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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

The Sales Pipeline is More Important Than Sales Activity

status of the sales pipelineIt seems like every sales manager I have talked to lately wants to talk about activity and how to enforce minimum activity expectations. It took a few of these conversations before a simple truth became obvious to me: Pipeline is way more important than activity.

Topics: sales performance sales management salespeople sales process sales pipeline

Implement These Social Media Best Practices to Enhance Your LinkedIn Social Selling Efforts in Under 1 Hour

implement these social media best practices on linkedinRecently, I shared a blog post called 10 Social Media Best Practices for Salespeople, and I wanted to expand on a few of them specifically related to how you can put these best practices into play on LinkedIn. I’ve gathered some specific examples from our team of experts, so check out the previous post here, then read on for actionable steps you can take in one hour or less of your time, to enhance your LinkedIn social selling efforts.

Topics: key account growth Social Media LinkedIn lead nurturing salespeople

Know Your Numbers

salespeople know your numbers"If you don't know your numbers, you don't know your business!"
-Marcus Lemonis 

My friend (and Managing Partner at The Center for Sales Strategy), Matt Sunshine, got me into the CNBC television program, The Profit. And I am absolutely addicted to it. And I mean addicted… I might have just finished watching 6 hours of the program this weekend. 

And you should be watching it, too!

Marcus Lemonis is the CEO of Camping World, and he uses his money to invest in struggling businesses that he features on his show. The stories are exciting, compelling, and full of drama! But, that's not why you should be watching the program.

Topics: sales strategy sales performance sales management salespeople

Summer Reading Recommendations: Business Books We've Read

summer-reading-recommendations-business-booksIt’s Memorial Day. A day to remember those who gave everything for us. For our country. For our freedom. Because of that, we’re able to celebrate with family, friends, and great food, as we kick off the summer season.

Topics: holiday sales management salespeople

Get that First Appointment — Master Your Approach

first appointmentHave you ever felt like taking a “Wild Wild West” approach to securing your first appointment? Think about it… if only it were appropriate to ‘lasso’ your prospect, ‘tie him down’ and force him to stay engaged so that you may cordially introduce yourself, establish credibility and politely present your value proposition. Honestly, if you could just get his undivided attention for 5-minutes… you know he’ll like you, and you know he’ll be intrigued and perhaps even excited or anxious to learn more, right?

Personally, I have indeed toyed with the idea (more than once) of taking the Wild Wild West approach to securing that first appointment. Fortunately wisdom intervened, because I’m certain I would have been greatly misunderstood and most likely thrown in jail if I had decided to draw from my Texas ancestor’s tactics and put those thoughts into action! Needless to say, my understanding of acceptable social behavior and, well… modern law kept me from utilizing an Outlaw Josey Wales sales approach.

Topics: setting expectations Setting Appointments new business development Sales salespeople prospecting

The Best Sales Pitch Isn’t a Pitch at All

sales-pitch-storytelling-191960-edited

This post was originally published on Hubspot.

Despite its increasing irrelevance, the tired, old sales pitch still enjoys a large following. Unfortunately, that washed-up elevator pitch generally focuses solely on the seller -- the company, its capabilities, and its accomplishments -- and rarely highlights the prospect’s needs.

Topics: Proposal Sales salespeople

The Impact of Bad Email Etiquette on Sales + 7 Tips to Avoid Clumsy Mistakes

email etiquette for salespeopleRecently, I've had a few run-ins with bad email etiquette. Not just in a quick email thread from a co-worker (I'll admit, my email etiquette gets sloppy in this arena), but I've received emails from salespeople attempting to get me (the marketing manager) to subscribe to their software, utilize their platform, or allocate some of my budget to their product, and all had major email etiquette issues, misspelled my name, or included verbiage that clearly showed me we aren't on the same wavelength. I also received an email from a potential candidate for a freelance writer that included major grammatical mistakes... WHAT!? 

Topics: email salespeople prospecting

10 Social Media Best Practices for Salespeople

salespeople social sellingIn an ever-changing sales landscape, maintaining a healthy personal brand on social media has become a necessary tool for sales professionals to build and maintain relationships with prospects. According to a Forrester Consulting study, Social Selling: A New B2B Imperative, “49 percent of B2B enterprises have developed a formal social selling program, and 28 percent are in the process of doing so.” If you aren’t utilizing social selling as part of your sales strategy, you could be losing sales to more social-savvy salespeople. 

Topics: Social Media LinkedIn salespeople facebook personal brand

Building Strong Relationships: Can You Teach That?

salespeople building relationshipsYou have hired your next great seller. You have a strong on-boarding plan, a great training schedule, and amazing people in place to help with training. They are prepared to hit the street, right?

Topics: training salespeople sales training coaching

Weekly Roundup: The Future of Sales + More

sales predictionsWe 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.

The Future of Sales: Predictions from the “Nostradamus's” of Selling — Hubspot

"I think there will be more and more specialization. The process will be broken up into a few parts -- depending on what you are selling -- with one person focusing on each part."

Read more on what Matt Sunshine (managing partner of The Center for Sales Strategy) and other sales leaders have to say about the future of sales in this Hubspot post.

Topics: sales management Sales Wrap-up salespeople