode you listen to. 

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Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

TSE 1146: 3 Core SEO Principles To Help Increase Your Inbound Sales

 

There’s no greater gift you can give to a seller than leads so we’ve uncovered 3 core SEO principles to help increase your inbound sales

We’re working to unite the two warring departments of sales and marketing. Kyle Carney has a passion for helping businesses grow and he does that with principles that help organizations earn inbound leads as fuel for growth. 

Lead generation mistakes

Many businesses chase after the wrong keywords in their SEO efforts. They know their industry and their target market but they pursue vague SEO terms. If, for example, I search for “new homes,” that could suggest that I’m looking to buy, or to build, or to discover what a new home costs. 

Businesses can improve by being more strategic in their efforts. So instead of searching for “new homes,” they can work to rank for “new home builder in Colorado.” That strategy is crucial for online success because that generates traffic that has qualified itself before the conversation even begins.

Google knows everything. It knows where you are, so if your website indicates the area that you’re serving, it will figure that out. 

One: Get your website right 

The messaging on your website has a huge impact on your inbound sales. We must make sure we get the right message in front of the right clients so they qualify themselves prior to beginning the conversation. 

When we do, the work becomes like fish in a barrel because prospects come to you and say, “I saw this on your site and it’s exactly what I need.” 

Building a website with proper messaging for the right audience allows your prospects to move themselves down the funnel. #SEO

Improve your site

Sellers wear a lot of hats and sellers have the ability to influence anyone. If we want to increase our bottom line, it’s in our best interest to connect with the marketing people and convince them of the importance of a smooth website. 

  • Work toward a mobile-friendly site. Most sites are, but there are small tweaks that will make your site operate faster. If the site isn’t designed correctly, it will run slowly which will affect your rankings. 
  • Identify the things your customer wants by understanding how they find you. If they find you online, ask what they were searching for. You’ll discover actionable information that will help you refine your website.
  • Find keywords that match what you do. Strive for specific, clear intent. 
  • Be data-driven. Find the search volume for keywords to help you decide on your messaging.

Rank for the right things

Most of the data about search content is freely available using tools like Google Keyword Planner. Initiate a conversation with the marketing department to ensure that you’re ranking for the right phrases. If you’re ranking for phrases that no one is actually looking for, it will do nothing for you. 

Once you’ve got the website functioning smoothly, you’ll focus on converting those prospects using content. 

Two: Generate content

This isn’t a reference to a basic 300-word blog. It’s quality content that focuses on answering their key questions and includes every type of content. 

If every seller would create videos to provide information, the potential would provide to be unreal. Create videos. Write blogs. Answer frequently asked questions. 

Block out 15 minutes to create content daily, even if you have to do it during lunch. It’s arguably one of the most valuable exercises a salesperson can do.  

Write down every question people ask you and rank them from the most common to the least. People frequently ask “How long does it take for SEO to work?” SEO is kind of a nerdy topic that many businesses don’t think about. Once they address it, they often want to know how long the results will take, so he wrote a massive article breaking the process down.

He didn’t intend to sell anything, but rather to provide quality information. Within a couple of weeks, people reached out to him asking if they could share it. Then, he landed on a list of 25 top Internet marketing articles worldwide, and he was surprised by the fact that people were even able to find him. 

Kyle points to The Go-Giver as a book that changed his perspective and motivated him to enrich the lives of the people who engage with his content. Now he uses the article during conversations as a source of information he can share with people. 

The article set him up as a thought leader and authority on the topic of SEO.

Think long term

SEO is a long-term game. It’s a process that won’t happen overnight. If you use it effectively, you’ll see results. 

The challenge, Kyle said, is that many sellers have huge lists of content they’d like to create but because they have big deals on the line, they have to prioritize those deals because that’s money in the bank. It’s difficult to prioritize stuff that doesn’t pay off immediately. 

In the long run though, you’ll make so much more money if you can generate content and videos consistently.

Kyle is a big proponent of YouTube but he recommends doing whatever is easiest. Just do something. It’s much better to do something than to wait forever for the perfect opportunity. Use whatever you currently have available. 

If that means starting from scratch, YouTube is a great place to start. It’s a massive search engine all its own. Your videos don’t have to be long, and you can even hire people to create them for you.  

Three: Make quality connections 

Kyle points to the hybrid approach as the best method of conversion. Provide gated content as well as free, accessible content. Create, for example, an amazing guide to the top 10 things to know about your business, and then ask for an email to access it. Connect that to your CRM so you’re providing something valuable that benefits your audience. You’re getting something and they are getting something in return. You’re getting a warm lead and you have an opportunity for a simple follow up. 

  • “I saw that you downloaded our guide. I’d love to answer any questions you have or hear any insights you had from a business owner’s perspective.” 

Then, use your CRM to determine what pages your visitors are seeing on your site. If you can track where they are going on your site and determine what things they are reading, then you can ask them to use this information in your sales process.

People are thirsty for knowledge, so if you can be a resource that answers their questions, it will build a foundation of trust. 

Give your prospects something specific they can apply to their own situations. In my case, I might ask prospects to try sending five emails to see what kind of results they get, or to test LinkedIn connections. Keep it simple. Don’t ask them to read a 500-page SEO book. Give them a quick win.  

Leverage your connections

As you’re out in the world networking, you’re developing key partnerships and mutually beneficial connections. Leverage those opportunities. 

If you’ve written something valuable, ask the people around you to share it. Then, offer to serve those connections as well by volunteering to write an expert blog post on their site. Tell them you’re only asking for a small linkback. It involves writing and proactive outreach, but the payoff is huge. 

The Internet is a popularity contest, and Google works the same way. When more websites talk about your website, that suggests to Google that there’s something valuable for its searchers there. Google will bump it up in the rankings.

It isn’t glamorous work but it can be very impactful. Instead of working to leverage random contacts, you’ll focus on the ones you’ve already built. 

Social media can be powerful for reasons beyond those that we already know about. If you give someone a shoutout on social media, that doesn’t necessarily improve their online visibility, but if you’re an influencer within your network, it provides credibility and it may drive people to visit. 

Write down the questions that people ask you every day and then provide answers to them. Provide the information people are looking for. Don’t hide behind a curtain and don’t keep trade secrets. 

“3 core SEO principles” episode resources

You can connect with Kyle at FirestarterSEO.com or on LinkedIn. He calls himself an open book and says he’s happy to educate people about SEO. If you simply have a question to ask, reach out to him on social media. 

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.

As a savvy seller, you’ll want to continue learning, and you can take advantage of a free 30-day trial, complete with a free audiobook, on Audible. They have thousands of books to choose from and you can begin your free trial today. 

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.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Kyle Morris, Donald Kelly, Lead Sift

TSE 1131: The Importance of Data in Sales

Kyle Morris, Donald Kelly, Lead SiftSellers that don’t have good data will struggle to repeat their success so we must recognize the importance of data in sales.  

Kyle Morris operates a company called SifData which features an application that sits on Salesforce to help companies track job changes.  

Defining data

Sales reps are very intuitive. They understand things well and many people assume that anecdotes and data are the same. They assume that, because they closed a deal with a company similar to the one they are interacting with, the information constitutes data. Because a tactic worked previously, they may assume that they can use that information as data moving forward. 

In other words, they assume that if a tactic worked once, it’s solid and they should continue using it. 

Kyle points out that the plural of anecdote isn’t data. We must stay objective and make decisions based upon actual information rather than sticking our finger to the wind to determine which way it’s blowing. 

Data is objective information about people, companies, or whatever your data set is that helps you make informed decisions. One of the easiest ways to identify the companies that could buy your product is by identifying the companies that have already bought your product. Figure out what’s common among them and then use that as a template to decide who to sell to in the future. If you’re selling to companies that are unique, you might find another market that also has that same commonality.  

Data problems

The two biggest problems common to data are that companies use data sources that are inconsistent and that they have too much data that isn’t actually valuable. 

Consider Uber as an example. If you’re trying to sell to Uber, some sellers might consider it enterprise while others view it as mid-market since they only have a couple of thousand employees. LinkedIn might reflect that the company has 35,000 employees, including drivers. If companies aren’t careful about where they are choosing data, it can create confusion. 

Be consistent about where you get data, even if it isn’t perfect, because you’ll at least be consistently wrong. Limit the number of resources you use to make classifications, especially for things like territories or number of employees or revenue. 

Many CRMs have a full page of information that reps never use. It doesn’t add value and it actually becomes a burden to them. Approach this with the same mentality you use when designing your website: what’s above the fold is critically different than what’s below the fold. It’s impactful where things are placed, and if reps have a bunch of unnecessary information at the top of the form it burdens them. 

If the reps don’t absolutely need it, then remove it. Streamline your process. Develop a discipline around reducing the amount of noise that your reps see based on the information they need. If the data won’t actually impact how they work through the sales process, it should be removed since it won’t actually move the needle. 

Guesstimation

Donald Miller says that if you confuse, you lose. We cannot confuse our reps. If we do, they’ll likely go back to what they’ve always done before, which is guesstimation. 

Imagine driving a truck built in 1965 versus a fighter jet built in 2019. The truck likely has a stick shift and two buttons for the radio, so almost any person can use it to get from point A to point B. Put that same person in a fighter jet with a million buttons and they won’t understand how to move forward. 

Sales reps must be able to execute and they shouldn’t be asked to fly a fighter jet if all they really need is a 1965 Chevy. 

Additionally, more data points mean that some operator has to maintain those fields. You must make sure the information is accurate because inaccurate data will make your CRM less valuable. Again, if that happens, your reps will start using anecdotes to make decisions again. 

Cry wolf

All those unnecessary fields will prompt your reps to fill them in, which will become cumbersome. If it isn’t a useful data point, they may just plug something in to fill the blank so they can move on. Your reps must be able to trust the fields that are on the page. 

Make the process simple and easy to engage. Remove as much as you can from the page layout so that your reps are only interacting with data that moves the needle. 

Everything can’t be critical. You can’t have 10 tier-one problems with no tier-two problems. You cannot cry wolf and represent that everything is vital.  

Kyle recalls his operations team once telling him that they needed a new field to be added to the CRM. He insisted that the team could add one field if they could identify two that could be removed. He said that it forces them to be intentional about the information they gather. 

Words are currency. You must make sure the process is easy. Find ways to break down barriers.

Effective data

Kyle said he’s a fan of using very specific people in very specific roles. Sales reps are most effective at building rapport, identifying pain and need, and closing deals.If you’re using your sales reps to collect data, you’re probably spending more money for it than you need to. And just as you would never ask your data-entry person to close deals, you probably shouldn’t ask your sellers to crunch data. 

Businesses may think they are being efficient by asking sellers to multi-task. They may figure the seller is already going to be on the site anyway so he can just collect the data. Consider the brain change that must take place in that situation. Sales reps must change their entire thought process in order to shift gears into data collection.

Switching back and forth can be tedious because it requires different muscles. Allow the people who are better at data to handle data. 

Every minute your seller isn’t selling results in money down the drain. Keep your opportunity costs in mind. 

Refresh data

Establish a process to refresh your data. As your company continues to accumulate accounts, you must track which ones are good or bad. Make it part of your cadence and establish a date on which you’ll refresh data. 

Consider hiring a team overseas to log into your Salesforce and identify the accounts that haven’t been updated in the past year and then refresh the data. Then track when the fields were updated. 

Also monitor duplicate accounts in your CRM which pollute your database. But before you can start eliminating duplicate accounts, you must work to ensure that you’ve prevented the problem of new duplicates. Duplicates create more mental overhead for your reps because two reps may be unknowingly working on the same account at the same time. It’s wasted energy that could be focused toward closing. 

Don’t assume that anecdotes and data are the same thing. Be sure, too, that you pick a single source of truth and stick with it. There’s no perfect data source, but at least be consistently imperfect. Allow your sellers to trust what they are working on. 

Importance of Data in Sales” episode resources

You can connect with Kyle Morris on LinkedIn or send him an email at Kyle@sifdata.com.

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.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

 

Andrea Waltz, Donald Kelly, Go For No, Failure

TSE 1041: Just Go For No!

Andrea Waltz, Donald Kelly, Go For No, FailureSalespeople don’t like to hear the word “no” but Andrea Waltz is going to help you change the way you look at that response so that you’ll find yourself trying to go for no.

Andrea and her husband struck out on their own about 19 years ago. They did sales workshops and trainings for big companies, and they found that their rejection piece was the thing everyone loved.

This was a problem and a solution that affected everyone no matter what business they were in.

In this replay of a 2017 episode of The Sales Evangelist, Andrea offers the following advice to those dealing with rejection.

It’s not about you.

Although it’s true that the rejection isn’t personal, it’s hard to avoid internalizing that rejection. It’s normal to respond emotionally when someone tells you no.

If, however, you allow rejection to take control of your sales process, you end up with mediocre results because you’re little more than an order-taker.

Go for the no.

Eventually you’re going to have a conversation with someone, so rejection is always a possibility.

Andrea’s husband had an experience once selling menswear, and his manager asked him what the customer said no to. Her husband pointed out that the customer bought everything he recommended and didn’t say no to anything.

The manager then asked, “Well then how did you know he was done?”

As sellers, we tend to sell to our own wallets, but if we could get comfortable being told no, it’s possible that we’d be even more successful.

We must get used to hearing “no.”

Help struggling sellers.

“No” doesn’t mean never; it means not yet.

“No” is the beginning of a negotiation. If you call on someone who is happy with the current supplier, that won’t necessarily be true forever.

You must stay in touch and follow up even when people tell you “no.”

Encourage your sellers to continue the follow up. It’s easy to lose track if you don’t use your CRM.

There’s also an interesting phenomenon around getting a “yes.” Everyone celebrates that “yes.” Contrast that with the person who makes 20 phone calls and gets nothing but “no.”

Consider that a lot of those “no” answers can turn into “yes.”

Track your “no” answers. Set a “no” goal.

If you get permission to follow up, you absolutely must do it.

Manage “no.”

Sellers must learn to distinguish the different kinds of “no” answer. When you avoid hearing “no” you don’t get good at handling rejection emotionally.

When you get used to hearing “no” you learn to distinguish the “no” answers that could potentially turn into a “yes.”

Get permission to follow up with that qualified prospect. At worst, ask if you can check back in a few months to see if anything has changed.

You can also try to figure out what the “no” is by figuring out how you got to “no.”

You have nothing to lose at this point, so try to figure out why it wasn’t a good fit. Figure out why people are saying “no” and figure out how you can mitigate that in the future.

Talk to the right people.

If you’re getting a large number of “no” answers, determine whether you’re talking to the right people. Consider that maybe you aren’t contacting qualified leads.

Maybe your presentation needs a few tweaks.

If you’re only being proactive, you’re only dealing with the “yes” answers.

People usually have to be contacted multiple times before they say “yes.” They are often hesitant to change, so if you’re changing a service but the prospect doesn’t want to make a change, that’s why multiple contacts are necessary.

Add value. Get them accustomed to the idea.

Change your mindset.

Understand that you don’t just have to focus on “yes.” That mindset shift forces you to let go of being perfect.

People have been conditioned to believe that “no” and failure go together.

When you avoid “no,” you miss opportunities for some big “yes” answers. We want to give people permission to believe that it’s ok to get a “no.”

Create a “no” awareness.

“Just Go For No!” episode resources

Learn more about these concepts by visiting GoForNo.com. You can also grab a copy of their book Go For No!: Yes Is the Destination, No Is How You Get There.

This episode is brought to you in part by our TSE Certified Sales Training Program, which teaches you to improve your sales skills, find more customers, build stronger value, and close more deals.

The next semester begins in April.

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.

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.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode, and share with your friends!

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Josh Cunningham, New Hire, Sales Team, Real Estate, Don't Trick Them

TSE 994: Sales From The Street-“Don’t Trick Them”

Josh Cunningham, New Hire, Sales Team, Real Estate, Don't Trick ThemJosh Cunningham, founder and CEO of rokrbox,  fast-tracked his entrepreneurial career by helping to solve a recurring problem for real estate clients and learning an important lesson along the way: Don’t trick them.

Josh first stumbled upon the ISA, or Inside Sales Agent, role in real estate while attending seminars with Vyral Marketing founder and CEO Frank Klesitz. Vyral Marketing works with top agents to create content and to get referrals and repeat business.

The entrepreneurial spirit

Many top professional teams buy real estates leads online, but their agents don’t always do a good job of following up on them.

Like any good entrepreneur, when Josh heard a lot of people complaining about a common frustration, he decided to solve the problem. [00:39]

He started rokrbox.

A rocker box is a gold mining tool used in the 19th century to separate the sand and gravel from the gold. Likewise, rokrbox takes your real estate leads and separates the tire-kickers and time wasters from the motivated buyers and sellers. [01:26]

Tapping into the student market

Rokrbox is strategically located directly across from the Texas A&M University campus in College Station, Texas. Many sharp and enthusiastic young professionals go there looking to grow their skills.

Josh provides them with the opportunity to develop real-world sales skills, CRM skills, and pipeline management skills. All of his student-employees typically graduate with multiple job offers from some type of sales professional career. [02:21]

Since starting in 2013, rokrbox has worked over a million internet leads, hired over 250 ISAs, and trained them to move forward in their careers.

Looking back, Josh believes that scalability was his biggest sales-related struggle. He knew he could do the job but wasn’t sure if he could train others to do it. When he first started hiring college students, he realized a lot of the same struggles that most people run into when building any sales team.

Set clear expectations

His first mistake was in not clearly setting expectations for the new hires. The job posting on the Texas A&M website was too vague.

It wasn’t clear that a new hire could expect to make a ton of phone calls a day, could expect to be rejected all day, etc.

It was just too ambiguous.

As a result, a new hire might go through the entire interview process and personality assessment only to quit almost immediately after starting the job.

One young man, in particular, spent over 15 minutes learning the types of calls to make, the technology/scripts/dialogue used and the likelihood of repeated rejection.

He excused himself to use the restroom and never came back. [04:28]

Josh blames himself. He had failed to set expectations and to make clear to potential hires what they were getting into.  He felt as if he had tricked people into taking the job which is not how to start a sales organization on the right foot.

Observation

As a result, rokrbox implemented observation into the business. Now, they invite promising applicants back to pair up with a senior rep as part of the interview process. They spend a full hour learning what to expect on a shift – from the technology to the daily team huddle, to the reports and the metrics.

They are encouraged to ask questions. It is their chance to interview the business.

At the conclusion of their observation session, applicants are asked to send an email to explain how they would fit into the rokrbox culture.

It has been amazing to see the persuasive essays they receive.  [05:43]

Essays

Josh enjoys hearing people explain why they want to be a part of the organization more than having them sneak away on a bathroom break, never to return.

He highly recommends showing potential hires exactly what they can expect. Show them what it is like to be on the phone or knocking on doors. Be totally straightforward from the very beginning.

Josh believes that when building a culture worthy of your organization, it is likely that you will strongly attract the right people and strongly repel the wrong ones.  And certainly, not everyone who attends an observation responds. The work and the pace intimidate some people. [07:30]

But he wouldn’t change a thing.

Rockrbox invests a lot of one-on-one training in every new employee before they are ready to do the job. Twenty hours on the new hire combined with 20 hours of the trainer’s time: Forty hours is a huge investment if someone might either bomb or quit.

Transparency

It is definitely better to be transparent and upfront.

Anything less is simply a waste of everyone’s time.

Have a collection of people that are all driven and motivated, in a cohesive unit, and headed in the same direction. A team that supports and enjoys each other becomes a better team because of it. It’s the most harmonious thing you can do with any business.

Know the culture you want to create and then protect it. Invite others to observe whether or not it is right for them. [09:16]

Once you become a leader of others, give them your expectations and the tools to succeed.

Clearly communicate all of it – the good, the bad and the ugly. [11:22]

“Don’t Trick Them” episode resources

To learn more about how rokrbox converts the online leads of top sales professionals in the real estate industry, visit www.rokrbox.com or contact Josh directly at josh@rokrbox.com.

This episode is brought to you in part by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. It will help you with your outbound to expand your outreach. It allows you to set it and forget it. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.

Previously known as TSE Hustler’s League, our TSE Certified Sales Program offers modules that you can engage on your own schedule as well as opportunities to engage with other sellers in other industries.

This episode is 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.

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.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode, and share with your friends!

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Jeff Propp, Maximizer, Donald Kelly, Sales Process

TSE 958: Fundamentals Of An Effective Sales Process

Jeff Propp, Sales Process, The Sales EvangelistOn today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we’re talking to Jeff Propp of Maximizer about the fundamentals of an effective sales process.

Jeff is the head of revenue for Maximizer CRM, one of the pioneers in the CRM industry. It’s a boutique company focusing on smaller midsized businesses in a crowded CRM marketplace.

Sales process

Sales isn’t about being charismatic or being a smooth-talker.

There aren’t a lot of barriers to entry in sales but there are a lot of barriers to success.

If you don’t have a process by which you as a seller enter into a relationship with the buyer, it won’t go well. You must have an understanding of prospects’ needs, goals, wants, and desires.

You must establish trust and then develop a mutually beneficial contract, and it can happen quickly or slowly.

The majority of people who are successful in sales adhere to a process.

Many new and struggling salespeople don’t have sales processes, and they face common struggles as a result.

Methodology

Jeff has seen salespeople get into trouble frequently by cutting corners. You have to go slow in order to go fast.

Take time to understand the root causes that are the catalyst for your customers’ desire to seek change.

It’s tempting to be anxious to pitch but start by understanding their business, their processes, and the stakeholders you’re working with.

Your process must be consistent, that’s understood, that’s simple, and that you have deliverables to support and that they are aligned with your company values.

Sometimes people accidentally eliminate the customer in the process and they forget to think about how the customer is buying.

Skipping steps

Closing is the fun part of selling so it’s tempting to hurry toward that part of the process.

Some stages may feel like “rubber stamp” stages, and sellers can get frustrated at those points in the process. Continue to be deliberate and methodical even though it sounds boring.

If you don’t eventually invest in a sales process, your business won’t scale properly. People will go rogue and do their own thing. It’s also impossible to forecast if you don’t have some kind of process in place.

It’s also important to have predictability in your revenue and your budgets. You must have some idea where you’re going to end up financially, and that will be tougher to do without a process in place, especially with larger teams.

Additionally, different customers will have different experiences if your process isn’t consistent. There will be a lack of consistency.

Consistent customer service keeps customers loyal to the brand.

Developing a process

The best practice for those who don’t have a process in place would be to hire a team that can help you practice and learn sales processes.

If you don’t have the budget for that, there are dozens of great books that can help you begin. You can go through the book together as a team.

The most important aspect is practicing as a team. Anytime Maximizer has a new initiative or process, they use role-playing to execute it.

If you can get into a course with materials that allows you to practice the things you’re going to be doing, that’s a great help.

Likewise, if you’re a new seller working in a company that doesn’t offer sales training, consider finding a mentor or a coach. It could even be someone in the company who is already doing well for himself.

Find podcasts and blogs you can engage with and other resources you can take advantage of. Audiobooks are a great tool as well. Learn to self-develop.

Make your interactions with people about them. Check out how much you’re asking compared to how much you’re telling. Great salespeople know the answers to the questions but the act of being curious creates trust and goodwill.

The spirit of reciprocity comes back to you when you put other people first.

“Effective Sales Process” episode resources

Connect with Jeff on LinkedIn or find him at the Maximizer switchboard. If you DM him or leave a voicemail, he’ll get back to you.

Grab a copy of the book SNAP Selling: Speed Up Sales and Win More Business with Today’s Frazzled Customers.

This episode is brought to you in part by Maximizer CRM, personalized CRM that gives you the confidence to improve your business and increase profits. To get a demonstration of maximizer, go to the sales evangelists.com/maximizer.

Click on the link to get a free demo of what Maximizer CRM can do for you. Maximizer is intuitive, simple, and personable. Maximizer integrates your marketing campaign as well as your CRM, and it works whether you’re a small organization or a large one. It works throughout the whole organization and it’s customizable to the way you sell.

This episode is also brought to you in part by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. It will help you with your outbound to expand your outreach and it allows you to set it and forget it. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.

We’ll use prospect.io in the upcoming semester of TSE Hustler’s League to focus on prospecting. We’ll give you insights and tools that will help you gain new customers and provide training and strategies that you can implement today to ensure constant flow in your pipeline.

“The Sales Evangelist”

Check out TSE Hustler’s League and apply to see if it’s a good fit.

Leave us a review 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.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode, and share it with someone else you think might benefit.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Josh Smith, Value, STACKED, Sales Book

TSE 904: Sales From The Street-“Building Value Pre, During & Post Meeting”

Josh Smith, Value, STACKED, Sales Book

We all understand the importance of building value for the prospect. It’s important to know, too, that it’s an ongoing process. We should focus on building value before, during, and after the meeting.

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, Josh Smith, author of How to Guarantee Qualified Sales Meetings With Real Decision Makers, explains why building value is such a massive part of the sales process, and why it must occur from the beginning to the end.

How can I prepare?

Sales reps often begin with the very best intentions. Despite their plan to provide value, they find themselves quickly resorting to features, benefits, and pitching a product.

Position yourself as an additional member of the team who gives them content and education, and who helps them overcome business challenges. Providing value builds trust and credibility.

Josh said he likes to start with LinkedIn, and he sends them valuable content that helps them realize that he is different from other sellers. He focuses on content that is relevant and specific to the prospect.

Where do you find this kind of content?

Narrow down your prospect list to one industry. Determine a narrow audience that you want to hit with your messaging. Set up an account on Google Alerts and identify some keywords that I want to be notified of. Google will email me any time a relevant piece of content emerges.

It’s automated, and I can send it straight to my prospect knowing that it will be relevant.

Consider using Feedly as well. It’s a content aggregator that allows you to type in information about who you’re trying to reach and it will aggregate specific content that you know will be relevant to the prospect.

Building value up front with relevant helpful information will help me build trust before I even tell them what I do. Do it for about 30 days. You can pitch them sooner than that if you want, but this is a consistent process that helps you develop qualified leads who trust you.

Set yourself apart

The difficulty is that a lot of sellers have adopted this same approach to prospecting. The challenge, then, is to make sure that your information catches their attention.

Pay attention to industry events that your prospects might attend. Look at the topics and the tracks that the industry is discussing to get a really good idea of the challenges facing the industry.

It’s not a huge problem if you’re sending information that’s similar to what someone else is sending. As long as the content you send provides value that will help move them along with a challenge that they are facing, it will give you a way to start a dialogue. Additionally, if you’re really quick with Google Alerts, you might still send the content before others do.

If you haven’t already asked them, find out what kind of content your customers in a given industry find valuable. Once you’ve identified that, you can start addressing those topics with your new prospects.

Also, make sure to measure and optimize what you do. When you send content, track its effectiveness. Determine which content earned you responses and which didn’t.

Provide value in the meeting

Your goal is to position what you do as more valuable than what others are doing. Create urgency around your solution.

The more credible your urgency story is, the better it will be. When you first meet the prospects, set the expectations from the start rather than waiting until the back end.

If you go all the way through your pitch before revealing that you’ve only got two spaces left, you lose some credibility. If you wait until the end of the pitch to say you can only offer this price today, you’ll lose credibility.

Move everything that you traditionally do at the back end of the pitch to the front. It creates believable urgency.

“I’ve only got two spots left and that’s exactly why I wanted to talk to you.”

Ask hard questions. “Why haven’t you already found a solution to this problem?” You can provide a more valuable pitch by knowing the answers to the hard questions.

Treat the person’s time with respect. By asking hard questions, you’re eliminating unnecessary information and providing the best solution for them the very first time.

Provide value after the meeting

This is the most important part because it’s where conversions can happen.

Offer a bit of free consultation after the meeting. Now that I understand the challenges they are facing, I can put together an overview of the meeting including some free suggestions that will help them move forward: 3 or 4 action steps.

Do it within 24 hours, because very few people are doing this.

Follow up with video. Josh’s conversions have doubled since he started following up with video.  Send a video of you talking about the meeting and the expectations. Video allows them to see you and see your energy.

“I just had a thought after our discussion of something we could do to help. Let’s talk next week.” It gets them back on the phone, and given that it takes an average of 12 touches to close a deal, that’s important.

Wistia is a fantastic platform that helps you shoot video even if you aren’t a video editor. You record it, upload it, and then send it, and it’s completely free. It provides data about when they watched it and how long it played for so you’ll know how effective it was.

Make value in your sales process. Be an honest advisor.

“Building value before, during, and after the meeting” episode resources

Connect with Josh on LinkedIn or Instagram. Grab a copy of his book about how to generate qualified leads with decision-makers using LinkedIn.

Pre-order your copy of How to Guarantee Qualified Sales Meetings With Real Decision Makers and start seeing immediate impact in your business.

Check out Feedly to keep up with content that is important to you. It’s a free platform that gathers important stories that will help you build value for your prospect.

Google Alerts allows you to set notifications for content that relates to your prospects. It will help you provide valuable content that helps your prospects manage challenges and solve problems.

Today’s episode is brought to you by Maximizer CRM, a personalized CRM that gives you the confidence to improve your business and increase profits. Get rid of the boring CRMs and customize to your team’s selling abilities. Click on the link to get a free demo of what Maximizer CRM can do for you.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, which teaches you how to utilize video to stand out from your competition. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy. You are a brand, and video can help you set yourself apart.

Leave us a review 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. If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.