Been a wicked busy and wicked cold January, so not much in the way of blogging, but now with this leap into February, I’m back at it. It was my great grandfather Horace, who lived up the road a piece in the beautiful town of Poultney, Vermont, who talked about 8 months of snow, 2 months of mosquitoes and 2 months of “just damn poor sleddin’”. My family has lived in this valley for just about 250 years, and what I know is that it takes real work to live here. Vermont’s beautiful on one hand, and just hardscrabble tough on the other.
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Being a disciple of the high priests of David Meerman Scott, the guys at Hubspot and the gurus of Jamie Turner, Mike Troiano, Dan Tyre and Mike Volpe over the past decade, I'm an Inbound Marketing kind of guy!.
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In the billions of years of time, we hopefully have 60 or 80 of those in which we can make a difference, so let's start, beginning today, with taking control over the next 150 real work hours remaining in this quarter!
Thanksgiving is right around the corner and while most normal people are already thinking about the 3 F's of Family, Friends, and Football, guys like me are calculating just how many selling days there are left in the year. The Answer:
at Best, there are 22 selling days left in the year !
- First, you should thankful that there are 22 !
- Second, 22 is a maximum number !
-The obvious days of this Wednesday & the immediate days after any of the holidays are not included.
- Even if you and your Champion are around post-Christmas, the probability of everyone involved in the process is zero !
-And, btw, there are a huge amount of other end-of-year distractions much more important than you between now and then.
- So, now is the time to plan out every possible day that you can own of those 22 days.
One of our most highly respected, most resourceful and most energetic sales leaders, Colleen Honan, CRO at Brainshark, refers to this detailed selling process as "Your Plan to Make Plan", which gets right down to what I call "Selling on Streets not States":
- In a quarter, in a month, and certainly in these 22 days, planning is not about strategy !
- It's about planning out next week's daily activities and the following week's tight travel and calls !
- It's planning travel at a street-by-street, city-by-city level travel to maximize your efficiency !
- It's about re-doing your Discovery Checklist and asking questions about prospect's holiday plans.
- Nothing is worse than having a commit and then learning that the Purchasing Manager is skiing.
- It's about taking today/tomorrow and making tons of calls and emails to get December meetings,
- At the very least, you should be reaching out to wish your prospects "Happy Thanksgiving!"
Clearly, THE MOST ENERGETIC SALES LEADER I know anywhere, any company, at any time !
In addition to being a superb sales pro, a Hubspot evangelist and director, a highly experienced and acclaimed speaker, he has just published his most recent book on The Inbound Organization-How to Build Your Organization Using Inbound Principles, not just "another" inbound marketing book, but a fundamental guide for both selling and marketing in today's totally changed customer world !
Download now, skim over this weekend, see what nuggets you could use for these 22 days, then read it completely over the next couple of weeks !
So, that's it here on a Monday morning! Time to get moving, but before you do...
Tufts- "Content in Context" Marketing projects
Have a great day selling something today!
At the Tufts Entrepreneurship Center, in addition to shepherding 450 enthusiastic and curious students a semester among 16 wicked smart professors, I've been focusing on building an event structure throughout the year that leads up to our $100K New Venture Competition in the spring. Right now, you should Mark April 5th in your calendar and come and participate in what Forbes ranks as one of "The top 15 business plan contests in the country."
Vermont's Marketing in the Fall
25% of Vermont's tourist dollars come as a result of four weeks during the leaf-peeping season from caravans of busses out the Midwest and outright commercialism of marketing and selling everything that is the essence of Vermont.
To the left is a picture from last weekend taken from my dirt road 'bout half a mile from my house. Doesn't get Vermont-better than this in terms of the beauty that is the fall...and the tourist dollars that come rolling in as a result.
When I became the Director of the Tufts Entrepreneurship Center, one of the Center's professors, a great guy and a superb instructor noted in our first faculty meeting "since you are the oldest..." , at which time, I jokingly cut him off, and he quickly course-corrected to point out... "I meant, you've been teaching here the longest".
I've also realized during the last six months through Tufts' very unique perspective on entrepreneurship, innovation and research, that age has its benefits.
Two thirds of the way through this superb summer and plenty of time left to take a bit of vaca, squish the sand between the toes, pack those gotta-read-this-summer books into the beach bag, and in general just prepare yourself physically and mentally for the wicked fast acceleration into the first week of September.
The Dog Days of August occur when everyone realizes that the beginning of the summa' has passed them by, and now there's just five weeks left to take some time off and do that forced relaxation thing. Forget trying to find anyone in France or Italy, and the same applies to any venture or PE person in the U.S, who all seem to be hiding out on Nantucket. It is what it is, and September will be here soon enough. To a degree, who cares, since this is all about you, so right now, this morning, click open your calendar and just mark off all the days you can with the words "beach", "golf", "kids" or "nothing". You won't get another chance since when it's over, it's over
You cannot not like Michael Porter...
The guy is just brilliant! Been around for a long time. Lots of books. Got the Five Forces Thing down. Senior professor at HBS. Has a building on campus named after him. And, he's a true Renaissance Man, who continues to do research, write and still actively teach. The Real Deal !
- Limited time to work. On average a "very good" salesperson works 57.5 hours a week, only slightly less than the 63.2 hours for a "very good" CEO...most of whom are what? Salespeople!
- Limited time to sleep. I guess that there is still a rule of thumb that the average adult needs eight hours, but there are those of us who have gotten by just fine, thank you, for decades on four or five, and last night on three.
- Limited time to live. 'Nuff said about that depressing note, since today I chose to "Be Happy!"
A beautiful happy day here in Boston having finally shrugged off the ugliness of a cold wet spring to now bask in the excitement of the startup capital of the world. Just a great day to be alive..."and sell some stuff"