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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Five Ways To Get More Case Studies

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Almost everywhere I go I hear managers and salespeople say, “Yeah, case studies are very valuable.  We need to get more case studies.” So why don’t more sales operations have more case studies? What’s holding them back? I can tell you what prevents most sales teams from having enough case studies:

  • Case studies require some level of client participation. While your client may indeed be pleased with what you have done, they are busy, and taking time out their busy day to write or even provide information to someone in your organization is not an “A” priority for them.
  • Your sales team probably doesn’t know who to nominate. Too often we are focused on making the next sale and not focused on what we did well in the last sale.  
  • While most people agree taking time to gather information for case studies is important, it’s not urgent. So it never gets done.

So, how do you address these problems?  Here are some ideas:

Topics: case studies Sales

5 CTAs Secretly Sabotaging Your Sales Emails + More

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We hope you've had a great week! It's Friday, and today we're sharing what we've been reading online this week! Here are our "best" from around the web.

1. 5 CTAs Secretly Sabotaging Your Sales Emails (& What to Use Instead) — HubSpot

Every call-to-action matters. Ask for the right things in the right way, and your relationships with prospects will grow stronger over time. Ask for the wrongs things in the wrong way, and they’ll stall — or even go nowhere at all. To make sure you’re not sabotaging your emails, take a look at the CTAs you should never use (and which ones to try instead).

Topics: inbound marketing Sales Wrap-up

You Can Get Anything You Want in Life, If…

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Do you know the rest of the quote? Well, here it is… "you just help enough other people get what they want." So, who said this? Perhaps you might think this came from the leader of a social services organization, or perhaps from clergy or some Eastern philosopher. But that's not where this quote came from. It actually came from a long time, well known motivational speaker in the sales arena. That's right, some of you know it was the venerable Zig Ziglar who said that. Pretty heady words from a guy who got his start selling pots and pans door-to-door, eh?

Topics: customer focus Needs Analysis developing strengths Sales

What You Can Change Today to Increase Sales Performance Tomorrow

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“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”  

I would bet, like the rest of us, you learned this Golden Rule in Kindergarten and you were probably raised to believe you should always treat others as you would want to be treated.

It sounds great in theory, and I applaud your kindness and compassion, but make no mistake, the Golden Rule does not work when developing people.

WHAT?!

It’s true. The sentiment is nice, but it just doesn’t work.    

Topics: sales management Talent coaching

Be Prepared, But ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ As the Story Unfolds

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I loved Choose Your Own Adventure books as a kid, specifically the sports-themed set. If you haven’t read or experienced one, it goes something like this… Your football team is in the regional championship game. Chapter One describes the build up to the game, and the summary of the 1st Quarter. Your team is already down by 10 points, and it’s 4th Down and 1 yard to go on the opponent’s 20-yard line. Do you kick the field goal, or go for it with a run up the middle? You get to decide, and the book instructs you which page to turn to based on your decision. It was like video games before video games!

It’s the only genre I loved… something about controlling my own destiny, having a choice, and following the story wherever it may go was thrilling to me. My advice to you is to treat every Hourglass Needs Analysis just like a Choose Your Own Adventure book. Go into the conversation with as many of the chapters, and as much of the story line, written as possible. Your research on the business, the industry, and the market should give you a great list of prepared questions that will allow you to Establish Rapport, Identify Needs, Gain an Assignment, Analyze the Opportunity, and Contract Next Steps.

Topics: Needs Analysis Sales

Stop Talking About Your Product; I’m Deciding If I Want to Work With YOU

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If you’re a salesperson, it’s good to be proud of what you sell and where you work. Those two factors are key to enjoying what you do for a living. Working for a great company and having a great product certainly helps with clients, but the criteria prospects will often use when deciding to give you some of their precious time, is YOU. 

Where should your product and your company be in your sales strategy when talking to new prospects?

Topics: Setting Appointments Sales

What to Monitor on Social Media in 2018 + More

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We hope you've had a great week! It's Friday, and today we're sharing what we've been reading online this week! Here are our "best" from around the web.

1. What to Monitor on social Media in 2018 — PR Daily

What should we expect from social media in 2018? Where are we headed next year with social media? What is hot or what is not on social media? This infographic shares some answers.

Topics: inbound marketing Sales Wrap-up

Tell a Story to Improve Your Sales Strategy

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Don’t you love a good story? We all do.

Even before the days of romance novels, adventure movies, television shows, and Broadway productions, there was storytelling. The art of storytelling goes back thousands of years and served as the primary way for one generation to hand down knowledge and wisdom to the next. People learned about their culture, community values, and the most important life lessons through the meaningful stories shared by those who knew.

Stories help us to guide and teach, and they allow us to communicate our feelings in a way that can be very persuasive to others. So the question is, why do we not use storytelling in sales? It seems it would just make sense. 

Topics: sales management Sales salespeople

6 Ways to Provide Superior Customer Service After the Sale

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Recently, I was preparing for a presentation about the retail industry. An interesting statistic about customer service jumped out at me. According to MediaPost, only 17% of consumers think manufacturers and retailers are extremely good at caring for their customers after a sale. This was a surprising figure to me. It’s tough to earn a repeat customer if you don’t follow through and offer superior customer service. This got me thinking about B2B sales and how the same basic principle applies.

Topics: customer focus Sales

Dark Matter and the Sales Process

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Getting a meeting is one of the most difficult steps in building a business relationship. If you’re in sales, you need that meeting, commonly known as the needs analysis, to determine how you can help. When we ask prospects what their needs are, they often don’t know. And if they do, those needs only scratch the surface.

Scientists say that the universe we can observe is only about 5-10% of what is really out there. Why do they believe that? Because what they can see happening cannot be accounted for just by what they can see. Dark matter and dark energy haven't been proven, but scientists believe they exist because of the effects they see. 

For business owners, like scientists, what is visible and conscious is probably only a fraction of what is really going on. You want to be looking beyond what the prospect tells you they think they need, to what is really happening. 

So how can you know what is really going on?

Topics: Needs Analysis Sales