Applying Sales Process Engineering, Managing Opportunities

The Holy Grail of technical sales: how to disentangle salespeople from production

Whenever we work in a technical-sales environment, this – bar none – is the most valuable idea we bring to the table. Here’s the most obvious symptom of the problem: When salespeople make a technical sale, they inevitably become entangled with production. Their involvement in production cannibalizes their (already limited) business-development capacity – leading to […]

Applying Sales Process Engineering, Managing Opportunities, Measures and General Management, Slaying Sacred Cows

Why your field rep should not necessarily be your salesperson

It seems so obvious. If that team member has a Blackberry and a company car; if they call on customers and help resolve their problems; then they must be a salesperson, right? Well, maybe not! Sure, that’s the way things have traditionally been done: the person in the field is automatically the salesperson. But, in […]

Managing Opportunities

Proposals: how to free your salespeople from them!

We don’t want salespeople writing proposals, simple as that! However, freeing them from proposal generation can be more difficult than it initially appears.  The problem is not with minor or major opportunities — there’s an obvious approach for each.  It’s the ones in the middle that are the issue! Let’s consider the extremes first. Minor opportunity […]

Managing Opportunities

Why there’s a silent ‘$’ in ‘Relationship: and why the integrity of your sales process depends upon it!

We have disbelievers in our midst! Among our loyal flock of AdVerb subscribers there are those who profess to embrace our principles but who flout at least one of them conspicuously. I’m referring to those executives who claim to be Relationship-centric Marketing aficionados but who, nonetheless, invest their scarce promotional dollars in golf days, boxes […]

Managing Opportunities

The corporate newsletter: neglected for years, resurrected at last

Wastepaper baskets, the world over, are full of them. In fact, if there were ever a competition to judge the most self-indulgent of all business communications, the newsletter would have serious competition from only the corporate video for first place! A tragedy, when you consider that newsletters have the potential to be by far the […]

Managing Opportunities

From a marketing department’s perspective, every relationship looks like a sales opportunity!

At best, most marketing communications are irrelevant to most of their recipients, most of the time. At worst, these communications run the risk of damaging the very relationships they are supposed to be cultivating. The problem is, from a marketing department’s perspective; every relationship looks like a sales opportunity. Accordingly, marketing (and sales) people tend […]

Managing Opportunities

Clicks and mortar

How to use the virtual world of the Internet to multiply the effectiveness of your real-world marketing activities. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel that managing a traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ business is downright unsexy! Particularly when stories abound of Web entrepreneurs who have reinvented business as we know it (and become […]

Managing Opportunities

Baptism by fire: a sustainable competitive advantage or else!

I spent a couple of hours with a Sydney-based insolvency practitioner last week. He visited to request assistance with his marketing. (Yes it’s okay, Ballistix is still solvent!) Because this was my first meeting with a potential client I waited a full 10 minutes before challenging the viability of his business model. Fortunately, my guest’s […]