Business Development Archives - Page 2 of 3
Relationship Building With Influencers, Executives, and VIPs

Relationship Building With Influencers, Executives, and VIPs

One of the biggest barriers to overcome in great relationship management is the moment of terror. Know it? It happens right before you press that Send button. That fear that your message won’t be welcome. That your contact, instead of thinking positively of you, will press the Delete key on your entire existence. And your business will spiral out of control, leaving you to join the circus. OK, maybe a bit too far there. And, for some reason, that fear is only exacerbated when dealing with an executive, influencer, or some other type of high-profile individual. We’ve spoken before about how to overcome that baseline reticence to engage, so today I’ll just provide you some guidance about how to approach improving your relationship with this particular group of people. I want to respect your time, so if you just want to grab a tl;dr out of this, it’s they’re human too. Let’s take a critical look at who these people are, starting with their differences and similarities with you and others. Differences: They are often more experienced, therefore can quickly pattern-match you against others. They may have an assistant as an initial filter to get through. They are “busier” – not to say that you aren’t, but the symptoms are slow/no email response, curt replies, etc. They have to be on the defense at all times – every dollar of their budget, minute of their time, screen pixel, brain cell, is being attacked. They lean on others and delegate heavily. Similarities: They, on average, have the same number of appendages as you. Sorry, just had to throw that one...
30 Effective Questions to Ask to Close More Deals

30 Effective Questions to Ask to Close More Deals

To fall in love with anyone, all you have to do is answer this set of 36 questions with each other. Recently, this was the topic of an article that I read on The New York Times’ website and how the writer tried this technique out. Ever since I’ve read it, I’ve seen these 36 questions everywhere and although I have yet to try it with my significant other (although, we’re past the beginning stages of using these questions ;) ), I understand the premise why they would work. There are psychological triggers behind asking questions and they create a connection with the questioner and answerer. They can compel someone to become more curious or interested. There are four different brainwave states that can be visited in the question and answer stage. All of these brainwave states will not happen at once, but they do outline why some questions would resonate with you more: Specifically, with the Beta and Theta waves. Most of the time, we are in the Beta state, which controls alertness, focus, and helps prepare us to answer questions. The Theta state allows for deep thinking, problem solving, and developing the answer. The Theta state, although mostly resides in the subconscious end, is something important to note because it is the gateway to learning and memory.  With the right questions, at the right time, the answers can open many doors and set off these brainwaves, especially in sales. Even though, as a sales person, you may not be trying to get someone to fall in love with you personally or intentionally set off these brainwaves, but...
10 Apps to Improve Your Professional Relationships

10 Apps to Improve Your Professional Relationships

If you’re like everyone else that’s alive and not living under a rock right now, you love apps. And who can blame you? Apps are pretty great. What do you want to do? There’s an app for that. No really, there is. In fact, there’s probably more than one. As is evidenced by my disappointment every time I check the app store after having an app epiphany. This handy list breaks down 10 of our favorite apps for improving your professional relationships. From team chat to conference networking, this list (in no particular order) touches on quite a few different pain points and we’re pretty sure you’ll find at least one to help your business (especially #10). 10 Apps to Improve Your Professional Relationships 1. Google Drive The document-sharing cloud everybody knows and loves. You don’t have to spend your life searching for that one spreadsheet from your boss’ presentation three weeks ago ever again. Google Drive makes it easy for teams to upload, create, collaborate on, and share standard documents. With features like word processing and spreadsheet options your team can work remotely and always have access to the key tools they need. Need to send files to a client? Share using Google Drive and you’ll both always be able to access them easily. Google Drive makes the file-sharing process simpler which makes it easier to focus on your actual interactions. Features: word processor, spreadsheets, team accounts, forms, slides, download email attachments to Drive 2. HipChat Real time conversations no matter where your team lives. We have team members around the world and this robust chat feature gives...
Why You Won’t Sell Anything at SXSW

Why You Won’t Sell Anything at SXSW

SXSW Interactive’s portion is starting in less than a few days. Last year over 32,798 people attended with over 1,100 sessions, and 2,377 speakers.  I had the opportunity to attend SXSW last year with the company I was at before Contactually, and boy…it was an experience. I went to a few trade shows previously, but it was no where near a typical trade show. With the amount of people, companies and parties going on in those 4 days, it was a whirlwind. I had set goals with the team previously on how many leads we wanted to bring in and close, along with other marketing benchmark metrics. However, it didn’t turn out the way I was thinking it would. I remember overhearing someone say they kept their calendar fairly open to have serendipitous encounters. At the time I laughed at this statement and thought it was silly. Yet, things have changed especially when I factored in what happened afterwards. As a marketer, I have to show how a campaign or something we’re spending money will prove to have a positive ROI. I have to be proactive and make educated assumptions that a campaign will succeed because marketing is expensive especially events, like SXSW. However, SXSW will not prove to have a positive ROI until months after and knowing that you won’t sell anything upfront is an expectation you must set at the very beginning. You won’t be able to set up sales calls, demo your product effectively, or probably get anyone to sign a yearly deal with your service. With that many people, brands, sessions, parties, and influencers all...
One Page Best Practices for Getting to Know Your Prospects [Cheat Sheet]

One Page Best Practices for Getting to Know Your Prospects [Cheat Sheet]

I understand how small talk can be really uncomfortable; however, I may be one of the few people who actually enjoy it (probably because of my high levels of curiosity). I tend to use the general small talk questions, “How are you doing?” “Where do you work?” “What did you do this weekend?” etc, as ice breakers that could potentially lead to more explorative questions. In marketing the small talk comes in different forms and has to be interpreted by data at certain points; but, in sales it’s a little different. Conversations happen at many different points and it’s a sales person’s job to get to know their opportunities and prospects as soon as possible with the small talk and all. So, how do you get to know your prospects best? What questions should you ask? What data points should you keep track of? We have the answers for you in this one page cheat sheet. Here’s are some questions we’ll answer in this cheat sheet: How do you start getting to know your prospects? What are the best questions to ask? Are there best practices to keep in mind? What metrics should you measure? Download your copy of the Getting to Know Your Prospects Cheat Sheet...
10 Books To Better Develop Your Sales Relationships in 2015

10 Books To Better Develop Your Sales Relationships in 2015

Editor’s Note: We’ve updated! Go ahead and check out our new list of 10 best business books for real estate agents and business professionals.  “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others; read a lot and write a lot.” – Stephen King This quote from King can be applied to just about everything, but always keeping the reading part in there. Reading is one of the vital components in understanding a subject, task, or something. The reading may vary in amounts, but becoming good a something and having the ability to learn it through completely — reading (a lot) is always present. Also, when you are reading your brain can’t tell the difference if you are reading about the experience versus actually experiencing it. This only helps make reading one of the most powerful tools for learning. Since it’s still the beginning of 2015 and you’re hopefully keeping your resolutions (We won’t tell, if you haven’t been back to that spinning class in a few weeks), you should add on another resolution to read more. Specifically, books to better develop your sales relationships. Here are the 10 books we think will better develop your business, sales, and your overall relationships in 2015 1. Challenger Sale: Taking Control of The Customer Conversation We now live in a world where buyers have many choices, not just one, and want to evaluate every option. These aren’t necessarily bad things; however, they do make it harder for a salesperson to close these people as customers. Over 6,000 sales reps were surveyed for this book to pinpoint what...