Tuesday, September 28th, 2021

Avoid the parity trap

Differentiating your solutions in highly competitive categories. Are you struggling to create a truly unique value proposition that sets you apart from your competition? You’re not alone. In fact, 88 percent of marketers and sellers surveyed by B2B DecisionLabs aren’t confident their buyers understand what makes their solution unique or valuable. In well-defined categories, many companies can solve the same… 

Friday, April 23rd, 2021

Supercharging our sales conversations

Selling power comes not from how much conversation we manage to get through, but the quality of the conversation. Supercharging sales is the overall theme of this edition of the International Journal of Sales Transformation, so I thought it might be appropriate to focus on a topic that has long been a focus of mine: how can salespeople supercharge their… 

Friday, April 23rd, 2021

Omnichannel here to stay for B2B sales

Covid-19 has cemented omnichannel interactions as the… 

Friday, February 26th, 2021

It’s time to level up!

Four forever changes transforming b2b revenue activities. Sales and marketing leaders, it’s time to level up. Buyers are searching for more information on their own, without talking to a sales rep. That means they are engaging with your content further down the funnel. As a result, your content can’t be just a companion to a sales-led customer conversation; it needs… 

Tuesday, November 10th, 2020

Write like a pro

As a sales leader you may be a great talker, but how do you find your written voice? No matter how skilled you are as a practitioner, no matter how you have grown and flourished professionally, if you cannot express yourself with simplicity, in language unencumbered by business jargon, your work counts for little. Nowhere is this more evident than… 

Monday, November 9th, 2020

Improved leadership communication

How storytelling can help bridge the gap between management and teams. Even as we are communicating all the time, even if we are surrounded by communication all day, it is neither easy nor simple: “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place,” according to Whyte (1950). From my experience, I believe he is right…. 

Thursday, May 28th, 2020

A (Virtual) Reality Check: Mastering remote selling

How to make virtual sales presentations more engaging, more memorable and more effective. In an instant, the number of salespeople delivering remote presentations has reached 100%. But how do they feel about virtual sales calls, versus in-person meetings? Not good, according to our recent industry survey of over 500 B2B salespeople. Over 70% of salespeople believe that remote selling is… 

Tuesday, September 10th, 2019

Gaining executive access

The approach advocated by so many executive access strategies finished dead last. Original research explores messaging approaches for gaining access to senior execs… and which approach works best. Getting meetings with senior executives has never been more important, but any salesperson you ask will say that it’s now harder than ever. The conventional wisdom is that, if you want to… 

Wednesday, June 26th, 2019

Acquisition not the same as expansion

The 1st Annual Customer Expansion Marketing and… 

Wednesday, June 26th, 2019

Putting personalization to the (field) test

Here we set out to discover what sort of communications personalization actually does drive action. One of the most-quoted lines in movie history comes from the classic film The Godfather. After Michael, the emerging leader of the Corleone crime family, lays out a ruthless plan for revenge against his enemies, he punctuates his strategy with the memorable line: “It’s not… 

Friday, March 22nd, 2019

Should sorry be the hardest word?

New research reveals a formula for communicating an apology that generates greater customer satisfaction and loyalty after a service failure. [tint-panel] In recent issues of this Journal, we’ve published three pieces of original research on improving messaging for critical customer success situations: renewals, price increases and upgrades. In each case we provided a tested, proven framework for the most effective… 

Thursday, March 21st, 2019

Acquisition is not the same as expansion

In sales, acquiring new business and expanding existing relationships is not the same thing – in which case, why do so many companies have the same conversations with prospects as they do with customers? Over the past two years we have undertaken new, original research focused on existing customer conversations. After a decade of hype surrounding the provocative selling approach,… 

Wednesday, December 19th, 2018

Can one little word change marketing and sales success?

A new study highlights the power of “you” versus “we” phrasing in your messaging. When sending out prospecting messages or presenting solutions to prospects and customers, most marketing and salespeople tend to “we, we, we” all over themselves. No, this article isn’t about losing control of bodily function. It’s about word choice and whether a single word or pronoun-based reference… 

Tuesday, December 18th, 2018

The “Fourth Value Conversation”

What is the “Fourth Value Conversation”? We asked Tim Riesterer, author of The Three Value Conversations. Q: What is the “Fourth Value Conversation” and why is there a need for it now? We’re calling it “Expand Value”. It’s that part of the customer conversation lifecycle where you’re looking to ensure more renewals, communicate price increases and generate upsells and cross-sells… 

Monday, September 24th, 2018

The next best thing to being there

New research explores how to dramatically improve your “virtual” sales calls. Editor’s Note: This is the second article in a series about improving the impact of sales calls in phone or web conference environments. This piece covers original research aimed at determining the most effective approach for engaging prospects and customers in these selling environments. In the 60s and 70s,… 

Friday, August 31st, 2018

To add “friction” or not to add friction – that is the question.

Here we preview original research on how best to engage your audience during virtual meetings. The move at many companies is to expand inside sales teams and decrease the number of “feet on the street”. But, for all the potential cost savings and productivity gains, this transition creates some serious engagement questions and challenges resulting from the virtual barrier between… 

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

“Why evolve?”

New research identifies how best to handle upselling or cross-sell conversations. “What about this selling situation?” That’s typically the first question we hear whenever we’ve conducted a study that sheds light on the buyer psychology of some critical moment in the purchase cycle. There’s always somebody waiting with the next question that needs to be run through the research gauntlet…. 

Thursday, December 14th, 2017

“Why now?” What message moves executive buyers to act?

New research reveals the most effective story for making a breakthrough business case to executive-level buyers. In the previous issue of the Journal, I laid out why there’s serious urgency around salespeople needing to become better at making a compelling business case that moves executive-level decision-makers to buy now. I discussed how business proposals need to become more executive-relevant –… 

Friday, September 22nd, 2017

Decide or defer?

Here, we explore why salespeople need help creating urgency with executive decision makers. Stalled proposals and “no decisions” are arguably the biggest threat to your sales pipelines. There’s a good chance you lose more deals here than you lose to your traditional competitors. The big challenge often comes down to how you make your case to an executive buyer. It’s… 

Sunday, April 23rd, 2017

When challenging the customer backfires

There’s a proper time to provoke the customer – it’s just not when you’re trying to keep them or get them to pay more, research shows. Provoking the customer, challenging the status quo, leading with an unexpected insight: these kinds of message are the lifeblood of the disruption-minded story you need to tell when you’re the outsider intent on convincing…