This year I was fortunate to have the time to read many blog posts written by some of the best sales trainers, top marketers and thought leaders out there. From the hundreds of articles that I read, I had many favourites, but I just wanted to share a handful of the most PRACTICAL ones for B2B sales professionals.
In no particular order:
This article highlights the importance of doing ‘the right sales activity at the right time’. Most of us have probably heard that saying from our sales leaders at some stage in our career, but the beauty of this post is that it weaves an important message in the story of two sales people – Janice and Sandra. I won’t spoil the plot – go read it.
We all know how difficult it is to connect with potential prospects. This article provides a simple but powerful technique of gaining micro commitments from the person you are trying to contact; each micro commitment builds on the previous one, and this helps to initiate a conversation with the prospect in a non-pushy way.
Also, while you are on this website, read about the Sidekick extension for Google Chrome. It can help you track your prospecting emails; for example, it will alert you when your prospect has opened your email, and from which device, did they forward it to someone, did they click on anything, and a lot of other features. As you’ll appreciate, this kind of information is crucial for timing the follow-up or even deciding on next steps.
Koka is well known for his social selling credentials, but this post is about the strategy that can help secure meetings with executive decision makers. In particular, he emphasizes on knowing your audience, talking about tangible outcomes and showing measurable results. Although, whole books have been written about each of those topics, but for busy sales professionals, this short article acts as a useful reminder about… how we should be communicating ‘value’ to the ‘right’ prospects.
There is no doubt that sales professionals are best at giving presentations, but given that even successful actors frequent drama schools, then why shouldn’t sales professionals continue to polish their skill. This article highlights some of the common presentation mistakes and how to avoid them. Identify at least one mistake that you can relate to and make a conscious effort of eliminating it in 2015.
There is a magic potion that can make you smarter, more productive, and help you increase your sales performance – and best of all it costs nothing. It’s called ‘Gratitude’. If you are thinking… WHAT!? then, this short post will open your eyes to the power of gratitude in sales success. There is also a link to a further article on Harvard Business Review that you will find insightful. In addition, also check out Jill’s website, there are tons of useful sales resources on there.
(The next article for sales professionals responsible for Account Management)
If you are responsible for closing revenues from existing customers, then the last thing you want is a customer deciding to take their business elsewhere. However, it doesn’t matter how hard we try, there is always a risk of that happening; and this article outlines 4 actions that can potentially woo them back. Anthony also writes a short newsletter every Sunday to G up the sales troops for the week ahead, very motivational. Still remember his comments from last week’s newsletter… ‘Know that what you do… makes a difference’
(The next article for sales leaders)
There are many reasons a sales leader could miss their number. This article highlights one of reasons, i.e. reps not being focused on the right opportunities. It talks about creating an Ideal Customer Profile and a scoring methodology; and other important considerations like… Buyer Personas, Buying Process Maps and Trigger events. In addition to this article, there are tons of other resources and useful tools on this site. If you are in a sales leadership role, you will find that this team of experts have really managed to nail the science of sales management.
That’s it from me, I am sure there were other excellent articles that I might have missed during the year. If you can recall any other good articles that specifically relate to B2B sales, then spread the word so more of us can benefit.