Category Archives for Sales Tools

Pitch, Presentation,

TSE 1133: Changing Rules for Sales Tools

 

The sales landscape has changed as buyers have gained access to more information, and the result for sellers is changing rules for sales tools

Subhanjan Sarkar runs a company called Pitch Link, which helps companies solve the problem of being able to scale by finding good salespeople.  

Balance of power

David Cancel wrote a book called Conversational Marketing in which he suggests that the balance of power has shifted from supply to demand and from company to customer. Thirty years ago, selling centered around the ability to mass-produce products in factories. Walmart’s mantra at the time was “stack them high and sell them low.”

The system used to work with the information estimate tree that existed between suppliers and buyers, because the suppliers and makers always had more information available to them than the buyers did. The buyer never knew, prior to the Internet, that certain items were available from other sources for lower prices. 

Over the last 20 years, the buying and selling process has been disrupted. Most of us won’t say it out loud because so much of the information from the previous era becomes irrelevant. 

Old things

Subhanjan said that people often challenge him on this premise because they can point to places where the old way of doing things still works. Though it may still work, it is less effective. Email open rates, for example, have dropped from 40 percent to 2.8 percent. People aren’t taking calls from people they don’t know.  

The fundamental shift is this: traditional sales was based on the principle of interruption but buyers don’t want interruptions. This doesn’t mean that reps shouldn’t do their jobs anymore. It simply means that reps must change the way they do things. 

He points out that they are called salespeople for a reason. They aren’t called prospecting people or lead-generation people. But they are expected to fill up a CRM, to write emails, to prospect, and to make phone calls. 

Local connections

In traditional sales, people knew each other because they went to school together. They played football or baseball together and then they graduated and one became the manager of the local factory while the other became a salesman. They built trust over the course of 20 years. 

Now people trust brands rather than salespeople. They might eventually trust the salesperson over five to 10 years of working together, but initially, it’s the brand. 

PitchLink

As Subhanjan built the company, he understood the story behind the company’s development in great detail. He could explain why the company evolved the way it did because he was in the thick of it. Then, he hired a hot-shot sales guy who understood marketing automation and social selling, but his storytelling wasn’t as authentic. 

The company’s story wasn’t being delivered authentically, so the company discovered a need to standardize its narrative. The more tactical problem was that without face-to-face meetings, the sellers couldn’t make pitches. The presentations got postponed. 

Small organizations that only have three interested prospects will struggle if they aren’t able to meet with two of them for weeks or even months. That’s catastrophic. 

Finally, they discovered that even if they could meet someone within a prospective company, it was often difficult to schedule meetings with the decision-makers. 

How do we establish our product or service or value proposition? And how do we do it so that our prospect isn’t rushed? 

Creating experience

PitchLink worked to create an experience that was as close to face-to-face as possible without actually being face-to-face. It could never be exactly the same but they worked to create a system that allowed room for narratives and questions. They built a tool that allows users to link up any kind of file format like a playlist. 

So imagine how you would pitch to a prospect about your product. Just as you would start by greeting the prospect and thanking him for the time, you can record audio or video of the same personalized introduction. The moment the prospect clicks the link, he immediately sees the personalized greeting. 

Your pitch will include the pitch, the scenario, a demo, and a comparison with competitors. All the elements of a typical pitch can be packaged into a single product and sent as a link to your prospects. You can effectively do all the things you would do in person by way of this link. 

Freedom

These packaged presentations free your prospects to consume your information when they have the time and mental capacity to do so. They’ll also be free to engage with specific parts of your presentation multiple times if necessary. 

Once they’ve done that, they can decide whether the product is right for them, and then invite others to view it. All invitees see the ame pitch on the same interface and they can ask questions within this interface. All users can see the questions asked and the answers that were given. 

Everyone is always on the same page. 

Clients are busy and focused on other things. The way we sold in the past won’t always work, so we have to evaluate new options and provide them in a way that’s best for the prospects. #SalesEvolution

Sales myths

The biggest myth perpetuated on us is that great sales guys close deals. Suhanjan believes that sales are closed by the buyer who finally signs the deal. He believes that sellers must respect that shift. 

The buyer is in control of the process, so we must rethink the way we talk about value transaction. Sales has evolved so much that perhaps we can’t even talk about sales anymore. 

“Changing Rules for Sales Tools” episode resources

You can connect with Subhanjan Sarkar on LinkedIn and at PitchLink, where you can also sign up for a free trial. Listeners of The Sales Evangelist podcast will get 120 days free instead of the 90 days that everyone else gets. 

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.

 

July 4th, Freedom, Donald Kelly, Independence Day

TSE 1130: TSE Certified Sales Training Program – “Freedom”

 

July 4th, Freedom, Donald Kelly, Independence DayToday we’re celebrating our country’s independence, but sometimes sellers relinquish their freedoms because of fear. 

We discuss challenges like this in TSE Certified Sales Training Program, how they can hinder our success, and how we can overcome them. 

Storytelling 

We’re focusing on sales tools this month and one of the tools we’ve discussed is storytelling. We’ve talked about how to tell an effective story and how LinkedIn and other social media platforms can help you share your company’s values. 

In my own case, I recently relinquished my own freedom because I worried about what other people might think. Despite the fact that this is our 1,130th episode, I still worry about people’s opinions. You might think I’d be beyond that, but I still worry about my writing and how it will be perceived. I worry that if I write something, it might not sound great. 

I worry, too, about the videos I create and whether or not I’ll look and sound good in the video. As a result, I relinquish my freedom to express myself and share my thoughts because I’m worried. 

Trolls

I appeared on a friend’s podcast recently and I shared my own experiences with content and how it has benefited our audience. Luigi, the host of the Sales IQ podcast, recalled his experience with a troll who was intent on nitpicking his podcast by suggesting that I wasn’t qualified to speak about sales. He claimed I didn’t have enough B2B experience and that I was like many others who were cheating people.

Reading that was like a kick in the gut. Despite the fact that I’ve helped hundreds of people, I started to have second thoughts. Our clients have landed promotions and generated a pretty decent income, but still, I doubted whether or not I should express myself. 

Limitations

I wanted to pick apart his arguments and defend my experience against his claims that my information was basic to selling. Luigi pointed out that many sales professionals understand the importance of basics now. Together, we realized that this gentleman wasn’t a fit for the things we offered. 

Though he told us he had 33 years of sales experience, he’ll likely limit himself because he doesn’t believe he can learn from anyone else, especially those who are younger than him. 

I also realized that this gentleman had done this kind of thing before.

Experience

He didn’t realize that I haven’t listed every single bit of sales experience on my profiles. I have more than 15 years of sales experience between B2C and B2B settings. 

Perhaps he also didn’t realize that the fundamental things we share in the TSE Certified Sales Training Program are the key to moving the sales needle. We’ve had clients from Tokyo to Australia, Europe to Canada, and of course the U.S. 

I offered to set a time for me to learn about him and him to learn about me. He responded by telling me that I could buy his book if I wanted to learn more about him. I declined his offer to buy the book and suggested a phone call, at which point he said he doesn’t spend money on long-distance phone calls. I offered to have a Zoom meeting but he wouldn’t commit. 

The point is that there will always be detractors, but we cannot let them stop us from expressing ourselves. Not everyone will be a good fit for whatever you’re selling. You’ll always have haters. 

Content

Our content isn’t for people who don’t like it or who don’t believe they need it. It’s designed for people like you and me who are seeking to be better sellers. 

We talk a lot about how to generate content for podcasts or for LinkedIn or for blogs, and how videos can help you share content about your industry.

The truth is that most of the people who consume your content will contribute to the conversation, and you can’t shut down your whole operation because of a single person.   

Whether you’re in the hospitality industry or the medical industry or the technology space, you can share content with others around you. Curate something you found online or write your own piece and ask others around you to help you improve it. 

Independence

Declare your independence from fear and from trolls. Go out and share amazing content that impacts people’s lives. 

I want you to succeed and it’s why I do what I do. I want you to find more ideal customers and build stronger value in your conversations. I want you to close more deals and declare your independence. Mostly, I want you to go out and do big things. 

“TSE Certified Sales Training Program” episode resources

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.

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. Share it with your friends who would benefit from learning more.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Marc Levine, Donald Kelly,Improv Selling

TSE 621: How to Empower Customers to Make Faster Decisions Through Improv Comedy

Marc Levine, Donald Kelly,Improv Selling

Looking for an exciting, highly effective tool you can use for your next sales conversation? Then you surely need to listen to this episode.

Marc Levine is the Founder of Improv My Sales, a training and coaching company focused on salespeople where he works with individuals and companies to help them utilize the power of improv to become more successful.

Today, Marc shares some insights into empowering customers to make faster decisions through improv comedy. Marc started taking improv classes in New York and he learned that  people who make it come alive on stage work with a set of guiding principles.

 

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Marc:

Why do improv in sales?

Sales is one of the least trusted professions so Marc seeks to help sales professional do this really well so sales profession is looked at in a respective way.

As humans, our real desires are hidden and with the improv approach, you become really good at uncovering your prospect’s concerns and needs and be able to think of them as if they’re your own so you can be the most trusted person to help clients move towards commitments.

The Power of Listening

A lot of times we miss the value because we’re not listening. We’re telling the story and there are conversations we’ve already set up that we’re missing the goal.

Who’s Agenda Is it?

Often in our sales process, our agenda is focused on gathering information we could use for selling which is around their needs, goals, and pain, but it’s actually really focused on you. It’s focused on your agenda, not theirs. Then they begin to become disengaged.

Client-Centered versus Sales-Centered

Change how you sound and really think about whether what you’re doing is client-centered or sales-centered. When people feel like you care, they feel like you’re on their side and they would trust you.

How improv comedy helps in building trust:

  1. No script

It’s just you and what you’re offering and the customer being the expert in their world and together building a solution.

  1. Listen

The best improvisors listen at a level 10 or 11. They say yes to the suggestions their fellow actors offer even if different than their own.

  1. It must be fun!

Improv is fun and if you’re able to bring that into your sales training, sales reps will be able to retain information they’ve learned much better.

  1. “Yes, and…”

Stop making your clients wrong, you need to make them right. So if the client says something, regardless of what it is, you say “yes” as a sign that you’re agreeing with them then add something else after the “and” part. Doing this helps justify their concern otherwise you’re not going to be in agreement.

This tool also helps you to ask the appropriate questions that would allow the prospect to express themselves. “Yes, and…” makes them feel you understand them and this makes them feel good.

Marc’s Major Takeaway:

Stop making your customers wrong and stop thinking their world is wrong because it’s getting in the way of you closing a sale. The only reason we think somebody’s world is wrong is because we think it gets in the way of closing a sale. When you start to say yes to their world and you can justify their world is making sense and add some questions on top of that, you’re going to build trust. You’re the person they can open up to and then you can help  them move towards commitment better than most other sales reps around you.

Can’t get enough of this episode?

Reach out to Marc through email at marc@improvmysales.com and he will send you a PDF that talks more about “Yes, and…” and some nuances to it. If you’re a sales manager, Marc will send you reasons why sales training doesn’t work and how you can fix that. Plus! Write to Marc and tell him what you like about today’s podcast and he will enter you into a contest to win one of three one-hour sales coaching that will rock your world!

Episode Resources:

Improv My Sales

The Five Languages of Love by Gary Chapman

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Sales Revolution, Pipeliner, Nikolaus Kimla, Donald Kelly

TSE 516: The Sales Revolution

Sales Revolution, Pipeliner, Nikolaus Kimla, Donald Kelly Sales has always been represented in a negative way.  As much as we probably love Hollywood, more than 281 movies have represented a negative image of salespeople from 1903 to 2005. So that explains it (in a way). The truth is… sales actually does create great impact on the society. In fact, we will be seeing a sales revolution in the next ten years.

My guest today, Nikolaus Kimla, shares with us some key insights into the sales revolution, why this is important, and how you can be a part of it. Interestingly, find out how Nikolaus is able to tie in sales as a peacekeeping component in our society.

An Austrian-native, Nikolaus moved to Los Angeles four and a half years ago. Nikolaus is the CEO of the Pipeliner CRM, an awesome tool that helps sales professionals and entrepreneurs of all levels.

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Here are the highlights of my conversation with Nikolaus:

The concept of a Sales Revolution in the next 10 years:

  1. The need for human touch

At the end of the day, it’s sales that brings the number home

  1. The complexity of sales

Everyday, it’s the same intelligence that people have so the buyer needs a person to explain things because not everything is simple.

  1. Sales is craft, not an art.

Sales has to be learned. True, it was an art in the old days but today, sales is a craft. You have to learn it. It’s hard. There are not enough university courses to learn it because it’s one of the most complex jobs in the world due to several variables.

  1. Sales creates wealth and peace.

Sales is very undervalued for what it’s contributing to society. What is the impact of sales in the society? Sales is creating wealth. More importantly, sales is creating peace. You can’t be at war with the person you’re selling to. Sell correctly and you get wealth and peace.

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Using CRM as a Powerful Tool:

Put people first. The solution should empower the people. And all done in an enjoyable way!

Nikolaus’ Major Takeaway:

Everything you do has to be in line with the person you’re interacting with. Everyone is a multiplicator. So for everything you do, it could either multiply or diminish your ideals. So be nice and be socially intelligent.

Episode Resources:

www.pipelinercrm.com

Create quick electronic proposals and check out PandaDoc. Even get to sign and receive payments without leaving your CRM. To get a quick demonstration and a free trial, go to www.thesalesevangelist.com/panda

Donald Kelly, PandaDocHelp us spread the word out by leaving us a rating or review on iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play or whatever platform you’re using.

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HubSpot Side Kick, Sales Tools, The Sales Evangelist, Donald C Kelly, Donald Kelly

TSE 158: Donald’s Top Three Sales Tools Part 1 “HubSpot’s Sidekick”

HubSpot Side Kick, Sales Tools, The Sales Evangelist, Donald C Kelly, Donald Kelly

I’m a firm believer that, as sales professionals and entrepreneurs, we need to take advantage of tools that are going to make our lives easier and increase our ability to sell more. This is why I’m doing this three part series. Over the next three Mondays, I will share with you some of the favorite tools I use on a daily basis to assist or enhance my sales performance. This week I want to share with you “Hubspot’s Sidekick” tool. It’s one that I use the most — besides my CRM.

The tool is just like the name depicts. It’s a sidekick to provide you insights with your email, personal intel on your prospects and offers potential leads similar to the ones you’re working with.

Problem:

We all have heard that it takes up to 8-12 touches for a prospect to make a purchase. So, this is why sellers of all levels send emails and leave voice mails in hopes that they can reach their target individuals. But how can you tell if they are getting your emails? You can always be “that guy” and send the creepy stalker-looking “read receipt,” but whenever you send that it just feels like you’re desperate or trying too hard and annoying.

 

The Sales Evangelist, Read Receipt

 

But what if there was a way to know when and how a prospect opened your email? What if you can see who they forward it to? How about what links they clicked on and how long they spent on those pages? Well, those are a few powerful capabilities of Hubspot’s Sidekick.

Solution:

During this episode, I reveal some of the unique ways I’m using this tool. I’m sure you’ll discover some of your own. Some of the benefits you will see by using this are:

  • Sidekick shows you powerful information about your contacts right in your inbox
  • See a contact’s professional history, where they live, mutual contacts, email history and so much more
  • With Sidekick you can track your emails
  • Receive live notifications when someone opens or clicks on one of your emails
  • Know when, how many times, where, and from what device they opened your email
  • Sidekick recommends leads who are similar companies to those you are working with
  • Sidekick is FREE! Allowing you up to 200 email notifications per month

Here is a video that Hubspot put together on this tool. Check it out and let me know what you think.

 

And remember to work smarter, not harder, take advantage of tools and do BIG THINGS!

The Sales Evangelizers, Donald Kelly, Sales Facebook Group