Smashmouth B2B Blog: Sales & Marketing Demand Gen

HubSpot Signals Product Review "She just read the email" (from #Inbound13)

Posted by Michael Damphousse

Hubspot Signals Product Review FeaturesLast week at Inbound, HubSpot announced a new product, Signals.  In simple terms, Signals is a Chrome extension that tracks and notifies you when someone has activity on emails, LinkedIn, Salesforce and HubSpot.  You get an on-screen notification, as well as a summary list of activity that you can review.  In short, Signals is an app that lets you know when and how to engage your leads--timing, intelligence, and relevance.

Sales people now have actionable intelligence from the prospect.  Knowing that they have seen your email or they clicked through a link or they are reading your website is gold.  It also tells you one other fact...the prospect may be sitting at their desk, or at least not occupied with other activites.  It's time to call them.  If no response by phone, maybe email them again with a secondary email that you would logically have sent (ie: don't just respond saying "I know you are sitting there doing emails".

If you get them and have some intel such as a new LinkedIn update, or the knowledge that they read certain pages on your website, you can now open the discussion in a relevant way that the prospect will respect and resonate with. "Hi Brian, it's Mike from Green Leads.  I was hoping to speak with you about Appointment Setting." (knowing he just read three pages on my site relating to b2b appointment setting).

Brilliant work HubSpot!  Enhancing the Inbound experience for sales people.

Screenshot from HubSpot site:

hubspot signals product review

Notification summary (as of the date of this post):

Email

  • A contact opens your email 
  • A contact clicks a link you’ve enabled tracking for

LinkedIn (after you mark a contact as a VIP)

  • When a VIP changes their position
  • When a VIP posts an update 
  • When a VIP adds a new connection

Salesforce

  • When a contact becomes a new lead
  • When a contact opens an email sent through Salesforce

HubSpot

  • When a contact visits a page on your website

Note: The email open notification only works if the prospect has "display images" enabled.  If they do not show images in their emails, email open notification will not work.  Solve this issue, and the Gold Medal gets a Gold Ribbon with it.

Tags: sales, b2b, b2b sales, demand gen, outbound marketing, inbound marketing, b2b marketing, hubspot, product reviews, outbound calling

@HubSpot Eliminates 2 Billion Cold Calls (from #Inbound13)

Posted by Michael Damphousse

inbound marketing summary 2013 resized 600

Just prior to Seth Godin stepping on stage, for what was an entertaining and thought provoking keynote, HubSpot CMO, Mike Volpe, announced that "We saved the world from 2 Billion cold calls!"  And they did.  I personally may have benefitted by 1 or 2 a day.  

HubSpot Orange Kool Aid

Inbound marketing techniques continue to evolve, and HubSpot is the pioneer for Inbound.  The tribe they've created in the past few years is amazing.  Almost 6,000 attendees to this year's Inbound conference were gathered for lots of marketing goodness, not just the orange kool aid.

In the world of sales, selling doesn't start until a conversation starts with the prospect.  Getting that conversation going has been revolutionized with Inbound Marketing.  The prospect is typically educated more than an outbound generated lead, they are thinking about the topic that your product or service addresses, and the time is fresh to start the conversation.  In short, they may be further along in the funnel (waterfall if you're a SiriusDecisions follower).

The top outbound marketers have embraced inbound marketing, not shied away from it. Compared to a purchased list or even a list of prospects warmed up with other marketing assets, an inbound list is the cream of the crop.  However, unless your inbound lead comes in the form of a calendar invite, date, time and phone number booking one of your sales reps for a appointment, there is still work to do.  The outbound function assigned to these leads is typically referred to as Inbound Response.  

Things to remember:

  • Scrub the data. Have a data team do list hygiene to correct and/or append needed data fields.  Or use tools such as DemandBase to dynamically append data.
  • Know your history.  Use tools such as HubSpot, your CRM, or other tracking systems to know how your company has interracted with the prospect in the past.
  • Intel.  Research the prospect on LinkedIn, Google, Social Sites.  The more you know, the warmer that lead.
  • Score your inbound leads. Don't assume they are all orders ready to be had. Don't waste your time on mickey@mouse.com
  • Pounce!  Once you have your ducks in a row, call them.  If they don't answer, email them.  The effective value of leads deteriorates every hour after they submit a form.

I just tested the above with a lead that came in through our HubSpot system within the hour.  It took me 2 minutes to correct their missing title, see that her colleague talked to us at the SiriusDecisions conference in May, add her LinkedIn url to her profile, note that we're connected by 8 people, and she visited 5 blog articles today.  Reviewed and scored -- 2 minutes.

Create great content.  Socially surround your market.  Optimize all conversion techniques.  Gather these inbound leads, then follow the process above, and your ROI will go through the roof.

Let's get back to the 2 Billion cold calls saved.  Inbound marketing certainly does reduce the number of cold calls an outbound marketer has to make to get the conversation started.  It streamlines the process.  The blended approach of Inbound and Outbound will increase the top line faster than any other methods available.

Is that lead an Innie or an Outie?

(took restraint not to post a pic of a belly button)

Tags: marketing, sales, b2b, b2b sales, demand gen, outbound marketing, inbound marketing, cold calling, b2b marketing, social media marketing, hubspot, appointment setting, tips, inbound, linkedin, outbound, lead lists, outbound calling, b2b appointment setting, demandbase

Inside Sales Blogs From AA-ISP Speakers

Posted by Michael Damphousse

Inside Sales BlogsI'm at the AA-ISP conference in Boston today (American Association of Inside Sales Professionals).  There are ideas and tips flowing faster than the coffee and ice water.

Everytime I visit a conference I like to check out the speakers' blogs.  I figured you may find value in a compilation of the speaker blogs from today (or the blog of their company):

Trish Bertuzzi, The Bridge Group, Inside Sales Experts 

Tom Scontras, Glance Networks, The Upside: Killer Sales Tips

Steve Richard, Vorsight, Inside Sales Tips

Gary Ambrosino, TimeTrade, The TimeTrade Blog

Koka Sexton, InsideView, B2B Sales Productivity

Cliff Pollan, VisibleGains, Visible Gains Blog

Dan Hughes, Broadlook Technology, The Official Broadlook Blog

Antarctic Mike, Selling at 90 Below Zero, Antarctic Mike's Blog

Lori Richardson, Score More Sales, Score More Sales

Patrick O'Mally, 617-PATRICK, Social Media Super Blog

Mark Ruthfield, Zoominfo, Zoominfo Blog

Ken Krogue, InsideSales.com, Ken Krogue

John Baker, The Asking Formula, The Asking Formula

Sam Richter, SBR Worldwide, Know More Blog

Todd McCormick, PGI, PGI Blog

Ken Jisser, ConnectAndSell, Sales Singularity Blog 

Mark Roberge, HubSpot, Inbound Internet Marketing Blog

 

  and then shameless self promotion (I am one of the speakers)...

Mike Damphousse, Green Leads, Smashmouth B2B Blog: Sales & Marketing Demand Gen 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tags: sales, b2b, b2b sales, inside sales, cold calling, b2b events, outbound, outbound calling

LinkedIn Lead Gen Tip: When a Face Makes the Difference

Posted by Michael Damphousse

Guest Post from Gareth Morfill, Inside Sales Blackbelt at Green Leads.

If you were talking to a prospect face to face, do you think that would make you pitch any differently?  More confidently?  We feel that it absolutely does. The simple act of having a real person to look at while you are having the conversation makes the building of rapport much easier.  

If they have a photo in their LinkedIn profile, look at it.  You may even be able to click on it and enlarge it.

Cold Calling Faces to Names

Science backs this up. Physiological studies show interesting correlations between perceiving and responding to eye contact, a salient social signal of interest and readiness for interaction. And although the response to a picture is less than to a live face, there may be an impact.  Our reps have been practicing it and the general consensus is, Put a Face to a Name:

  • Improves the ability to quickly build rapport
  • Personalizes the conversation
  • Humanizes the typical "cold call"
  • Make dialing all day a bit less mechanical
  • Looking at the photo means you have to look at their LinkedIn profile first -- scan it

Smile!  

...ps: If you're an Inside Sales Blackbelt, we're hiring.

Tags: sales, b2b sales, inside sales, cold calling, lead gen, linkedin, outbound calling

Lead Gen Scripts: They Have to Go

Posted by Mike Damphousse

No bad outbound calling tips!There are a lot of great sources for telemarketing and teleprospecting calling tips out there, and just several weeks ago we brought you some great outbound calling tips from the best BDR's our management team has ever worked with.  That being said, there are some bad tips out there that need to be put to rest.  They just don't work any longer and they're not helping anybody succeed at generating quality b2b leads.  Top of the list:

Stick to the script - There was a time when it was imperative that you stick to your prospecting script.  It had everything you needed to pass a lead or book an appointment with your targeted prospecting base.  If you're dialing consumers selling widgets, maybe, but if you are dialing high level b2b audience, no way. They can read through a script all day long.  Create three guidelines for conversations. Then don't use them verbatim, use them in your own words.

  • Talking points - 4 or 5 high level statements you can work into your conversations.
  • Open ended questions - Questions that bring value to the prospect by getting them to talk and participate in the conversation.
  • Objection handling - As it states.  How to handle the most common "no thank you" statements.

Then keep it natural.  Have conversations.

What other outbound calling tips have you encountered that just need to go?

Photo Credit:  sindesignvia Flickr

Tags: lead gen, appointment setting, outbound, outbound calling

Outbound Calling Tips from Johnny Bench

Posted by Michael Damphousse

Outbound Calling Tips from Johnny BenchWhen I was in college, one of my roomates used to watch The Baseball Bunch.  It was designed for kids, but I loved it.  You had Johnny Bench, All-Star Hall of Fame catcher for the Cincinnati Reds, teaching a group of young kids how to be better players, and each week they also got professional tips from guest ballplayers like Jim Rice, Pete Rose, Cal Ripen, Jr, and even Ted Williams!  Add to that, Hall of Fame coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Tommy Lasorda, as “The Dugout Wizard,”and the San Diego Chicken, and I’m telling you, any kid who loved baseball was glued to the TV when that show was on, even the older "kids". 

What I loved most about the show, though, was the advice that each guest shared with the team.  I felt like I was getting a one-on-one coaching session with an All-Star right in my dorm room.

What does all of this have to do with B2B sales and marketing?  Well, I’ve had the pleasure of working with a lot of Business Development Reps over the years, and I wanted to share with you some of their “All-Star” outbound calling tips.  Rather than just spout off to you a dozen or so tips that I’ve gathered over the years, I thought it would be much more beneficial for you to hear from them. 

Special thanks to all of those BDR’s who helped put this together.  They really are, in my opinion, the best and the brightest in the industry:

Lenny - When calling a list rather than starting at the top with the "A" companies, work the list in reverse starting with companies that begin with "Z".  That way you most likely will hit the companies that get called the least.

Mira - Repetition has its benefits. However doing the same things over and over again can make you stale.  This stunts growth!  Listen to your peers and change things up a bit. Break out of your old routine and try something different.

Jessica - It's really just a numbers game. The more you hear no the more you hear yes. Be aggressive but nice, quick and to the point. People are busy. They want to know what you want and don't want the BS. Be yourself, have personality, and be a straight shooter. And don't be afraid to ask! The worst thing that can happen is they say "no".  Be persistent, be confident, and go into every call knowing you can close.

John - When dialing high (C-level or VP) pick times to dial when the gatekeeper would be on a break (best times are 7:45am-8:00am, 10:45am-11:00am, 12:45pm-1:00pm and 4:45pm-5:00pm, in each timezones).  When you do speak with an admin, and they give you a referral, ask them politely to transfer you to the referral you get.

Todd -  Always have a good strategy for overcoming objections. Prospects are always going to have objections, so if you can handle the initial objections with relative ease, it will go a long way to getting an appointment for your sales team. Simplify it into a playbook.  List the objections, match up the ways to overcome them.  Then have those techniques memorized and natural.

Meghan - Make sure you are calling the right contacts/targets.  Simply ask the prospects.  Ask admins and operators.  Don’t waste time calling the wrong people! 

Aaron - Don't let failure stop you from pressing on. Cold calling is a numbers game and you are going to fail.  And because it is a numbers game you have to press on to get to the success.  Every dial is a new dial, and every smart dial is a better dial.

Bill - Make sure you let the prospect know that an admin referred you.  This is a great way to add credibility to your call.

Tim - Remember, don't get discouraged with hang-ups! Everyone has a bad day once in a while!  Give them some time, and try them back.

Andy - Your job is to make each prospect that picks up the phone want to learn more about your product.  Your job is not to teach them about your product -- that's the sales guy's job.  In otherwords, listen to their needs, and focus accordingly. No one cares about the technology you're hawking if it doesn't make their life easier, or make them more money.

Coleman - Be yourself. Though you may be selling something, if you push through the call not treating the prospect as a person, you might as well hang up the call.  When you are yourself, you are able to meet the prospect at their level, and can guide the conversation.

Some good stuff, right!?  What about you?  What outbound calling tips can you share with the rest of the Smashmouth crowd?

Tags: inside sales, b2b marketing, lead gen, appointment setting, tips, outbound calling, tv