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Sales Tips From Jonathan London

17 Sales Tips and Questions on Lead Generation

Posted on Tue, Aug 06, 2013

pipeline funnel resized 600

When thinking about your lead gen strategy, here are 17 interesting questions that are relevant for a salesperson or sales organization:

  1. How many leads are you getting in total from both inbound and outbound activities?
  2. Are the ratios correct from each? Is lead gen giving you the number of quality leads you need or should you spend more money and time on outbound?
  3. Do the 2 feed off each other?
  4. What is your close ratio on each?
  5. Are you getting enough leads (stupid question to ask a salesperson) to meet your number or do you need more leads or a higher close ratio
  6. Quality of leads – which lead is better regardless of volume – your own outbound or the inbound
  7. For your outbound do you have named accounts that you are going after
  8. Are they verticalized? They should be if they aren’t
  9. How many accounts are on this list?
  10. Rotate accounts – how often do you rotate them? What is your criteria for this list? Do you have an ideal profile?
  11. Assign by contacts – are you taking advantage of social media and assigning accounts by who knows who?
  12. Do you allow people to trade accounts based upon criteria that gives them a better chance to sell them?
  13. If you are a manager, do you take accounts away from people since they are not active?
  14. If you are using a lead gen capability, how and when do accounts go back in for a “drip” campaign?
  15. If you are a manager, what is your lead distribution philosophy? Is it round robin, or do you have someway of distributing leads to those who are performing better and doing better with the leads?
  16. as a sales leader are you giving your lead gen/marketing group enough direction?
  17. should you be using more targeted lead gen activities if you are in a very tight

Tags: Sales Skills, b2b lead generation, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Sales Advice, Territory Management, Inside Sales

Sales Tips - 12 Tips and Questions About Territory Management

Posted on Tue, Jun 04, 2013

umbria map

How do you manage your territory of existing and or new clients without losing focus on the biggest opportunities. This is asked of me all the time and it is becoming a bigger problem as more is being asked of the individual salesperson or account manager.

Here are some different questions for you to answer and ways you can best manage yourself and get the most from your territory and manage your time:

  1. how many accounts to do you have and do you have too many
  2. does the 80/20 rule relate to you or is it more 70/30 or 90/10 (it could also be 85/15 or something like that)
  3. are you spending your time accordingly and not getting distracted by the volume of issues from smaller accounts or opportunities
  4. when you interact with your prospects and clients are you only asking for near term business because of the pressure you are under or are you asking for their short term and long term goals and priorities
  5. do you have multiple contacts in your best accounts so you are not exposed if your contact leaves
  6. do you delegate (if you have someone to delegate to) things that get in your way of focusing on your largest opportunities and clients
  7. Do you know where your accounts are growing so you can focus in these areas? Do you have a "whitespace" document or spreadsheet
  8. are you using Google alerts to stay on the activities for your best accounts
  9. do you follow your best accounts and prospects on Twitter and Linkedin so you can reach out and stay current with them
  10. do you use technology (email, Linkedin Groups, other social media) to stay in touch with the smaller accounts so they are constantly aware of what you and your company are doing. If not you, is somebody in your company doing so?
  11. for your smaller accounts, are you using their inbound emails or calls to qualify if their is a bigger opportunity underneath their request
  12. do you know what industries or geograpic areas are growing the most in your territory so you can focus on these
If you have any other tips or ideas, please let me know.

Tags: Territory Management

Salespeople: Think Before You Prospect

Posted on Thu, Nov 08, 2012

 Man Thinking

I am working with a client who needs to penetrate their territory, prospect more effectively and sell a unique, leading edge product into hospitals.

We are done with the first of our four 4-hour sessions via web conferencing; I started using WebEx which is good but not so with video. I switched to GoToMeeting which is much better, easier and fantastic with video.

We are at the stage where we are examining their market more closely. I took them through the following exercise (the client is XYZ). This exercise is what I have done for 35 years in sales and with over 18,000 students. It is intended to help you align, define, discover and prospect into as many real marketplaces you can sell your services to.


 

- 1 –

XYZ STRENGTHS

(products and services)

- 2 –

INDUSTRIES

(consider past successes, ties to strengths and the economy)

- 3 –

APPLICATIONS/DEPT’S TO CONTACT

 (that can benefit from XYZ)

- 4 –

CURRENT CUSTOMERS

(as references)

- 5 -

POTENTIAL PARTNER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 






 






 


 

 

There didn't appear to be much to discover since hospitals in itself is such a defined market. At first glance, this is who they were prospecting to most often:

  • Infection Control – C Suite – Chief Quality Officer
  • Green – Environment Services

But after spending only 30 minutes, here are other areas they could prospect into, or should spend more time with:

  • OR – Higher inpatient vs. outpatient
  • Oncology – ER – ICU – Marketing
  • CFO  – Environment – Services – Or Interested
  • CEO  - Infection – readmission –
  • COO - Facilities – want to get more involved with patient care –
  • Hospital in same system as current customer
  • Related Hospital
  • Teaching Hospital – Oncology – Operations -
  • Elective Surgery
  • Hospitals in direct competition
  • Military, Gov’t and Naval
  • Anesthesiology

We also took into consideration these elements:

  1. Profit vs. not for profit
  2. Hospitals with heavy ICU, ER and OR facilities - needed them most
  3. Geographic proximity so they could spend more time with prospects
  4. Formal and informal partnerships that could facilitate introductions
  5. Better use of the executive team and board
  6. Cross-pollination of contacts amongst the sales people

If you would like to know more about how to use this process, manage your territory and prospect more effectively, please let me know at JLondon@ipgtraining.com or call 201 391-1643.


 

 

Tags: Sales Skills, Prospecting, Sales Advice, Sales Training, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Sales Effectiveness, Closing, Territory Management, Presenting, technology enabled selling

If Sales Were an Olympic Event: The Selling Decathlon

Posted on Thu, Aug 02, 2012

business hurdle

I think for the next Summer Olympics we should consider a sales decathlon instead of ballroom dancing. It can be an individual and team sport. Here is how I envision it:

You could create a decathlon that extends for weeks, where the skills people (individually or in a relay) would compete for in the following categories:
1.    Time Management
  • How quickly can salesthletes manage the decathlon while handling 200 emails a day, blogging, tweeting and creating proposals.  They will also have to do many of these while running a 10K  and pole-vaulting.

2.    Territory  and Opportunity Management

  • Which team knows where their sweetspot is and can navigate a territory and its detours, which could be online or actual traffic detours. You would also have to throw a javelin or use a bow and arrow to hit the center of your target.  Participants will need to strategize by entering black holes where all light and information is removed from an opportunity (kind of like a customer not calling back) and navigate their way out of the black hole and back on track.

3.  Business Acumen

  • Salespeople will run along a similar path as runners or bikers and at different stages will be given questions to answer by different business people.  If they get it correct, they run to the next station and hand off the next question to be answered.  If they drop the question or get it wrong, they have to wait X seconds to get it right or ask another teammate.  This will be a series of 100 meter dashes.

4.    DiSC and Getting Along with Prospects

  • Each team will be stopped by an official who represents a different DiSC style. They will have to engage in a physical event with them (lifting, pulling or throwing something) and determine which DiSC style they are by how the official interacts with them.

5.    Prospecting and Gaining Access to Power

  • While running, they will have to text, email or call a prospect and get a meeting using relevant, compelling messaging and social media. They can use an “official Olympic” tablet or smartphone.  Sponsors will go crazy for this event.

6.    Qualifying and S.PRI.N.G. Dialogue

  • A dexterity and strength test will be given where they have to punch a wall mounted device that will reveal if they have asked the right question in the right way in the right order.  Asking or punching things incorrectly brings a penalty, where doing so correctly, makes the physical task of punching easier. They can also use different size discus instead of punching.

7.    Presenting Your Solution

  • While juggling several things (pins, balls, oranges) they have to relate their solution to a specific circumstance. They will also have to long jump to engage the judges. To test their dexterity, judges will also be able to throw objects at them which they have to dodge while presenting. The best team will advance to the next round.

8.    Objection Handling

  • If the object thrown hits the salesthlete, they have to address the objection in a way that the judge puts down other items they are preparing to throw at the participant. Or they have to jump over specific hurdles after they address the objection.

9.    Closing

  • A salesthlete needs to turn or lift a very heavy object to close the deal. This could be a lifting weights or a steel shutter to show their strength.

10.    Negotiations

  • The lead salesthlete needs to work with his or her other teammates to persuade the judges that the offer/terms they have made will be accepted. This will be done via a Greco-Roman wrestling match.


The winning relay team would finish the events in the least amount of time and get a Gold medal, but since they are salesthletes, they would also get some kind of spiff like a 3 day 2 night vacation with their partner or spouse to some exotic location.

I am accepting applications for the Sales Olympics. Let me know what event you wish to be in and your credentials.  Any ideas for improving the event are also welcome.

Tags: Sales Skills, Time Management, Prospecting, Sales Advice, Social Media, Sales Training, Sales Strategies, b2b Sales, Sales Tips, Closing, S.PRI.N.G. Dialogue, Objection Handling, Summer Olympics, Territory Management, DiSC Styles, Presenting, Negotiations, technology enabled selling