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Lead Generation Toolbox

The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

The New Word of Mouth

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Personal recommendations are a powerful thing. Good or bad, they have the power to persuade us in one direction or another. Think about it—when most of us have little to no knowledge about a particular company or product, we typically ask those whose opinions we trust: family, friends or coworkers. As we all become more and more connected, most of us have also begun to rely on digital reviews.

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Topics: referrals, Digital, reputation management

Shopping for Solutions: Delivering the Perfect Digital Advertising Target

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Mid-February is an interesting time of the year. The stores, malls, and grocery stores are jam-packed with people shopping for Valentines Day. If you like to shop, this may be paradise… heading out with all of the other crazed shoppers, trying to find that one special thing for that special someone. But if you're not into shopping, you probably want to minimize the places you have to go.

Imagine if you only gave yourself one opportunity to find that special gift—you're determined to go to only one store. Some of you would get lucky. Others might find that is it out of stock, while others find that the one store chosen never even carried that special something. So what do you do if you weren’t lucky? Since you only gave yourself one shot, you have two options—find another gift or go home with no gift.

Don’t like those options? Me either, but when it comes to digital marketing, I see salespeople and marketers do just that all the time when using ad targeting to reach their target consumer—their someone special if you will. Instead of using multiple targeting options available to them, they make the decision to hyper-target… using just one behavior, age group, or a small geographic area. Doing that is the same thing as just going into one store to find your target gift. You might get lucky and generate results, but more often hyper targeting minimizes your chances to deliver results.

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Topics: Digital, selling digital advertising, integrated media solution, understanding target audience

Finding that Ideal Prospect when Selling Digital Advertising

Selling_Digital.jpgOver the years, I've seen—and still see—a pattern with media sellers in the pursuit of prospects who welcome ideas that include digital. Selling digital as part of an integrated solution requires a certain kind of prospect that will "get" what you're talking about with respect to integrated solutions. To help navigate through your best opportunities, try these tips as you prospect and plan your approach:  

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Topics: Setting Appointments, Digital, selling digital advertising, integrated media solution

The "Buy Now" Button Comes to Pinterest and Instagram

Why_Did_You_Buy_ThatAs Social Media continues to mature, they continue to search for new ways to engage consumers and drive revenue. Two weeks ago, Pinterest and Instagram introduced similar features aimed at accomplishing both goals and these new options could be game changers for businesses and consumers.

The first "buy now" button is the Buyable Pin that was introduced by Pinterest on June 2nd. The new feature will allow users to purchase products without ever having to leave Pinterest—when they see a blue Buy It button. If you live in the United States and use an Apple device, you will begin seeing the new feature in a couple of weeks. According to the company’s blog, you should be able to discover over 2 million Buyable Pins on your iPhone or iPad by the end of June. Android users will have to wait a little longer to see the new Buyable Pins. 

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Topics: Digital

The Ad Industry Has Been Giving Clients The Wrong Impression

ad-industry-wrong-impressionMy three-year-old grandson led me to a meaningful epiphany recently. We were sitting at the kitchen table playing with some Play-Doh when he watched me sink my thumb into a small ball of the clay. He pointed to my thumbprint and asked, “What’s that?”

I answered, “That’s an impression.”

Like most three-year-olds will do, he followed my answer with a question: “Why?”

“Because when I touched the Play-Doh, I left a mark on it.”

He proceeded to copycat the procedure, pressing his fingers and handprints into several lumps of clay; after each masterpiece, he would attempt to form the new word he had learned: “Look, Grandpa, I made a ‘preshun’.”

“I left a mark on it.” 

I had been to a marketing conference earlier in the week, where much of the focus was on falling CPMs, and rightfully so. Once upon a time, the cost of access to consumers was high, thanks to the relative scarcity of media. There were only one or two newspapers in most major metropolitan areas, and only a couple dozen radio and television stations (even fewer in smaller markets, of course). The law of supply and demand favored companies who distributed advertising messages, where the supply of big audiences was (comparatively) limited, and the demand was high. 

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Topics: Digital, selling digital advertising

The One Thing Every Brand Should Do to Improve its Social Media ROI

every-brand-needs-to-pay-attention-to-the-headlineAs a former Digital Sales Manager turned consultant, I am constantly asked How can I make sure this social media campaign will work? As with any campaign, there’s plenty a marketer needs to do to maximize success. But there’s one thing that’s enormously impactful and often overlooked:

If the headline doesn’t click in their head or their heart, there’s no way their finger will click.

The headline is the first thing a person sees—and too often the last. Social media are as cluttered today as are every other medium. People who are active in social media are often on several different platforms every day, and every one of those feeds is jammed with new information, new content, every time they check in. Do they carefully read it all? Ha. Do you? Of course not. 

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Topics: Digital

Which Is More Important—Product Training or Sales Training?

Product focused training and sales skill training - both are important to increase the knowledge and expertise of a sales team, but which is more important? Which has the larger impact? Before I answer that question, let me define the differences between the two to make sure that we are all on the same page.

Product Training

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Product training focuses on the nuts and bolts, on educating your sales force on the features and benefits of what you sell. What the product (or service or solution) is, what problems it’s intended to solve, how it actually works, what it costs in its various configurations, how you handle it internally to ensure the client gets what they bought, and everything else you might need to talk about the product. Most product training is delivered in a classroom environment where the facilitator is doing most of the talking and answering questions along the way. 

Sales Training

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Topics: Digital, Training Topics