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Wendy Connick

Wendy\'s Sales Blog

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Sunday April 20, 2014

BinocularsThe last thing you ever want to do is sell a commodity. Commodities are products that all have the same qualities across competitors. In other words, they're bought and sold strictly on price. In that situation, only the cheapest vendor will succeed.

Ideally, your marketing department has done something to make your product stand out for prospects. But even if they have, you can always add your mite and do a little extra product positioning.

Positioning Your Product

Related Reading
How to Outwit the Competition
Selling Value Over Price

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Let Your Creativity Shine

Saturday April 19, 2014

TabletOne of those unwritten rules of business says that the "arty" folks all end up in the marketing department, while the smooth talking ones end up in sales. A new book by Mark Donnolo breaks through those preconceptions by showing that there's a place for creativity and innovation in sales, too.

Donnolo started out in the arts and ended up transitioning into business, eventually getting his MBA. He now runs a sales consulting organization that teaches salespeople how to be creative effectively. His new book lays out the basics of the process he uses to teach salespeople practical creativity.

Book Review: The Innovative Sale

Related Reading
Book Review: Whiteboard Selling
Book Review: Unlimited Sales Success

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Webinar Wednesday #137

Wednesday April 16, 2014

Back to SchoolWebinar Wednesday is a celebration of all things webinar. You will find upcoming webinars, links to recorded webinars for those who missed them on the first go-round, and occasional recaps of webinars I recently attended.

New Webinars:

"Prospecting Power: Build Your Pipeline Now" (Tuesday, April 22nd 12:00 pm ET) - hosted by Wendy Weiss. How to improve your prospecting and generate more appointments.

"Motivating a Multi-generational Sales Force" (Tuesday, April 22nd 1:00 pm ET) - hosted by Selling Power. Work well with salespeople of any age.

"Webcast Briefing: The Collaborative Sale" (Wednesday, May 7th 2:00 pm ET) - hosted by SPI. Overview of the recently released book of the same name.

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Tough Competition

Sunday April 13, 2014

TigerDepending on your industry and the type of customers you sell to, you may or may not be in direct competition on many of your sales. Direct competition in this case refers to the common situation when a prospect preparing for major purchase collects bids from several vendors.

Even if you don't directly compete very often, it's highly unlikely that you're operating in a vacuum with no competitors. Now and again, you'll find yourself butting heads with a competitor or two. When that happens, it's nice to be able to calculate your odds of coming home with the sale.

How to Tell If You're Winning a Bid

Related Reading
How to Outwit the Competition
How to Stay Positive

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

When Research Is a Waste of Time

Saturday April 12, 2014

StressGenerally I'm all for doing plenty of advance preparation, as you may have figured out from some of my article topics. Whether it's prepping for a major sales presentation or doing a little pre-cold call snooping on the Internet, taking the time to prepare yourself is usually a great idea.

But it is possible to cross the line and become a research addict. After a certain point, you could be spending so much time on research that you don't have time for actual sales activities. Obviously, that would be a pretty big problem. Like most things in life, a little research is healthy but doing it to excess is not.

Precall Research

Related Reading
Why You Avoid Cold Calling
Warming Up Cold Calling

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Webinar Wednesday #136

Wednesday April 9, 2014

Back to SchoolWebinar Wednesday is a celebration of all things webinar. You will find upcoming webinars, links to recorded webinars for those who missed them on the first go-round, and occasional recaps of webinars I recently attended.

New Webinars:

"6 Things You Need to Know Before You Call Another Prospect" (Thursday, April 10th 1:00 pm ET) - hosted by Wendy Weiss. Find and sell the best prospects.

"Neuroscience of Leadership" (Thursday, April 10th 2:00 pm ET) - hosted by Christine Comaford. Boost your leadership success with science.

"How to Overcome Initial Resistance When Closing" (Wednesday, April 16th 12:00 pm ET) - hosted by Laura Posey. Break through common stalls and objections.

"Motivating a Multi-generational Sales Force" (Tuesday, April 22nd 1:00 pm ET) - hosted by Selling Power. Work well with salespeople of any age.

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Text Message Marketing

Sunday April 6, 2014

GraphsAs of 2014, more than half of the US population now owns a smart phone or other smart mobile device. That means text message marketing has the potential to reach a staggeringly large audience. What's more, you can reach them anywhere, anytime.

While text message marketing is an impressively powerful sales tool, like many other marketing tools it can also be a tremendous waste of money. It all depends on how you use - or misuse - the opportunity.

Selling in 160 Characters or Less

Related Reading
How to Build and Maintain an Email Database
5 Lead Generation Mistakes

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Your LinkedIn Profile Matters

Saturday April 5, 2014

TabletAs the business centric social media platform, LinkedIn is the obvious place to start selling or marketing yourself on social media. And a strong LinkedIn account starts with a strong profile.

Someone who is considering adding you as a connection will certainly look over your profile first. That's why it's crucial to have a well-written, professional, yet appealing profile in place before you start trying to make connections.

Creating Your LinkedIn Profile

Related Reading
Finding Your Ideal Customers
Assessing Prospects

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Webinar Wednesday #135

Wednesday April 2, 2014

Back to SchoolWebinar Wednesday is a celebration of all things webinar. You will find upcoming webinars, links to recorded webinars for those who missed them on the first go-round, and occasional recaps of webinars I recently attended.

New Webinars:

"What to do when prospects go silent" (Tuesday, April 8th 2:00 pm ET) - hosted by Tim Wackel. Re-establish contact with elusive prospects.

"Neuroscience of Leadership" (Thursday, April 10th 2:00 pm ET) - hosted by Christine Comaford. Boost your leadership success with science.

"Motivating a Multi-generational Sales Force" (Tuesday, April 22nd 1:00 pm ET) - hosted by Selling Power. Work well with salespeople of any age.

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

Hiring Is Not a Band-Aid

Sunday March 30, 2014

MatchflameA new article by Business2Community discusses an error that company executives and sometimes even sales managers may fall into. It's not uncommon for executives to assume that the answer to poor sales is hiring more salespeople. After all, they reason, the more salespeople you have, the more total sales you will generate.

As Miller points out, the major problem with this reasoning is that new salespeople don't generate sales right out of the starting gate. There's always a learning curve, no matter how experienced those new salespeople are. Instead of hiring, Miller recommends other methods for producing quick sales results.

The Sales Mistake That Executives Make (And How To Avoid It)

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto

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