B2B Online Marketing – The Direct Pipeline to Off-line Sales: 5 Simple Steps

November 22, 2010 at 7:01 pm | Posted in Adrian's Network, sales, technology, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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I’m so very happy to be able to share this terrific post by Jasmine Sandler of Agent-cy Online Marketing. Jasmine is truly a pro and these tips are valuable for all of us trying to build our businesses in the brave new world of online communities.

From Jasmine:
What is important now and in the future to small business B2B Online marketers is how to grow brand awareness and client interest across moving and fickle (marketing) channels, where the ability to engage the audience grows thinner each day because of the millions of messages being pumped out every New York minute. One effort that will always remain a common thread is the act of creating real client relationships. And so, how do we use Online Marketing as our main vehicle and measure return in real off-line deals?

It is through leveraging online communities such as NING, LINKEDIN, TWITTER, BUSINESSEXCHANGE and more to supplement the “old” ways of making the B2B sale. These (online communities) make it possible for a B2B marketer to execute at all levels of the solution sale.

You will get off to a great start if you follow these 5 simple steps:

1. Develop a relationship through a warm connection. In Linked IN, you can gain a connect to someone who you want to know through someone you know. Further, you can research that person’s history and interests and so when you do get the chance to make your first impression, it is a great one.

2. Understand the company of your target customer. Company profiles on these social networks are filled with important information you need to know to create a real alliance with that company and the key decision makers. Further, you can see who you need to influence and how you need to sell by understanding the company and its employees’ online behaviors and who is a real force within a company page.

3. Follow up and communicate effectively with your target through the networks in which they are active.

4. Become a real resource. Provide necessary connections and valuable information to your target client at the community level.

5. Comment/become engaged in your target’s activity – this keeps you top of mind.

Of course, just like a normal 3-6 month sales cycle in the solution sales B2B world off-line, you need to stay visible through other efforts such as smart networking and personal branding and the like. Further, you need to stay pleasingly persistent as we used to say at IBM. For more information on how to use online marketing to sell, visit the Agent-cy Blog.

What If I Train Them & They Leave? What If I Don’t Train Them & They Stay?

November 18, 2010 at 6:46 pm | Posted in Adrian Miller Sales Training, Adrian's Network, New York Sales Trainer, sales, Sales Training, small business | Leave a comment

What If I Train Them & They Leave?
What If I Don’t Train Them & They Stay?

Is it really that much of a dilemma?

As a sales trainer I often see companies make the mistake of holding back on necessary training because they feel they might “waste their money” if the sales or customer service rep decides to leave, or if by some chance they have cause to terminate them.

What an error.

Training is one of the best ways to ensure that you will have a competent, motivated and satisfied employee. Done effectively, it helps to minimize attrition and promote employee retention and growth.

And, if those two things aren’t important to you, how about the “damage” that an unskilled and incompetent rep can do. Can you risk annoying your clients and selling or servicing them in anything but the most professional and proficient manner.

Sales training is truly an investment in your employees and in the growth of your firm. It should not be considered discretionary even in these most difficult of economic times.

A Sales Trainer Has Been Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places

November 17, 2010 at 8:04 am | Posted in Adrian Miller Sales Training, Adrian's Network, entrepreneurship, sales, Sales Training, small business | Leave a comment

Thinking a bit about love these days what with the hooplala about the engagement in England and the media frenzy that is now occurring.

But really, I’m not thinking about that kind of love at all.

What I’m thinking about is that old-fashioned client love and well, where to find those lovers, er, clients.

You know the drill. Some folks are not even open and receptive to having a “conversation”; others have the talk but won’t pull the trigger.

What’s a girl to do?

Well, l’ve done some soul searching and realize that I need to look for the love in better / right places. And that means doing my due diligence and uncovering companies and industries that need my help. They might not even be aware of how much they need it but, yes, there is pain that can be identified and cured (by me).

Sometimes identifying that pain takes a bit of time and impatience gets in the way so my new mantra for 2011 is to develop a strategy or engage an outside resource to help me identify “exactly” who those prospects are that, well, NEED me.

A very deliberate and direct approach and perhaps I will finally find the love.

(By the way, I’ve identified just who those outside resources are. Want more info.?)

Could It Be “Just My Imagination”

November 2, 2010 at 5:36 pm | Posted in Adrian Miller Sales Training, Adrian's Network, entrepreneurship, meetings, Networking, sales, Sales Training, small business | Leave a comment

The Rolling Stones provided us with Just My Imagination and I was thinking the very same thing this morning when I realized that more than a few of the people that I have met recently at networking events, and who had expressed what seemed to be sincere interest in following up and getting to know each other a bit, have fallen off the grid.

Yep disappeared.

I’ve tried emailing and then calling all to no avail.

I’ve left messages that help fill in the blanks as to who I am and why I am trying to connect with them. (I know that everyone is busy and meeting so many people that they just might not remember me.)

Still nothing.

Gee, what a waste of time to put yourself out there, go to the trouble of going to events and so forth and then not following up or following through with the contacts you make.

Am I unique in this situation? Not on your life. I’ve asked many people and they agree that more often than not, the majority of people just slip away and don’t follow-up with the contacts and connections initiated at these meetings and events.

I used to be more persistent but I have to admit to taking a different approach now. Unless I have a very clear idea that the person that I am trying to connect with is absolutely a slam dunk in terms of referral or sales potential, I just let it go. I send one email, make one phone call and then that’s it.

Perhaps it was “Just My Imagination” that they were interested in the first place.

Adrian on Adrian’s Network

November 2, 2010 at 10:34 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Listen here!

Countdown to Year End

November 1, 2010 at 3:56 pm | Posted in Adrian Miller Sales Training, Adrian's Network, entrepreneurship, Marketing, Networking, sales, small business | Leave a comment

November 1st. Gulp. Two more months to make certain that this year is not a complete disaster. Sure, things are looking up; prospects are more plentiful and some, bless their hearts, are even saying “yes”. This improvement doesn’t mean any sort of slackening off of activity; rather, it means that if I just increase the pace a tad I might even reach the numbers that I want, despite the monstrous economic situation in 2010.

How about you? You know that these last few months are incredibly important. In November you can scoop up the last of your projects for 2010; most clients are loathe to launch anything in December. December is prep month when you develop your plans for 2011 and plant the seeds for what you intend to grow in the upcoming months.

Ask yourself:

* Who is my target market and do I want more of the same or do I want to go after different prospects? If so, why? What research have I done that indicates that this new segment is a viable market for my products or services?

* Is this the year that I will ramp up my outreach tactics, refresh my website, jump in and leverage social media…or…will I continue to do things exactly the same? And if I don’t make any changes, why do I expect things to improve?

* What parts of my business need improvement? Can I do this on my own or do I need assistance? (Have I been trying to accomplish change on my own for quite sometime and what has been the result/s?)

This IS the time to jump in and set the wheels in motion. No one can or will do it for you. Say it—this IS the time.
Now do it.

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