This summer proved to be a test of my Sales & Marketing studying abilities...and, I think that I just may have passed the test
Read two marketing textbooks. For someone who does not use a textbook in my marketing course at Tufts, I thought that all 735 pages of Marketing by David Ferrell were just plain "excellent". .
Tough concepts brought down to simple English and then filled in with lots of current and meaningful examples. Big bucks for the book, and a bit more heavily focused on B2C, but certainly a strong thread of B2B throughout to make it very meaningful. Definitely worth the money and the time if you're in, or plan to be in, the profession of marketing.
David Meerman Scott's The New Rules of Sales & Service. Exactly what I would expect from the Zen Master of Inbound, as he expands his universe and penetrates deeper into the funnel.
If you haven't read his bible, The New Rules of PR & Marketing, go to Amazon right now and download it...well, as soon as you've finished reading this blog that is.
Marketing Performance Blueprint by Paul Roetzer.
I also thought that this was very good! It's filled with real life strategies and tactics and interlaced with tons of very useful and practical downloadable tools.
And then just for fun, I reread every 2015 issue of the Harvard Business Review, which all winter and spring I had (kind of) read, and then had stuffed them into into the summer beach bag.
BTW, there's an excellent article in this current October edition on "How Smart, Connected Products are Transforming Companies" by Michael Porter and James Heppelmann, the CEO of PTC. A watershed article, I think, and something that I believe every techie and especially non-techie needs to read. In fact, I'd extend that recommendation to state that it's somewhat critical that you read this particular article if you plan to continue to be successful in any business during the next few years.
I then spent two days just immersing myself into a portion of the huge library of Hubspot videos. One of my two favorite sales and marketing platform and tools companies, Hubspot, has outdone themselves in creating hundreds of brief, to-the-point, and extremely well presented videos on every facet of usage of their platform. Some easy to digest, some not-so, but extremely practical if you plan to be a fluent HubSpotter
And finally, I reread every Brainshark 2015 blog and download I could get my hands on. Since, as a board member, I'm on their distribution list, I receive a serious number of "how-to's", but, given that I was spending two weeks just reading, re-reading and studying, I had the chance to concentrate a bit more than normal on their content on improving sales and marketing productivity.
Check this recent Brainshark article out on 22 Tips for Better Sales Readiness, for example. Nothing truly revolutionary here, but in the heat of battle and "The Crunch of the Month", as sales warriors, we waaay too often forget these very valuable Sales basics.
Not only worth reading, but I would recommend doing what I do, and that is to actually print it out and keep a copy in the car to flip through before making that all-important call when you're trying to move Opportunities down deeper into the funnel.
Now that I'm back in the classroom-Tufts began last week, and MIT this past Monday-I realize that once again, I'm still just a student in the professions of Sales and Marketing. I like to believe that I have some level of expertise, but I realize at the start of every semester that all of what I know about sales and marketing is somewhat unimportant...
- ...unless I can develop new skills,
- ...unless I can study and learn more,
- ...unless I can refresh the basics again and again,
- ...unless I can teach what I know to my sales and marketing teams
- ...and, most importantly, as a result, I can bring real value to my customers.
One final note, at Reiser, Inc., one of our top customers and the leader in its industry, and where I have the privilege of being chairman, we're looking to fill the new position of Director of Marketing. If you're interested or you know of a strong candidate for this exciting career position, just connect with me, and I will send you the job description and profile or just answer your questions on a call.
Remember that your first job as a salesperson is to learn, not to sell!
Have specific sales questions that you want to bounce off me or other Derby Coaches, just email me, and we'll set a time to talk at the end of a day.
Derby Management...for 25 years
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Box 171322, Boston, MA 02117
Jack's Cell: 617-504-4222