Tag Archives: B2B Sales

B2B Sales Executives: Are you a coach or a manager?

[fullwidth background_color=”” background_image=”” background_parallax=”none” enable_mobile=”no” parallax_speed=”0.3″ background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” video_url=”” video_aspect_ratio=”16:9″ video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_preview_image=”” overlay_color=”” overlay_opacity=”0.5″ video_mute=”yes” video_loop=”yes” fade=”no” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” padding_top=”20″ padding_bottom=”20″ padding_left=”20″ padding_right=”0″ hundred_percent=”yes” equal_height_columns=”no” hide_on_mobile=”no” menu_anchor=”” class=”” id=””][fusion_text]real-time-sales-coaching_small

Becoming a B2B sales manager is the pinnacle of achievement in a sales department. You can be managing a small team or overseeing the entire sales department for your company. The job carries a lot of responsibility including that of motivating and helping your team grow as sales representatives.

It is easy to get swept up into the details of managing a sales department such as daily statistics, attrition rates, and tracking new clients. Often, upper management looks to you for the bottom line. However, while these tasks are important, your primary focus should be on developing your team.

It is not enough to just manage them. You need to coach them to success.

What is the difference between a B2B sales manager and a sales coach?

Managers focus on the numbers instead of the people. They are taskmasters instead of leaders, and while some of their sales reps can do well on their own, others need encouragement and help learning the best practices for interacting with clients.

On the other hand, a sales coach spends time with team members working with them on planning their approach to customers, offering feedback on what they are doing right and going with them on sales appointments to help them improve. They plan time to develop their people with a goal of success in order to drive sales.

A sales coach encourages their people to grow without taking credit for their sales. This is a positive effort that cements a team together. Sales people like being coached because they learn what they are doing right and what the next step is in their growth.

12 Bad Habits Whitepaper

Coaches are teachers

A good analogy is a baseball coach who works with their players on their skills, and then watches them during the actual game to see where they still need work and to cheer them on when they do well.

When you narrow it down there are three keys for being an effective sales coach:

  • A coach spends time asking questions and listening
  • A coach gets to the root of a problem, rather than trying to make quick fixes to symptoms
  • A coach  teaches responsibility, teamwork, and rewards personal growth

Sales techniques are generally not taught in school; they are learned on the job. Therefore coaching someone to improve their skills is how they learn.

Sales Dialing Automation Software Provides Options for Real-Time Telephone Coaching

ConnectLeader_ChallengesofCoachinganInsideSalesTeam_small

Spending time with sales representatives during sales calls is one of the best training and evaluation tools for a sales executive. For traditional field sales teams, this is common and routine. However, inside sales executives have a more difficult time evaluating sales reps during the sales call.Listening to recorded conversations and role playing are common tools for coaching telephone selling skills, however, both options lack that “real-time” interaction. Some sales dialing software tools provide sales coaches the ability to listen to the call in real time. Sales executives can also speak to their sales reps using a “whisper” mode.
ConnectLeader Director of Sales and Business Development, Mark Lynch authored an article for the ECSell Institute on the benefits of real-time sales coaching.[/fusion_text][/fullwidth]

Keeping your B2B sales team motivated during the dog days of summer

[fusion_text]sleeping_dog

The summer has a reputation among those in the B2B sales world as being a time of massive slowdown. Inside sales and business development representatives get discouraged at the low sales numbers and frustrated when trying to reach leads that seem to be perpetually on vacation. Morale begins to suffer and people end up wasting time in the office.

Encouraging your B2B sales team to keep pressing forward through the summer months can help keep the company in the black and help ensure that everyone hits the ground running when fall arrives. Here are some fantastic and fun ways to keep your sales team successful throughout the summer.

Lively department contests

Since you know that the sales slump is likely to occur during the summer months, use the time leading up to the slow months to build momentum with some fun contests. Learn what matters most to your sales team, such as a new iPad, an extra vacation day, or other type of fun prize. Then invite people to participate in a fun contest that challenges them to keep their numbers high. Some fun ideas for contests might be:

  • prizes for those who complete the most demos
  • prizes for the entire team if customer satisfaction of a particular level (such as 95 percent of polled customers) can be reached
  • prizes for new clients

Some teams might also find success if they assign a particular number of points to different tasks, such as 20 points for a new client, 15 points for a demo and 5 points for a new qualified lead, and having contests to see what team can obtain the most points in a month.

12 Bad Habits That Destroy Inside Sales Productivity Whitepaper

Keeping sales teams engaged when the office is slow

Sometimes, despite the most exciting contests a supervisor can imagine, the office is still slow. Even the most motivated salespeople cannot sell to customers who are on vacation. To keep the office engaged and enthusiastic about their jobs, there a few ideas you can use to help people relax and have fun while also moving towards sales success.

Celebrate small successes

Recognize hard work by celebrating even small successes, such as closing a big deal or the newbie making their first sale. Have a small party so everyone can celebrate and feel reinvigorated.

Screen inspiring movies

There are a variety of fantastic sales movies that can be used for inspiration or just some laughs such as The Boiler Room, The Pursuit of Happyness, The Goods – Live Hard, Sell Hard and Glengarry Glen Ross. Consider screening one occasionally over lunch breaks.

Role-playing and breaking down sales

Pass the time when business is slow by doing some fun role-plays or breaking down past sales. Look for what went wrong, what went right and what sales teams can learn. It is a great way to practice skills even when not speaking with customers

The summer slump is commonly acknowledged in sales circles as people struggle to find clients through the slow, hot months. To keep your sales team motivated and engaged, you have to be creative, but with proper preparation, it is entirely possible. If you find yourself staring down the approaching summer with dread, consider implementing some of the above ideas and keep your team moving forward towards the more productive autumn.

[/fusion_text]

12 Bad Habits that Destroy Inside Sales Productivity

[fusion_text]

12 Bad Habits that Destroy Inside Sales Productivity

12Habits_Cover

Download this digital guide to learn how to avoid the bad habits that drain inside sales productivity.

We’ve compiled two of our most popular blog posts into one convenient digital guide. Bad habits can drain any inside sales team’s productivity. Don’t make these mistakes in your organization.

 A few highlights:

  • Having a cluttered workspace
  • Procrastinating
  • Not using the best sales acceleration tools
  • Not getting enough sleep

Request the Digital Guide

.[/fusion_text]

Great News! B2B Sales Reps are Still Needed!

[fusion_text]business_interactions

Study finds B2B Sales Rep Involvement Still Critical to the Buying Process

A recent study unveiled by business-to-business research and advisory firm SiriusDecisions, found that for more than 50% of all buying scenarios, human sales interactions occurred during all phases of the buying process. In complex scenarios, sales rep involvement begins during the education phase of the buying cycle.

SiriusDecisions recently unveiled the findings from its 2015 B-to-B Buyer Study during a keynote address at its 10th Annual SiriusDecisions Summit.

The SiriusDecisions B-to-B Buying Study identifies the three stages of the buying process as Education, Solution, and Selection. It was commonly believed that 67% of the business process occurred without sales rep involvement. That is, customers would conduct research via the internet and social media prior to engaging a sales rep.

connectingAccording to the report, B2B buyers interact with human sales reps in every stage of the business cycle.”

Another finding that should not be overlooked, “buyers interact with a sales representative from the winning provider organization in all phases of their decision-making process.”

“We found that buyers interact with representatives during every stage of the decision-making process at least half the time, and that the type of decision – or buying scenario – greatly impacted the number and types of interactions,” said Jennifer Ross, Senior Research Director, SiriusDecisions. “Just because buying behavior is done digitally does not mean that sales representatives are no longer required to instigate or facilitate a buying process.”

Making a phone call is a great way to engage – Sales dialing automation makes it better

A phone call is a great way to exchange information between a buyer and a seller. It is easy to do, does not cost much, and can jumpstart the buying process. Inside sales reps should not be shy about contacting prospective buyers as early in the sales process as possible.

Sales dialing automation makes the telephone process even easier and more cost-effective.

Other blogs on this topic that may be of interest:

[/fusion_text]

ConnectLeader® Announces the Award of Three Patents

[fusion_text]

Press Release


CL_logoConnectLeader, a pioneering innovator of technology used by B2B sales reps to accelerate the sales process, announces the issuance of three patents for visibility and control features, online scheduling of calling sessions, and remote coaching technologies.

ConnectLeader LLC announces the issuance of three patents (U.S. Patent numbers 8594308, 8964963, and 8938058) by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for which ConnectLeader is the exclusive licensee. These patents protect many aspects of the company’s innovative sales acceleration technology, and are key components of a comprehensive international patent portfolio that includes many pending patents worldwide.

ConnectLeader is a pioneering innovator of technology designed specifically to give B2B sales reps visibility into the calling process, allowing them to make real-time updates on-the-fly. ConnectLeader refers to these features as ‘visibility and control’. Using the visibility features enable users to see which target leads/contacts are queued up for calling next. The ConnectLeader Sales Dialing Platform control feature enables users to update the status of leads/contacts that are queued up for calling. In turn, the user may dynamically change the order of calling, create a “do not call” status, or a “do not call until a specific time” status.

Management Quotes

“Using a sales acceleration platform is like driving a sports car.” stated Senraj Soundar, CEO of ConnectLeader. “When you drive a sports car, it is important to have excellent visibility into where you are heading and have total control on the road you take. The ConnectLeader visibility and control features in our sales acceleration platform are analogous to the exceptional visibility and control of a sports car. These important features facilitate user adoption of our sales acceleration platform and expedite productivity increase for our customers. In addition to the obvious business benefits, our customers tell us it is fun to use the product.” Soundar added.

“These patents enable ConnectLeader to assertively maintain its status as the leader of ground breaking innovations in sales acceleration.” Said Matt Stanton, VP of Sales at ConnectLeader.

Customer Quotes

“I like to change my list as I’m calling. I can easily de-select a name and the system won’t call that number.”Scott Serpa, Inside Sales Manager, formerly with Xangati, Inc.

“Before we used Team Dialer, we used another tool. Some of our representatives were reluctant to use the dialing technology because they would be caught off guard when a call was connected. With ConnectLeader, they have much more control.”  Rob Consoli, VP of Sales & Marketing, Liaison Technologies

In addition to the Visibility and Control features, these patents protect many other innovative sales acceleration capabilities offered by ConnectLeader (or planned for near future), such as:
Multi-touch campaign with calling – Enables sales reps to easily plan and execute multi-touch campaigns including various touches like calling, leaving voice messages, sending texts, and sending emails

Remote Coach – Enables sales managers to actively listen to and coach sales reps during calls
Online scheduling of calling sessions – Facilitates time management for sales reps
Dynamic Agent Allocation – Allows the system to optimize agent’s time utilization.

About ConnectLeader

The ConnectLeader® Sales Dialing Platform helps B2B sales organizations improve personal and team sales productivity by reducing non-productive calling tasks. We were the first in the market to offer a single dialing platform giving sales teams the ability to choose from a range of dialing speeds to match their sales productivity needs. ConnectLeader solutions feature our patented visibility and control features and provide bi-directional synchronization with Salesforce.com, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Oracle on-demand CRM, NetSuite CRM, Zoho CRM, Bullhorn, and other CRM systems.

Click Dialer™ is a click-to-call softphone embedded into the Salesforce.com CRM environment. Sales reps simply click on the phone number to start dialing. Users also have the option to select multiple names and let the software dial in a list mode. Call results, emails sent, voicemail drop, and follow-up activities are updated for analytics within Salesforce.com in real time. Sales reps using Click Dialer can increase their calling productivity by up to 30% over manual dialing.

Personal Dialer® is cloud-based power dialing technology that takes calling productivity to the next level. Personal Dialer provides visibility into calling, allows the reps to control the selection of the next call, progress to next call quickly, and a host of many other features. Reps can increase their calling productivity by 50% to 100% over manual dialing.

Team Dialer® is a sales acceleration solution for organizations who want to further boost dialing productivity for outbound prospecting, business development, and lead qualifying. Team Dialer accelerates the sales process by delegating non-productive calling tasks and integrating with sales automation systems. The Team Dialer solution combines state-of-the-art cloud-based software with a team of human agents who assist with call navigation, allowing your sales reps more time to sell. Team Dialer customers typically have 8 to 12 live conversations per hour, an 800% increase over manual dialing. www.connectleader.com

ConnectLeader, Click Dialer, Personal Dialer, and Team Dialer are trademarks of ConnectLeader, LLC.

All brand names and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.
###

[/fusion_text]

ConnectLeader® Introduces Click Dialer™ for Salesforce

ConnectLeader® Introduces Click Dialer™ for Salesforce.com – Easy-to-Use
Click to Call software for B2B sales reps

Click_Dialer_Monitor_blog_imageConnectLeader Click Dialer is a new click to call dialing app being launched as part of the ConnectLeader for Salesforce V2 upgrade. The app, which can be downloaded from the ConnectLeader AppExchange listing (for Salesforce Professional Edition & higher), now provides B2B sales teams with three sales acceleration solutions to boost their sales productivity. With the introduction of Click Dialer, Connectleader expands the range of dialing speeds available for B2B sales reps, increasing sales dialing productivity over manual dialing from 30% to 800%.

Salem, NH – ConnectLeader®, innovator of the Personal Dialer® and Team Dialer® sales dialing technology, is pleased to announce the introduction of Click Dialer™, a click-to-call software native to Salesforce.com. Click Dialer helps sales reps save time by automating dialing and data entry tasks, all from one simple interface.

While Click Dialer can be used by any salesperson, it works especially well for inside sales reps and account managers. Click Dialer works great for reps who typically make lower-volume calls and have longer conversations. Sales reps who prefer to conduct more research or use social networking sites like LinkedIn, will appreciate the amount of flexibility and control that Click Dialer provides.

Click Dialer included with new ConnectLeader for Salesforce V2 software

request live demoClick Dialer software can be downloaded for free as part of the ConnectLeader for Salesforce V2 application on AppExchange. This download includes also includes Personal Dialer® and Team Dialer® integrated within the Salesforce.com environment.

“We are very excited about the introduction of Click Dialer,” explained Senraj Soundar, CEO of ConnectLeader. “Our customers have asked us to develop technologies that meet their unique selling style. Now with the introduction of Click Dialer, ConnectLeader provides a full range of dialing speeds unmatched in the sales acceleration industry.”

Click Dialer features an attractive, easy-to-use interface, includes the ability to pre-record voice messages, update call results, schedule follow-ups, send emails, and most importantly, provides real-time analytics within Salesforce.com. This tight integration ensures higher data quality and saves sales reps time by eliminating the need to record data in multiple locations.

“Click Dialer gives B2B sales reps another tool to improve productivity by spending less time on non-productive tasks and spending more time selling,” said Matt Stanton, VP of Sales at ConnectLeader. “We’re excited to extend this new product to our existing customers who can increase the value of their ConnectLeader investment by extending dialing solution to their entire sales team.”

Oh No! You didn’t make your inside sales quota! Now what?

[fusion_text]

yoda-do-or-do-not

Image source: www.positiveimperative.com

Imagine this….You are an inside sales rep and you have to sell $1 million dollars this year.  If not, that’s it. You are history. No second chances.  Either make your quota or lose…  (you fill in the blank).

 What would you do to make this goal?

Would you make a plan? Set more appointments? Work smarter? Work harder?

If you were given a year,  would you develop a plan? Make as many dials as possible? Would you try EXTREMELY hard?

or would you just try a little, wait for inbound leads  and referrals and hope for the best?   Would you watch the clock, research accounts, surf the net, look at your tweets? Not pick up the phone?

So here are some statistics to think about courtesy of CSO Insights:

  • 58% of sales reps make quota (down from 63% in 2012)
  • 25.2% of leads are generated by marketing
  • 45.9% of leads are generated by sales reps

What can you do now?

Stop depending on marketing and work harder to generate your own sales leads

Create a personal sales plan, don’t wait for one to be created for you.

Take control of your inside sales process.

  1. Use a CRM to manage your sales process.

Do More

  • Make more phone calls
  • Send more emails
  • Get more referrals
  • Set more appointments
  • Make more demos
  • Generate more proposals
  • Close more deals.

Work smarter, not harder

Use sales acceleration tools to generate more leads, faster

Final Thoughts:

My first question is… what prevents sales reps from pushing the envelope without this type of motivation?  What holds you back?

If you can isolate this and figure it out,  you’ll achieve success.   Give it some thought and leave no stone unturned!

If you want to turn stones over faster…check out connectleader!

 

About the Author: Rick Hussey is an Inside Sales Rep for ConnectLeader. The comments included are Rick’s and do not necessarily represent the views of the company. Although we totally agree with him.

file-1003762041[/fusion_text]