Success in sales hinges a great deal on appearances and first impressions whether you like it or not. Of course, landing a sale has everything to do with what you’re offering, what the client needs and the presentation itself. But even if all of that is on the up and up, most likely a client won’t trust you with their business if they don’t see you as a competent and professional individual. Therefore, a component of branding yourself as a successful and trustworthy salesperson has nothing to do with the actual business at hand, and all to do with you! We’ve got some tips to build your image in order to make sure your next sale sticks.
Marketing is not a one-note tune. In fact, most marketing textbooks feature meticulous descriptions of the Four P’s of marketing — four elements that work together in the creation of a successful campaign. If any one of the four is lacking, failure is a likely possibility.
Groupon, a well-known daily deals website, made headlines at the end of February when its CEO and founder, Andrew Mason, wrote a company memo regarding his departure from the company. The memo read, “I’ve decided that I’d like to spend more time with my family. Just kidding — I was fired today.” The casual tone he took regarding his ouster unsurprisingly raised some eyebrows, as did a few of the other decisions he made during his time at Groupon. However, some have interpreted Mason’s departure as a writing-on-the-wall moment for the daily deals industry.
Last week, we discussed some ways to keep from becoming overwhelmed by work, and we’re always looking for more. With that in mind, we searched for the best apps out there to help you keep track of all your meetings, tasks and contacts. Smartphones are becoming almost ubiquitous with the average businessperson and they offer apps to simplify and organize your work life. No matter what your position is in the ad department, chances are you are constantly organizing and reprioritizing your daily, weekly and monthly tasks, meetings and leads. Wrapping your mind around everything that needs to get done can become a task in itself. However, we found eight apps that will help you manage your work and the stress it can incur. Read on below to discover the benefits and specs of these great apps that will help you keep your work life on track even when you’re on the go!
Professionals of most any industry are subject to stress, anxiety and being generally overwhelmed with work. Sales reps and ad mangers are no doubt familiar with these emotions as well. Managing workflow, keeping clients satisfied and sometimes losing a sale — all of this can contribute to stress and anxiety. Of course, some of it is inevitable, however, if there are ways to manage stress and anxiety, those methods should certainly be considered. Thankfully, CBS Money Watch’s Laura Vanderkam published the article, “Four Ways to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed” to help all professionals with managing their day-to-day work life.
With experience on both the ad agency and media sides of the business, I’ve learned some lessons about relationships between the two. There are often clashes between agencies and the media. In most case, the friction between these two key players in the marketing world comes down to two things: control and money. Both want more control of advertisers’ media placement decisions and both are in business to make money.
While new technologies continue to outmode face-to-face and telephone sales calls, it’s important that when you do make a sales call to potential and existing clients, you make it worth their time. In an interview with Inc.com, Jeffrey Seeley, the CEO of Carew International, came up with a few major mistakes to avoid during sales calls in order to make every call count.
As a sales rep, you have to have a thick skin and almost impossible confidence. Sales can be a touchy career that causes reps to toughen up to meet its demands. However, sometimes the key to sales and relationship building is more about softening up and losing the tough exterior to make your clients more comfortable around you. In Jeff Haden’s article for Inc., “6 Habits of Remarkably Likeable People,” he details the ways people unleash their inner charisma and likeability that puts others at ease.
We attended a webinar lead by Janet DeGeorge, the President of Classified Executive Training. The presentation, “What to Expect in Classifieds: 2013 (And How to Monetize It!),” addressed what classified reps and managers should be doing in the New Year to improve their revenue. She broke the discussion down into the three major verticals: auto, real estate and recruitment. We brought back what you need to take away from DeGeorge’s presentation to adapt in your own office this year!
Reviews are vital to a business’ success nowadays, which puts those who review businesses in a unique and important position. Consumers have the ability to trump up or derail a business’ public appearance significantly, yet some consumers still receive substandard service. Self-proclaimed, “lifelong entrepreneur” Brad Newman, has developed something that can help tell a business that you mean business — the ReviewerCard.
Thomas knows the power of storytelling. “I’ve found that the right stories help me sell more advertising,” he said. “After all, prospects are like everyone else. They like to hear stories and examples of things that have happened to other people. Thomas is right. Every sales person should have an arsenal of stories for a variety of purposes — to establish credibility, illustrate product benefits and answer objections.
“Recently I fired a great salesperson,” Stacey Alcorn wrote in the opening sentence of her article for The Huffington Post. It took me by surprise, and I’m willing to bet your reaction was similar to mine. The success or failure of a newspaper ad department often hinges on the sales team. So why on earth would Alcorn fire someone she defines as a great salesperson? That is what she went on to explain in her article, “Firing Your Sales Force – Redefining Greatness.” As she noted, the sales industry has undergone a complete and utter transformation in the past 50 years, if not in just the past decade. It wasn’t so long ago that we would receive a knock on the front door and be greeted by a salesperson trying to sell kitchen utensils, make up or the like. Those days are past us, and now, with the help of smartphones, laptops and tablets, consumers go to the source for their purchases, often circumnavigating the salesperson. Although many salespeople, like the one Alcorn let go, may be great at their jobs based upon previous definitions — like the number of sales they can close — that may not be the case any more. Alcorn implored readers to redefine what it means to be a great salesperson and hire accordingly. She set up three key characteristics to look for when creating a sales team to be reckoned with.
The flaw: You’re meeting with a prospective client, but you seem to be communicating on different wavelengths. When you mention a key sales point, your prospect barely acknowledges it. And when he or she talks, you feel like the entire conversation is off topic. The experience reminds you of the two proverbial ships passing in the night, with neither crew being aware of the other.
In mid-November of this year, a brand with a distinguished reputation as a staple of American life announced its intentions to liquidate the company after filing for bankruptcy not quite a year earlier. This company is Hostess, the maker of products that have become more than dessert treats — they have become fond memories of Americans for nearly 80 years. Although the company’s many products, including Wonder Bread and Twinkies, have been taken-for-granted regulars on the shelves of grocery stores all across the country, that alone was not enough to keep the company going. Now that Hostess has been relegated to become another bit of nostalgia for American consumers, it’s time to see what business lessons we can take from its shortcomings. Huffington Post’s Joseph F. Coughlin investigated just that in his article, “Hostess Twinkies and Three Lessons About Brand and Innovation.”
The 2012 REALTORS® Conference & Expo was held in Orlando. It offered real estate professionals the chance to learn about some of the best new advice for marketing homes, getting referrals and dealing with their current markets. It also provided many networking opportunities, as well as the chance to peruse various vendors. One of the most informative and illustrative sessions at this year’s conference was “Powerful Advertising” by Ian Grace. In his talk, Grace discussed the problems of traditional advertising as well as tips and tricks to solve those problems. Many of his suggestions caused light bulbs to turn on in the attendees’ heads, as his advice was both attractive and strategic. Although he brought many strategies to the table, the intent was the same throughout: to sell homes you need to tailor your advertising to the lifestyle that home could provide, instead of focusing on the specifications of the house.
“As crazy as it sounds, losing a sale can be good for business,” Gerald told me. “It offers a unique chance to build rapport over a long period of time. And when they conduct another advertising review, I’ll be in a better position than before.”
“Failure” is a scary word for sales reps, whose jobs hinge upon successfully closing a deal. However, it’s time to shine a new light and perspective on the word failure. While you should always aim for success, you should not allow the fear of failure to dictate your actions or inactions. The possibility of failure is always present; it’s part of life. Therefore, we must learn how to coexist (and sell) with failure. We have gathered some reasons why failure might not be such a bad thing for your career after all, in hopes of alleviating some of the stigma surrounding the word.
It’s common knowledge that the majority of salespeople are extroverts. They’re confident, personable and extremely social beings. However, in his Huffington Post article, “The Gregarious Salesman: Death of a Stereotype,” Wray Herbert brings this common knowledge into question. Do extroverts truly make for the best salespeople? Instead of fact, Herbert believes this notion is actually a myth.
When it comes to products and services, options are king. People look for variety and choice when searching for what to buy, and your clients aren’t any different. So, when deciding on your pricing structure for your products and services, err on the side of choice and variety, not rigid rules.
Golf magazine runs features that focus on problems and solutions in golf swings. It's a good way for duffers — as well as experienced golfers — to improve specific elements of their games.
In the spirit of improving our advertising swing, let's apply this concept to the ad business. Here's a look at two problem areas — one involving a sales presentation, and one involving a challenging creative situation.
It seems more often than not, no meeting is complete without food. Whether it is because we are all so busy and the two-birds-one-stone approach allows us to eat and work, or because meetings are always more fun when you can score a free muffin, food is essential. We found an article on Inc.com that highlights some of the ways to have a successful business lunch so that your attempts to multitask or feed your employees and guests run smoothly. This article, called “7 Rules of a Successful Business Lunch” by Matthew Swyers, details the (you guessed it!) seven best ways to ensure productivity while your members are filling their stomachs.
It can be a hard thing to hear that the majority of you success can be mental, but it’s true. Having and maintaining a positive attitude is one of the keys to success, especially in sales, because it allows you to keep going, even when times are tough and the road ahead looks hard. In “Three Mindsets of Long-Run Sales People,” an article by Ted Haro found in the Huffington Post’s Business Section, the author discusses some keys to having and keeping a positive attitude.
People talk about how your attitude can be a self-fulfilling prophecy; “whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right”. Accurate this information may be, the words you use, both indicative of your attitude and your approach the situation, can either help you succeed or cause you to fail. In an article found on Inc.com, Geoffrey James, lists five words that often cause failure in sales and in life.
There is a well known quotation from Albert Einstein that goes something like this: “Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish based on its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.” Now, Einstein may have jumped the gun a little when he said everyone is a genius, however the premise is not flawed in the least. We all hold within ourselves at least a modicum of ability for something or another, whether its management or sales.