Sales and Marketing Performance Blog

A Fortunate Life

Posted by Mark Gibson on Mon, Aug 10, 2015

The following is my Icebreaker talk delivered at my maiden Toastmasters speech in June this year. I will comment on the value for salespeople in completing the 10 projects in Toastmasters "Competent Communicator" manual in another post.

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Topics: personal development

Moving the Needle and other Sales Enablement Challenges

Posted by Mark Gibson on Fri, Aug 07, 2015

Recently I met with a top sales enablement professional whom I'll call Bob, to exchange ideas.

During the meeting I was introduced to the concept of the Three Humped Camel. Bob wishes to remain nameless as he started a new job and does not wish the camel phenomena to be tied back his prior employer.

13% of Salespeople produce 87% of Revenue

I raised a question which prompted the discussion after reading Mike Bosworth's recent book, " What Great Salespeople Do". In it, Mike quotes a study of 1100 B2B companies by Greg Alexander of Sales Benchmark Index, which reveals that the old maxim of 20% of salespeople selling 80% of the business is no longer true.

According to Sales Benchmark Index, now 13% of salespeople are selling 87% of the business.

When I asked Bob to draw the quota distribution graph for his old firm, he drew something that looked like this.
 
This is obviously just a quick hand-drawn sketch from memory, but the point Bob was making is that the majority of the sales team were not making their numbers and were dispersed around 40% of quota achievement, with a smaller hump around 100% and another hump at around 150% of quota achievement. 

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Topics: mike bosworth, sales training, sales enablement

Escape your Wine Comfort Zone - Trader Joe's 20 Wines under $10 Tasting

Posted by Mark Gibson on Fri, Jul 31, 2015

Trader Joe's Twenty Wines under $10.00 Tasting

Trader Joe's is a privately held supermarket chain with over 450 stores around the USA, in business since 1967.

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Topics: wine

The Essence of Listening - and Success in Sales

Posted by Mark Gibson on Thu, Jul 30, 2015

This article "The Essence of Listening" was written and delivered as a recent Toastmasters speech - Project 2 in the Competent Communicators Handbook. It was a project to organize a speech, with clear transitions, opening, closing, for delivery in 5-7 minutes.

At the bottom of this post is a game to test your linguistic skills in handling sales objections.

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Topics: listening skills, consultative selling skills

It's Sales Kick-off Time - Plan More than a Hangover!

Posted by Mark Gibson on Tue, Jul 07, 2015

I wrote this article having attended a sales kick-off and sales enablement event for a major technology company.

This event, while similar in many aspects to a traditional kick-off, varied greatly in the take-aways for each individual sales attendee.

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Topics: sales enablement, sales kick-off, whiteboard story

Social Selling - The Wrong Way

Posted by Mark Gibson on Thu, Jun 25, 2015

How NOT to use LinkedIn

This article is a lesson for sales newbies and people who are new to LinkedIn.

Anyone who has been using LinkedIn for a while will be familiar with the problem outlined in this story and tired of being on the other end of SPAMMY connection requests.

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Topics: linkedIn for business, social selling

The 10 Worst Email Opening Lines

Posted by Mark Gibson on Wed, Jun 17, 2015

To reach new B2B Buyers and connect via email is a low probability game, but the marginal cost of sending email is close to zero, so don't expect volume to decline.

Email is a science, with every element from the senders name to the signature analyzed and dissected for optimal performance. If you want to read the current research, follow this link to directly read the 2014 report.

This article is about the opening sentence and will be of interest to sales and marketing professionals.

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Topics: B2B selling

Solutions for ADD Salespeople - Advice from Experts

Posted by Mark Gibson on Thu, Jun 04, 2015

Dear prospective customer,

Apologies for the many times we salespeople have sat in front of you - selectively (not) listening, interrupting you and telling you what you needed, before you had finished your sentence.

people2

Image by Aoki Tetsuo

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Rules for Salespeople at Tradeshows

Posted by Mark Gibson on Fri, May 22, 2015

This article was publsihed in full, yesterday on Linkedin pulse, you can find it under "What not to do at Trade Shows".

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Topics: trade-show

The 19th Century called - they want their buying process back

Posted by Mark Gibson on Mon, May 11, 2015

In 2003 I was working in a Silicon Valley tech startup. Google was just 5 years old, the iPhone was a glint in Steve Jobs’ eye, and Blackberry was the king of the smart-phone market.

I’ll never forget one meeting at the disc drive manufacturer Maxtor; the buyers in the meeting knew nearly as much as we did about our product and they knew more about our competitors product (Google search) than we did. 

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Topics: b2b buying process

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