The Sales Blog http://thesalesblog.com S. Anthony Iannarino Thu, 18 Sep 2014 18:34:48 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Stop Waiting to Share Your Gift http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/18/stop-waiting-to-share-your-gift/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/18/stop-waiting-to-share-your-gift/#respond Thu, 18 Sep 2014 11:27:53 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46949 Stop Waiting to Share Your Gift is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

Stop Waiting to Share Your Gift is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino Share your gift. pic.twitter.com/HKwoLddlQk — S. Anthony Iannarino (@iannarino) September 18, 2014]]>

Stop Waiting to Share Your Gift is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

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Violence and Force Are Weakness http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/17/violence-and-force-are-weakness/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/17/violence-and-force-are-weakness/#respond Thu, 18 Sep 2014 01:56:47 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46943 Violence and Force Are Weakness is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

Violence and Force Are Weakness is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino I got the belt a few times when I was kid. A couple of the very old nuns at Catholic school used the wooden paddle to punish me for leaving the school grounds to get lunch in eighth grade. [...]]]>

Violence and Force Are Weakness is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

I got the belt a few times when I was kid. A couple of the very old nuns at Catholic school used the wooden paddle to punish me for leaving the school grounds to get lunch in eighth grade. I am certain I deserved more than I ever received when it comes to corporal punishment.

I got in a good number of fights when I was a kid, and I started a good many of those fights. I was never a good enough fighter to hurt anyone else, but I got hurt a number of times. I saw a lot of people get hurt, and it always made me feel awful, regardless of the circumstances.

I have never raised my hands to children.* I never spanked them when they were little. I never wanted them to believe that violence was the right response when someone does something wrong (or something you don’t like). Because violence isn’t the right answer. Might doesn’t make right (thankfully).

Violence is the choice taken by those without the will to control their own state, the resourcefulness to help others change, or the ability to persuade others.

Physical violence is only one type of violence. Mental or psychological violence is equally–and sometimes more–damaging to individuals. Bullying is a form of violence, and so is threatening someone.

Personal leadership requires that you are able to control your own state. If you are going to be effective through and with other people, you are going to have to be resourceful in finding ways to bridge differences. You find success through influence, through people choosing to follow you.

Violence or force, in any form, is weakness not strength.

* When my kids really acted up and wanted my attention, I would literally go running from the room, causing them to give chase to whine and cry. I kept running until they started laughing. If the whining or crying started up again, off I ran again. The physical act of running changed their state, and soon the crying stopped.

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After Inbound http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/16/after-inbound/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/16/after-inbound/#respond Wed, 17 Sep 2014 01:36:25 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46930 After Inbound is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

After Inbound is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino After inbound produces the lead, then what? Let’s assume inbound drives enough leads to you that you should be able to generate the revenue, then what? Do you know how to qualify those leads, ensuring that you are spending your time with [...]]]>

After Inbound is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

After inbound produces the lead, then what? Let’s assume inbound drives enough leads to you that you should be able to generate the revenue, then what?

  • Do you know how to qualify those leads, ensuring that you are spending your time with the prospects for whom you can create massive value and who are willing to pay for that value?
  • Do you have a process that allows you to understand where the buyer is in their buying journey and how to create value where they are now?
  • Can you differentiate you and your offering from all of the people who sell what you sell?
  • Do you know how to gain the commitments you need to move your prospective client forward and create an opportunity?
  • Do you have a sales process that helps you move your client from target to close?
  • Do you know how to close? Are you supremely comfortable and confident asking for your client’s business?
  • How well do you do defending your price and the value you create?

Inbound marketing is an important part of a client acquisition strategy. It is an above the funnel activity that can supplement–not replace–your prospecting efforts. But it doesn’t replace the ability to sell well.

If you are effective at inbound without having the sales chops, processes, and methodologies to create opportunities and win new clients, then being effective at inbound produces the same result as not being effective at inbound.

If you are only okay at inbound but have extraordinary sales chops, you will produce better sales results than you would by just being good at inbound.

If you are a pure salesperson, you may not need inbound at all. If you can pick up the phone, gain commitments, and know how to sell, you are always going to do well. But if you are the entrepreneurial type with the ability to create content, adding inbound to your mix is going to blow up your results.

No matter how good you are at inbound, you better have something after inbound.

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Dear Client. You Are Wrong. http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/15/dear-client-you-are-wrong/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/15/dear-client-you-are-wrong/#respond Tue, 16 Sep 2014 01:00:33 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46923 Dear Client. You Are Wrong. is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

Dear Client. You Are Wrong. is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino The customer is not always right. You are not a customer service representative. You are a salesperson. And it is not the job of the salesperson to tell the customer that they are right or that they can have [...]]]>

Dear Client. You Are Wrong. is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

The customer is not always right. You are not a customer service representative. You are a salesperson. And it is not the job of the salesperson to tell the customer that they are right or that they can have what they want (at least not the way they want it).

When you call a company for support, you expect the support person to help you get the outcome you need. It’s not the customer service person’s role to tell you that you are wrong, that you can’t have what you want, or that you are wrong for even wanting whatever it is that you want. That’s not what a customer service person does. They give you the help you need.

If you are a salesperson, acting like a customer service rep will make you a weak, ineffective salesperson, or what we would call an order-taker. Your relationship with your client is different, and you have a greater responsibility. This often means you have to tell your client that they are wrong, and that they can’t have what they want the way they want.

Dear Client, You Are Wrong.

You want to be consultative. You want trusted advisor status. You want to create the highest level of value. If you want these things, you are setting the bar very high for yourself.

Your client doesn’t know what they don’t know. They don’t know what other companies are doing. They don’t know what you are doing for your other clients. Most of the time, they don’t know what all of the options for producing better results are, and a big part of the reason they don’t is because they don’t know that they should be dissatisfied.

You have to tell your client that what they believe isn’t true–when it isn’t. You have to tell them the truth about where they can produce better results. And you have to tell them how they can do better, which brings us to the second part of your responsibility.

Dear Client, You Can’t Have What You Want.

Any of your clients can have anything they want, provided they are willing to do what is necessary. And, if it were up to them, most of them would want the better results you promise without making the changes they need to make–and without investing a penny more than they are investing now.

You do your client a disservice when you allow them to believe that they can have what they want without changing what needs to be changed. You have to tell your client what needs to change, why it needs to change, and how to change it.

You aren’t helping your client by allowing them to believe that they can have what they want without investing more. You have to tell them why they have to spend more and what that spending gets them. That’s helping them. Letting them believe a lie is not.

If you want to be consultative, a trusted advisor, a peer, then you can’t act like a customer service representative. You need to be liked, which means you do all of this with a good spirit, and you need to be trusted, which means you don’t shy away from talking about the big issues.

You aren’t going to lose your relationships by tackling difficult issues. You’re going to lose your relationships by avoiding them.

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The Leadership Playbook: Leaders Build Leaders http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/14/the-leadership-playbook-leaders-build-leaders/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/14/the-leadership-playbook-leaders-build-leaders/#respond Mon, 15 Sep 2014 01:16:45 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46918 The Leadership Playbook: Leaders Build Leaders is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

The Leadership Playbook: Leaders Build Leaders is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino It’s easy to see a leader’s legacy. That legacy is the leaders that she has built while she had the responsibility to lead. You can’t be a leader if no one is following you. But the measure of [...]]]>

The Leadership Playbook: Leaders Build Leaders is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

It’s easy to see a leader’s legacy. That legacy is the leaders that she has built while she had the responsibility to lead.

You can’t be a leader if no one is following you. But the measure of your success as a leader isn’t the raw number of people you lead. Success isn’t measured by what you’ve accomplished with and through the people you have the honor to lead. If you produce outstanding results for your company as a leader and leave it unprepared for the future, you have failed as a leader.

Your legacy is going to be the quality of the people you led, and that is most easily measured in the quality of the leaders you have helped to build.

The best leaders help others realize their potential. A leader sees something inside some of the people they serve that those people often can’t yet see for themselves. One of the ways they build new leaders is by continually giving these high potentials assignments and responsibilities that stretch them. They push the high potential to take on a little more than he is ready to take on. And each time the high potential grows into his role, the leader pushes him into something that once again tests his boundaries.

Great leaders know that they are building a leadership factory. They build leaders who in turn work to build new leaders. They pass on to the leaders they are building all that they have learned, their vision, their mission, and their values. These new leaders do the same, building the next generation of leaders behind them. Creating leaders propels the whole organization forward and helps the organization to reach its full potential–along with all of those within it.

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The Hustler’s Playbook: 4 Things the Hustler Fears http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/13/the-hustlers-playbook-4-things-the-hustler-fears/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/13/the-hustlers-playbook-4-things-the-hustler-fears/#respond Sun, 14 Sep 2014 02:10:47 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46914 The Hustler’s Playbook: 4 Things the Hustler Fears is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

The Hustler’s Playbook: 4 Things the Hustler Fears is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino Hustlers are driven. They are motivated to make a life of their own design. They are motivated to make a difference. And just like non-hustlers, they are motivated by their fears. Not Doing Enough Hustlers are [...]]]>

The Hustler’s Playbook: 4 Things the Hustler Fears is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

Hustlers are driven. They are motivated to make a life of their own design. They are motivated to make a difference. And just like non-hustlers, they are motivated by their fears.

Not Doing Enough

Hustlers are motivated by the fear that they are not doing enough. They worry that they are not taking enough action, even when they are doing 5 times as much as anyone else. Hustlers fear that by not doing enough, they won’t succeed in reaching their goals, whatever those goals may be. So they respond by doing more, by taking more action.

The non-hustler is also motivated by fear. But where the hustler’s activity is fueled by fear of not doing enough, the non-hustler is paralyzed by their fear. They fear taking action because they’re not ready, they might fail, or that other people might judge them. The non-hustler’s fear ensures that they never take enough action.

Not Going Fast Enough

A hustler doesn’t only fear not taking enough action, they fear not doing all that needs to be done fast enough. The hustler fears that if they don’t move fast that someone else will. They worry that if they don’t take advantage of the opportunities presented to them, the opportunity will disappear. This fear fuels the hustler to move with a sense of urgency.

The non-hustler prefers to move slowly, cautiously, to let things come to them. They say, “If it’s meant to be, it will come to me.” They are afraid of moving, let alone moving fast.

Being Out-hustled

Hustlers worry about being outhustled. They worry that somewhere out there, someone has got the jump on them. They worry that someone is working harder or working smarter. They fear that someone is doing something more or something better. This fear drives the hustler to bring her A-game and to always remain a student. The hustler is motivated by and learns from this fear.

The non-hustler doesn’t worry about being out-hustled because they are always and everywhere being out-hustled. They’re very comfortable with the fact that others are working harder, working smarter, building the life they really want, and making a contribution.

Legacy

Hustlers don’t fear their legacy. The fear running out of time to do all of the things that they can do to build that legacy. Your legacy isn’t built on what you do for yourself. No one ever says, “Look at how wonderful he was. He made a fortune and bought himself a yacht and big house.” Hustlers know that a legacy is built on the contribution you make while you are here. Legacy is built on what you do for others.

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The Clock Pointed At Your Head http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/12/the-clock-pointed-at-your-head/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/12/the-clock-pointed-at-your-head/#respond Sat, 13 Sep 2014 00:51:17 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46907 The Clock Pointed At Your Head is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

The Clock Pointed At Your Head is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino If you live to be 90 years old, you will have lived 32,850 days. That’s 4,680 weeks. That sounds like a lot of days. Even when you look at a lifetime in weeks it seems like a lot [...]]]>

The Clock Pointed At Your Head is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

If you live to be 90 years old, you will have lived 32,850 days. That’s 4,680 weeks. That sounds like a lot of days. Even when you look at a lifetime in weeks it seems like a lot of time. But it isn’t very much time at all. It only feels like a lot of time when you are very young.

The 680 weeks end when you are 13 years old. At 32 years old, you are down to 3,000 weeks. At 50 years old, you have a mere 2,080 weeks left before your 90th birthday.

You have a short time to do all of the things that are going to make up a life of your own design, a life that fulfills you, and a life that you can proud of having lived. No one has gun pointed at your head motivating you to do something. But there is a clock pointed at your head. That clock is every bit as threatening, and the threat is never lifted.

Your time here is short. Get busy.

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How to Uncover Dissatisfaction Without Alienating Your Dream Client http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/11/how-to-uncover-dissatisfaction-without-alienating-your-dream-client/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/11/how-to-uncover-dissatisfaction-without-alienating-your-dream-client/#respond Fri, 12 Sep 2014 01:51:44 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46899 How to Uncover Dissatisfaction Without Alienating Your Dream Client is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

How to Uncover Dissatisfaction Without Alienating Your Dream Client is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino When you first sit down with a contact from your dream client’s company, they may not be willing to share with you the areas where they feel an improvement might be made–or where one might [...]]]>

How to Uncover Dissatisfaction Without Alienating Your Dream Client is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

When you first sit down with a contact from your dream client’s company, they may not be willing to share with you the areas where they feel an improvement might be made–or where one might be necessary. They don’t yet know you, and you haven’t yet established a relationship or trust.

Your contact may be the person who chose their current provider. Your contact may have been the one to establish the processes and procedures that are presently creating challenges. As much as you may want to uncover their dissatisfaction or create it, the truth is more likely to be shared only when your dream client feels safe in doing so.

  • Ask questions that aren’t judgmental: If your questions come across as judgemental, you alienate your dream client and make it impossible to share their dissatisfaction. You force them to be defensive instead of open. By removing any judgemental language from your questions, you make it easier for your dream client to share the truth.
  • Don’t make assumptions: Assumptions can sound like accusations. Even if you have every reason to suspect that your dream client has a real challenge, and one you can help them with, making assumptions can cause them to retreat from the conversation. No one wants to be told that they have an ugly baby, lest of all by a stranger.
  • Talk about the industry as a whole, not your dream client. If you ask questions about the common challenges you help to solve, frame those problems as industry-wide problems. If the whole industry struggles, it’s okay for your dream client to struggle to. It also helps them understand that you have experience helping resolve those issues.
  • Leave your client a face-saving line of retreat. Always leave your client a face-saving line of retreat. They aren’t on trial, and you don’t need them to feel as if they are being accused.

 

If you follow these basic principles when meeting with your dream client, the conversation will go from “We are happy,” to “There are some areas that might be improved,” to “We have some real challenges,” to “We’re miserable and we need to change.” Once trust is established, this transformation can happen in 45 minutes.

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What To Write About When You Have Nothing To Write About http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/10/what-to-write-about-when-you-have-nothing-to-write-about/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/10/what-to-write-about-when-you-have-nothing-to-write-about/#respond Thu, 11 Sep 2014 01:42:31 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46892 What To Write About When You Have Nothing To Write About is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

What To Write About When You Have Nothing To Write About is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino You always have something you can write. Your creativity is a bottomless well, even though you may not be used to lowering the bucket into that well and pulling out the ideas that live [...]]]>

What To Write About When You Have Nothing To Write About is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

You always have something you can write. Your creativity is a bottomless well, even though you may not be used to lowering the bucket into that well and pulling out the ideas that live there.

If you are blogging for business, you can write all kinds of useful content for your clients and prospects.

  • You can write about all of the things that you recognize they should be doing that they don’t yet recognize. What are the issues that haven’t hurt their business yet but soon will? What are the opportunities they should be taking advantage of now?
  • You can write content about how to recognize your challenges and discover what you might really need to produce a better result. What does your dream client need to do right now? What would you recommend? Or what would you do if you were in their situation now and why would that be your choice?
  • You can write about how to think about all of the choices they might make to get a new or different result. You can write about how to weigh those decisions and all the factors they might consider. What choices could your dream clients consider? Why are some options better than other?
  • You can write stories. All kinds of stories work. Personal stories are always engaging and interesting. Stories about your experiences helping people are always useful and interesting, too.

If you think you have nothing, think of your target audience and use these prompts:

  • 10 Things Every __________ Should Do Now
  • 5 Mistake ________ Make When ______ And How to Avoid Them
  • 6 Ways to Improve Your _________
  • The 3 Fastest Ways to __________

Here’s my favorite way to come up with ideas: write down everything that grabs your attention. If you hear something interesting, write it down. If you have a good experience, write it down. If you have a bad experience, write.

Every day you have experiences worth capturing. They are entertaining, educational, or inspirational–and sometimes all three. They’re all valuable, and they are all worth capturing.

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Do You Know How You Won? http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/09/do-you-know-how-you-won/ http://thesalesblog.com/blog/2014/09/09/do-you-know-how-you-won/#respond Wed, 10 Sep 2014 00:51:08 +0000 http://thesalesblog.com/?p=46883 Do You Know How You Won? is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

Do You Know How You Won? is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino How did you win your last deal? Why did you win that deal? Was it because you had the lowest price? If that is your company’s strategy that is a good and proper reason. But it isn’t likely [...]]]>

Do You Know How You Won? is a post from: The Sales Blog | S. Anthony Iannarino

How did you win your last deal? Why did you win that deal?

Was it because you had the lowest price? If that is your company’s strategy that is a good and proper reason. But it isn’t likely that this is how you won (even if you believe that price is what causes you to lose).

Was it that your solution was so much better than any of your competitor’s that you were the obvious choice. Let’s assume it was. Let’s presume that your solution was the greatest value. How did you create that differentiation? What made it worth paying more to obtain?

Was this prospect a dream client? Did you pursue them because you knew you had the ability to produce that value?

What did you do to help your dream client work their way through their buying process? How did you create value in helping them to understand their needs? Is what you did there different than what you believe your competitors did? What did you do to help your client with their needs?

What did you do during the presentation and proposal stage that drove up the value of your solution? What did you do in all of the later stages that drew a line between you and your competitors? Did you win in the boardroom or was it something you did earlier?

How much of your win was due to the relationship you created? How much trust do you believe you generated and what impact did that have on your winning the opportunity? How did you create that trust? What did you do that helped to you build consensus, to gain the support of their team?

How much of the decision to choose you and your solution did you control? What did you do to make that happen? Why did your client want to work with you? Specifically?

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