Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Linkedin Networking Event Makes Columbus News on NBC

The Linkedin Success Week Event put on by Lewis Howes and Frank Agin a few weeks ago was a big hit in Cleveland and Columbus. In case you were hiding in your home and avoiding the cold weather, the Linkedin event attracted upwards of 400 people in the Columbus area, all looking to connect and exchange contact information.



The event also attracted the attention of the more traditional media outlets. See the Columbus NBC Channel 8 interview with Lewis and Frank on the LinkedWorking site here.



Bet you won’t miss the next one.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Get More Face Time With Your Prospects By Using The Dale Carnegie Principles To Open Your Sales Calls

Last night I sitting in the latest Dale Carnegie Course facilitated by Laura Nortz. We were in session 4, reviewing success stories with the first set of Dale Carnegie Principles.



During the second half of the session, I heard one of our account managers deliver a remarkable demonstration of exceptional sales acumen, even though she has been on the job for just over two months.



The Secret of My Success.  Kim Hartzler holds one of the texts used to develop sales acumen in the Dale Carnegie Course.

"The Secret Of My Success". See Kim's Linkedin profile here: View Kimberly Hartzler's profile on LinkedIn

Kim Hartzler, new account manager, had been trying to get some talk time with an HR person regarding one of the new assessment services that we offer. Kim was constantly getting the brush off. If you are in sales, I know that you’ve heard some of these before:


  • I’m busy right now.
  • I don’t have time.
  • We aren’t buying anything right now.
  • I’m on my way out the door.
  • Now is not a good time.

On this particular instance, Kim had caught her prospect on their way out the door and she got the standard litany of replies.



On this particular occasion, Kim thought about the Dale Carnegie Principles and thought about some of the challenges that they faced. Then she said, “Let me ask you just one question. I know that you spend a lot of time scouring through resumes trying to find the right person to fill a position. What would it be worth to you if you could eliminate the amount of time you spend searching through resumes, yet increase your certainty of getting the right person in the right place the first time?”



Apparently, Kim hit a very raw nerve because her contact paused and then said, “We need to talk”.



Since the start of this ugly recession (or at least since the financial wizards admitted that we were in an ugly recession a year after the fact), we have been bombarded with questions from sales reps looking for the“unfair advantage” that will give them an edge. Questions like:

  • “How do you open a sales call?”
  • “How do you keep your contact on the phone when making a cold call?”
  • “How do you respond when your contact says that they aren’t buying anything in this economy?”

In every case, my response is the same. Stop talking about you, your company or your product. Talk about something that your prospect is interested in.



In the good old days of selling when times were good and the money was flowing freely, you could get away with talking about the marlin on your prospect’s wall, the latest super hot car, or the fantastic restaurant down the street.



What are your prospects interested in today? Try these:

  • How to save time.
  • How to hold on to their jobs.
  • How to increase cash flow using their current resources.
  • How to leverage their technology to decrease their financial costs.

Your prospects today want to talk to someone that can help them solve their challenges and issues more than ever before. They don’t have time to waste talking about pseudo hobbies.



Come to think of it, they didn’t have time to waste before. But now the tolerance threshold has dropped into the basement. So if you can’t talk about something that they are extremely interested in, be prepared to get booted out the door, while watching someone else who has that capability, like Kim Hartzler, swoop in and walk away with your business.



Be a winner, not a whiner.  Develop your communication skills with the Dale Carnegie Principles and supercharge your sales.

For Hartzler, exceptional presentation and communications skills is a no brainer



Do you want an unfair advantage? Follow Kim’s lead and take the time to discover the challenges that your prospects face daily. Then talk about how you can help them resolve those challenges.



I’ll leave you with these words of wisdom regarding the "unfair advantage" I picked up from Aptela when I worked in the telecomm industry:



“The advantage is unfair only if you ain't got it.”



Go get ‘em.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Virus Scanner For Sales Reps

Here is a quick post for all of you sales reps out there.



If you suspect that you have some type of malware o your system, like a virus or a trojan looking for passwords, here is something for you to use.



On the Tech blog for Sales Reps, you'll find a couple of online malware scanners to help clean up your machine. You'll find them here at Koobface Worm Is On The Move Again Attacking Facebook Users.



Lock your machine down.



Good Selling.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Business First Is Another Member Of The McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Of Ohio Tag Team In This Recession Smackdown

It has come to my attention that there is another unsung hero helping the good people in the Ohio Valley during these tough times.

You may know that Dale Carnegie Training of Ohio and Indiana has a long standing relationship with McGohan Brabender in helping companies in OH, KY and IN get the best for their people..

What you may not know is the relationship that Dale Carnegie Training of Ohio and Indiana has with Business First, the producers of the Business Journals that you see in various cities including the Cincinnati Business Courier and the Business First of Columbus.

Business First is a partner sponsor for the seminar series currently being run in Columbus, Cincinnati and Dayton in conjunction with McGohan Brabender and Dale Carnegie Training of Ohio and Indiana.

Within the last month, several of these 3-hour programs have been conducted in southern Ohio ranging from Effective Onboarding Strategies to Effective Sales Tactics. In this economy, hundreds of individuals have attended these programs to discover new ideas in improve their performance, regardless if they were working for a large corporation or a small consultancy. We all need to share ideas in order to be better at what we do. And this is an excellent way to get together with like-minded people and share information..

The rest of these programs are listed below. If you need more information on any of these programs or are interested in attending one, register at the McGohan Brabender Learning Center or leave a message with us at mbdct@dcarnegietraining.com regarding your interest and we’ll get in contact with you and get you set up.

Again, if you are outside of the Ohio Valley area but you are still interested in the ideas that we’ll discuss at these workshops, email us at mbcdt@dcarnegietraining.com with the following information::

  • Your name

  • Your company name

  • An email address where you can be reached

  • A brief description of two challenges that you are facing


We'll get you the information as well as some possible solutions to help you in addressing your challenges.

Good Selling!




McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Programs in Columbus







McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Programs in Dayton



  • Recruiting Salespeople with Traci Tigue, 03/19/2009

  • How Is All The Work Going To Get Done? with Ed Eppley, 05/21/2009

  • Five Dysfunctions Of A Team with Ed Eppley, 10/01/2009





McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Programs in Cincinnati

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Use This Direct Marketing Technique To Drive Sales In Your Email Campaigns

About 3 weeks ago, I received a letter in the mail. Yeah, snail mail. Typically, when I get something from the US Postal Office, it’s either:


  • A bill
  • Junk Mail
  • One of the last hardcopy magazines that I simply refuse to give up.

At this point, everyone I know either sends me email, gives me a tweet on twitter, texts me on my cell, chats with me on Google, writes on my Facebook wall, links to me on Linkedin or calls me on my cell. I’m sorry to say that the snail mail only brings me uninteresting news at best and bad news at the worst.


So when this bright yellow 4x6 envelope arrived in the mail, addressing me by name, a real name in the return address and a stamp in the upper right hand corner, it caught my attention.


Direct marketing strategy for getting our sales letter opened. It needs to get noticed.

It even looked like the address and return address had been hand written, as if someone had taken the time to add their personal touch to the correspondence. For a savvy direct marketer, this is easy enough to do with a printer and some clever fonts. Still, it looked extremely personal and inviting.


The thing had me curious. When I first saw it, I thought to myself, “Mike G??? I don’ t know a Mike G. Who is this guy?”


Guess which piece of mail got opened first that day?


When I opened it, I found this card on the inside.


Direct marketing sales strategy. Send a message of interest.

Well, at this point, I’ve got the envelope opened, I’m looking at a dog chewing on a shoe and I needed to know who Mike G was. So I opened the card and found this.


Direct marketing and sales letters. Get your old clients back by making them an offer.

Yow!


RoadRunner Sports, where I bought my shoes to run the Akron Marathon back when the weather was a lot warmer, was reaching out to me again 6 months later.


Not a bad strategy, actually.


There are two things to consider here. First the friendly, personal appearance of the letter stood out from the everyday, humdrum, here-comes-another-bill look. It invited me to open it first over everything else.


You can do this same type of personalized, stand-out-from-the-crowd implementation in email as well. In fact, in a previous post entitle Email Marketing Ideas Using The Dale Carnegie Principles, we discussed how using the Carnegie Principles in an email direct marketing campaign can boost your open rate.


Then there is the strategy of reaching out to me after no activity on my part for almost 6 months. I’m willing to bet that there’s a sizeable chunk of customers in their database that hasn’t made a single purchase over the past couple of months. It just makes plain old common sense to give those people a little nudge, to remind them that RoadRunner Sports is still alive and thinking about them.


There are customers in your database that are like that. You know the ones I’m talking about. The ones that you let languish in a corner, ignored, neglected and have collected enough cobwebs to qualify for their own horror movie. They purchased something from you in the past because you had something that they wanted at one time, and have long since fallen into oblivion.


Create a direct marketing campaign that reaches out to them again and brings them back into the fold. It’s a lot cheaper than going out scouring the fields to find new customers. And in this economic environment, you would have to be crazy to sacrifice the people that have patronized you in the past to go hunting for new clients to nurture. Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for going out and beating the bushes to find new clients. But not at the expense of past patrons who have already bought something from you.


As I said, I get most of my correspondences electronically as I’m sure most of the new sales force out there does. I get a lot of email from sales reps telling me about their latest offerings or the specials that are coming up.


I can’t remember the last time a sales rep emailed me saying:


“Hey Larry, I know that you were looking at storage systems for your company. Here’s an interesting article that talks about some interesting data preservation techniques.”


Or


“Hey Larry, the last time we spoke you were looking at bringing your team up to speed on using social media in sales. Here’s an interesting blog that discusses using Linkedin to generate leads.”


But I do get 7 or more emails a day from potential suitors saying, “Look at my latest video on killer sales techniques. It’s hot! People are snapping it up. Check it out here.” When I get to their site, the video is a long infomercial on how great their product is. Definitely not personal, and definitely no relationship built.


There’s nothing wrong with self-promotion, but I do believe that it goes a lot further if your audience believes that you have their best interest in mind. The best way to build that credibility and trust is to think of them and send them something of interest when you don’t need anything.


Before this whole credit crisis erupted, the experts recommended that you establish a reputation with your banker by asking for a loan when you didn’t need one. That way you could establish your credentials and earn their trust when the pressure was off. Then, when you did need that loan for starting your business or buying your home, your banker was in your corner because you had already earned their trust.


When was the last time that you emailed your client or prospect something that they were interested in, just to build that relationship? What are you doing to nurture your relationship with your current clients and to re-engage your past clients? Most blogs, videos and articles now have some way of emailing the file out to other parties. Are you making use of that ability to create value for your potential prospects and clients?


I would encourage you right now, to touch base with nine clients that have fallen off of your wagon for whatever reason, and begin bringing them back on board with a quick email that includes something that is of interest to them.


In today’s economic environment, lots of sales people are out there looking for the killer strategy or that one secret that will give them an edge.


Become genuinely interested in your prospects and do something that demonstrates that interest. Show them that you care by sending them something that they can use.


When it comes time to make the sale, they will take care of you.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Get Linkedin At The Cleveland And Akron LinkedWorking Events

A quick update for those in the Cleveland, Akron and the Northern Ohio area.


If you are looking for new ideas and tactics to leverage in your job search, then you do not want to miss the LinkedWorking Linkedin event. Social Networking mogul and Linkedin expert Lewis Howes is hosting this one at the Rock Bottom Bar and Brewery.


If you are in the Columbus area, your day to get Linkedin is March 5th and in Cincinnati, the event is happening on March 3rd.


But if you live and work in Northern Ohio, including Akron, Canton and Cleveland, then this Wednesday you need to March 4th to the Rock Bottom Bar and start getting Linkedin to a better job, more sales, and a better future.


Find more information on the LinkedWorking Linkedin event at Lewis Howes website here.


Good Hunting!


P.S. This event looks way big: Over 300 people. Get in now before it's too late!

McGohan Brabender and Dale Carnegie of Ohio and Indiana Double-Team the Recession

If you are like most people in this current economic climate, then you are probably looking for some way to leverage your skills and knowledge to get ahead.

This is not the time to sit by idly, waiting for someone to ride in and save the day. Nor is it the time to ignore the current economic environment with the belief that there is no recession. We're in it up to our collective waists. The question to ask is, what are we going to do about it.

This is the time for directed, determined and deliberate action. We need to have our targets mapped out in front of us and to understand and visualize the goals that we are trying to achieve. We need to architect a plan to help us get where we want to go, the boldness to act on the plan and the tenacity to see it through to the end.

To assists entrepreneurs, professionals and small business owners in enhancing their strategic planning and leveraging their resources, Dale Carnegie Training of Ohio and Indiana has partnered with McGohan Brabender to bring the local community a series of dynamic business building programs.

Leveraging the human resource expertise of McGohan Brabender and the Communication and Leadership power of the Dale Carnegie methodologies, these programs are designed to give you a heads up and a running start in creating powerfully loyal customers, developing dynamic teams, create effective selling strategies, and devising effective methods for managing and developing your talent. Programs are currently underway in the Columbus, Dayton and Cincinnati metropolitan area.

If you want to get into the driver's seat and take command of your economic vehicle, then these half-day programs will definitely get you started in the right direction. Register at the McGohan Brabender site or email us at mbdct@dcarnegietraining.com about your interest and someone will contact you directly.

If you are outside of the Ohio Valley area or you have a scheduling conflict, but you are still interested in the ideas that we'll discuss in these programs, email us at mbcdt@dcarnegietraining.com with the following information:

  • Your name

  • Your company name

  • An email address where you can be reached

  • A brief description of two challenges that you are facing


We'll get you the information as well as some possible solutions to help you in addressing your challenges.

Good Selling!




McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Programs in Columbus







McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Programs in Dayton



  • Recruiting Salespeople with Traci Tigue, 03/19/2009

  • How Is All The Work Going To Get Done? with Ed Eppley, 05/21/2009

  • Five Dysfunctions Of A Team with Ed Eppley, 10/01/2009





McGohan Brabender Dale Carnegie Programs in Cincinnati


  • Building Rapport and Developing Interest with Lance Tyson, 02/04/2009

  • Communicate, Motivate and Get Results with Ed Eppley, 03/04/2009

  • Onboarding Engagement with Traci Tigue, 04/01/2009

  • Talent Management with Ed Eppley, 05/06/2009

  • Team Member Engagement with Kevin Watts, 06/03/2009

  • Create Loyal Customers with Laura Nortz, 07/01/2009

  • Five Dysfunctions of a Team with Ed Eppley, 08/05/2009

  • Cross and Up Selling with Lance Tyson, 09/02/2009

  • Business Professionalism 101 with Kevin Watts, 10/07/2009

3 Tips To Supercharge Your Cold Calling Response From Internet Generated Leads

I posted this on the Sales IT Tech blog a few days ago. It just seemed to fit nicely with some of the other discussions that will take place over there. After all, over there we’ll be looking at Internet lead generation techniques as well as how to implement some of the technology required to make those techniques work.


This particular technique, however, seemed more sales strategic. It would probably be very useful to the any sales rep looking for ways to improve their lead follow-up procedure, especially in these turbulent times.


So here is the follow up technique that involves saying something different from the ever prevalent, “We saw that you downloaded one of our whitepapers. I’m just calling to make sure that you found everything you needed.”


Good hunting!

Three Cold Calling Tips For Augementing Your Lead Generation Strategy