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Help! I Can’t Close Sales: 5 Ideas to Increase Your Close Ratio

Recently I got an email from Ahmed that said, “Do you have anything on how to close sales? Getting into an account isn’t a problem for me. But I get stuck after submitting a proposal. “By this time, I’ve already sent them all our marketing materials and given them a demo. They seem interested. Then, after they get my proposal, nothing. What am I missing?” I can’t tell you how many times salespeople have asked me to help them get better at closing. However, despite what you think, it’s not the real problem. Your inability to close is a symptom. What it really means is that your prospect does not think it’s worth making a change right now. In short, it’s nice ...

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Why My LinkedIn Profile Isn’t Good Enough

I have a confession to make. I haven’t updated my LinkedIn profile* for 18 months. I know. Shame on me. I’m supposed be a leader on things like that, but I’m human too. If you looked at my profile, you’d probably think it’s fine. It doesn’t read like a boring resume or make me look like a hungry, job-hunting sales vulture. It doesn’t sound like a self-serving company brochure. It’s customer focused, showcases my expertise and establishes my credibility. It’s my professional presence online. Even LinkedIn says it’s well done. But here’s the truth. My LinkedIn profile doesn’t reflect changes I’ve made in the past year and a half. Worse yet, it’s no longer meeting my objectives. (FYI: It still says that I have ...

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“Let Me Show you the ROI”

As a follow up on to my Blog last week,  What? I can’t take you to lunch? I promised to provide you with iSalesman’s answer to the question regarding “what selling skill do you need to develop now that your client’s Code-of Conduct Policies inhibit the types of Relationship Building events you can invite a client to (or what they can accept)”. This selling skill has been around for ages.  Ever since you went to sales training you heard and learned how to cost justify your product to your client. But how many times did you really use it?  Like learning High School French if you don’t use it, you lose it. I’m Scared!  Can’t I just stay in my Comfort ...

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What? I can’t take you to lunch?

Back in December 2011 I wrote a Blog titled “Ethical Selling = Effective Selling”. While working with an Ethics & Compliance company I learned of all the many rules and regulations impacting the sales profession. In this blog, as well as in my e-Book “Ethical Selling”, I identify all the laws and regulations that are important for a sales person to learn about and understand. In my role as Head of iSalesman I get to speak with sales people every day. As a part of our sales consulting activity I usually ask the salesperson how they are developing their other selling techniques in order to compensate for their client’s Code of Conduct restrictions. This question then causes the sales person ...

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The New Sales Leader’s Blueprint for Success

Congratulations on your promotion to Sales Leader!  You, no doubt, were a great salesperson who produced great results and earned this new assignment, but are you ready?  Leading is very different from being an individual contributor.  In order to succeed as the new Sales Leader you need a plan or a Blueprint for Success.   Over my 30 years of sales leadership I have thoroughly enjoyed leading large teams of sales people to deliver great results with companies like AT&T, MCI and Dun & Bradstreet.  Learning how to be a good sales leader does not come to a person instantly but with good mentoring and learning from failure. I believe I can help you with your Blueprint. Your Blueprint for ...

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Ethical Selling = Effective Selling

Since you’re reading this article you no doubt are a very eager salesperson striving to gain knowledge that gives you the edge as a great sales professional.  You’ve done diligent research on how to conduct effective cold calls, identify key decision makers, make great presentations, handle objections, develop super “C” level relationships, use all the CRM Apps to gain insight and become a “master” closer.  Your pursuit of knowledge will definitely pay off.  I too am an avid reader of sales effectiveness publications written by great writers like Jill Konrath, Keith Ferrazi, Chet Holmes and that time tested great Dale Carnegie.  However, in all my sales life, I have yet to see any disciplined focus on Ethical Selling.  As trust ...

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The Absolutely Essential Qualities of Leadership…

Yesterday, I outlined how leadership has changed, and I suggested that more than ever, leaders need to develop “soft-skills”. I also promised to share those skills that I believe are absolutely vital: This list is not by any means exhaustive, but it is an excellent start (If you missed yesterday’s post, do simply scroll down) Integrity This has to be right at the top, because if the team has cause to doubt the integrity of its leader, then it will fail when the team is exposed to stress or a risk. If a person is capable of minor lapses in their personal integrity, they fail to keep faith and then they could let their own team members down when they ...

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Because of Me

My wife and I are natives of Kansas. There is a debate across the nation on the merits of barbeque from Kansas City, through Memphis, to North Carolina and back to Texas. I personally like them all, but Kansas City style is my favorite. I grew up with it. When we moved to Texas almost 8 years ago, I had to find some great Texas barbeque. I decided on Rudy’s as my favorite. Not because it’s the best food- it’s good, but not my favorite by taste, but because of the great service. For those of you who have not been to a Rudy’s, they are located in upscale gas and C-stores in Texas. I recently visited the one at ...

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The Four Step Process I Use When Probing For Pain

Sales people involved in prospecting already know the challenges of persuading a prospect to give them the business, but very few recognize that there is actually a four-step process involved in buying, that all of us follow; Step One: We have to feel MOTIVATED to make a purchase, irrespective of its type or size. Step Two: At some point after we’ve become motivated to want to buy, we make a DECISION to buy. Step Three: Then, after we have made a decision, we want to feel CONVINCED that our decision is the right one and at this stage we may seek approval and input from other people. Then we’ll make our purchase. Step Four: Finally, after making our purchase we ...

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Just Get Your Foot In the Door: Start Simple.

It seems like all our prospects are crazy-busy these days. They’re too busy to answer the phone, too busy to return your message, too busy to make a decision and too busy to even think. My friend & colleague, Jill Konrath, just came out with a new book to address this key issue. It’s called: “SNAP Selling: Speed Up Sales and Win More Business with Today’s Frazzled Customers.” I highly recommend it. It’s already soared to the #1 Amazon sales book! Here is an excerpt from the book… Make Decisions Easier for Your Prospects By Jill Konrath, author of SNAP Selling and Selling to Big Companies Crazy-busy prospects can’t handle complexity. They hate it when things are difficult to decode, decide or ...

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