Today is Day 1-Three Tactics for 2017 Sales Success

Posted by Jack Derby, Head Coach on Fri, Dec 23, 2016


I just pulled the plug on my ISP.  

Big firm, terrible connectivity, and consistently poor service, so I finally made the decision to pull the plug last week since I just couldn't be held hostage anymore.  Lee Drake, superb tech CEO, at his IT support firm, OS Cubed, had been telling me to do this for the years, but I didn't want to go through the pain of disruption. Finally the pain of staying connected outweighed the fear of the pain of disruption. The move happens next week, the process will be transparent, and I could not be happier. The point of this introduction is that when I looked up our background with the ISP, I discovered that we had been with them for 20 years !!  

20 years?!?

20 years ago, the World Wide Web had just been invented.  We moved to WWW using Mosaic from Arpanet where we had stuck it out for years using arcane commands, slow speeds and calling people on our landline telephone to ask if they did in fact receive the email (although it wasn't called email, we did not have html, nor did the words that came through on the screen look like any email that we know today).   

Which brings me thinking about the 2017 concept of "Day 1", and the adoption of faster change in our business, in our sales development, and in my teaching Marketing, and, with this semester, a new course in Sales.  I should have made this ISP switch five years ago, and for some wacko reason, I just stuck it out piling up one wasted hour after another.  2017 is about every day being Day 1 and initiating more rapid change that brings more value to our customers' businesses.

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Tags: sales coach, Sales Management Best Practices, sales productivity

Must Do Tactics for the Next 8 Days

Posted by Jack Derby, Head Coach on Fri, Dec 16, 2016

Here we are on the late afternoon of the 16th...

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Tags: sales management, sales management coach

Selling in December is not about you or your price!

Posted by Jack Derby, Head Coach on Wed, Dec 07, 2016

There's no Black Friday in B2B Selling!

The fact that the holiday season kicks of with Black Friday, followed by Cyber Monday, and then just plain old "Discount Day" all day, every day between now and the 24th, doesn't mean that the same should hold true for those of us in B2B sales.  Sure, everyone on both sides of the table knows that we have quotas to meet, and, in most cases, the pressure's on to hit plan in the next 17 days.  BTW, "17" is really expanding the days to the max, and not taking into consideration the reality of kids' vacations and that large numbers of decision makers are going to be skiing during many of those precious days between Christmas and New Year's.   

Pressure, Pressure, Pressure!

My partners and I live in the real world, and we're also under the gun to hit our sales targets, but, as execs running lots of companies and a wide variety of sales groups, we know that most discounts are not necessary!  In fact, the data shows that typically good salespeople do abnormal things at this time of year and give out discounts just because they think incorrectly that everyone is price buying, and that they need to do the same.  

The reality is that it's just not true, and, in fact, it only becomes true, when we don't focus on selling value, and instead we start our sales processes at the bottom rung of the ladder with non-decision makers who push us to talk about price rather than focusing on the larger business case of explaining financial value.

Price Selling" is at the very bottom rung of The Selling Ladder- "The Approved Vendor" Rung.  

  • Even in the heat of the next 16 days, our total focus and actual rally cry needs to be totally driven to the top two rungs of The Selling Ladder-"The Strategic Adviser" and the Trusted Partner" rungs.

    That's where the money is, so we must have absolute focus on the financial value to our prospects and customers and not on the price.  

A bit of help on pricing to value comes from our friends at Hubspot in one of their posts this week

1) Don’t Talk About Price Right Away
HubSpot Research found nearly six in 10 prospects want to discuss pricing on the very first call. But introducing cost into the conversation before establishing value can commoditize your product. This mindset hurts you and the buyer. He’s thinking about sticker price instead of ROI.

2) Highlight What Sets Your Product Apart
Once you’ve found your differentiators, figure out which resonate with each of your buyer personas. A startup employee who wears several hats will appreciate your product’s simplicity, while a corporate employee with a single function will like how customizable it is.

3) Position Your Product Strategically
Although badmouthing other companies will make you look insecure and unprofessional, you can -- and should -- ask your prospect which other vendors she’s considering. Her answer tells you how to position your product.

4 Sales Techniques to Avoid Race-to-Bottom Pricing

https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/sales-techniques-avoid-race-to-bottom-pricing#sm.0001c1niq1884crlz2t12so2nxfy5

17 DAYS

Oh, yea, did I mention "17"? Thought I did!  

The issue of a finite time now also needs to be driven by the fact that days are not 8 hour days. I mean, they could be, but in fact, we know from our buddies at Salesforce from tens of thousands of professional salespeople that sales reps aren't spending most of their time selling. In fact, reps spend an average of 64 percent of their time on non-selling tasks, including administrative and service related tasks, traveling and training.  

Okay, now do your math on just 17 days

 

 

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Tags: sales process, sales management, sales coach