March 2014 | Click links (>>) below to read articles
  • 7 Keys to Integrating E-Prospecting and Tele-Prospecting by Jim Domanski >>
  • Boardroom or Bored Room? Three Rules to Command Attention and Change Minds By Tim Wackel >>
  • How To Get People To Read Your Emails by Jim Meisenheimer >>
  • Unlocking Why Buyers Buy In Five Easy Steps by Roy Chitwood, CSP >>



7 Keys to Integrating E-Prospecting and Tele-Prospecting
by Jim Domanski

Greetings! , 

Interested in improving your tele-prospecting results? Reaching more decision makers? Setting more appointments? Selling more?

If so, the trick is to integrate e-mail into your calling efforts. A well-crafted e-mail combined with a solid telephone follow up strategy can double and even triple results.
Here are 7 keys to making  the most of your e-mail and telephone prospecting efforts:

Key #1: A Hell'uva Subject Line

The first key is to create a subject line that catches the eye of your prospect; something that is different and unique; something that makes him or her curious enough to open the e-mail rather than delete it. And that's the challenge. Most of us have never been taught how to craft a subject line that screams "open me." You can go here for tips.

Key #2: An Intriguing Message

An intriguing prospecting message is a one-to-one message, not an e-mail  blast. This is a rifled approach, not a shot gun approach.

 It is also one that poses a problem that the prospect might be experiencing; something that picks at a 'scab', so to speak, and agitates the reader. It then goes on to offer a possible solution (your product / service ) but without the details. In other word, it teases rather than sells. It makes your prospect want to learn more. Finally, your e-mail concludes by telling the prospect you'll be making a follow up call to discuss their situation.

If you'd like to learn how to craft a hell'uva a subject line and an intriguing e-mail message, go here for details.

Key #3: Timely Follow Up

Prospecting e-mails have a short shelf life. You must make your follow up call within 24 hours of sending your e-mail; not a week or three days or even two days later. This means you can't send out dozens of e-mails if you want to follow up on time. You need to work in batches.

Key #4: A Gatekeeper Strategy

You can use the e-mail proactively or reactively to get past the gatekeepers. Your e-mail gives you a legitimate reason for calling and this increases the odds of reaching more decision makers.

Key #5: A Superb Opening Statement

A superb opening statement is the key to a good prospecting call. A good opening statement cleverly leverages the message in your e-mail. In effect, it creates a one-two punch by combining the power of an audio message with the power of a visual message. Your opener must focus on the prospect, not you. It must emphasize benefits. Want a good opening statement? go here to learn more information. 
Key #6: A Compelling Voice Mail

You won't always reach the decision maker. Be prepared for voice mail. You can leverage your e-mail with your voice mail, much like you can with your opener. Again, the trick here to leave a voice mail message that echoes the message in your e-mail. This increases awareness and interest. It increases the odds of a return call.

Key #7: Persistently Polite Follow Up

Finally, the seventh key is to politely but persistently follow up. A combination of a voice mail and e-mail can help stimulate a response. Send an e-mail and then make a follow up call the next day like you did with the original e-mail. Leave a voice mail message if you don't reach your prospect. Direct the prospect to the e-mail.  If you don't get a reply, wait three business days and then repeat the process.


Putting these seven keys together is not particularly difficult but it does require some planning and implementation. And I can make it easier and faster.

            If you'd like to learn more, get more details, access templates for a superb B2B prospecting e-mail, opening statement and voice mail, go here to learn about a hell'uva a good webinar on integrating e-mails with tele-prospecting.   


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Boardroom or Bored Room?
Three Rules to Command Attention and Change Minds
By Tim Wackel

Imagine you’ve been working on a significant opportunity for several months. You’ve invested long hours with all of the key players and it’s almost time to go to contract. The final step is a simple “show-n-tell” presentation that you need to deliver to the executive committee. All you need is their nod and you’re off to the bank to deposit the commission check.
The day of the big pitch arrives and you’re feeling good. You walk confidently into the board room, connect your laptop and launch the presentation. Suddenly all eyes are on you and without warning you find yourself stumbling through a lame introduction that goes something like: “Hi, my name is Bob and I work for XYZ Company. Thanks for taking some time to be here today."
You race through the deck until you get to the meat of the presentation (easily identified by the slides that have lots of words typed in small fonts). Finally you begin to feel strangely comfortable as you start reading these complex screen shots to the decision makers. 
And then, without warning you find yourself staring at a blank slide. There is nothing left in the deck so you immediately ask for questions and of course there aren’t any. You awkwardly thank everyone for their time and head back to the office. Now you’re left with no clue if you’ll win this opportunity but you’re certain that you won’t get a second chance.
Sound powerful? Probably not, but I’ll bet it sounds familiar.
So what does it take to keep the Board Room from becoming a Bored Room? Here are three quick tips to get you back on track now:
#1. Get a hook!
Most audiences rush to conclusions in the first two minutes of your presentation. Failure to develop a solid introduction is one of the biggest mistakes sales professionals make. Leverage those first two minutes to take command of your listeners. Engage them with a relevant story. Grab their attention with an alarming insight. Or just make them smile with some simple humor. Worry less about educating (do you like to be educated?) and worry more about entertaining (everyone likes to be entertained).
I’m not suggesting you start your next presentation with a card trick (although that could be a great hook). But I am suggesting you take a hard look at how you get your audience to lean in for the first two minutes of your next presentation. 
Script, practice and polish your hook until it is rock solid. Grabbing their attention from the very start sets you and your ideas apart from everyone else who just “wings” their opening. And a great hook creates confidence that you can build upon throughout your presentation
#2. “I know this next slide is a little hard to read."
PowerPoint was originally developed to be a visual aid; a tool that presenters could use to add “power” to their message by highlighting a key “point.” Think big fonts, few words, maybe even a picture or two to drive home important ideas.
PowerPoint was not designed to be a proposal tool or a script. Save the Gantt charts for the appendix… PLEASE!
PowerPoint decks aren’t the presentation, you are the presentation. The deck is there to support you and your ideas.
Look at it another way. PowerPoint decks that are jammed full of data, charts, conclusions and complete paragraphs could just be emailed to the customer. What do they need you for? The customer can read it themselves and it saves you from having to make a sales call. What an interesting way to decrease business and work yourself out of a job.
#3. The two words that everyone loves to close with.
Most of the sales presentations I get to watch (and I get to watch hundreds every year) close with the presenter saying “thank you.”  Not exactly a strong call to action, is it?   
You deliver presentations because you want someone to do something. You might want their approval or an introduction or maybe you want their feedback on an idea. The bottom line is you want something from your listener and the best way to get it is to ask for it!      
I know you won’t always get what you want, but if you’ll ask for something specific it becomes a springboard for questions, discussion and next steps. You walk out of the boardroom knowing where you stand versus going back to the office and hoping that your phone will ring.     
Want to learn more? Then register for this month’s webinar where I’ll show you how to avoid the ten biggest presentation blunders. Hoping you will join us!       
Remember it takes courage to admit you could be a better presenter and confidence to believe you can change. It takes nothing to create excuses?
Asking great questions is a skill that top performers master. They refine their questions every week and benefit from increased insight, opportunity and bottom line sales.
It takes courage to admit you could be a better sales rep and confidence to believe you can change; it takes nothing to create excuses.

Speaking of Sales is about finding, winning and keeping customers for life. If that’s part of your job, then you won’t want to miss the next issue.

About The Author

Tim Wackel

Tim Wackel is hired by sales executives who want their teams to be more successful at blowing the number away. Tim’s “no excuses” programs are insightful, engaging and focused on providing real world strategies that salespeople can (and will!) implement right away. Sales teams from BMC Software, Cisco, Fossil, Hewlett Packard, Allstate, Thomson Reuters, Raytheon, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Catalina Marketing, Philips Medical Systems, Red Hat and TXU Energy count on Tim to help them create more success in business and in life.

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How To Get People To Read Your Emails
by Jim Meisenheimer


First, a little email history.

Email was invented by Ray Tomlinson in 1971. At that time it was only available for researchers and universities.

All that changed in 1988 when Fidonet allow the general public to use email.

I have some fond memories of 1988. You see, it was a very special year for me because in June I got married and started my speaking and sales training business.

Here's a short list of some of the things that didn't exist in 1988.

Cell phones, laptops, Facebook, Twitter, Wordpress Blogs, Instagrams, Kindle readers, text messaging and iPads.

This is only a partial list. I'm sure you'll have no trouble adding to it.

I don't remember when I started using email, but I do remember being incredibly excited about being able to send messages that were delivered instantaneously.

Chances are when you got those first emails you opened them immediately.

Now all that has changed. My spam filter eliminates more than 1000 emails every day.

And I don't take the time to open all the other emails I get every day.

So what's the trigger that gets me and probably you to open the emails you get?

Let's start with this email. What was it that made you open this email?

Of course you know it was the subject line.

Before you send any emails, especially the important ones, make sure you spend some time crafting a powerful subject line.

What was it about my subject line that got you to open and then read this email?

My subject line promised you an end result. This means when you opened this email you would learn how to get more people to open and read your emails.

Here's a sales tip for you to consider. Most people are interested in learning about "How to" do something.

Here's a short list of effective subject lines you may want to use in your emails.

A subject line that is "results driven."
A subject line that emphasizes the word "easy."
A subject line that hints you're going to share a "secret."
A subject line that is focused on "an advantage."

I think you're starting to get the picture.

You should pay particular attention to the subject line if it's really important to you to have your email open and read.

That's all folks! I have to write a blog post, check my Facebook and Twitter accounts, download a new Kindle e-book, and make a few phone calls on my iPhone5.


About The Author:

NEW ebook from Jim:

Selling Made Simple - The Six Keys To Selling Success

Here’s the link for more info.

Make sure you check out Jim's Sales Trailblazer program:

Jim is a Sales Strategist and is the creator of No-Brainer Selling Skills. He shows salespeople and entrepreneurs how to increase sales, earn more money, have more fun, and how to do it all in less time. His focus is on practical ideas that get immediate results. He offers Advanced Sales Management Workshops, Sales Coaching, Consulting, In-house Sales Training Programs, and a wide variety of Learning Tools i.e. books, special reports, sales manuals, and CDs.Jim Meisenheimer is a member of The National Speakers Association, where he earned the C.S.P. designation, Certified Speaking Professional. He has authored five books including, "The 12 Best Questions To Ask Customers," and the recently published “57 Ways To Take Control Of Your Time And Your Life”.


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Unlocking Why Buyers Buy In Five Easy Steps
by Roy Chitwood, CSP

What makes people decide to buy?

It's a mystery that anyone who wants to sell a product, service or idea must solve if they want to be successful.

It's my belief, however, that the only way to crack the code of the buyer's decision-making process is to understand the "hidden agenda" that every buyer has.

Most salespeople think they understand how people buy. This thought process usually reflects the reasons a salesperson thinks a buyer would make a purchase, not the actual reasons the buyer would.

People buy for their reasons, not yours.

This is an important distinction because at the heart of your prospect's decision-making process is the question: "What will it do for me?"

A salesperson should imagine this question emblazoned across the forehead of every prospect, because it is this question that must be answered satisfactorily for a sale to take place.

To effectively answer the "WWIDFM" question, salespeople must first understand the five factors that influence a customer's decision to purchase - the Five Buying Decisions. These decisions are based on the idea that people buy emotionally and then justify their decisions logically.

Therefore, to be an effective salesperson you must learn to appeal to your prospect on an emotional level.

Earlier, I wrote about the Seven Steps of the Track Selling SystemTM to guide a prospect through a comfortable selling process without pressure.

The Seven Steps dovetail with the Five Buying Decisions because each one is addressed in the precise psychological order in which prospects make their decisions.

Here are the Five Buying Decisions:

1. The salesperson.

Logically, you would think the first buying decision would be about the product, service or idea you're trying to sell, but remember, the prospect's buying decisions are emotional, not logical. In this first contact, your prospect is deciding how she feels about you. Can she trust you? Do you understand her needs? Will you be of service to her? Prospects want to buy from someone who is a helpful, valuable consultant. They want you to understand what they need as much as you understand the product, service or idea you're selling. This decision fits into the first three steps of the Track Selling SystemTM - step one: approach, where you open the sale with a positive first impression; step two: qualification, where you ask open-ended questions to gather information; and step three: agreement on need, where you demonstrate an understanding of the prospect's needs.

2. The company.

In addition to liking you, if you represent a company, your prospect will need to be assured it's dependable. While you make an obvious distinction between yourself and your company, your prospect does not. As long as you are a representative of the company, then the company is who you are in her mind. If you demonstrate that both you and your company have integrity, your prospect will be more open to your presentation. This decision is addressed in step four of the Track Selling SystemTM: sell the company, where you highlight past successes of the company to build your prospect's confidence.

3. Your product, service or idea.

Once your prospect has determined that she can trust you and your company, she will then evaluate your product, service or idea to determine if it suits her needs. The challenge of this step is for you to recognize that if it is not a fit for her, it's your responsibility to graciously back out of the sale.

Trying to persuade her to buy something she may later regret will destroy the trust you worked so hard to build with her. This decision is addressed in step five of the Track Selling SystemTM: fill the need, where you answer the "What will it do for me?" question positively.

4. Price.

Price may seem like it should be the first buying decision because most of us assume a prospect's decision to buy would be based on cost. Prospects buy because of value, not price. Until your prospect is convinced your product, service or idea is valuable and that she will derive benefits from it, no price will be right. Furthermore, discounting your price only cheapens the quality of your product, service or idea in her eyes. Sell value, then present the appropriate price. "For your (summary of features), the price is (quote the price)." This decision is addressed in step five of the Track Selling SystemTM: fill the need, as well.

5. Time.

Now is the time to ask for the order and give an implementation date. Your prospect will decide whether your timetable fits with her requirements. No one wants to spend money before it is necessary, but if you can give sound advice on why she should buy now, she'll want to hear it. Above all, remember that people buy because it is clear to them that the seller truly believes in his product, service or idea. This conviction is worth more to your buyer than all the facts in your presentation. This final decision fits with step six of the Track Selling SystemTM: act of commitment, where you summarize your areas of agreement and then ask for the sale.

If your prospect doesn't like you, doesn't feel comfortable with your company, doesn't understand the value of your product, service or idea or feels rushed in any way, that prospect will not be in the right frame of mind to purchase - even if what you're offering, the pricing and the timing are perfect.

This is why handling your prospect's Five Buying Decisions effectively is critical.

The better you understand the Five Buying Decisions and how they work integrally with the Seven Steps of the Track Selling SystemTM, the better you can design a presentation that identifies and meets your prospect's needs.

By effectively completing this process, you can build a solid relationship and become a trusted partner with whom your customers feel respected, understood and secure in their every purchase.


Roy Chitwood is an author, trainer and consultant in sales and sales management and is president of Max Sacks International, Seattle.

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