Archive for March, 2013

Are You Applying the Training Tips We Share?

Friday, March 29th, 2013

by Ginny Speaks

Lately it seems I have been speaking a lot about application. Most of us that have been in the sales seat for a while know what to do, but the question is … do we do it? To demonstrate the results netted when following our methodology, we are pleased to spotlight one of our clients in this week’s issue of Seller’s Edge.

Meet Dana Loyer, Account Executive for Sinclair Television in the Tampa Bay Florida Market. Dana has been in media for just six months and is getting results because she is applying the training tips introduced to her through M&A.

GS: Tell me a bit about your background, how long have you been selling?

DL: I have been selling TV now for 6 months and, so far so good. This is my first media sales job. I worked previously in retail sales and as a server for over 5 years.
GS: Can you share a tip learned or a bit of information gleamed from M&A trainings that you used to close a deal or get a call back or how it affects the way you work?

DL: The scripts you share are very helpful and have helped me get a call back. For example, I used the tips you suggested in the webinar on landscaping and found the decision maker for a furniture company that used to be on the air and has not in a while, so they were on my prospect list. Once I located the right person, I used the voice mail script to leave a message and got a call back, a meeting and currently contract pending! The interesting thing with this prospect, I was the first one to call them in well over a year.GS: Share with me the best advice you ever received.

DL: Ask for exactly what you want.

GS: Do you have a selling tip you would like to share?

DL: Make it easy for the buyer to say yes by always being prepared and organized with details about the package/program that is clear and concise with a “sign the dotted line” place for authorization.GS: What do you do to keep motivated daily?

DL: Sometimes it is hard, yet I am an extremely positive person. I practice not worrying about the things I cannot control and control the things I can. Such as, I cannot control the no’s, but I can control the amount of people I call on.

Based on this interview and Dana’s attitude, I look for great things to happen for Dana this year!

Do you want to share your story or know of a great seller making things happen in the field? Shoot me an e-mail to nominate a seller for a future “Seller Spotlight” feature.

Roll the Dice, Roll Some Accounts and You’ll Find More than Luck in the $huffle

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

by Amber Brown

Rolling accounts is never a popular topic inside sales organizations. Anytime there is a conversation about rolling an account, there tends to be some series hoarding followed closely by renewed activity when previously there was none.   I’ve spent much time discussing this recently and how to effectively use CRM data in the process.   There’s no easy answer — or is there? I’d like to share with you my favorite account-roll scenario of recent past.

The Most Valuable Prospect

The MVP included not only a roll, but contest elements as well. Here’s the general account of how it was executed.

The idea was to create a “draft” not to different then say the NFL or the NBA. In the weeks leading up to Draft Day, managers went through an effort to look for accounts that met certain criteria such as:

  • Under-performing against market
  • Spending on other media
  • Declining spending vs. other places in market
  • Not active in last 6-9 months, excluding seasonal

You get the idea. The list was long, hundreds of accounts. Upper management vetted the final list and managers (and some reps) were able to state their case to make a FEW exclusions from the final Draft List. The Draft List was given to all managers and their reps to prioritize before draft day. On the list were BIG time advertisers, which was somewhat shocking to compile into one place to see.

Was this process painful? Probably a little bit. No rep ever wants to see a big potential advertiser taken away. However, sometimes a change in rep, change in attitude or change in approach may be just what is needed to break through with the client. On the flip side, there were plenty of big advertisers on the list for the taking, which meant new prospects for everyone as everyone was on equal playing field.

Draft Day arrived and was held in the locker room of one of the local professional sports teams! Each rep/manager drew for draft order. The VP announced the draft order from the podium and projected a power point of accounts behind him along with the Rules of Engagement for the contest. After 10 or so rounds, the dynamics in the room were fascinating.   There was a sense of relief for some to shed the accounts that perhaps bogged them down, and conversely, others picked up something that excited them. There was new energy, a new approach.

The result – lots of new revenue in the months following the draft. Other residual benefits — doors opened on accounts that resulted in new revenue down the road and new relationships were formed where none existed before.   Often all it takes is someone new calling the client with a new perspective and a new approach.

Shuffling accounts is tough and I loved this concept.  I’m a big believer in what goes around comes around and sometimes letting go is the quickest way to have something better come your way.

Did you know April is Financial Literacy Month?

Friday, March 1st, 2013

by Susan Novicki

Financial Services is a category that is regularly in the news – whether it’s lawsuits still stemming from the financial meltdown of 2008 or new profit numbers emerging from some of the largest banks out there, such as Bank of America. At the same time, these large national banks getting this press are fiercely competing for customers against the regional banks and small community banks. There is a huge push for market share.
And, with the new government regulations, banks are trying to figure out how they can make more money. Lending has always been the place for banks to make the majority of their profits but with the government restrictions in place, it is much harder for them to do it. And consumers are more leery about rushing out to get a loan. So what is the right recovery strategy?

Remember, financial institutions are not only in the business of keeping money…. but also making money. Every company is looking at what fees can they increase, what services they can provide to not just garner customers but make money in doing it. This is a tough challenge.

One of the things that every financial institution has always told us in needs analysis conversations is that financial literacy is something that is important to them. They want to educate general consumers, small business owners, teenagers, etc. on the importance of understanding and managing finances. There are so many things that financial institutions can provide  -loans, savings, checking, investments and insurance. And the specific institution wants to be your advisor in all of it. Financial literacy is a great vehicle to garner awareness and sell services and products.

At the same time an education program puts a company in good stead with consumers. Instead of hearing bad news or negative press, financial institutions could be showing people that they want to help them and educate them on how to handle their money. Consumers are finally starting to get more comfortable with the economy; banks are looking for ways to boost revenue. The way to merge these two together is with education. Be sure to read the article about young investors needing more financial education over to the right of this blog.

With April being the official kickoff for financial literacy, now is the time to get aggressive with these decision-makers and talk to them about what they are doing in April to push financial literacy.

Remember, in doing your research and preparing for the call, determine the new product offerings that might be available, what kind of customers are they focused on, what changes have they made to their offerings, such as new fees, what are they doing to improve the customer experience, and how are they “localizing” their footprint in your market?

Take the time to find the regional decision-makers in your market – and remember there are many different decision-makers to reach from the Regional VP to Small Business Banking VP to Product Manager for Card Services – each of these people have their own agendas, and all of them are looking for ways to increase financial literacy.

What can you do to help them in the month of April?