Prospecting

Prospecting 100 New Contacts a Week – What does it look like?

A team member that prospects 100 new people a week?  It’s a sales managers’ dream come true!

It’s no easy feat though.

Brendan Goleby, of Black Toyota, does exactly that.  100 new prospects per week.  But how?  With much planning and dedication.

Here are some of Brendan’s tips:

  • Starting at 5am with LinkedIn database maintenance
  • Getting on the road by 7am
  • Offer free LinkedIn training
  • Create events that value add, and invite people
  • Know what is happening in the community – show up, volunteer, spread the love
  • Have a plan for the week – prospecting 100 new people takes time
  • Communicate with people how they want to receive communication

One more tip?  Make sure you keep healthy on the road.  Keep it light and easy to digest.

Selling in the community

Selling in The Country – It’s all about community.

When you have a role which is all about building a community, you better make sure you are genuine about it.  The community you are serving will see through you quickly, if you are doing it purely for your own needs.  

People of the country will also quickly identify a salesperson who sells via means of manipulation – and it doesn’t go down well.

Add massive value and invest the time though, and one will be rewarded with loyalty.   

During our ‘Day In The Life’ feature on Brendan Goleby, of Black Toyota, we ‘popped’ into a community event.  Not only did we get to touch base with other corporate supporters of this gardening community, we were able to share with a local member of the press about what we were doing… and get a feature in the newspaper.  A story about a story!

It was great to be able to see first hand what was going in this part of the community.

As Brendan Goleby said, “You’ve got to always be on the lookout to add value.  It is more than about ‘being seen’  It is about knowing and understanding what is important to the people.”

 

Brendan Goleby and Edward O'Dwyer of Black Toyota

A Day In The Life of The Dream Job

What does your dream job look like?

Brendan Goleby doesn’t need to think about that question, he is living his dream.

18 months ago, Brendan started building his LinkedIn community – with the sole purpose being to add value.  During that time, Brendan has not only been engaged by Black Toyota because of his network, he has built a community whose numbers have reached over 1800, and his monthly live events have hit over 260 visitors.

I spent a day with Brendan – and I discovered something rare.  He is someone who genuinely cares about his community, and goes and above and beyond to help them.  

Over the next few days we will be sharing more insights into how Brendan Goleby is living his dream.

Here are the other insights we learnt from A Day In The Life of Brendan Goleby:

Selling In The Country – It’s All About Community: http://salesva.com/selling-in-the-country-its-all-about-community/

Prospecting 100 New Contact per Week – What Does It Look Like?  http://salesva.com/prospecting-100-new-contacts-a-week-what-does-it-look-like/

Trucks & Roo’s; The Hazard of Selling In The Bush:  http://salesva.com/trucks-roos-the-hazards-of-selling-in-the-bush/

On The Road Again; A Guide To Building a Database When On The Move:  http://salesva.com/on-the-road-again-a-guide-to-building-a-database-when-on-the-move/

Always Adding Value:  http://salesva.com/always-adding-value/

 

 

 

CRM_Close

What Do You Want From Your CRM?

At least 5 times a day, we hear these words from prospective clients…

“I hate my CRM, it’s too complicated.”

And our response is, “Well what do you want your CRM to do?”

Silence.

 

CRM

Before searching Google for Best CRM, take the time to sit down and make a workflow of what you need your CRM to do for you.

Here are some questions to ask yourself, when designing your workflow.

Where do your leads come from?

How do you track where they come from?

Where do your leads get stored?

Who needs access to your leads?

How do leads get moved through the pipeline, while also keeping your team updated?

What reports do you need on a daily, weekly, monthly basis?

How much information does your team need access to, at each stage of the pipeline?

What does the CRM need to plugin to, once a sales has, or has not, been made?

*Please note, that this is not an exhaustive list, but will help you get clarity on what is important to you, and what is not.

Of course, usability is also a big factor.  If your team doesn’t see the benefit of using a CRM, it isn’t going to matter which you choose, it will be a waste.

We would love to know how you get your team to use your CRM!  Leave a comment below to let us know.

Have a productive day!

Blue Ocean Wave

Top 5 Outsourcing Options for A Sales Person.

Onshoring.  Offshoring.  Nearshoring.  ‘I just want to sit on the beach’ shoring.

(Obligatory ‘working from the beach’ shot.  Pffft!  Who wants sand in their laptop?!?  Photo from the great people at www.deathtostockphoto.com )

It’s the trendy discussion to have.

But when it comes to B2B selling, outsourcing is only just being brought into the conversation.

You see, there is this little thing called ego and control.

And neither of those things are bad.  Let’s face it, one needs a certain amount of ego to survive in B2B sales.  Andcontrol over your process is something that will always pay dividends.

If you can put those things aside for one minute, and have a good look at your Sales Process, you will see that there is ample opportunity to outsource parts of your process – that aren’t client facing.

And I would bet that the client facing parts are where your strengths are… so do more of that!

1.  Social Media.

This will be a no brainer for those who recognise that their personal brand is of value to themselves, their company and their career.  From creating content, to scheduling posts, or monitoring engagement, outsourcing the social media part of your process is one of the easiest to do.  We recommend companies like EzyVA for this.

2.  Telemarketing.

If telemarketing is a part of your process, and you are still doing cold calls yourself, I really want to ask WHY?!?  Imagine waking up on Monday morning with a schedule that is absolutely full of warm, face to face, meetings.  Now imagine not having to squeeze any time in, to make telemarketing calls.  Also ask yourself how much energy it takes to do those calls?  What other activities could you be doing instead?

3. Calendar management.

There are plenty of appointment scheduling apps out there – but are you using one?  Doodle is a favourite that we use with our clients… but even with access to Doodle, our clients still prefer for us to manage their calendar for them.  Once you set the parameters, getting a VA to help you manage your tasks in your calendar will ensure that ‘things’ won’t slip through the cracks.

4.  Email management.

When it comes to ‘things’ slipping through the cracks, how many times per week do you think to yourself, “Geez, I was meant to send through the order form for ABC Client last Monday…”  It’s not only a bad look, but how many sales are lost because of a lack of timely follow up?

5.  Data management.

The beloved inputting of CRM Data.  No one likes it.  Everyone does their best to avoid it.  But it is a valuable and necessary activity, with massive benefits for both the individual sales person, and head office.

Without quality CRM Data, the sales person has no history, the sales manager has nothing to manage, and head office has no comprehension of what is really happening out in the marketplace.

So the question is, what parts of the sales process do you outsource?  Do you let your sales people do what they do best – Sell?

Of course, we take care of numbers 3 – 5 easily with our Sales VA App, you can find out more here.

binary

The Secret Language of Your CRM

There is a language that isn’t taught in any school on the planet.  It isn’t a spoken language, it is only ever typed.

And it isn’t HTML.

It’s The Secret Language of Your CRM.

And every industry has it’s own dialect of this language.

Let’s face it – every person using a CRM also has their version of this language.

Form

Here is an insight into this language.

LM.

DNLM.

FU.

CBL.

SW.

If you have any idea of what those mean, then you are a part of the CRM Secret Language club.  (It’s not really a thing.)

The question is this:  If you are only entering data containing this type of language, how valuable is it?

A CRM has a purpose – to record the communication between different parties, so that all parties involved can keep up to date.  If all that is entered is FU, and you fall ill for the next 2 weeks, what a waste of time it will be if your business partner picks up the phone to follow up and they find out that your FU included an order, that order was delivered and the client expressly communicated to call in 8 weeks time for another order? Awkward to say the least.

I know it can be hard to enter data in, in the first place, but what is the point of having a CRM at all, if all that is entered is this non-existent language?

PS.  What are some of your own Secret Language inputs?

corporate_events

The 2 Networking Follow Up Actions – To Impress Beyond Measure.

Networking events.  Some people love them.  Some people loathe them.  However you feel about them, there is no point in attending if you don’t do anything with them.

Your pre-networking event routine is a whole other post.  Today, let’s focus on what happens after.

Does this sound familiar to you?

You connected with a handful of people at the event.  You looked at your watch numerous times, as you have back to back appointments to get to after the event.  You ate all the food you could (who knows when you’ll have time to eat next… right?!?)  And you ran out the door, promising the last person you spoke to that you would follow them up for coffee.

Now, be honest with me.  What do you do next?

The majority of people will shove those business cards into their pocket, maybe fish them out before they wash, then shove them into the briefcase.  By the end of the week, they will definitely be actioned and uploaded into the CRM. You will get to it.  Really you will!

No you won’t.

There is absolutely no point to even attending a networking event, if there is no follow up plan.

(Just like there is no point to doing a client meeting if there is no follow up plan ;)

One of the greatest Top Of Mind Awareness mentors that I have seen, was the late, great, Geoff Kirkwood.  Owner of BNI in Australia for approximately 15 years, he was the expert in post networking event follow ups.

Here are 2 of the greatest Networking Tips (learnt from Geoff Kirkwood), that will take all of 5 minutes, but will massively improve your investment into networking.

1.  Put follow up into your calendar.  Only 5 minutes is needed in your car, after a networking event, to initiate the follow up process.

2.  Use those 5 minutes to send a voice memo to each person you connected with.  Something along the lines of; “Hey John, It’s Emma Monro.  It was great to connect with you this morning, and I am looking forward to learning more about your business during that coffee catch up we discussed.  I will be in the city next Wednesday, what time would suit you?”  The voice memo app on your iphone will do this so easily.  This starts the follow up process, it inputs the email address into your gmail, and it puts the ball in John’s court.  Immediacy is the key – how impressed and surprised is John going to be?

After that, it is up to you.

What are the best Networking strategies that you have implemented?

PS.  If you find this process so easy it blows your mind in its simplicity, while also being massively effective?  Then you will find Sales VA a dream to look after all of your follow up requirements!

small-business-off_3124140b

SME Employers of Sales Teams: are you settling for ‘just good enough’?

Guest Writer:  Michael Simonyi:   The sales recruiter SME & Mid-Market business leaders partner with to secure the talent needed to deliver growth.

You can connect with Michael here.

The team at Sales VA is committed to being an employer of choice. Our team of dedicated VA’s will be placed in Universities around the world, providing On Campus Employment to Universities and Real World Experience to University Students.

The majority of my clients are SME/mid-market businesses, typically owned by families, private equity or management – people with real ‘skin in the game’. When talking with leadership about their challenge in attracting the ‘right’ talent, there’s often a recurring theme: “we struggle to compete with corporates for the best people.” But does this belief lead to settling for someone who is ‘just good enough’, rather than someone who will genuinely raise the average?

Comments I typically hear include:

“Big companies can afford to pay more”

“They offer a career path that we can’t”

“People feel more secure working for them because of their size”

“They have budgets for training and development that we can’t match”

“We don’t have the marketing budget to support our sales team that corporates do”

“Our systems and processes aren’t as advanced as those in bigger companies”

“We don’t have the employer branding that corporates do – we don’t look as good on

someone’s CV”

I believe there are ways for SMEs to appeal to top talent and have them seriously consider mid-market businesses as employers of choice. I base that belief on practical experience – of helping people move from corporates to SME clients of mine over the past 11+ years and make profoundly positive impacts, both on the businesses they’ve joined and, just as importantly, on their own careers.

So, let’s explode a few myths….

“Big companies can afford to pay more”

Perhaps they do on occasion, but given the focus on taking costs out of businesses following the global financial crisis (GFC), in my experience they rarely do. In fact, it’s commonplace for a corporate to offer less than smaller businesses, based at times on the logic that ‘if someone wants to work for us, they’ll accept less, because of our brand.’ Then there’s salary banding, which means that a company will only pay within a certain salary range for a given position, regardless of the calibre of an individual candidate, and won’t deviate from that policy for fear of creating what they perceive as inequity.

“They offer a career path that we can’t”

Do they? The career ladder that’s often discussed at interviews has a lot less rungs on it post-GFC, with organisations flattening their structures. That means fewer potential opportunities for promotion, and a lot more bodies to climb over to get there.

“People feel more secure working for them because of their size”

When I’m interviewing and ask people what they’re seeking in a move, security is routinely near the top of the list. When I drill into what security actually means, size rarely features in the discussion that follows.

What is important? Clear vision and strategy, a well-established presence in a given market, a reputable product/service offering, and experienced leadership making consistent, commercially-sound decisions are the most common desires. All of which are well within the capacity of a small-to-medium-sized business to deliver.

“They have budgets for training and development that we can’t match”

Sure they do. Or they did, because those budgets were slashed with the onset of the GFC.

“We don’t have the marketing budget to support our sales team that corporates do”

Except that the marketing budget went the same way as the learning and development budget when the GFC hit. Along with most of the marketing team.

“Our systems and processes aren’t as advanced as those in bigger companies”

Perhaps, but there are plenty of corporates struggling to successfully implement large-scale IT system roll-outs, which is causing their sales teams no end of heartburn. And SMEs can utilise a CRM system, for example, as effectively as any corporate. Robust systems are about mindset, not size.

“We don’t have the employer branding that corporates do – we don’t look as good on someone’s CV”

When I look at someone’s CV, I want to know what they’ve achieved against key deliverables. I think most recruiters and hiring managers feel the same way. It’s fair to say people will assume that someone who’s worked within, say, a large FMCG or pharmaceutical business, should have received a solid grounding in sales disciplines, but the fact that someone has worked predominantly in corporates can also be a negative in some situations.


 

Think about your own business – will someone who’s only worked in corporate environments successfully make the transition to yours? I’m sure you’ve seen people fail to do so – I know I have.

Of course, there will always be a percentage of the workforce that specifically wants to work for a corporate. However, there are a number of advantages SMEs bring to the table, which in my experience, make a compelling case:

 Ability to genuinely make a difference: Which would you rather, to be a cog in a giant wheel, or to make a tangible, positive impact on a business and be remembered for it? The latter, right? Which environment do you think gives the best opportunity for motivated people to be able to achieve that?

 Access to decision-makers: People may not always get the answer they want, but they’ll get decisions made and probably be able to converse directly with the ultimate decision-maker in the process. Try getting that in a multinational.

 Flexibility: Around the make-up of remuneration packages, incentives, working from home, working hours. Of course there are limitations and business imperatives, but which environment is likely to be able to offer the greater scope for flexibility?

 Customer focus: Not that there can be absolutes on this, but I know which environment I suspect is likely to be more nimble and responsive to customer needs. And which environment will feel to employees as if they’re trying to turn the Titanic around to get an outcome for a customer.

You don’t need to go to extreme lengths to ‘brand’ yourself as an employer of choice, but giving real thought to just what it is that your business offers – and ensuring you present that in a compelling manner to top performers – will go a long way to securing the talent you’re really seeking.

Want more ideas as to what you can do at a practical level? Please drop me a line – I’m happy to help!

meeting

Nice To Meet You – How Would You Like To Be Communicated With?

This one is for the Sales People who are meeting numerous people per day.

It’s one for the Sales People who are really present with those they sit in front of.

The Sales People who really, truly, want to serve their clients.

To give them the best solution for their challenges.

But who are struggling to communicate with their clients in they style that their CLIENTS want to receive communication.

I am sure you have left at least 1 client meeting a week and felt that you missed creating a true connection with that client.  And that’s fine – you can’t connect with everyone.

But we can learn the techniques that will help us connect with more of them.

And the techniques will not only make your job easier – it will make the client happier – and that’s what we all want, isn’t it?

This short video will explain how to connect with your clients and build rapport in 2 minutes.  It sounds simple, but if you apply and practice these techniques, your connection ratio will improve massively.

PS. Feel free to use this information with your team!

PPS.  Want to make an even better connection once you have a signature on the dotted line?  Ask them how they would like to be communicated with… and then do it!

 

bluesneaker

Don’t Sell Shoes To People Who Wear Thongs

Having a full sales funnel is the best! You’re busy, you feel like you are being productive, you’re hitting lots of your benchmarks in phone calls and appointments etc…

But you still aren’t hitting your targeted sales number!

Aargh! What is going wrong?

There are 2 things to ALWAYS keep in mind when it comes to lead generation.

1. Who is your target?

Here is a reminder for you. “Don’t sell shoes to people who wear thongs.” Simple. When you are prospecting, ask yourself, does this client wear shoes or thongs? Have no idea what I am talking about? Check out the video below.

2. How is your stature and what is your headspace, around picking up the phone?

Your stature plays a HUGE importance in determining your headspace, and how clients receive you on the phone. Stand up, pull your shoulders back, clear your throat.

These are both simple things that we all tend to forget about after a while.

Consider this your reminder!