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A brief story about sales motivation

Hey Guys!

I am so excited to share with you this story about sales performance and sales motivation apps from Monitae (@monitae). Maybe you are wondering why there are a lot of posts about motivation. In real world and in business world, motivating an employee or a sales person plays a vital role. Why? It is because these people are the ones whose bringing us the profit, if their spirits are down, so as our earnings. This is why companies are conducting team building activities, seminars, meeting and giving sales contest games. I know you are excited as I am so I will not keep you waiting, here is the complete post. Happy reading!

A brief story about sales motivation

Every business aims to make a profit. Whether you are in a retail or manufacturing industry,   your business performance is determined by the number of sales. There are many ways that you can increase sales. One is by expanding your targeted market. You may expand your market in terms of the geographical area or by targeting a wider age group. Another way is by increasing the number of salespeople. However, these all require more investment in the business to succeed. In fact, you are not even assured of any positive result on your individual sales. Of all the sales motivation methods, most businesses prefer to hold sales competitions.

While most people believe that a salesperson only works for money, it is not all that they want. Every employee wants to achieve success in what they do. In addition to working in a flexible and well-paying job, an employee wants to see what he/she has achieved in a given period of time. Rewarding your employees, therefore, is very important for your business to grow. The best way to reward employees is by planning asales contests. This is a healthy way of encouraging sales, as it provides a single platform for all the salespeople to compete on their sales performance.

A good example is a retail company in Canada that decided to hold a sales contest at the end of the year. The sales manager’s objective was to motivate sales. He decided to reward the best sales performer during that month with an Apple laptop. According to the rules of the contest, the employees would compete fairly, with the number of sales being the determining factor. By the end of the month, the sales department had recorded a sales increase of over 150%. The feedback from the customers was also impressive. The company had not only increased sales, but also motivated their team of salespeople.

This is just one success story that shows how you can motivate sales. Different companies have different stories. The bottom line is that by motivating your salespeople, you are assured of increasing sales. This way of motivating sales is very affordable. Instead of investing a lot of time, energy and money in looking to expand your market area, focus instead on dominating your current market by motivating your salesforce. Arrange for several regular sales competition campaigns to ensure that your workforce is motivated. You may also choose to motivate your team of salespersons by giving a raise or promotion to the best performing individual.

A motivated salesperson is a gem to the company! Sales competition never fails as long as you run it fairly. Be creative and always arouse their excitement. If you make them happy, they will make you happy too. Now, are you ready to run a sales competition? I will be waiting for your response down here! 🙂

Best,

Jack

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The Significant of Conversation in your Business

Hello there!

It was such a beautiful morning! Every morning I tried to find something good to read before I start the day. Is this also one of your habits? Of course, my day wouldn’t be completed without sharing what I think is interesting. For today, it has something to do with conversation with client which you can also use in sales promotion. This article is written by Michael W. McLaughlin(@MWMcLaughlin) of MindShare Consulting. He states the significant of conversation in your business. It can help your business to grow or it can bring your business down. I will let you read the full article so I pasted it here.

Three Conversations That Can Make or Break Your Business

By Michael W. McLaughlinOne of the things I appreciate about the consulting business is that it’s full of surprises–like when a client sends the global consulting firm packing in favor of the upstart boutique firm. Or the client who chooses the premium-priced consultant, instead of a less expensive, competent competitor.

What’s intriguing is that the consultants whose businesses do well whether times are good or bad aren’t always the ones with the best price, top industry position, or the longest track record of success. Yet, they still thrive.

So what sets these consultants apart from the rest? What you will find is that winning consultants prevail because they have higher quality conversations with their clients than their competitors do.

Not the Usual Mindless Chit-Chat

Most of the successful consultants I know are good communicators. After all, at its core, the consulting business is about conversations–with clients, colleagues, competitors, partners, and others.

Part of that is schmoozing, which is not unimportant in this business. But if you really want to up your game as a consultant, find ways to elevate the quality of the three substantive conversations you have with clients on a regular basis: diagnostic, sales, and consultative conversations.

Those are the interactions that build your credibility with clients and matter most to your business.

Diagnostic Conversations: Seeking Mutual Gain

Any consultant can listen to a client’s description of the situation and offer up a potential service solution. It’s not hard, given that most clients pre-qualify consultants before they talk to them. So clients know ahead of time who can help them with the pre-defined issue. The result: the consultant talks to the client, hears a familiar problem, and offers a predictable solution.

This approach to a sales opportunity may fit the bill in some cases. But in most competitive situations, you’ll find at least one consultant who doesn’t suggest the obvious solution to the client’s self-diagnosed problem. That consultant will ask more diagnostic questions, delve into the matter more deeply, and resist the urge to “solve” the problem immediately.

The inquisitive competitor withholds judgment, gets the facts, and identifies the client’s need–as opposed to just agreeing with what the client wants.

Before you try to sell anything, invest time and energy in diagnostic conversations to build trust, establish your credibility, and make sure that the client’s project would be mutually beneficial to you and the client.

Sales Conversations: Answering the Big Questions

Effective diagnostic conversations set the stage for productive sales conversations in three ways. First, they help you write a more compelling sales proposal that has greater clarity. You won’t have to rely on the typical boilerplate; you’ll have enough detailed information to write a highly-focused, thoughtful project plan.

Second, your sales discussions will include fewer assumptions and more certainty about how you would conduct the project. Assumption-free proposals and sales presentations inspire confidence and demonstrate your competence.

Finally, your client will experience what it’s like to work with you, providing an opportunity to answer the big questions about the personal chemistry between you and the client’s team, the rigor of your work style, and the depth of your expertise. Once the client can draw conclusions on those questions, the project should sell itself.

Your sales conversations, though, must follow this rule: clients want to hear about themselves, not you. So you have to answer the big questions about you by focusing on the client’s issue, the way you’ll approach that issue, and the value your client can expect. Sales presentations that are mostly a recitation of your qualifications won’t get or keep a client’s attention, and that puts your sale at risk.

Consultative Conversations: Staying Top of Mind

I once worked with a PR consultant who wanted to keep in touch after we finished our small project. Every now and then, I’d get an invitation to lunch or a request for a meeting to talk about an issue or two that he thought would interest me.

These conversations always went the same way: He’d show me some interesting research or suggest an intriguing idea. We’d talk about its relevance, and then he’d pitch a project to me. Every idea he brought to my attention had a price tag attached, even though we never discussed any potential projects before our “keep in touch” meetings. That consultant never worked for me again.

For many clients, what you do when you’re not working on a project with them (and there isn’t one looming) defines the on-going relationship. But it can be a challenge to keep past relationships current when you are not actively engaged on a specific assignment for a client.

Most consultants know exactly what they should do to maintain contact with past clients, but something holds them back. Why not pick up the phone and call your client? Why don’t you send that email? The most common concern I hear is that the client will think it’s a self-serving sales call, not an honest attempt to help a valued client.

The best way to avoid that dilemma is to talk to your clients about staying in touch before you finish projects. Usually, they want to hear from you, especially if you’ve done a good job for them. Just be sure that what you have to offer is useful–a new way to think about an old problem, or a trend that could change how the client does business, for example.

The point of keeping in touch isn’t to go for the client’s wallet each time you meet, as my former PR consultant did. Bring ideas without the expectation of gain. You want to stay top of mind, build your relationship, and demonstrate your commitment. Your client will remember that when it comes time to hire a consultant again.

Talk Is Cheap?

The saying “Talk is Cheap” may ring true for some businesses, but not consulting. To thrive, you need to master the basics, of course, including services marketing, sales, project delivery, and client relationship management. But your skills in these areas can’t be used to their best advantage unless you also master the three make or break conversations with clients.

To be a good communicator you must be prepared all the time. You should know what to say when client is asking you of something. When you are confident of your service, it would be very easy for you talk about it but you must not overdo it, you should talk in a casual manner or as natural as possible. It shouldn’t sound like pitching. Are you a good communicator?

 

All the best,

Jack

The Spirit of Risk-taking

Hey everyone!

It’s another brand new day! Another day of sharing! What I’m going to share today is very light. It is just some motivation. It is about risk taking! In the sales industry, risk is always there. You don’t know if you are going to make a sale or not but you have to take the risk right? If not, you will never know if you can close that certain deal, especially if you are just standing there, thinking about the scenario all day. I have here a blog posted by Tim J.M. Rohrer of Sales Loudmouth which is “The American Spirit: Risk-taking”. Whether you are American or not, this blog can motivate you and therefore motivate sales.

The American Spirit: Risk-taking

By: Tim J.M. Rohrer

“Sometimes, when we reach for the stars, we fall short. But we must pick ourselves up again and press on despite the pain.” – Ronald Reagan

 
Twenty-seven years ago, space launches had become so consistently predictable that television networks no longer carried them live.  This was even true of the Challenger launch on January 28, 1986 whose mission included carrying the first female astronaut, Christa McAuliffe, into space.  Only the fledgling CNN was on hand to record what has become a seminal event in American history – the explosion seventy-three seconds into the 25th shuttle launch; the subsequent death of seven American astronauts and the resulting three-year lockdown of the space program.
 
McAuliffe was a 37-year old school teacher from Concord, New Hampshire who had been plucked from obscurity by being chosen from 11,000+ applicants as the first participant in NASA’s Teacher in Space Project.  The plan was to reignite the passions of school children for the space program by broadcasting lessons about space from the shuttle after it had reached orbit.  Rather than having a professional astronaut do the teaching, NASA thought it would be extraordinary to choose an educator and then train that person to be an astronaut.  Ultimately, they chose two:  McAuliffe and a back-up named Barbara Morgan.

Finding a more typical or ordinary American to be the first teacher in space would have been difficult.  McAuliffe was born in Boston, MA and was the eldest of five children.  Her father was an accountant, and her mother was a substitute teacher.  She grew up and went to college in Framingham, MA – a suburb of Boston – and settled with her husband in Concord, NH.  By all accounts, she lived her entire life within 100 miles of where she was born.  
 
While her love of the Mercury and Apollo space programs have been documented after the fact, even that interest was very typical of the times.  A friend of hers remembered McAuliffe saying, after John Glenn returned from orbiting the earth in 1962, “Do you realize that someday people will be going to the Moon? . . .and I want to do that!”  But, this was hardly surprising as millions of American children fantasized about being astronauts in the 1960’s.


Instead of becoming an astronaut, McAuliffe became a wife, a mother of two and an educator.  She was a teacher who, according to the NY Times, “emphasized the impact of ordinary people on history, saying they were as important to the historical record as kings, politicians or generals.”  And so it became true that this ordinary American became part of our historical landscape – teaching lessons far beyond those available in her classroom or even those she had prepared for her space mission.

 
McAuliffe taught us or reminded us that ordinary Americans are still amazing humans.  She sought adventure and intended to make a difference far beyond her usual circle of influence.  She was a risk taker who wanted to change her life and enrich the lives of others in the process.  If she hadn’t have died in the process of fulfilling her dream, we probably would have under appreciated her contribution for decades before history fully understand the meaning of her accomplishment (see Lewis and Clark for an example of exactly this type of historical revisionism).  But, that’s okay, because in America we expect people to choose risk because it’s what Americans do and while we recognize it’s value, we move on quickly because its ordinary.  Ordinary in the way that Christa McAuliffe was ordinary.  The American brand of ordinary.
 
Remember Barbara Morgan?  She was the teacher chosen as the back-up to McAuliffe.  She became the ambassador of the Teacher in Space program after the Challenger disaster – working with NASA for a time but eventually returning to her teaching career in Idaho.  If there was anyone we might have excused from a life of risk, it would be Barbara Morgan.  After all, she was at the launch of the Challenger and watched the explosion live with hundreds of school children.  Surely, no one would blame her for going back to a quiet life out of harm’s way.  But, in 1998 Barbara Morgan gave up her safe life and became a full-time NASA astronaut.  In 2007 – the year she turned fifty-six years old, Barbara Morgan flew on her first shuttle mission.  The reason why you’ve probably never heard of her is that she’s an ordinary American.

This is the year that Christa McAuliffe would have turned sixty-five years old.  No doubt she would have been a beloved grandmother and a pillar of her community.  I like to think she would have still lived in New Hampshire and I picture her reading to children who would be oblivious that the gentle lady reading books to them was also the namesake of the library in which they had gathered.  
When my children returned home from elementary school today, I asked them if there had been any mention of the space shuttle, Challenger.  I was disappointed when they said “no”.
So, I showed them video of the launch and I taught them about Christa McAuliffe and Barbara Morgan and I threw in a little about Lewis and Clark and I might have mentioned Paul Revere and George Washington and just for the sake of obscurity I tossed in William H. Seward.  And, I’m sure it didn’t register with them that their ordinary American lives could one day be part of the historical fabric of our nation.
But, maybe, today I took them a little closer to understanding that achievement and success are all tied to risk taking.
Perhaps, I’ve done the same for you.

 

How do you find the story? Does the story inspire you in some ways to take risk? If you are always on the safe side and afraid to take risk, I’m telling you, you are not living your life. Do not put your dreams behind. No one says that reaching dreams is easy but it is not impossible. All you have to do is to take a risk and you would know. Are you a risk-taker?

Respectfully,

Jack

Sales Incentive Programs

Dear Salespeople,

I know you need your daily dose of knowledge of information today so here I am at your service, sharing another great video that I just saw from YouTube (where else?). The topic we have in the video is about sales incentives. Does this excite you? Well, I bet it does! Who doesn’t want it? We all want it right? Companies need it too! They need it to increase staff performance. So it helps everyone, one way or another. Well, I will just let this video talk. This was uploaded by LoyalNationVideos and entitled “Sales Incentive Programs from LoyalNation”. Watch it!

 

Sales Incentive Programs from LoyalNation

By LoyalNationVideos

 

The speaker speaks about the old saying “Money doesn’t buy happiness” and he followed it up with “neither poverty”. All I can say is “hell yeah!”

Well, this is his intro to sales incentive. He said that even though we work for money, it is still not about money. It is about the passion to win. Actually sales incentives creates a healthy competition inside the company and it is great to see that everyone is doing his best to get it and to be the best and there’s nothing wrong with that. It maximizes the potential of the team all year.

The video was cut out but the information is already given. Tell us now, are you driven by sales incentive? If you are a sales manager, do you find sales incentive program helpful? Share us your thoughts!

 

 

Cheers,

 

Jack

Sales Management

Hey People,

I would like to get the attention of the sales management team or the sales manager today because the blog that I saw is for them. It is about sales management on how you handle your sales team. If your team is doing fantastic, it must  be because you are a good leader but if your team is doing poorly, it is time for you to ask yourself “am I a good sales manager for them?”. Your sales people need help from their superior before they do the business. Make sure that they are equipped with the knowledge they need before you let them go to the field. Here’s the article from Ken Thoreson, your sales management guru.

Sales Mgmt:  Understanding “Setting the Hook”

By Ken Thoreson

One of the main jobs of sales management is to help their salespeople see where they are in the sales opportunity.  Are they early? Do they know what they need to know? Do they have an excellent strategy to close?  I like to think that a salesperson is a juggler, tossing X number of opportunities in the air and the sales managers job is to assist the salesperson on judging what opportuniti8es to work , which one’s to toss away and to provide ideas on HOW to work the selected ones

During a few recent client/consulting meetings I realized that this remains an extremely important aspect of any salesperson’s life as well as any sales manager or president of any firm. Exceeding monthly sales objectives are the goals of the sales organization, especially the sales manager. What to do?

First: if you have not subscribed to the “Sales Managers Tool Kit”, atwww.AcumenManagement.com , you can get a free copy of the Sales Strategy Guide by sending me an email:  Ken@AcumenMgmt.com   The Tool Kit contains 40 tools/guides for any sales manager.  The purpose of the  Sales Strategy Guide  is to be used by each salesperson and the sales manager to discuss and strategize on individual sales opportunities and uncover what you know, what you don’t know and develop tactical steps to move the account to conclusion.

Second: The salesperson must know what the “Impact” of your product or services will have on the prospects business. The salesperson must fully understand this question and its answer. You will use it during critical aspects of closing the opportunity.   YOU close for the prospect’s benefit-not the salespersons.

Third: Depending upon your product/services that you offer and vendor relationships, knowing when the prospect wants to be fully utilizing your offering is critical. It is not about “when a decision will be made” it’s about understanding timing and any issues surrounding that timeframe.

Fourth: Knowing early on during the sales process the reason the client will make the decision, the impact of your solution on their company and timing, allows the salesperson to begin to set the hook early. Now I am not suggesting unethical sales tactics, but making sure early in any sales cycle you fully understand the prospect’s key issues allows you control the sales process.

The key element to remember is individuals are always challenged to make a decision, your job, as a trusted advisor is to assist the individual in making the right decision that will impact their business and to help them make it on your time line. This is selling vs order taking.

Being mentally creative and tough and moving your role from simply presenting products/services to providing business guidance moves the role to the next level. It is the job of sales management to assist the salesperson to move forward professionally.

Acumen Management Group Ltd. “operationalizes” sales management systems and processes that pull revenue out of the doldrums into the fresh zone. During the past 14 years, our consulting, advisory, and platform services have illuminated, motivated, and rejuvenated the sales efforts for organizations throughout North America. His latest book is titled: “Leading High Performance Sales Teams”.

As a sales manager, it is your obligation to inform your team about your company and about their role in the business. It is also your duty to motivate them and to bring out the best in them. Remember they are looking up on you. You must be a good example and you must be firmed all the time, to get their full respect! Questions?

Happy selling,

Jack

Knowing your Targets

Hey there!

Are you excited for the new info that I am going to share today? My excitement is doubled because every time I find something interesting, I can’t help myself but to hurry and post it.

I can relate to this post from ZoomInfo (@ZoomInfo), the title is “Marketers don’t understand their targets“. Can you relate too? An example is a B2B Sales through social media. Marketers are hurrying to try something new in marketing world, simply because they don’t want to be left behind. If everyone is using Facebook to have sales, they are also there, trying to target every Facebook users and forgetting their target market. Read for yourself.

Marketers don’t understand their targets

By ZoomInsights staff

New technology often leads to a gap between goals and execution across industries, and according to a Demandbase study – done in conjunction with Ziff Davis – that is true for B2B marketers. The report, “Account-Based Marketing in 2013,” said, “Many survey respondents indicated that how their companies measure results, produce content or even use resources does not correspond to their long-term priorities.”

In many ways, this is an age-old tale. Everyone wants to use the newest tools, but not everyone takes the time to plot out a strategy. Not surprisingly, the report said, “To stay competitive, such organizations must bridge this gap by testing new approaches, thinking strategically and measuring their results.”

Social media and content marketing on the rise

While the report found that SEO still claims the top spot when it comes to the strategies that companies use for online marketing, it is social media and “inbound marketing/content creation/blogs” that come in second and third. These inexpensive marketing tools that take your company’s message straight to the people have become powerful extensions of the B2B marketing machine. As these tools gain prominence, however, there will be questions to be answered.

On the other hand, pay-per-click campaigns seem to be on the decline, and display advertising also rank low.

Who are b2b marketers targeting?
Demandbase asked its respondents “Which of the following marketing targets are most important to your company?” and “Which of the following marketing targets consume the most marketing resources (e.g., budget, staff time, other resources)?” In both cases, marketers indicated that they are focused on targeting companies by industry and/or vertical market. Coming in second, in both cases, was “prospect title.”

The report warns marketers against making too many assumptions about people with desirable titles: “While targeting by title can be effective in marketing a narrow niche product or service or for the creation of buyer personas, it can also limit the efficiency of marketing efforts by failing to better define what the title really means within the context of a particular company — or where that company exists in the context of your buying universe. Are they likely to ever buy from you —or is it a case of right person, wrong company? Context is key.”

A lack of understanding

Although the marketers who were interviewed indicated that “increased focus on individual prospect types/buyer personas” and “increased focus on industries or vertical markets” were their biggest priorities, the research found that many of these same people were struggling to understand those target markets: “With 50 percent of the respondents who say they have only a basic understanding of their target market, and another 10 percent who say they don’t yet understand their target at all, this area indicates room for ample growth.”

How to improve your B2B marketing efforts

The report drew three concrete conclusions about how B2B marketers can improve their efforts in the coming year:

  1. Align targets, resources, lead scoring and content creation. Long-term goals and areas of focus should serve as a guide.
  2. Consider diving deeper into data you have collected about your existing customers as the shortest path to a more thorough understanding of who your new customers will be.
  3. Limited budget and resource concerns lend themselves to a renewed focus on account-based marketing techniques, combining what you know about the companies most likely to buy with your tactical campaign selection, lead scoring, lead nurturing, buyer persona creation and content strategy.

As it turns out, much of what the report concludes is common-sense advice. Know your audience, have a strategy, and measure your success – wisdom for this year and next.

P.S. ZoomInfo has partnered with Vorsight, an award winning sales effectiveness firm, to host “Unlock the Secrets to Handling Objections”. Please join us for a free webinar on Tuesday, January 22nd at 1:00 PM. Space is limited. Reserve your spot today!

Are you guilty of not understanding your target markets? This is very important in the business. This is the basis of every strategy. When you know your markets are, it will be easy for you to do your next step. Who are your targets? Have you figure out already? Comment if you know!

Best,

Jack

Find the Problem and Offer the Solution

Hi Peeps!

This is an amazing day! It is amazing because I am here again sharing another interesting stuff with you. The blog title is No Problem, No Need which was written by Jim Keenan (@keenan) of A Sales Guy. What makes this blog interesting is how the author presented the term “need”. We have been taught to sell something that the people need. This is true but why some people refuse your product? Is it because they don’t need the product or services? If you are certain they need it why they are not buying it? These questions will be answered through this blog. Come on and read it and include this to your inside sales technique!

No Problem, No Need

By Jim Keenan

As sales people we are taught to find a need and sell to it. Needs based selling is what many of us have been taught from the early days. In almost every conversation I have with sales people on how to sell, the word “need” comes up. It’s without a doubt the most common term I hear sales people use when discussing how they sell and what sales is all about.

In almost all cases it’s explained as the “thing” a sale must be attached to. Need, is what sales people need to ferret out. Good sales people find need. The best sales people dig and search until they can find a need, then they sell to that need by telling the prospect how their product or service can fill their need. As good as it sounds, this approach is wrong and actually handicaps sales people.

Selling to a need assumes the customer has a need and more importantly, knows they have a need. The problem with this assumption is most sales opportunities are found because the prospect didn’t know they had a need.  They didn’t know they needed anything. They thought things were just fine.  Have you ever listened to someone sell to a need that didn’t exist?  It’s painful.  The customer says they don’t need the sales persons product, and the sales person flounders around looking for a need, while the customer says nope, I’m happy with my current product, yup, it does that, nope don’t need that feature, nope don’t need that, nope, don’t need that feature either. After about 5 min. if the sales person is lucky, the call is over, dejected and confused, they call the next poor soul, ready to find their need.

Here’s what’s wrong.

There is no need without a problem.   Trying to find a need without finding the problem is like trying to fish without a pond. NO pond, no fish. No problem no need.

A problem is when something can’t get done, a goal is being blocked, or when there is a hinderance to reaching an objective.   A problem is when something is preventing something from being achieved such as; information, knowledge, a tool, resources, insight, etc. Problems exist when things are missing.  The missing things is where the needs come in.

Rather than selling to need, find the problem. Don’t ask if the client needs something. Don’t look for need but rather for a problem.  Dig in to see how they are operating the business your product effects. Try to determine if they are happy with the results they’re getting. Ask if they are getting everything out of the current environment they want. Ask if they are on track to achieve their yearly goals. Ask if their competition can do things they can’t. Find out if they would like to get more out of the current environment. The key is to look for problems or even better show them they have a problem they didn’t know they had.

If you want to increase sales stop looking for a need.  Start by trying to identify a problem. Once you’ve found the problem, you then can start focusing on what they NEED to solve it.

All sales starts with a problem, everything else comes after. Find or uncover the customer(s) problem and everything else will take care of itself.

This is a great real life story on how focusing on need gets a “NO!” But, finding the problem gets a “YES!”:

What I Learned From a Franklin Covey Store Clerk

Be a problem finder.

As a final thought, the author states that you should find first the problem then offer the solution they need. In this case, they will find your product or services irresistible because they badly need it! So what do you think about the whole post? Have you learned something today? Comments are welcome!

Sincerely,

Jack