In a time where many are wondering how businesses will adapt and change in order to continue moving forward, I have taken some time to truly reflect on my thoughts and outcomes from attending Pipeline Generation Bootcamp offered by HubSpot and facilitated by Dan Tyre.
If you’re like many professional service providers who are early on in their growth, you’re hungry, eager to see new successes, new sales and you want to scale. But you’re looking for repeat sales, new customers from your website, or word-of-mouth leads which just aren’t generating the revenue or growth you want and need. You aren’t alone.
For much longer than I care to admit, I was in your shoes. As a young Agency and services provider, I was relying on new relationships within the community, inbound digital marketing, and personal referrals to grow my business. To be honest, I was experiencing more frustration and failure than actual revenue. But, I learned that as a young business, I wasn’t doing enough. I simply wasn’t taking necessary action for steady improvement, to fill my sales pipeline and serve more businesses.
I was unsure of how to make regular progress and lacked the confidence to conduct deliberate outreach and outbound prospecting. I have personally grown tired of the feeling that cold calls create. I didn’t want to be “that guy” and believed the only way to effectively demonstrate value to others was to avoid outbound tactics. I was wrong, and changing my mindset has created more opportunities, more revenue and more growth in less time.
Dan expertly guided us through 8-weeks of challenging practical exercises, real-world activities, and processes which defined a new way of doing business – to guide our client to the success they want and the results they need.
Fortunately for me and for many other participants, the Pipeline Generation Bootcamp was much more than a boot camp for sales generation. With weekly accountability, daily homework, and more, Dan excelled at providing necessary motivation, inspiration, and confidence. He armed us with the tools, the resources, and tactics to create better relationships and grow our sales. More importantly, the Boot Camp helped us learn to communicate better with our clients, gain a clearer understanding of their needs, and identify how we can help.
Key Lessons Learned
The Need for Change In Sales
In today’s market, consumers are more prepared and more educated than ever before. We have the resources we need to research, shop, and buy in the palm of our hands, literally.
If your sales teams are cold calling, using rehearsed sales scripts, and working to convince your prospects that you have something they need, then it’s time for change.
Think about it for a moment, you pick up the phone and the salesperson on the other end starts with a typical greeting immediately followed by a rehearsed script, how do you normally respond?
If you’re in business, the approach to sales is in desperate need of change. In fact, there are many companies that aren’t getting the sales they need to sustain their business, simply because they don’t want to engage in outbound sales. Our own experiences have created a barrier to growth.
Smile, Stand, Pause.
Imagine how it would feel if you picked up the phone, were greeted by a smiling, pleasant voice who was genuinely interested in you.
A normal sales conversation may sound similar to this:
Hi John, this is Dan with Pro Growth VA. The reason for my call today is…
If you’re like me, at this point you’re ready to stop listening and either hang up or wait for them to pause so you can (hopefully politely) tell them you’re not interested. You haven’t really heard what they are trying to sell, and they certainly haven’t taken the time to understand your needs.
When you reach out to your prospects, practice a warm greeting followed by a simple pause allowing the other person to respond.
Hi John, It’s Dan from Pro Growth VA… PAUSE, umm, Hi Dan? Thank you for taking my call John.
This does a couple of things in the mind of your prospect.
- It posits the question, how do I know this person?
- It causes a reaction that’s different from the standard cold call. A Pattern Interrupt.
In most sales and cold calling, there is very little known about the prospect. This is evident by the scripts and often the unenthusiastic voice droning on at the other end of the call.
But what if that person had taken time to learn about your business and was prepared to offer helpful resources that could benefit you today.
By taking the time to research your prospects, through HubSpot’s services, online activities and more, you can arm yourself or your sales teams with valuable information that turns your cold calls into warm conversations. This is especially true if you take a position of truly working to help others.
John, it’s obvious that you have invested time in your website and your online presence. That Article about lead generation you published on LinkedIn certainly got a lot of traction, I especially liked that you explained the sales process.
Be Human, Be Helpful
For most of us, the first part is easy, but how do you connect kindness and position yourself to be helpful in your sales processes and activities?
Is it helpful when you pick up the phone only to hear a rehearsed sales script that aims to convince you that you want what I am selling?
By defining a clear process for your sales, conducting research, asking thoughtful questions, and listening, you can see opportunities to help.
If you call your prospect and begin telling them how their website needs improvement, is out of date and all of the other glaring issues you found, you’re less likely to create genuine interest in your services.
But, if you start by stating things that are being done well, reinforcing that they are not failing from the start, you can change the conversation. Then you express that you are calling to help, offering ideas and resources for improvement, even if they aren’t a good fit or in need of your services, you can change the conversation and the trajectory of your business.
4 Steps to Creating an Effective Sales Process
Here are 4 simple steps to creating an effective sales process. By defining a simple sales process, you can create goals for each step, draft rough outlines of the questions you can ask, the services you can talk about and demonstrate how you can help the next time you pick up the phone.
- Identify – Identify potential good fit clients and conduct initial research to see if there are opportunities to help.
- Connect – Connect with your prospects, gain an understanding of their needs and identify opportunities to help.
- Explore – After identifying good fit, understanding challenges and determining there are opportunities to help, explore goals and determine a need for your product or service.
- Advise – Offer your unique solution, aligned with the challenges identified and demonstrate how your solution can help to overcome those challenges.
Ultimately, the 8-weeks of learning has helped to shape me and my business. The course improved the way I think about prospecting, enabled me to get out of my comfort zone and understand how I can position myself to generate more business and help more businesses achieve their goals.
Pick up the phone, offer to help, be human, and don’t quit.
If you’re in sales or marketing and want to learn how you can improve your relationships, generate more qualified leads, and grow your business exponentially, then take 15 minutes to get a free website review and advice you can use. Schedule A Call Today