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Sales E Books

The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Demrie Henry

Demrie is the Director of Sales for Tax Law Solutions. She works with tax law attorneys and business strategists to help business owners dramatically and permanently reduce their income tax rate. She can be reached at: dhenry@taxlawsolutions.net
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Recent Posts

Are Your Prospects Dying of Boredom?

dying-of-boredomIf every time your prospect or customer felt like you were pushing your products, rather than focusing on his business, he transformed into a Hollywood film director and screamed, “Cut. Boring! You’re out of here!” He’d be doing you a favor. What happens more often is that the prospect is bored and finds a semi-polite reason to show you the door. He’s just polite enough that you don’t get the bigger message—that you were boring.

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Topics: Sales, sales process

Winning is Everything! How to Stay Motivated in a Long Sales Cycle

winning_is_everythingFor many high-performing salespeople, winning is everything! Coming out on top is always the goal and there are no points for second place. They are laser focused on the prize and the title. They keep score, they know where they stand, they feel the deep agony of defeat, and they know the incredible high that comes with each and every victory.

For this highly competitive kind of salesperson, winning is like drinking a Red Bull—it gives them a piercing jolt of energy that pumps their adrenaline and fuels their performance. To clarify, I should note that this focus on winning does not mean they have a “win at all costs” mentality. That is something entirely different. 

How do these highly competitive salespeople deal with a complex sales environment and those long sales cycles?

Closing a deal is a definitive win, but in many businesses there isn’t the opportunity to score like that every day, sometimes not even every week. So competitive salespeople find other ways to keep score, other ways to ensure they are consistently winning. Finding ways to measure and document little wins and incremental progress is critical to keep the competitive type of salesperson engaged and moving the sale forward. Bringing a prospect from just-a-lead to done-deal can be a very lengthy journey, requiring discipline, focus, integrity, responsiveness, expertise, commitment, collaboration, and consistent thoughtful engagement. Real-world factors beyond the salesperson’s control often lengthen the sales cycle; finding ways to stay motivated can spell the difference between success and failure.

Here are three areas in which highly competitive salespeople find ways to win during a long sales cycle:

1. They set specific goals for each and every interaction with their prospect.

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Topics: Sales

Luck Happens when Preparation Meets Opportunity

Luck_Happens_when_Preparation_Meets_OpportunityAs the global celebration of St. Patrick’s Day approached, I started to think about how lucky we are as a society to be able to put aside our differences and come together in celebration for one day. It’s ironic that I first thought of the word lucky to describe this phenomenon, as the phrase luck of the Irish is so common, and even more so around St. Patrick’s Day.

Luck of the Irish?

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Topics: Digital

Valentines Day Should Be Everyday!

Valentines_Day_Should_be_Everyday“Happy Valentine’s Day. I love you, I appreciate you, and I think you’re amazing in every way.  You had me at hello!”

Those are words we express–and really like to hear–from those we love each year on February 14th. But shouldn’t we express love and appreciation to people we care about everyday? And what about our customers? Shouldn’t our customers feel important everyday… rather than just certain days of the year?

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Topics: sales strategy, Sales

Would Peyton Manning Make a Great Salesperson?

Peyton_Manning_(cropped)Absolutely!  And here’s why. He’s a competitor; he has a deep desire to win and is not afraid to work hard. He has intense focus, he is smart, and he is dedicated and committed to do whatever it takes to achieve his goals and perform at his best. He understands the incredible value of his team and his teammates trust him. He has overcome many obstacles throughout his career and is now the NFL’s top product endorser, earning $12 million annually off the field from companies like Reebok, Buick, Wheaties, DirectTV, Gatorade and Papa John’s… which means he has also earned the trust and respect of millions of people across the globe.

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Topics: Talent

Plan on a Happy Holiday Season!

Plan_on_a_Happy_Holiday_SeasonRegardless of race, religion or creed, people all over the world are celebrating during this holiday season. It’s a magical time of year for us all to reflect on what’s important to us, celebrate our beliefs, and join in festivities with our friends and family! 

In sales, this time of the year is also the season for forecasting, budgeting, annual planning, and closing out the year with a bang! Sales directors, managers and salespeople must plan and focus if they’re going to successfully finish out the year, develop their growth strategy for the following year, AND enjoy the holiday season.  

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Topics: sales strategy, Sales

Two Words Seldom Spoken That Your Clients Love to Hear!

Two-Words-Seldom-Spoken-That-Your-Clients-Love-to-HearFollowing is a letter of thanks that makes me feel good just reading it!

Thank you for trusting in me, and thank you for allowing me to get to know you and help you grow your business the past few years. I truly appreciate the opportunity to work with you; it’s obvious that your team feels the same way. You’re a great leader and while I know our partnership has played a part in your company’s growth, it’s because of your vision, your dedication and your ability to motivate and inspire your people that your company is thriving. 

While the competition in your industry has been fierce, you’ve succeeded in creating a culture that attracts high performing employees, one that promises to promote and support the continued growth of each individual person. Your turnover is remarkably low, and you’ve experienced record sales over the past two years. Those achievements were not reached by accident! I value your business and I value the friendship we’ve forged over the years. It’s because of circumstances like this, and people like you that I forget I’m “doing my job.” Working with you has never felt like a “job.” It’s a partnership that continues to motivate and inspire me. It’s why I get excited to get up each morning, and for that I’m truly grateful! Thank you!

As we approach Thanksgiving, it’s natural for us to reflect on what we’re thankful for. 

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Topics: Sales

For the Best Results Don’t Wing It. Follow A Process!

For_the_Best_Results_Don¹t_Wing_it.__Follow_A_ProcessHave you ever tried to make chili by throwing all the ingredients together in a giant pot, stirring and then slow cooking all day? If you had, you’d know that is NOT the best way to cook chili! First you brown the meat, if you were an onion lover like me then you’d add onions during this stage… to get the most flavor. 

After the meat is browned and fully cooked you then drain the fat (if healthy eating is important to you) and then you add the chili seasoning followed by the rest of the ingredients, which could vary depending on where you’re from and personal preferences. If you were to rush through the process and skip browning the meat first, you’d find the results are remarkably different. 

When you change the process, you change the results.

When you cook, whether it’s chili, key lime pie, chicken noodle soup, etc., there is a necessary sequential process that is recommended to follow to get the best results. Typically, that process is provided with the recipe and cooking instructions.  When you change the process by skipping or rearranging steps, the results also change. This logic also applies in B2B sales.

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Topics: Sales

I Just Deleted Your Email... No, I Don't Want to Chat!

NO_Im_NOT_open_to_Chatting_DeleteThat was exactly what I thought and then did after reading an email I received from a salesperson trying to sell me something. In fact, just to add perspective… here is what the email said:

Demrie,

Just wanted to reconnect with you. The organization is experiencing very exciting growth and I would like to update you. Would you be open to chatting tomorrow?

When I opened this email I immediately thought about a conversation I recently had with a client about how his salespeople seem to ‘just check-in’ with their prospects. He told me they don’t call them with a valid business reason nor do they offer any real value… or in other words, a compelling reason for the prospect to believe that having a conversation with them would actually help their business. He said his salespeople tend to call prospects and say something like: “Hi, I just wanted to check in with you to see how things are going? Is there anything new going on that I can help you with?”

If you want your prospects to take time out of their schedule to meet with you or talk with you, you must make them believe you can add value to their business.  

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Topics: Sales

No Tricks, JUST Treats Please!

No_Tricks_Just_Treats_PleaseCostumes, Ghosts and Goblins, Spooky Spiders, and Candy are fun Halloween traditions. Each year, children dress up and go door-to-door exclaiming “trick or treat” in hopes of getting a handful of candy to add to the stash they’ve already collected. To a child, there is no such thing as too much candy… in fact the one with the most candy by the end of the night wins. What’s interesting is while children give the choice… “trick or treat,” we all know that they don’t want to be tricked. All they really want is treats!  They want to be delighted with yummy, fun to eat candy.

Are You Tricking Your Clients?

Your customers are the same… they don’t want any tricks; they just want to be delighted with the treats you give them. Only treats are no longer sugary bites wrapped in bright, colorful paper. They are valuable solutions, tailored to meet their very specific needs.  And they provide a measurable benefit to the organization and often times the person and/or person(s) buying that solution. Developing customized solutions is not easy though; it requires the ability to first identify the problem. And uncovering the point of pain, or challenge that needs a solution is difficult!  

Following are 5 ways to help you uncover the point of pain so you can treat your customers with effective and valuable solutions:

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Topics: Sales