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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

6 Ways To Ask The Perfect Question

ask the perfect question salesHave you ever come back to your office after a solid Needs Analysis meeting and shared the exciting news with your manager?

As you sit down to recap, your manager starts to ask you questions about the prospect, and you realize you can’t answer them.

Critical information that you need was never even discussed. The assignment that you uncovered and thought was strong is actually vague, and you begin to understand clearly that you're missing key pieces of information.

You start to deflate as you realize this meeting wasn’t as good as you thought after all.

Topics: Needs Analysis sales performance sales process prospecting

10 Eye-Opening Email Statistics To Help Guide Your Sales Email Strategy

email statistics to guide sales email strategyRecently, I sat on a panel about sales and marketing, and during the presentation, another fellow panelist said, 'Email is dead! Social media is where to reach your people!' Well... I laughed (internally, of course)... but was he right?

Surely not. 

Topics: email sales strategy prospecting sales playbook

Stop Spending Time with Lousy Prospects: 3 Criteria to Help Qualify Your Prospects

don't waste time when sales prospectingMany sellers struggle to develop new customers. Often this has less to do with the seller’s ability to sell, and more to do with the seller’s ability to select quality prospects.

Some prospects are better than others, and qualifying them will help determine which of the prospects should be pursued and which prospects should not.

As you search for ideal prospects (future key accounts), use the following criteria to determine which current clients have the greatest potential for growth and deserve the most time and attention.

Topics: sales performance prospecting

Why Your Salespeople Need a Cold Calling Playlist (Playlist Included)

cold calling playlist

Scientists say music changes mood, motivation, cognitive processing, and the ability to retain information. Additionally, music just makes work more fun and time fly!  

Setting appointments is a common problem — in fact, the 2020 Media Sales Report found that 80% of sales managers find it harder today than just 5 years ago. Listening to music is just one small motivator that will help get the job done.

Effective sales prospecting is one of the most challenging — and most important —parts of the sales process. Getting it wrong means wasted time and frustration. Getting it right means a healthier pipeline and better performance.

Topics: sales process prospecting

Silence is Golden: 3 Ways to Improve Your Listening Skills

improve listening skills"Silence is golden"—usually this is said right after your children leave the room and you finally have a moment of peace.

As much as that is a "funny" joke for parents, the concept of silence is a rare one in today's world. Are we ever "silent?" And when I say "silent," I don't mean staring at our phones for hours at a time.
 
In the context of sales, silence has another meaning. Silence is an opportunity to stop talking, be quiet, focus, and listen. Yes, I know this is a radical concept for those us that are gregarious, loud-mouth, salespeople.
Topics: Needs Analysis sales performance prospecting

What Does Sales Strategy Mean?

What Does Sales Strategy Mean

We hear sales managers and execs talk all the time about the importance of sales strategy. “Strategy” is one of the words that gets used a lot. In fact, Webster’s Dictionary says it's in the top 1% of most popular words. After all, who gets heat for talking strategy?

The problem is that most sales “strategies” are not really strategies at all. If you look at that definition of strategy, you see, “a careful plan or method for achieving a particular goal, usually over a long period of time.That means a strategy doesn’t change (or if it does, it's not very often), is long-term, and describes a set of consistent behaviors.

Many sales strategies are more like tactics making more calls in a defined period of time, approaching a new group of prospects, or introducing new offers to move the market forward. These things are not bad, but they're tactics, not strategies. Tactics are helpful IF they support a strategy.

Topics: sales strategy prospecting

Turn Stale Leads into New Business and Re-Engage Old Leads

Turn Stale Leads into New Business and Re-Engage Old Leads

Are you one of the 63% of businesses that have problems getting traffic and leads? Or are your salespeople part of the 44% that give up after one rejection?

It happens to everyone in sales. You connect with a prospect, conduct a needs analysis, maybe even give a stellar presentation, but something happens along the way, and the prospect stalls. Do you know it takes six to eight follow-ups for sales leads to convert to paying customers?

Before moving forward after a stalled account, evaluate where you went wrong. How do you re-engage stalled accounts? Well, it all depends on where you’re at in the sales process.

Topics: sales process prospecting

The Link Between Healthy Habits and Healthy Pipelines

The Link Between Healthy Habits and Healthy Pipelines

Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, Mark Cuban — all agree that one habit is a key ingredient to success.

Practicing good health habits by eating right and exercising each day is what these billionaires, and 21 others, agree helped create the foundation for their businesses and financial success. Your habits and routines determine your success and your future. In order to see the true benefits of any effort, you must be disciplined and consistent.

The same holds true when developing new business. It takes that same effort and discipline to consistently create a healthy sales pipeline.

Topics: business development Sales prospecting

4 Winning Approaches for Writing a Cold Email

4 Winning Approaches for Writing a Cold EmailYou found someone's email address online. Someone you've been looking to get in touch with for a long time. Now, it's up to you to write an email that'll get opened.

A cold email can be effective depending on your target audience's communication preferences. Follow these four approaches and you'll increase your chances for success — and your open rate.

Topics: email Sales prospecting

Solutions to the Age-Old Problem of Call Reluctance

Solutions to the Age-Old Problem of Call Reluctance

As a sales manager, do you feel like some of your veteran sellers struggle with new business development? It’s no secret that the recent downturn in revenue has shifted the focus to new business sales initiatives. Unfortunately, many sellers are struggling in this area of new business development. They are showing signs of call reluctance—the fear of taking a step in the sales process, fear of rejection, and fear of the unknown.

Call reluctance is very common; in fact, studies show 40% of salespeople will experience episodes of call reluctance, despite their years of experience or product knowledge. And while this anxiety feels unbeatable, you can help sellers overcome it by determining its root case and building a strategy.

Topics: sales process prospecting