I continue to enjoy the insightful discussions I have with sales and marketing experts in our PowerViews series. There are a few topics that come up regularly. For this ‘best of’ edition we revisit the hot topics—social media, mobile marketing, sales lead follow up. Look for some of these topics to be further explored by upcoming guests Jill Rowley of Oracle and Kyle Porter of SalesLoft. Enjoy!
|Today's Featured Guests|
|Koka Sexton, LinkedIn
Peter Bourke, The Complex Sale
Lori Richardson, Score More Sales
Jamie Turner, The 60 Second Marketer
Click to start video at this point—Koka’s “eureka” moment was when he recognized the value in connecting his Twitter and LinkedIn accounts. Twitter is more of a running conversation, where people relax and divulge more personal information. LinkedIn is more buttoned up. But if you can get to know people on both levels—personally and professionally—you gain a different insight as a salesperson. This cross pollination fosters relationships and widens your network.
Click to start video at this point—Want to win more? Then sell less, Peter says. Does this sound antithetical? Does it go against your instincts as a salesman? Probably. But Peter says the more you sell, the less the client trusts you to tell them the truth. That’s right: the more you sell, the less inclined the client is to listen.
In reality, the more you sell, the less you win. In his ebook Unselling: Sell Less to Win More, Peter will help you shift the buyer-seller relationship from subservient to collaborative.
Click to start video at this point—Lori regularly encounters issues with sales follow up. It’s so easy for your mind to trick you into thinking that when you don’t hear back from someone they must not be interested, but if you have something of value that you really feel is beneficial and you feel a company is a good fit for the solution then it’s up to you to continue trying to contact them until they tell you directly that they’re not interested.
I shared my thoughts with Lori on a “legislative branch” being established for a period of time to monitor leads, so that if there has been agreement between marketing and sales on a lead definition, and leads aren't being followed up, there is a responsible party in place to look for the reason.
Lori agreed that if marketing does have a process and they feel they’ve qualified a lead through that process, but sales doesn’t follow up, then yes, someone else should look at it and see what the issue is.
I also asked Lori about the challenges around the lack of insight from salespeople into their sales activity and the sales process. Lori sees this also as an ongoing issue that happens every day in sales. She regularly sees leads being hidden until a rep knows there is a solid opportunity. The challenge this presents is the ability to justify investing in an expensive comprehensive CRM tool that has been customized, when in fact it’s not reflecting the true data.
Click to start video at this point—When asked about marketing automation and if he felt we were returning to a one-to-many marketing approach, Jamie expressed that with the increased use of marketing automation, even on the social front, it has become somewhat depersonalized. Now more than a listening tool social can in some cases become very automated, without the personal nuance that one-to-one marketing lends itself to. However, Jamie says that this has to happen. Initially, social media marketers had to listen to what was being said about them and then analyze it. This took an enormous amount of time and required a lot of manual labor. Now the data has become so massive this process is becoming automated.
Jamie asked my thoughts on marketing automation and I shared a favorite expression of mine that, “Not every senior executive wants to be treated like the human equivalant of a pinball, only getting your attention when they've hit the right bumpers and scored enough points."
I feel that marketing automation can be a good thing and we use it ourselves, however, the reality is that the more senior decision makers are more averse to giving up their digital body language. I recently read an article that the more average sales reps flock to inbound leads and the more successful strategic reps go after outbound leads.
In addition, companies are rushing to focus on big data because of all the promises and press it’s received. Unfortunately they are forgetting about segmentation and how instead they should be looking at the individual performances.
By Dan McDade