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The Razors Edge with Barbara Giamanco|Sales|Social Selling|Marketing|Customer Experience|Technology|Business

If you want to learn from the best minds in B2B sales, marketing, service, and technology, The Razor's Edge podcast is for you. After 25+ years in Sales, Barb understands the challenges that sales leaders and salespeople face. Barb is the co-author of The New Handshake: Sales Meets Social Media and authored the Harvard Business Review article Tweet Me, Friend Me, Make Me Buy. In this podcast, Barb interviews authors, practitioners, and sales, marketing, service, and technology leaders from across the globe who share their expertise on everything from selling and marketing strategies and skills, engaging buyers online with social selling, top trends in technology to drive increases in revenue and pipeline and much more. www.barbaragiamanco.com
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The Razors Edge with Barbara Giamanco|Sales|Social Selling|Marketing|Customer Experience|Technology|Business
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Dec 31, 2016

Elinor Stutz broke through barriers long before doing so was popular. Against all odds she defied the theme, “women can’t sell” to become the top producer at every company she ever worked all the while ignoring attempts to get her to quit.

While on a stretcher with a broken neck predicted to be irreparable, Elinor saw two visions come to her. The first presented a report card showing it was her duty to begin empowering communities, and the second showed she was to become a worldwide speaker. She vowed with all her heart that she would rise to the occasion. Being the sales pro, she negotiated the outcome of healing 100%. The entire medical staff came to her recovery room to meet her and exclaim, “You are a walking miracle”. Stutz’ motto became, “Believe, Become, Empower.”

Moving full steam ahead six months later, she created Smooth Sale. Next steps to include ignoring all negativity:
• Her first book, Nice Girls DO Get the Sale: Relationship Building that Gets Results, is an International Best-Seller featured in TIME Magazine and on CBS-TV news.
• The Smooth Sale blog is distributed among corporations, entrepreneurs and media.
• Kred declared Elinor to be A Top 1% Influencer

Dec 21, 2016

I talked with Corey about what it takes to be a top sales producer in today’s ultra-competitive business environment. We talked about:

What led to Corey's own personal success in sales.
Top traits he thinks high performers have in common.
Ideas for being creative when trying to get to hard to reach buyers.
Metrics to measure and track.
Making it easy for your sales manager to support you.

About Corey:

Corey is the President and Founder of The Long Term Care Planning Group, a firm that specializes in delivering Long Term Care education and coverage to companies, high net worth individuals, and large organizations. Since 2001, Corey has devoted his career to Long Term Care as a result of multiple personal experiences. A neutral provider of Long Term Care Solutions since 2001, Corey brings a unique and comprehensive consultative perspective to this issue.

Learn about The Long Term Care Planning Group www.thelongtermcareplanninggroup.com

Connect with Corey:
LinkedIn - www.linkedin.com/in/coreyrieck

Dec 13, 2016

In this episode, I talked with Mike Kunkle who is the senior director of sales readiness consulting at Brainshark, Inc., which provides sales enablement solutions for faster training, better coaching, and more successful sales conversations. Mike has spent more than two decades helping companies transform their sales results.

Mike and I discussed how to improve field training & sales coaching quality with the ROAM method.

You will learn just what the ROAM method is, how a sales manager can implement the strategy, training, and coaching methods to support the process and what can sales organizations or companies can do to enable their managers to use ROAM effectively.

Mike has made this offer to listeners -If you want to watch a webinar recording about ROAM and especially more detail about the dashboard and the field training and coaching models that we discussed. Visit: bit.ly/traincoach

Learn about Brainshark - www.brainshark.com

Connect with Mike:
Website - www.mikekunkle.com
LinkedIn - www.linkedin.com/in/mikekunkle
Twitter - www.twitter.com/Mike_Kunkle

Dec 6, 2016

In this episode of the Razor's Edge, I talk to Mike Saunders at the Marketing Huddle about Authority Selling, which is also the title of his best-selling book. Today, more than ever, you need to be viewed as an expert authority in your field in order to move sales opportunities forward. Mike and I discussed:

  • The definition of Authority Positioning and how that is related to Authority Selling.
  • Why Mike believes that SEO as we traditionally know is almost "antiquated" and not as relevant as it used to be.
  • How to create and leverage to your advantage the Authority Positioning Porfolio.
  • The ZMOT (zero moment of truth) and how that relates to building authority.
  • How Mike helps entrepreneurs become Best Selling Authors without writing one word with his 3-Hour Authority System.

 

It was a great conversation that I hope you enjoy!

  

MikePicture-UPDATED.jpg

About Mike:

He is the author of Amazon Bestselling book Authority Selling™, contributor to The Huffington Post and Adjunct Marketing Professor at several Universities. As an Authority Marketing Strategist, I help business owners build their Authority and Expertise to enhance their Competitive Advantage and crush their competition by helping them become an Amazon bestselling author without writing a word using my proprietary 3 Hour Authority™ System. The result is a spectacular Authority Positioning Portfolio™ which is the solution for opening more doors to closing more business.

Connect with Mike on LinkedIn and Twitter

Nov 28, 2016

In this episode, I talk with Stu about his best-selling book - How To Get A Meeting With Anyone - and the creative approach that he uses to break through the competitive noise. We know that it is tougher than ever to get in front of buyers using traditional approaches like email and the telephone. That doesn't mean you throw out those approaches but I talk to Stu about other ways to stand out. 

We talked about:

  • How cartooning and marketing led to Stu's breakthrough approach to getting a meeting with anyone.
  • What contact marketing is and how it works.
  • How contact marketing integrates with today's Account Based Marketing strategies.
  • How you can get a meeting with anyone even if you don't have a skill in creating cartoons.

Enjoy the interview! 

About Stu:

stuheinecke.jpg

Wall Street Journal cartoonist, DMA Hall of Fame-nominated marketer and author of the new #1 best-selling book, How to Get a Meeting with Anyone, Stu Heinecke discovered the magic of "Contact Marketing" early in his career, when he launched a campaign to just two dozen Vice Presidents and Directors of Circulation at the big Manhattan-based magazine publishers.  That tiny $100 investment resulted in a 100% response, launched his enterprise and brought millions of dollars worth of business.

The ability to connect with the people most important to realizing one's goals ultimately became an obsession.  While Heinecke regularly employs his own cartoon-based contact methods, he became intensely interested in how others have solved this age-old challenge.  As a result, he has uncovered a unique form of marketing that until now has had no name, yet it produces response rates as high as 100% and ROI figures in the tens, even hundreds of thousands of percent.  In How To Get A Meeting with Anyone, he not only gives Contact Marketing its name but provides us with a definitive guide to what it is, how it works and has cataloged twenty categories of Contact Campaign types.

Heinecke is also the host of Contact Marketing Radio and President and Founder of "Contact," a first-of-its-kind Contact Marketing agency based on Whidbey Island, Washington.

Nov 13, 2016

One thing I love about social media, which naysayers will tell you can't be done, is that I build friendships and relationships with people all over the world but may not have talked to them on the phone or met them in person yet. Such is the case with my guest Viveka Von Rosen. An admirer, I've followed Viveka for several years, we've communicated in social channels and developed a personal relationship. When we got on Skype to record the interview that was the first time we'd actually talked to each other personally. It was great fun!

In this interview, Viveka tells us about her latest book, and we talked about: 
  • Personal branding and why it is important for anyone in sales but Viveka's advice also applies to anyone in business.
  • Common mistakes people make when attempting to brand themselves on LinkedIn.
  • Tips from Viveka's book that goes beyond simply personal branding
Another great conversation that I hope you enjoy! 

About Viveka

Viveka is the author of best-selling: LinkedIn Marketing: An Hour a Day (http://amazon.com/author/linkedinexpert) & contributing author (expert) to The Sophisticated Marketer's Guide to LinkedIn. I help entrepreneurs, corporations, and small business owners use social media for better business and personal branding & more effective conversations with their prospects.

Connect with Viveka on LinkedIn

Nov 6, 2016

In this episode of The Razor's Edge I talked with Anthony about his new book - The Only Sales Guide You'll Ever Need. We had a great conversation about what you need to succeed in sales today and in the future. This book is for you if you are in sales but your performance isn't quite where you want it to be and you don't know why.

In the interview, you'll hear how Anthony got into sales and by his own admission, it was kicking and screaming. Also, learn about core concepts from Anthony's book like the difference between mindset and skill set and why you need both in selling. We also talked about the two mindset and skill set element that salespeople need to work on now.
 
Enjoy the interview! 

About Anthony

Anthony Iannarino is an international speaker, best-selling author, sales leader, and entrepreneur. He's personally built businesses with annual revenue of $50M. He blogs daily at www.thesalesblog.com, a site that generates 130,000 page views monthly, and he hosts a weekly podcast called In The Arena. 

Connect with Anthony onLinkedIn
Nov 1, 2016

In my interview with Deb Calvert, we talked about the idea that salespeople need to stop selling and start leading. An extremely interesting concept that is backed by some very solid research. Deb and her research partners did some extensive work to understand what buyers want from the salespeople they choose to work with. We are talking about specific behaviors that lead buyers in the direction of doing business with you or not. 

We talked about: 

The buyer research and how buyers view seller behaviors? 

Several of the behaviors that buyers said were important to them. 

The one change that sellers could make right now that would lead to greater sales success. 

Enjoy the interview!

About Deb 

Deb Calvert, author of “DISCOVER Questions Get You Connected”, Top 50 Sales Influencer, President of People First Productivity Solutions, a UC Berkeley instructor (teaching the popular Sales Development Principles course), and a former Sales/Training Director of a Fortune 500 media company.

Connect with Deb on LinkedIn and Twitter

Oct 25, 2016

In this episode, I talked with James Muir, author of The Perfect Close: The Secret to Closing Sales. During our conversation, you will learn what promoted James to write the book. And did you know that the more often you try to close during a sales conversation, your chances of success actually decrease by a pretty significant margin? James also debunks some other myths about closing sales that just might surprise you.

We also talked about: 

The traps that salespeople fall into when trying to close the business. 

Why intent is a big deal in selling. 

Why James' makes a bold statement and says that his approach is 95% effective. Listen to learn what makes it work. 

The two questions that lead you in the direction of gaining commitment. 

And more... 

Enjoy the interview!

About James 

James Muir is a professional sales trainer, author, speaker and coach.  James has shattered records as both a field rep and manager.  His guidance comes from experience and the school of hard knocks.  Three decades of experience has given James a fresh and practical perspective on what works in real life and what doesn’t. 

He is the best-selling author of The Perfect Close: The Secret to Closing Sales that shows sales and service professionals a clear and simple approach that increases closed opportunities and accelerates sales to the highest levels while remaining genuinely authentic. 

Those interested in learning a method of closing that is zero pressure, involves just two questions and is successful 95% of the time can reach him at PureMuir.com.

Connect with James on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Sep 29, 2016

In this episode, I talk with Marietta Davis a seasoned sales professional with an extensive career in the technology industry. Our conversation focused on creating a unified customer communication strategy supported by a Customer Communications Management (CCM) approach and platform. If the goal of your organization is to have deep, meaningful relationships with their customers, relationships are built on communication. If organizations cannot communicate with their customers, then it’s difficult to have a long-term relationship. CCM provides the ability to effectively communicate with customers thereby building and deepening the relationships that organizations desire to have.

 
We talk about:
 
Where CRM leaves off and CCM begins.
Benefits of CCM to the organization.
The capabilities an organization needs to have to support a unified communications strategy.
How your strategy must map to the customer journey to deliver a stellar experienced
Trends that are causing digital disruption forcing companies to re-evaluate the customer communications strategies.
 
Learn more about a Customer Communications Management platform from Data Oceans.
 
Enjoy the interview!
 
About Marietta

Marietta Davis is a seasoned sales professional with an extensive career in the technology industry. She has held critical positions at IBM, Lotus Development, Ameritech, Tata Consulting and most recently the role of vice president of U.S. Dynamics at Microsoft Corporation. A seasoned professional, she was responsible for leading more than 400 sales, marketing, and technical experts as they serve Microsoft's business customers with Dynamics ERP and CRM Solutions. While at Microsoft, Davis successfully managed and grew multiple businesses at Microsoft to the $1B and triple digit growth milestone. Her diverse portfolio extends to mentoring strong leaders into key roles, acting in an advisory capacity to incubation and small startups. She currently sits on the National Board of Youth Villages; a private nonprofit organization dedicated to helping emotionally and behaviorally troubled children and their families. The organization assists more than 23,000 children and families each year from more than 20 states and Washington, D.C. 
 
A graduate of Bradley University, she also graduated with an MBA from Loyola University, as well as executive advanced leadership classes at Harvard University.  She was inducted into the Spelman College “Game Changer” Hall of Fame for her work in 2015 additionally, she has been a sought after speaker at Morehouse College, Georgia Tech as well as Women In Technology.
 
Connect with Marietta
 
Email: colstondavisgroup@outlook.com 
Sep 1, 2016

Prospecting is a critical element in keep that sales pipeline full and revenue flowing, but as Mark Hunter points out far too many salespeople avoid prospecting like the plague. In this episode, I talk to Mark about his new book: High-Profit Prospecting. Excellent book - highly recommend you check it out! 

Mark defines prospecting as "an activity performed by sales and/or marketing departments to identify and qualify potential buyers. 

Mark points out that prospecting is not a complex process. He believes that when you are prospecting you are looking for people who can and will buy from you. It is the quality of your prospecting efforts that lead to the development of sales opportunities. Prospecting is NOT talking to friends or people nice enough to take your call. Your goal is to find qualified buyers and that means it is just as important to get a fast no, as it is to get a win with a yes.

 
Mark and I discussed:
 
  • How High-Profit Prospecting is different from his earlier book: High-Profit Selling (also a great read!)
  • Why salespeople look for any excuse to avoid prospecting, because “experts” keep banging the drum that there is an easier way. 
  • That not everyone with a pulse is the right prospect for what you have to sell.
  • The role social media plays in the prospecting process and why a nice profile, sharing content or some online conversations isn't all you need to have opportunities roll in.
  • Tips for breaking through the noise with a 14-second voicemail (or super brief email) to get your point across.
  • Attitude and motivation versus skilled and knowledgeable.
  • A few strategies Mark's shares in his book that you can start using right now.
Enjoy the interview!
 
 
About Mark...
 
Mark Hunter, CSP, “The Sales Hunter,” is recognized as one of the top 50 most influential sales and marketing leaders in the world. He is the author of “High-Profit Prospecting” and “High-Profit Selling: Win the Sale Without Compromising on Price.” Mark helps companies identify better prospects, close more sales and profitably build more long-term customer relationships. He is known for his energetic presentation style and ability to engage sales leaders. Not only does Mark have expertise in sales, but also knows how to communicate it to others. This is seen by the 50+ speaking events he does each year throughout the U.S. and Canada and around the world.  To find out more, visit Mark’s site at www.TheSalesHunter.com.
Aug 23, 2016

In this episode, I talk to Gerald Vanderpuye - CEO of BuyerDeck. It is clear that salespeople need to adapt their selling approach. Buyers are blocking cold outreach, and in fact, Gerald shares a recent story about the number of cold emails he's deleted and why he didn't give them a second look. :)  

 
Gerald and I talked about the biggest challenges facing today's sales organizations, how deals are won and lost, how to use content to your advantage, but more importantly, how to know when buyers are interacting with your content - or not.
 
In this episode you'll hear about:
 
  • The changes that have disrupted sales and marketing because buyers don't behave the way salespeople want them too.
  • The biggest challenge facing today's sales organizations.
  • Why it is some important to analyze deals - both won and lost.
  • What salespeople can learn from the data and insights that BuyerDeck uncovered about how salespeople sell.
  • Whether or not salespeople should be creating their own content.
  • The best ways to use content to capture interest and attention and the type of content that does that best.
  • How to track the content journey and buyer interaction with content you share with them.
About Gerald Vanderpuye:

As a proud co-founder at BuyerDeck, Gerald has three passions: He loves sales, technology and creating happy customers. He has been in sales, marketing and delivering remarkable customer experiences the last 10 years. His last position was at Rackspace where he was responsible for developing sales strategy and driving business growth through existing customers and new Logo acquisitions in key markets. He led and managed a diverse team to deliver on new growth targets for both Enterprise and SMB's. He now leads the team at BuyerDeck to bootstrap the distribution of their B2B SAAS product beyond the initial traction of 12K buyers and sellers.

Visit BuyerDeck and sign up for a FREE trial IF you tell them that you heard Gerald's interview with me on The Razor's Edge.

Connect with Gerald:

LinkedIn:                         https://uk.linkedin.com/in/geraldvdp 
Twitter:                            @Geraldvdp

Jul 28, 2016

In my latest podcast episode, I talked with Cian McLoughlin, Founder and CEO of Trinity Perspectives. Cian is also the author of a new book called: Rebirth of the Salesman: The World of Sales is Evolving. Are You?

We discussed the changes that have eclipsed sales during the past 10 years and why salespeople need to be thinking about how to adapt their approach. We talked about the following:

 

  • The driving force requiring salespeople to rebirth themselves.
  • Why storytelling has become the #1 skill to master in sales and business today.
  • How buyers really make their buying decisions. It might not be what you think.
  • The role of emotional intelligence in the selling process and the ability to be situationally aware of what is going on around you.
  • The greatest sales challenges facing businesses and how they can be overcome.
  • Why you need to "know they prospect".
  • Who will be the ultimate winner in the battle between salesperson and sales automation (and other tech tools in the stack).
  • The ways in which Win/Loss Analysis can redefine your sales and business success
  • The "so what card" and why you should use it in preparing every sales presentation you give.

 

About Cian:
 

He hails from Dublin, Ireland, originally, but spent much of the past 18 years in Sydney, Australia. With a sales career spanning almost 20 years, including senior management roles in a number of the world's largest software companies, Cian is the found and CEO of Trinity Perspectives. A boutique sales training and consultancy firm, Trinity is committed to helping businesses unlock the latent potential of their customer insights.

 
Cian has worked with and advised sales professionals from Brisbane to Bangkok, Christcurch to Cape Town and everywhere in between.
 
Author of the Amazon #1 bestseller Rebirth of a Salesman, and co-author of Secrets for Business Success, Cian is a regular sales and marketing commentator in the mainstream media. His blog was voted one of the Top 50 Sales Blogs in the world for the second year running by Top Sales World, and he is also a regular columnist with Smallville.com.au and the soon to be released MOB Magazine.
 
With ASX and Fortune 500 clients across Australia and the Asia-Pacific region, Cian is a passionate proponent of an ethical, honest and authentic approach to sales.
Jul 21, 2016

Tim Sanders Interview:  Dealstorming

In this episode of the Razor’s Edge, I talk to Tim Sanders about Dealstorming, a term he coined. Tim is also the creator of the Dealstorming sales process and Dealstorming is the title of his recently released book.

Tim’s book is so meaty and packed with great information that my book pages are already dog-eared, sections are highlighted and I’ve been writing notes in the sidebar. Really good stuff!

There are lots of great nuggets of information that Tim shares about the best way to brings deals to close. We also talked about: 

  • Today’s more complex buying process.
  • How salespeople and their sales leadership aren’t adapting more quickly.
  • What it takes to become an elite seller and how to create and elite sales organization.
  • Why solving problems not pitching features is what creates sustainable competitive advantage.

    The 4 levels of a sale today.
  • Why the lone wolf seller is a dying breed and more.

You won’t want to listen to this podcast just once! So listen and enjoy and be sure to get your copy of Tim’s book here.

Jan 26, 2016
I sat down to talk with Plutora's, Head of Marketing, Eric Mitchell to get his thoughts on the world of marketing today and in the future. Since sales and marketing go hand in hand, I got Eric's perspective on how the two camps need to align around a core objective - driving revenue. 
 
During the conversation, we talked about:
 
  • Advice for anyone getting into marketing today.
  • Trends in marketing like email/marketing automation platforms.
  • What today's social media landscape looks like and how that applies to sales.
  • Sales and marketing alignment the effect that alignment (or non alignment) impacts customer experience.
  • Tools still useful in sales... like the telephone.
  • The real scoop on social media vanity metrics and if they really matter when it comes to driving revenue.
  • 2016 marketing and sales predictions.
 
 
About Eric:
 
Based in the Bay Area, Eric is a passionate, digitally experienced leader who knows the SaaS community inside and out. The creator of the popular Social Hangout, Eric and his guests tackled the issues related to sales, social media, digital marketing, media, public relations and more. A straight shooter with boots on the ground experience has earned him the respect of a well known start-ups and companies throughout the Silicon Valley.
 
Connect with Eric on LinkedIn.
Jan 11, 2016

The 21st Century has ushered in the information age, and with it a new set of rules for success. In this current episode, I talk to Keenan about his new book – Not Taught. What it Takes to be Successful in the 21st Century that Nobody’s Teaching You.

Not Taught shares how the rules of 20th century and the industrial age no longer work and that if you want to be successful you must learn the new rules of success. Get ready for a dose of reality about work today and offers clear strategies on how to be successful in this crazy information-driven world. 

We talk about: 

  •        What’s changed in business today and why you need to change too. 
  •       The new keys to succeeding in today’s digitally driven world. 
  •       How to be deliberate in managing your career and your brand. 
  •       What happens when you digitally anonymous. 
  •       Why your degree doesn’t have that much relevance today. 
  •       Why experience is far less important than expertise and hard work. 
  •       The fastest way to start ramping up new skills. 

In his blunt, motivating and passionate style Keenan tells you why doing what you’ve always done is no longer an option!

Enjoy the interview. Then go buy the book

About Keenan: 

Keenan, is CEO of A Sales Guy Inc., a sales consulting and recruiting firm. He’s a Forbes Columnist, a Top 50 Sales and Marketing Influencer, author of the popular sales blogA Sales Guy and is a highly sought after speaker. Keenan is the father of three crazy (but in a good way) girls, a PSIA Level 2 ski instructor for Vail Ski Resort and a finder of the elephant in the room.

Jan 5, 2016

Sales teams who are the most successful sell differently, not just more effectively. Largely, according to George, this is being spurred by global competition and the internet. Makes sense that salespeople need to be able to differentiate themselves from the competition. You can do that by helping your salespeople become skilled at consultative selling, which is married together with a solid sales process that is consistently followed. Avoid the common temptation to simply measure activity, because the right activities should be progressing the sales opportunity forward. 

During the conversation, we talked about: 

-Why sales organizations need to institute a solid on-boarding learning and development process for their people. Get beyond teaching product features and don't assume your salespeople really know how to sell. 

-Setting salespeople up for success by starting with a clear set of expectations. Don't assume salespeople know. 

-Key reasons why salespeople need to follow a process and stop killing deals by skipping important steps in that process. Did you know it can take 60% longer to lose a deal and that's the result of not following a process consistently. Your salespeople need an actionable checklist that they can follow. 

-Sales coaching and why that's critical to ensuring that salespeople not only follow the process, but that you keep reinforcing the skills and behaviors that will help them achieve their sales objectives. 

Finally, learn how the Membrain platform drives the right sales actions with a solid sales process. I've started to use the platform myself and love it! 

Dec 31, 2015

In my latest podcast conversation, I talked with Stu Perlmeter about why sales organizations should conduct a thorough win/loss analysis to understand why deals either closed or did not. 

 
Those organizations that do some sort of win/loss evaluation are often making incorrect assumptions based on what their sales rep tells me or the data that they've asked the sales rep to try and uncover. 
 
Human nature being what it is, you will rarely get the full picture of what happened throughout the course of the decision making process that led to a go/no go decision. This is especially true if the deal was a loss to a competing company. Having spent time with the salesperson during the process and recognizing that time and money has been invested in trying to secure the business, buyers are often very reluctant to be truthful about what went wrong. This is where a 3 party can help.

 
During my conversation with Stu, we talked about:

  • What win/loss analysis is and why it B2B companies should care.
  • How sales leaders can learn from the analysis and use it to drive and improve sales performance.
  • The benefits to both the sales organization and the organization as a whole.
  • How to get the most accurate data when doing an analysis of deals won and lost.
 
And more...
 
Enjoy and feel free to share with others!

 
About Stu Perlmeter: Stu brings 30 years of marketing and research experience to 1st Resource, which he founded in 1996. Stu’s primary expertise is in understanding the market insights that tie to success formulas for companies seeking to grow their business in strategic ways. 

Stu is an expert in designing and implementing market research that incorporates a deep understanding of social psychology and behavioral economics. Stu leads a team of ten talented researchers at 1st Resource, covering all relevant components of research: primary, secondary, qualitative and quantitative.

 
Dec 18, 2015

Salespeople always seem to be looking for that quick fix, as if one actually exists. Rather than taking a targeted and focused approach, salespeople often resort to a "spray and pray" approach by broadcasting the same message to everyone. 

Now with social media, spamcasting has taken on a whole new level of "please don't do that". Broadcasting over social channels is a quick way to created a less than positive brand impression - for you and for your company.

In this episode, Barb Giamanco and Doug Lehman talk about the common misuses of social channels and why you should avoid them.

Dec 14, 2015

Most sales messaging is overly "me" centric and are focused on what companies and their sales people want to sell versus actually caring about what buyers want and need. 

"According to sales management, the salesperson's ability or inability to communicate value messages is the biggest inhibitor keeping salespeople from achieving quota." --SiriusDecisions

Can you really blame buyer's resistance to dealing with salespeople? Their experience is, more often than not, a waste of their precious time. The inability to create a value message is at the heart of this problem. Feature dumps don't cut it, and simply making more phone calls, sending more spam emails, or broadcasting your pitch to more people on social channels aren't helping you. Your sales messaging has to change!

Barb Giamanco and Doug Lehman talk about why your message matters and what yours is probably saying about you! 

 

Dec 9, 2015
The quota year is winding down for many of you, but that doesn't mean you can rest on your laurels. Learn how important it is to focus on solving problems for customers versus trying to pitch them.
 
While you are busy closing the deals you can in the final December push, don't forget that you need to be thinking ahead to the New Year. Planting the seeds for your sales future must be top of mind.
 
Sales acceleration is an inside job, and it is all about velocity. The common myth is that buyers slow down the sales process, but it might be a big shock to many sellers to know that they are the ones slowing down the purchasing decision.
 
If you sell, you have one job to do. 
Contrary to what you might think, it isn't to sell something.
 
Selling is about helping customers solve their business problems and make buying decisions. Think about delivering value in a different way. Think of adding value as providing information quickly, in order to move buyers one step closer to a purchasing decision. Make it easy for them to make a decision.
 
Dec 4, 2015

In this episode, Barb Giamanco and Doug Lehman chat about strategies for generating higher quality leads, in less time.

 
WHY?
 
Access to decision makers is tough! An IDC study reported that inundated with data and sales pitches, buyers return only:
  • 10.5% of phone calls
  •  9% of emails from new vendors
Yet, pressured by management KPI's, every day salespeople use the same tactics - cold calls and cold emails - in an effort to convince a prospective customer to agree to a sales meeting.

In IDC's Social Buying Meets Social Selling whitepaper they concluded that "While time is scarce, trust and confidence can be even rarer. Buyers making high-impact decisions will gravitate toward methods that make confidence building easier."
 
 

 

Nov 30, 2015

In this episode, Barb Giamanco and Doug Lehman break it down for you in Lehman's terms. There is no easy button called social selling. Like all aspects of being good in sales, how you utilize social channels as part of your sales process takes work.  

Patience, planning, the right mindset and sales and technology skills all factor into the success equation too. In response to a different kind of buyer, salespeople and their leaders need to change their mindset and selling behavior.  

With 2016 right around the corner, now is the perfect time to put your strategy in place, or to adjust the one you already have. 

Remember, you cannot slap new technology - social channels - onto outdated sales approaches and expect to win. Cheesy selling, or is that sleazy selling, is still cheesy and buyers hate it. Adopting a new type of selling mindset means change. It means doing things differently, regardless of what worked back in the day. 

It all starts with a sound strategy, backed up with great sales skills and consistent execution of your strategy.

Jul 31, 2015

In my recent Razor’s Edge podcast, I talked with Robin Saitz, CMO at Brainshark. The focus of our conversation was sales productivity and specifically, we talked about what is behind the sales productivity gap and what companies can do about it. 

Though we’ve heard through the years from CSO Insights that roughly 52% of salespeople do not achieve quota each year (and that’s in a good economy!), Robin told me that the TAS Group reported that the number is as much as 67%. If that doesn’t keep a sales leader up at night, I don’t know what does! 

As with all my guests, I learned a lot in talking with Robin.

Sales Productivity Defined

She defined sales productivity as the yield per sales rep. In other words, hitting quota in the most efficient way possible. As I came to learn and as the TAS Group numbers suggest, productivity in sales is way off the mark.

What Causes the Gap

In particular, I was struck with Robin’s point of view regarding why we have such a problem with sales productivity at all. She told me that it comes down to several things, like: 

Lack of an onboarding process and specifically, a lack of focus on training selling skills. Some 38% of companies lack any kind of formal process or program for preparing new reps. 

Salespeople cannot find the content/information they need when they need it. Up to 40% of their time is spent searching or trying to create the content that they need. Breaking it down that equates to 2 out of 5 sales days each week. 

Sales conversations are not effective enough and there is a lack of visibility – on management’s part – in terms of understanding the behavior and knowledge of their salespeople.

What Companies Can Do

During the interview, Robin shared her suggestions for what companies need to do to close the productivity gap, who needs to be involved in addressing the issues and what to measure to ensure that you are closing the gap. 

With C-Suite and corporate Board members extremely concerned about sales productivity, this interview is certainly worth 35 minutes of your time.

Learn more about how Brainshark can help your organization close the sales productivity gap.

Follow Robin on Twitter.

 

Jul 2, 2015

According to Gallup, 71% of American workers today are disengaged or actively checked out of their jobs, which creates a serious problem for organizations.

Why? 70% of customers' brand perception is determined by the EXPERIENCE with people. I'm not surprised. I see this a lot in sales. From the first interaction or touch point with a prospect what perception are you creating in their minds? 

 
In my conversation with Jane, we talked about:

 

 
  • How inspired leadership makes a big impact on the bottom line.
  • Employee engagement and advocacy.
  • Most inspiring companies.
  • Characteristics of inspirational leaders and what that means for their teams.
 
When there are higher levels of employee engagement, companies see an increase in sales, customer loyalty, above-average productivity and higher profits.

 

 
Connect with Jane on LinkedIn or visit her website at www.janegentry.com 

 

 
Follow her on Twitter.
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