Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today

I write about the three topics that I am most passionate about; Sales, Marketing and Social Media. These topics are covered from my experiences in outside sales and marketing. My objective is to use my expertise to help business and the individual.

Product, Content & Customer Marketing Strategies to Market New Product Features on Social Channels

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Here are questions I would ask and actions I would take to market new product features on social media.

I would ask:

What is your feedback for each of the new product features?

I would collaborate with the Product Team during beta testing interviewing customers to gather feedback on new features using information obtained to develop blogs and other messaging. Also, I would ask customers to provide testimonials about the new features using them in social media campaigns.

How would you gain additional customer insights?

I would survey customers about their learning style, content format, and social network preferences. This data would be used in conjunction with my social media research conducted using social listening and analytics. Based on data from the survey, I would decide which social channels to use and the type of content to develop.

Which social platforms would I use?

I would use a blog, Email, LinkedIn, Slideshare Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube platforms to educate customers about new offerings focusing on the channels where my target market congregates. I would find this information by asking my customers, Which channels do customers use when making purchasing decisions?

With what I learned, what might my campaign look like?

The campaign would revolve around a series of social posts based on customer feedback. Social posts would include customer testimonials obtained from beta testing and videos of customers using the new features. I would use the videos to build anticipation and announce the new features.

Are there any other social strategies you would employ?

I would attend industry events and interview industry experts. Also, I would create a group to reward loyal customers by building an evangelist program where customers would tell their friends.

How have you marketed new product features to current and prospective customers?

Feel free to comment and share.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference.

I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing.

Open on title, industry, company, location, and level. Reach out on LinkedIn or at dan@dangalante.com to start a conversation.

Posted 14 weeks ago

Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today

I write about the three topics that I am most passionate about; Sales, Marketing and Social Media. These topics are covered from my experiences in outside sales and marketing. My objective is to use my expertise to help business and the individual.

Sales & Marketing Strategies for Enabling Sales Teams, Handling Objections, Closing More Deals & Increasing Sales

Sales processes include the following: customer development, prospecting, discovery calls, closing deals, cross-selling, upselling, post-sales implementation, customer experience, obtaining referrals, and testimonials.

What is the hardest part of the sales process?

I surveyed my LinkedIn audience to find out.

Survey Results

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Of those surveyed, 53 % said closing deals was the hardest part of the Sales Process, followed by understanding market fit at 22%, Calling on buyers, and knowing their needs at 19% with the lowest being cross-selling, referrals, testimonials, or other reasons at 6%.

Based on these findings, I have included nine ways to enable sales teams to close more deals.

9 Strategies to Empower and Enable Sales Teams to Make more Sales

1. Have Sales and Marketing Management discuss Sales Cycle mapping out Sales, Marketing, and the Customer Journey.

2. Have Marketing go with Sales on calls to observe customer interactions regularly.

3. Take notes from Sales calls to develop answers to customer objections.

4. Role play with the Sales to get better at objection handling.

5. Develop an on-demand LMS for Sales including Decks, Videos, Sales Training materials, Product training materials, Scripts, and FAQs.

6. Use feedback from Sales calls and objections to improve Sales and Marketing Collateral.

7. Assign readings on sales strategy and techniques.

8. Conduct market research to show how is your products and services are better than the competitor. Present market research creating a chart that Sales can refer to when dealing with customers.

9. Develop buyer personas to understand customer buying motives. Share the buyer personas with Sales.

8 Techniques to Overcoming Customer Sales Objections

In sales, everyone has to be able to overcome objections to be successful. The best way to overcome objections is to prevent them. This can be done by providing a thorough sales presentation that covers all the information about your products and services. Also, you must address any questions the prospect has immediately. However, objections will come up from time to time. Some of these objections are real buying signals and others are just stalls to put you off. As a Salesperson, you need to be able to tell the difference.

Handling Objections & Stalls from Prospects

1. I am happy with my current supplier.

When you call on a prospect they say we are happy with our current supplier, this can mean one of two things. The first is that they are truly happy and the second is that they want you to get lost. (A stall) You need to be able to tell the difference. You should be able to tell by a prospect’s body language and level of attention.

If it is the first scenario, you should find out what supplier they currently use. When the prospect tells you it is your job to demonstrate how you are better. Once you feel that you have demonstrated how you are better, ask for a commitment or small order. By asking for small order, you provide the prospect an opportunity to take a chance on you with minimal risk. I have had a lot of success with this approach.

If the scenario is the second one, the prospect will not provide you with any information or say that they deal with a company or person for 20 years and they do not want to change. In this case, I would still ask for the order. Should the prospect say he is not interested again, I would thank them for their time and leave. You should call on this prospect a few more times and then only call on them every two months. You need to focus your time on prospects that are receptive to you and your offering.

2. I want to think it over.

When you hear this, what the prospect is saying is I am interested but I am not convinced. You should ask the prospect what specifically about this offer do you want to think over? Your goal here is to uncover the real objection. If the prospect gives you a specific answer, you are in business. Address the objection and ask a closing question. Say if I can handle XYZ, is there any reason why you would not purchase this product. Should the prospect say, no you covered everything, this means that they are either stalling, not interested in your offering, or will not tell you the real issue they have with your product. If this is the case, ask when they plan on making a decision and follow up with them in that time frame.

3. I need to consult another party

This can be a stall to put you off. You will need to determine this by the prospect’s body language and the level of attention you receive. When the prospect tells you this, you should ask for a meeting with the prospect and the person they need to consult. Should the prospect agree to this, you have a chance. If they will not agree to a meeting, it is a stall and they are not interested in your offering. However, I would still call on them a few more times. If you have no success, call on them every two months.

4. I am not the Decision-Maker- The Columbo Technique

During some cold calls to dental offices, I was not able to obtain the information that I needed to overcome prospect objections. This occurred because the person I was speaking to was not the decision-maker. As a result, they were reluctant to talk for fear that they would say the wrong things or give away too much information on their bosses’ business. Despite their reluctance, I would continue to talk with them, build rapport and bond. I would ask to speak to the decision-maker but many times they were not in the office, or the person I was speaking with would not want to disturb them for fear of getting reamed out when I left the office.

When this was the case, I would use the Columbo technique to get the information that I needed. I would turn to leave the office, put my hand on the doorknob and ask who their supplier was or when I could catch the boss. Usually, the person I was speaking with would provide me with a lot of information about the prospect. Even more, than I expected! This is because the person that I was speaking with put their guard down. After all, they thought I was leaving the office so one last question didn’t seem so bad.

During other cold calls, I was able to speak to the decision-maker. I would build rapport with them and try to obtain as much information as I could to overcome their objections. Many times the prospect would be reluctant to give me information; stating that they were happy with their supplier or they were too busy to speak to me. When they used the supplier objection, I would employ the Columbo technique; turn to leave and ask who their supplier was. Many times they would tell me and I would ask them for a few moments of their time to show how my products were better. I would get the time and close the prospect on giving me a trial order. I developed some of my best customers this way. Other times, I was able to obtain a follow-up appointment with the prospect.

The key to the Columbo technique is to get prospects talking. Even if it’s about things not related to their business at first. You want to make them comfortable talking with you. Next, you want to save the question you want to know for the end of the conversation because the prospect will most likely answer it thinking you are going to leave their office. In other words, their guard is down.

The Columbo technique is a great way to close sales and obtain information.

5. Your price is too high.

Emphasize the quality of your product along with the level of service you will provide. Next, you should demonstrate to the prospect how your offering’s total cost is less than the competitors over the life of the product. This is when you can bring up the competition showing how your products are superior in terms of product features and benefits using market research. Testimonials or social proof from loyal customers can also help. By taking these steps you demonstrate that your product is valuable and increase your chances of making the sale. (Provided this is the real objection.)

6. We spent our budget.

If they say the money is not the budget, ask If I can offer delayed billing or a payment plan would you be able to take delivery? If the person needs approval from another person, ask to present your product to that individual with your prospect’s endorsement. Should the company want and need your product, they will find a way to pay for it.

7. I had a bad experience with your company.

I would apologize to the prospect about the experience. Tell them you are the new rep and that you will not let anything bad happen on your watch. Ask them to give you a chance. This will not work all of the time.

8. Call me After the Holidays.

During the holiday season, many people are in holiday and party shopping mode. from Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and many other things. Also, everyone is thinking about going to parties. So the last thing on your customer’s and prospects’ minds is to make a year-end purchase; unless they receive a year-end tax advantage. As a sales rep, you are under pressure to close deals so you can earn that bonus. Unless your customer is in a buying mood, you are going to hear the objection “call me after the holidays”. If you have done business with this customer, you will have an easier time than if you are making a cold call.

To combat this objection. You have to attempt to get around this objection. If your offer is time-sensitive or if you can provide a break on pricing or payment through a special promotion for example no payments for 3 months; make your customer aware of them. However, at this time of the year, you will get customers and prospects who just don’t want to deal with you and your offering. As a sales rep, it is your job to be able to tell if the customer and prospect are telling you the truth. In other words, you need to qualify their objections. This means following up with every customer and prospect even when things look bleak.

Should your customers and prospects insist that call you after the holidays, I would find out which holiday they mean. Next, I would pin them down to a specific day and time to call back. I recommend sending your customers and prospects a holiday card with a little note reminding them about the appointment; stating how you look forward to speaking with them on the specific date and time. Once this time comes, I would hold them to their promise. Deliver your presentation and ask for the business.

Why Customer Objections are Sales Tools

When the Customer does not ask questions about a product or service it demonstrates a lack of interest. Sales objections are sales tools because the customer shows interest by asking questions. These questions allow the Salesperson to build rapport and trust with potential customers. They get to demonstrate their product knowledge and expertise. Without any customer objections or questions, reps have no way to measure their progress during the sales call; making it impossible to pivot. This makes it hard to make sales and build a relationship with the customer.

Why Customer Objections are Marketing Tools

Certain things come up when customers raise objections. Over time, Salespeople will be able to see patterns of this objection. Objections are raised about pricing, bad past experiences, budgeting, being happy with a competitor, and product inferiority. While Reps need to be able to handle objections; if they keep losing the sales for the same reason, they need to share this information with the marketing and product development teams.

How Marketing Can Help Sales

Based on the feedback from Sales, Marketing Teams can Create and improve Sales/Marketing Collateral to address potential objections. Customer objections are Sales and Marketing tools because they provide customer intelligence that can be used to sell more/improve products.

Sales Teams

Sales teams can provide a lot of information about customers, product concerns or issues, and objections they face. They are front-line soldiers that have a direct line to customer intelligence.

Integrating the Sales Team into your Marketing Strategy

Meet with the sales team and encourage them to compile a list of customer complaints, objections, and questions about products that they face. Ask the team to create materials that address these concerns that customers can access. This could take the form of blog posts, PowerPoints FAQs, product demonstrations, and tutorials.

If the sales team feels uncomfortable creating content, they could be interviewed by the marketing department. The marketing department could take content /basic materials, emails from the sales team and polish them up into visually appealing content that customers can access.

Customer Service & Service

Similar to the sales team, your customer service and service teams are front-line soldiers to help customers with issues they face at call centers or through social media. Ask them to write down complaints they get from customers with the answers. These complaints of FAQs could be put up on a website via a PowerPoint presentation, blog, etc… If this is not possible for the team, interview them, collect basic materials, emails, notes and create the content yourself.

The sales and customer success and service team are an important part of a marketing strategy for customer retention. The more products a customer uses from a brand, the less likely they will switch to a competitor. Remember it costs more to obtain new customers than it does to keep existing ones.

Cross-Selling & Up-Selling

Sales, Service and Customer Success teams can also help with cross and up-selling by sharing promotions and new offerings with customers. The Sales and customer service functions of brands are essential to creating a great experience for customers.

This is how brands can integrate Sales and Customer Success and Service teams into their marketing strategy. How are you using content from sales and customer service teams to help your brand retain customers? What are the goals of your brand’s marketing efforts?

Obtaining Testimonials

Once you have made a sale to a customer, it is important to follow up with them. In Sales, it is important to deliver on the promises you make to customers. This means checking in with the customer throughout the implementation of your product or service. Staying in touch with a customer post-sale is also important to earn repeat business and referrals.

As an outside sales representative in New York City, making sales was the highlight of my day. Once I made a sale, I was itching to ask for a referral or a testimonial. In other words, I wanted to ask the customer the question Do you know of anyone who could benefit from my product and services? However, once I made the sale, my inner voice told me not to ask for a referral.

Now many people would want to ask because they feel that the customer bought their products or services and this shows a sign of trust. But what did the customer buy? Yes, the customer bought you and your products but the main thing that they bought was your promise to deliver value through your offering. How can you ask someone to put their credibility on the line when you and your solution are unproven? Yet many people do.

Asking for a referral right after the sale is a mistake because you have not delivered on your promise and you will seem ungrateful. The customer will think that you are not interested in building a relationship and that you just want to make a commission. Remember your job as a Salesperson is to build relationships with customers and to make sales by demonstrating the value of your products to the customer. Once the sale is complete, it is your job to deliver on the promises that you make to your customer.

When to Ask

Now you are thinking well this is great but when do I ask for a referral? How do I ask for a referral?

I would ask the customer for a referral when I know the customer is happy with the implementation of your product or service. In other words, ask when you have delivered on your promise. If you offer more than one product or service try to cross-sell or upsell the customer first. See if the customer will use more of your products or services or if the customer purchases more expensive offerings from you. Once the customer purchases more items from you, the customer is demonstrating that they like and trust you. This is the time to ask for a referral. I usually waited until this point to ask for a referral.

Ask the customer for a referral by thanking them for the business that they have provided. I would then ask if they knew of anyone like themselves that would benefit from my offering. My experience has taught me that customers were always willing to offer themselves as a reference. Customers who offered me a referral would let me use their names with other clients or pass my name along to their peers.

Testimonial Formats

Testimonials are like referrals. Testimonials can come in a variety of forms. There is a testimonial letter and a testimonial video. The testimonial letter is when a customer writes a letter stating that you did a wonderful job for them and endorses you. The digital version of this letter is the recommendation feature on LinkedIn and,/or uploading a letter to your website. The testimonial video is when a client speaks of your performance in a short video segment. This can be done by the sales or marketing team depending on if there are customer advocacy or referral marketers on your team.

When asking for a testimonial, offer the customer the option to choose the option they feel comfortable with. Also, be sure to tell them what specific aspect of your service you want them to focus on. Once you receive a referral and/or testimonial, make sure to thank your customer. Should you get new business through a referral, provide great service otherwise your customer will not give you anymore! Keep your customer informed on the status of the relationship with the referral.

Customer Evangelism

Providing customers with great products and experiences is a great way to get customers to help market your products and services.

Below is an example of how Hyundai used customer marketing & testimonials to roll out Connected Care at the NY Auto Show.

Previously, I wrote an article about what the auto show could teach us about trade show marketing.

Hyundai made one of the best presentations of this particular show. They dared to be different. Instead of the traditional press conference, where journalists sit, take in the information and ask questions post-conference, Hyundai included a Q & A session right into the presentation. The conference was not a conference at all; it was a town hall. John Krafcik, CEO of Hyundai Motor America, used the opportunity to roll out Connected Care. This is a service that allows drivers to get help in case of emergencies. The service also updates owners on the health of their vehicles.

To back up their claims, they had customers provide in-person testimonials of how their lives were saved. One of their customers survived a head-on collision thanks to the service. Unable to contact his family, the service notified them of the customer’s condition. Now that’s a testimonial. If I need a new vehicle, I would strongly consider buying a Hyundai.

The live customer testimonials are worth their weight in gold. Prospects will believe what customers say over any marketing campaigns that brands create. This is a strategy that any business or brand can use. Offer quality products and a great customer experience. Serve customers in this way, and they will be more than happy to share their stories with the world! This is the best kind of advertising that anyone could ask for. Certain customers may even become evangelists.

Customer Appreciation

The easiest way to make sales is to earn referrals and testimonials from your customers. Customers are usually delighted to provide referrals and testimonials for products that work. However, you need to show your appreciation to your customers who put their name and reputation on the line for you.

How you show this appreciation could take many forms. You could bring them baked goods or take them out to dinner. Taking them to a sporting event or concert of their choice is a great way to build your relationship. Find out what type of gift your customers want and try to get for them if it is feasible. Remember to do a good job for your new customer!

Customer Loyalty & Reward Programs

Another thing you could do is to show appreciation is to provide customers a coupon for 15 percent off any item that you sell once their referral has been converted to a sale. I would also provide a thank you note with the coupon. Also, I would develop a point and reward system that encourages your customers to provide you with more referrals. Credit card companies use a rewards and points system when customers make purchases. This can be a model you can copy and implement; depending on your budget. Gift cards can also be an option.

Building Communities

Brands can create online and offline events for loyal customers to reward them. They can also create user groups on social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Slack.

Brand Ambassadors, Referral, Affiliate & Influencer Marketing

Brands can also develop a brand ambassador, referral, and/or affiliate marketing program. Some brands use influencer marketing to help sell and market products. Some influencers are celebrities but some brands use micro-influencers that are known in a particular industry.

Remember, word-of-mouth marketing is a great tool to earn new business. Taking the time to say thank you is well worth the time and effort. Your customers have more weight with your prospects than you do! Let your customers help you earn new business. Your existing customers are one of the best sources of new business. Turn these customers into Apostles.

What Sales and Marketing strategies have you used to: enable sales teams, to make more sales, close more deals, and, open new relationships?

Share your thoughts in the comments.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference. I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

Articles and insights have been featured, mentioned, and, referenced in:

Tractica in the News

The Future of AI

https://medium.com/@DanGalante/the-future-of-ai-insights-from-the-ai-summit-ab6267eca70b

Digital Marketing World Forum

https://www.digitalmarketing-conference.com/key-insights-from-digital-marketing-world-forum-north-america/

Voice Summit

Compilation: Our Favorite Post-VOICE Coverage So Far

https://www.voicesummit.ai/blog/compilation-our-favorite-post-voice-coverage

Engage Bay

7 Steps to Align your Marketing Automation Strategy

https://www.engagebay.com/blog/marketing-automation-strategy/

Relay 42

The Role of Technology in Customer-Centricity

https://relay42.com/resources/blog/the-role-of-technology-in-customer-centricity

Databox

How to Improve Marketing and Sales Alignment (Gave background)

https://databox.com/how-to-improve-sales-marketing-alignment

Onalytica

Named as a Top STEM Influencer for EdTech and Education Industry Insights.

http://www.onalytica.com/blog/posts/stem-top-influencers-brands-publications/

The Arizona Republic

http://yourbusiness.azcentral.com/handle-top-10-sme-sales-objections-24845.html

Twitter Ads Blog

https://blog.twitter.com/2014/how-smartphone-users-engage-on-twitter-three-key-findings

Paper.li’s Wall Of Fame via Scoop.it

http://www.scoop.it/t/all-things-paper-li/?tag=Dan+Galante

I’ve been honored for my Social Profiles

•LinkedIn SSI Score in the Top 1%

•SlideShare for being in the top 5% of profiles viewed in 2014

•LinkedIn Profile was in the top 1% of profiles viewed out of 200 million members in 2012

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing. Reach out to start a conversation on LinkedIn or email me at dan@dangalante.com

Posted 16 weeks ago

Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today

I write about the three topics that I am most passionate about; Sales, Marketing and Social Media. These topics are covered from my experiences in outside sales and marketing. My objective is to use my expertise to help business and the individual.

How Vehicles are Bought & Sold: Trends in the Automotive Industry

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Things are changing in the automotive industry. These changes are from the way vehicles are bought and sold. Vehicle offerings are also different. Vehicles went from gas combustion engines to hybrid vehicles which means a split between gas and electric. Now there is going to be a shift to all-electric vehicles or EVs. The adoption of EVs will accelerate as more charging stations become available.

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Source: Derived registration counts by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Experian Information Solutions https://afdc.energy.gov/data/10861

“This figure illustrates the population breakdown of alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) registered in the United States as of Dec. 31, 2020. Most of the vehicles are flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs), but those generally operate primarily on conventional gasoline. FFVs were produced and sold as a way for vehicle manufacturers to meet their fuel economy requirements. Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) are the second-largest population by fuel type, accounting for 70% of the AFV population when excluding FFVs. Plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) include all-electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), and account for about 30% of the AFV population when excluding FFVs.”

I covered The New York Auto Show which was back after a two-year pause because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year’s auto show had different types of cars, trucks, and SUVs. The show was made up mostly of electronic vehicles and hybrid vehicles. This change is because of changes in the industry and US government policy to improve the environment. Starting in 2026, all gas vehicles will need to get 50 miles to the gallon to be sold in the US. Gas engines are being phased out.  The industry pledges to sell only electric vehicles or EVs by 2035. This is a global trend.

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This is information that came out of the World Traffic Symposium, at the New York Auto Show.

Guest Speakers included:

Jennifer Homendy, Chair, National Transportation Safety Board

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Andrew Wishnia, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Climate Policy, U.S. Department of Transportation

Dr. Steven Cliff, Deputy Administrator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

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David Strickland, Vice President, Global Regulatory Affairs, GM

Mark F. Schroeder, Commissioner, NYS DMV, Governor’s Representative for Highway Safety

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I did a survey on LinkedIn on how people find and buy vehicles. The results are here.

People are buying and selling cars online but many sales are still happening at dealerships.

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According to the New York International Auto Show, here are the demographics of people who attended and bought cars at the auto show over the last 10 years.

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How do you feel about electric vehicles? How do you find and buy vehicles?

Share your thoughts.

Posted 7 weeks ago

Press & Industry Highlights of The 2022 New York Auto Show

The New York Auto Show is back after a two-year pause because of the COVID-19 pandemic. I had the privilege of covering the event over the past two press and industry days at New York’s Jacob Javits Center. It was great to be back. One of the events was hosted in the new Pavilion built at the Javits Center. Mark Schienberg, President of the Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association  opens the Auto Show at the awards breakfast.

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I want to congratulate Audi, Hyundai and Mercedes for winning world car awards.

The Hyundai Ioniq 5 wins a World Car award at #NYIAS 2022!


There was a shift in the type of cars, trucks, and SUVs at the auto show. This year the show was made up mostly of electronic vehicles and hybrid vehicles. This change is because of changes in the industry and US government policy to improve the environment. They pledge to sell only electric vehicles or EV’s by 2035. This is a global trend. This is information that came out of the World Traffic Symposium, which was held yesterday.


The show was based on two levels and there were three EV test tracks where drivers could drive Electronic Vehicles. This is a fun exhibit that I recommend that you experience. Ford had one and Hyundai had one. There was an additional track on the lower level where you could see more hybrid cars, trucks, and SUVs. You can also see EV Charging stations on the lower level. For kids not old enough to drive, they also had arcade-style racing games. There is something for everyone at the show. Here is a new Corvette!

 You can find additional pictures posted on Instagram.


There were also some new vehicle role-outs and major press announcements from KIA, Hyundai, Chrysler, and Jeep. You can see them below.

Kia   


Hyundai


Chrysler


Jeep 


The show is open to the public starting today at the Jacob Javits Center located at 429 11th Avenue New York, New York 10001. How to get to Auto Show.  The Auto Show runs from Friday, April 15th, through April 24th, 2022.  The hours are as follows Monday - Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm and Sundays from 10 am to 7 pm.  General admission tickets are $17 for adults and $ 7 for children. If you want early access for this Friday or Saturday tickets are $45 for adults and $7 for children.  Tickets can be purchased here.

What are you hoping to see at the auto show? If you have attended the auto show, what was the most exciting thing that you have experienced?

Posted 10 weeks ago

How to use Marketing to Build a Top Talent & Employer Brand

Brands use Marketing to increase sales, and revenue, and to beat the competition. While this is a great strategy, a brand is only as good as its talent. Yes, brands compete to get and keep customers; but they are also competing to get and keep great talent. For brands to grow, they need great talent in every function of the business.

According to LinkedIn, “the number of global members who changed their jobs on LinkedIn was up 54% year over year. For context, those numbers typically hover between 0 and 5%. “

For brands to be able to attract top talent, they need to be a desired place to work. To be a desired place to work, they need to understand what motivates their employees. While this will vary by industry and company size there are similar things that many employees seek. These include:

1. Feeling valued for their contributions

2. Freedom to do interesting work and solve intriguing problems

3. Fair and competitive compensation including incentive and performance pay, perks, and other employer benefits

4. A fun place to work with activities to bond with co-workers

5. Training and advancement opportunities

6. Work-Life Balance

7. Flexible-working conditions ie work from home, remote work, hybrid work, or onsite for those who want to be in the office

If these things listed above are in place, brands are on the right track to building a great talented brand provided their product offerings are solid.

Getting employees excited about coming to work each day will increase the talent pool by generating word of mouth. When people have something good they tell their friends.

Beyond the offline word of mouth, Brands need to own their identity online by in-sourcing their online and offline assets. This starts with their websites, digital properties, and the collateral used to sell their offerings. With talent branding and employer branding, brands are selling prospective employees the idea of applying and working for their company. This is similar to marketing their commercial offerings to potential customers.

Brands will need to conduct market research to understand who their competitors are and where they stack up in the talent market. Compensation, company culture, intelligence from applicants.

Information from this research can be used to develop a positioning strategy that can be applied to the talent brand and employer brand.

Every brand should have a career page on its website because this will reduce recruiting costs. This page should include the following:

  1. Pictures of employees from each function with a short bio and why they chose to work at the brand
  2. Employer Benefits and Perks offered
  3. Authentic Stories on Company Culture
  4. An application that is easy to fill out. i.e greenhouse.io or a form with a file for a cover letter and resume Greenhouse can be linked with LinkedIn
  5. Social Sharing buttons for job postings

Company LinkedIn pages

In addition to sales, product, and content marketing, brands should use their LinkedIn page for talent and employer branding. Some companies’ talent and employer branding strategy are to post jobs on LinkedIn hoping candidates will apply. This is a missed opportunity to sell active and passive candidates on why they should work for your company. Today, candidates have many places they can work.

Things to include in a LinkedIn page

  1. Pictures of employees from each function with a short bio and why they chose to work at the brand
  2. Employer Benefits and Perks offered
  3. Stories on company culture
  4. An application that is easy to fill out. i.e greenhouse.io Indeed, Glassdoor, or a form with a file for a cover letter and resume Greenhouse can be linked with LinkedIn.
  5. Social Sharing buttons for job postings

Creating Engaging Job descriptions

The function head, Marketing, and HR need to collaborate to write job descriptions that convince applicants to apply, similar to copy-writing for commercial offerings.

Creating a Great Candidate Experience

Providing candidates with a great recruiting experience is key. Everything should be transparent to candidates. At the end of the recruiting process, it is important to solicit candidate feedback to refine and hone your recruiting process.

New Hire Onboarding and Reducing Turnover

Make sure new hires feel welcome and are trained properly coordinating with the managers and functional heads of each department because roles had different needs and requirements for success.

Empowering and providing incentives to employees

Encourage employees to share company content and jobs on LinkedIn. Also, encourage employee referrals with incentives for referrals that are hired.

If you are not happy with the amounts of applications post the jobs on LinkedIn and Indeed to widen the applicant pools. Niche site may work as well.

This is how to use Marketing to build a great Talent Brand.

Who is hiring?

I surveyed my audience of Recruiters and Hiring Managers to which roles are they hiring.

Based on the answers Sales is the highest at 50 %.

Specific data on top jobs in demand can be found here.

How have you used marketing to build your talent and employer brand?

Share your thoughts.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: https://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference.

I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing.

Open on title, industry, company, location, and level. Reach out on LinkedIn or at dan@dangalante.com to start a conversation.

Brands use Marketing to increase sales, and revenue, and to beat the competition. While this is a great strategy, a brand is only as good as its talent. Yes, brands compete to get and keep customers; but they are also competing to get and keep great talent. For brands to grow, they need great talent in every function of the business.

According to LinkedIn, “the number of global members who changed their jobs on LinkedIn was up 54% year over year. For context, those numbers typically hover between 0 and 5%. “

For brands to be able to attract top talent, they need to be a desired place to work. To be a desired place to work, they need to understand what motivates their employees. While this will vary by industry and company size there are similar things that many employees seek. These include:

1. Feeling valued for their contributions

2. Freedom to do interesting work and solve intriguing problems

3. Fair and competitive compensation including incentive and performance pay, perks, and other employer benefits

4. A fun place to work with activities to bond with co-workers

5. Training and advancement opportunities

6. Work-Life Balance

7. Flexible-working conditions ie work from home, remote work, hybrid work, or onsite for those who want to be in the office.

If these things listed above are in place, brands are on the right track to building a great talented brand provided their product offerings are solid.

Getting employees excited about coming to work each day will increase the talent pool by generating word of mouth. When people have something good they tell their friends.

Beyond the offline word of mouth, Brands need to own their identity online by in-sourcing their online and offline assets. This starts with their websites, digital properties, and the collateral used to sell their offerings. With talent branding and employer branding, brands are selling prospective employees the idea of applying and working for their company. This is similar to marketing their commercial offerings to potential customers.

Brands will need to conduct market research to understand who their competitors are and where they stack up in the talent market. Compensation, company culture, intelligence from applicants.

Information from this research can be used to develop a positioning strategy that can be applied to the talent brand and employer brand.

Every brand should have a career page on its website because this will reduce recruiting costs. This page should include the following:

  1. Pictures of employees from each function with a short bio and why they chose to work at the brand
  2. Employer Benefits and Perks offered
  3. Authentic Stories on Company Culture
  4. An application that is easy to fill out. i.e greenhouse.io or a form with a file for a cover letter and resume Greenhouse can be linked with LinkedIn.
  5. Social Sharing buttons for job postings

Company LinkedIn pages

In addition to sales, product, and content marketing, brands should use their LinkedIn page for talent and employer branding. Some companies’ talent and employer branding strategy are to post jobs on LinkedIn hoping candidates will apply. This is a missed opportunity to sell active and passive candidates on why they should work for your company. Today, candidates have many places they can work.

Things to include in a LinkedIn page

  1. Pictures of employees from each function with a short bio and why they chose to work at the brand
  2. Employer Benefits and Perks offered
  3. Stories on company culture
  4. An application that is easy to fill out. i.e greenhouse.io Indeed, Glassdoor, or a form with a file for a cover letter and resume Greenhouse can be linked with LinkedIn.
  5. Social Sharing buttons for job postings

Creating Engaging Job descriptions

The function head, Marketing, and HR need to collaborate to write job descriptions that convince applicants to apply, similar to copy-writing for commercial offerings.

Creating a Great Candidate Experience

Providing candidates with a great recruiting experience is key. Everything should be transparent to candidates. At the end of the recruiting process, it is important to solicit candidate feedback to refine and hone your recruiting process.

New Hire Onboarding and Reducing Turnover.

Make sure new hires feel welcome and are trained properly coordinating with the managers and functional heads of each department because roles had different needs and requirements for success.

Empowering and providing incentives to employees

Encourage employees to share company content and jobs on LinkedIn. Also, encourage employee referrals with incentives for referrals that are hired.

If you are not happy with the amounts of applications post the jobs on LinkedIn and Indeed to widen the applicant pools. Niche site may work as well.

This is how to use Marketing to build a great Talent Brand.

Who is hiring?

I surveyed my audience of Recruiters and Hiring Managers to which roles are they hiring.

Based on the answers Sales is the highest at 50 %.

Specific data on top jobs in demand can be found here.

How have you used marketing to build your talent and employer brand?

Share your thoughts.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: https://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference.

I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing.

Open on title, industry, company, location, and level. Reach out on LinkedIn or at dan@dangalante.com to start a conversation.

Posted 11 weeks ago

How Free, Low-Cost Trials & Loss Leaders increase Sales & Customer Loyalty

Free or Low-Cost Trials

When creating a new offering, I would offer a free or low-cost trial of your product to both end-users and industry experts. Consumers look for social proof before they buy a product. If the product is new, then none exists. To lower buyer resistance, you need to make the buyer feel comfortable about their purchase. Offering free or low-cost trials of your product is a great way to build trust and gather feedback. You can conduct market research and product testing using surveys to ask potential customers about their experience.

If your product helps to solve a customer’s problem, they will be happy to share it with others; increasing the chance of converting prospects into paying users. Product testimonials and endorsements help to address product reliability and usability. Customer testimonials build loyalty, brand recognition, and sales for your product.

Loss Leaders

If free or low-cost trials are not something that you can offer, you can use loss leaders. A loss leader is when you offer a product at a loss or break-even point to gain future business. Supermarkets and e-commerce businesses do this when a new product is rolled out.

Another place I saw loss leaders was in dental field sales. Certain customers were loyal to certain types of equipment. When I asked why, they said that these were the tools they used in school and they were comfortable using them. As a result, they did not want to switch. When I called on dental schools and hospitals, I found they were in contract with larger competitors. My larger competitors sold the equipment at cost; practically giving it away. Why would they do this? My competitors were creating life-long customers trained on certain tools who refused to switch.

Connection, trust, and advocacy are essential for customer acquisition. It is your job to turn your customer base into evangelists.

Free, low-cost trials and loss leaders help to increase sales and customer loyalty. The decision on where to offer a trial or use a loss leader is dependent on the specific product, business, and industry.

How have you used trials or loss leaders?

Share your thoughts.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: https://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference.

I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing.

Open on title, industry, company, location, and level. Reach out on LinkedIn or at dan@dangalante.com to start a conversation.

Posted 13 weeks ago

Product, Content & Customer Marketing Strategies to Market New Product Features on Social Channels

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Here are questions I would ask and actions I would take to market new product features on social media.

I would ask:

What is your feedback for each of the new product features?

I would collaborate with the Product Team during beta testing interviewing customers to gather feedback on new features using information obtained to develop blogs and other messaging. Also, I would ask customers to provide testimonials about the new features using them in social media campaigns.

How would you gain additional customer insights?

I would survey customers about their learning style, content format, and social network preferences. This data would be used in conjunction with my social media research conducted using social listening and analytics. Based on data from the survey, I would decide which social channels to use and the type of content to develop.

Which social platforms would I use?

I would use a blog, Email, LinkedIn, Slideshare Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube platforms to educate customers about new offerings focusing on the channels where my target market congregates. I would find this information by asking my customers, Which channels do customers use when making purchasing decisions?

With what I learned, what might my campaign look like?

The campaign would revolve around a series of social posts based on customer feedback. Social posts would include customer testimonials obtained from beta testing and videos of customers using the new features. I would use the videos to build anticipation and announce the new features.

Are there any other social strategies you would employ?

I would attend industry events and interview industry experts. Also, I would create a group to reward loyal customers by building an evangelist program where customers would tell their friends.

How have you marketed new product features to current and prospective customers?

Feel free to comment and share.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference.

I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing.

Open on title, industry, company, location, and level. Reach out on LinkedIn or at dan@dangalante.com to start a conversation.

Posted 14 weeks ago

The Reasons People use Marketing & The Challenges & Priorities of Marketers

I asked my LinkedIn audience If the Sales and Marketing function merged and run by Sales, What would be your main focus? Why?

image

As you can see, 68% of those surveyed said that increased lead generation and demand generation was a top priority. What this means is that people see Marketing as a vehicle to increase Sales and Revenue.

Marketing also serves as an Enablement for Sales Teams, Customer Success, support, and even employer branding. Many companies have created a dedicated enablement function. Companies sit employer branding and Recruitment Marketing in HR. However, there are still a lot of companies without dedicated enablement and employer branding functions.

Everyone looks to the marketing department. The lines between product, marketing, sales, and customer success are blurring. Marketers need to be able to serve different parts of the organization.

Marketers do traditional work of branding, advertising, market research, content creation, and enablement, but these tasks support the larger goal of increased Sales and Revenue. Marketers impact Sales by filling up the Sales pipeline, pre, and post-sale. In the end, Marketers need to make a business case to justify their existence.

Why do People use Marketing?

People use Marketing for different reasons and they have different sets of challenges concerning the Marketing they do. I conducted two surveys of my LinkedIn audience.

I asked the following:

1. What do you hope to gain from your marketing efforts?

image

Based on the survey, most people want the marketing mix of brand awareness, leads, sales, and revenue in exchange for their marketing efforts.

2. What is your biggest marketing challenge? Why?

image

Based on survey findings, 56 percent of people use Marketing for a mix of brand awareness, lead generation, and revenue. In terms of Marketing challenges, 70 percent said that Content Marketing was the biggest.

What should be the main priorities of Marketers? What do you hope to gain from your marketing? What is your biggest marketing challenge?

Share your thoughts.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference.

I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing.

Open on title, industry, company, location, and level. Reach out on LinkedIn or at dan@dangalante.com to start a conversation.

Posted 14 weeks ago

Strategies to Gain Market Share with Tech & EdTech Products & How & Why People Buy

During my time in field sales, I wanted to obtain the business of Dental Schools and Hospitals. After obtaining meetings and making presentations to prominent Dentists, I was informed that they could not buy from me. After handling objections, showing how my offerings were better than the competition, I found out why. The decision-makers explained that they were under contract with large manufacturers and distributors.

These competitors offered deep discounts to Dental Schools so their students would get comfortable using their products. When students would become licensed Dentists, they would use the products they trained on instead of the competitors. These competitors built lifelong customer loyalty.

When I called on certain Dentists, they said they liked a particular company’s product. I asked them why they liked the product and would they consider switching for something comparable with faster service. The Dentists said no saying that they learned on particular equipment in Dental School and it was the only thing they felt comfortable using.

The Technology Life Cycle

image

Image via

http://www.matthewsonmarketing.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/chap-1-fig-2-geoffrey-moore-tech-adopt-curve1.png?w=580

Geoffrey Moore discusses the Technology life cycle in Crossing the Chasm.

Dental manufacturers and large distributors used pricing to target the Innovators/Early adopters/which in this case was the dental students and hospitals. To increase market share, they offered discounted pricing in exchange for purchase and long service contracts. These manufacturers and distributors succeeded in targeting dental students right before they would become customers; earning them years of customer loyalty.

Here is how this SAAS marketing program could be executed on the Technology Life cycle curve.

Innovators Preparation Programs

Offer Preparation programs discounted pricing and free trials to try the product.

Have Pre-service Professionals get comfortable using the product.

Early Adopters Early Career Professionals

Offer them free trials and a lower discount.

Early/Late Majority Seasoned Professionals

Offer Trials and discounts to targeted staff and managers

Laggards Senior Staff Members

Continue to innovate the product and messaging to show how the product is being used.

Obtain Testimonials from satisfied staff and managers.

Show how the product exceeds competitors.

When appropriate, offer free and discounted trials to all appropriate prospects.

This is how Tech companies can improve their market share and generate life-long customer loyalty.

Tech Companies have the chance to improve business and generate life-long customer loyalty. This opportunity can be seized by offering discounted pricing and free trials to Innovators/Early Adopters which in this case are the preparation programs.

How this applies to EdTech & E-Learning

This strategy can be applied to the EdTech/E-Learning market because many companies serve this space but only a few companies dominate the market. The opportunity to target Innovators/Early adopters as I described above presents itself as the United States Department of Education is asking for Education Technology to be embedded into K-12 teacher preparation programs.

image
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EdTech/E-Learning companies have the chance to improve the Teaching profession and generate life-long customer loyalty. This opportunity can be seized by offering discounted pricing and free trials to Innovators/Early Adopters which in this case are the teacher preparation programs.

Here is how this marketing program could be executed on the Technology Life cycle curve.

Innovators Teacher Preparation programs

Offer Teacher Preparation programs discounted pricing and free trials to try the product.

Have Pre-service Teachers/Admins get comfortable using the product

Early Adopters Rookie Teachers/Admins

Offer them free trials and a lower discount.

Early/Late Majority Seasoned Teachers/Admins

Offer Trials and discounts to targeted staff and Administrators, Lead Teachers, and Instructional Coaches.

Laggards Senior Staff Members

Continue to innovate the product and messaging to show how the product is being used.

Obtain Testimonials from satisfied Teachers and Administrators

Show how the product exceeds competitors.

This is how EdTech/E-Learning companies can improve the Teaching profession and generate life-long customer loyalty.

What EdTech/E-Learning product do you want to try?

Additional Market Research

Why & How People Buy Tech

When marketing and selling a tech product or service, it is important to ask two questions to understand your buyers.

1. What motivates people to buy a tech product or service?

2. How do people find a tech product or service to buy?

I surveyed my LinkedIn audience for answers.

1. What motivates people to buy a tech product or service?

People buy a technology product or service for many reasons.

2. How do people find a tech product or service to buy?

People find and buy technology products or services in different ways.

How Buyers Find EdTech & E-Learning Products & Solutions

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I asked my audience how they find Education Technology products and solutions. According to a survey I conducted on LinkedIn, 58% used google, viewed product demos, and read reviews. Next was Social Media and word of mouth at 33%. This suggests that the education technology buying cycles are customer-centric. A great product demo is only as good as product reviews, word of mouth, and the customer experience for established brands. Only 8 % found products from seller-centric activities such as seller calls emails and catalogs. Customers are educating themselves and seeking out sellers at the end of the buying process, not the beginning.

When marketing and selling an EdTech or tech product or service, it is important to ask two questions to understand your buyers.

1. What motivates people to buy your tech product or service?

2. How do people find a tech product or service to buy?

These findings suggest businesses need to create customer-centric offerings to survive in a competitive marketplace. Answering these questions will help businesses develop, create, and, position offerings people want to purchase.

Why & How People Buy In General

When marketing and selling a product or service, it is important to ask two questions to understand your buyers.

1. What motivates people to buy a product or service?

2. How do people find a product or service to buy?

1. What motivates people to buy a product or service?

image

People buy a product or service for many reasons.

2. How do people find a product or service to buy?

image

People find and buy products or services in different ways.

These findings suggest businesses need to create customer-centric offerings to survive in a competitive marketplace.

Answering these questions will help businesses develop, create, and, position offerings people want to purchase.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference. I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

Articles and insights have been featured, mentioned, and, referenced in:

Tractica in the News

The Future of AI

https://medium.com/@DanGalante/the-future-of-ai-insights-from-the-ai-summit-ab6267eca70b

Digital Marketing World Forum

https://www.digitalmarketing-conference.com/key-insights-from-digital-marketing-world-forum-north-america/

Voice Summit

Compilation: Our Favorite Post-VOICE Coverage So Far

https://www.voicesummit.ai/blog/compilation-our-favorite-post-voice-coverage

Engage Bay

7 Steps to Align your Marketing Automation Strategy

https://www.engagebay.com/blog/marketing-automation-strategy/

Relay 42

The Role of Technology in Customer-Centricity

https://relay42.com/resources/blog/the-role-of-technology-in-customer-centricity

Databox

How to Improve Marketing and Sales Alignment (Gave background)

https://databox.com/how-to-improve-sales-marketing-alignment

Onalytica

Named as a Top STEM Influencer for EdTech and Education Industry Insights.

http://www.onalytica.com/blog/posts/stem-top-influencers-brands-publications/

The Arizona Republic

http://yourbusiness.azcentral.com/handle-top-10-sme-sales-objections-24845.html

Twitter Ads Blog

https://blog.twitter.com/2014/how-smartphone-users-engage-on-twitter-three-key-findings

Paper.li’s Wall Of Fame via Scoop.it

http://www.scoop.it/t/all-things-paper-li/?tag=Dan+Galante

I’ve been honored for my Social Profiles

•LinkedIn SSI Score in the Top 1%

•SlideShare for being in the top 5% of profiles viewed in 2014

•LinkedIn Profile was in the top 1% of profiles viewed out of 200 million members in 2012

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing. Reach out to start a conversation on LinkedIn or email me at dan@dangalante.com

Posted 15 weeks ago

Steps to Create Engaging Customer-Centered Sales & Marketing Presentations & Content-Based on Buyer Learning Styles

Creating content that engages customers is key.

Survey Results

I surveyed my LinkedIn Audience to ask which types of content help them to learn best and what type of content they value most.

As you can see, people learn best from a mix of written, video, audio, and content formats.

Of the types of content, people want to read, many want to read industry insights, how-to, insights from conferences, and a mix of all of the above.

Based on my findings, I would recommend that content be:

1.Created and repurposed in multiple formats

2.Content is about industry insights, how-to, and insights from conferences

In other words, how do buyers learn best?

There are three learning styles, Visual, Auditory, and kinesthetic. 65 percent of learners are Visual but this is not everyone.

In the presentation below, I provide ideas and strategies to:

1.Collect information on your buyer’s learning style

2.Create presentations and content that will engage buyers with content that is optimized to their learning style making it more engaging

3. Create differentiated presentations and content for all learners when buyer learning styles are unknown

How to Customize Presentations & content to Buyer learning Styles

from

Dan Galante

Content Creation

High-quality content created on a blog or newsletters has amazing potential to be shared, increasing readership. However, just creating content; sharing it in its original form on many channels multiple times will continue to yield diminishing results. Results are diminishing because Social Networks and the blog-sphere are bombarded with content. As a result, quality content will be overlooked. Now if you are reading this confused about what to do next, relax you are not alone. When I started blogging I thought the very same thing. Here is where content repurposing can help.

Creating Channels for Content

However, before content can be repurposed, channels to share the content must be established in addition to a blog and LinkedIn. These additional channels that you create will ensure that your content reaches a broader audience which increases opportunities for social sharing. I would start by creating accounts on other social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Slideshare.

Rewriting/Repurposing a Blog article

Blogs and Newsletters can be republished on additional platforms. For example, I publish my content on WordPress, Tumblr, Medium, LinkedIn, Anchor, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram.

The Title of the republished blog

The first I would do is to change the wording of the title or put the title in the form of a question. Putting the title in the form of a question invites the audience to weigh in.

Your title should reflect the topic that you are writing about while being engaging to readers. Most people skim the headlines as they are overloaded with content.

Additional popular titles and content ideas include:

How to’s,

1.lists ex 7 ways to _______

2.Ask Me Anything/ Questions and Answers

3.What I learned

4.Trends in

5.Newsjacking a story with your analysis

6 Coverage of industry events sharing trends and insights

7.Interviews with Industry leaders

Calls to Action

A great call to action would be: feel free to comment, or ask a question of the reader at the end of the post. Other calls to action could be a link to a website, landing page, content, etc… using words like learn more, read more, see a demo, contact us to name a few.

By having a call to action to comment, readers are more likely to start a discussion and share the content. It is important to talk with your audience and not at them.

SEO tags Keywords

Make sure to pick keywords that reflect your topic. LinkedIn, WordPress, and Tumblr allow users to include as many as they would like while Medium’s platform allows only five.

Images

Make sure when you upload an image that it reflects what your post is about.

About the Author section

I would add an about the author section at the bottom of each article. This is another great way to showcase the author’s expertise; incorporating a call to action such as: see how we can help or click here to sign up for a free demo.

Repurposing Formats beyond a blog

The contents of the article can be put into different formats such as a PowerPoint, YouTube video, ebook, whitepaper, newsletter, publication, and Podcast. All of these formats can be uploaded to SlideShare. The article can be published to LinkedIn’s publishing platform as well. Your article can also be written having presentations and videos embedded in the article itself. Content can be cross-promoted across content and social channels, in calls to action; embedded, and in links. There are endless ways to repurpose content.

The overall content strategy should be based on how your customers learn and the types and format of content based on their wants and needs.

Another key element to creating both customer-centered presentations and digital content is knowledge of buyer learning styles.

Customer-Centered Sales & Marketing Presentations

Developing Your Presentation

When you start to develop your presentation, it is important to know your prospects’ business. It is imperative to know your products and services; specifically how the prospect can benefit from them. As a salesperson, it is your responsibility to uncover what the prospects’ needs are. The next thing that has to be done is to know how your company and your products compare to the competition.

 How do buyers learn best?

There are three learning styles, Visual, Auditory, and kinesthetic. 65 percent of learners are Visual but this is not everyone.

How to Customize Presentations & content to Buyer learning Styles

from

Dan Galante

Product Knowledge

Product knowledge is a must. (You should also know what motivates the prospect to buy.) Based on whom your prospect is currently using as a supplier, you can use this information to show how you are better than whom they are currently using. Only after you have done this research are you ready to move forward.

Preventing Objections

Make sure the sales and marketing content in your presentation is thorough and can answer as many questions as possible. Your goal is to prevent objections and questions by prospects by covering them in your presentation.

Testimonials

Make sure to have testimonials from loyal customers with you. (Many times prospects will ask who else you have worked with before considering you.) Make sure to include product specifications and an ROI analysis if the product you are selling is a big-ticket item.

Practice

You should also practice your presentation to make sure it sounds polished. Get your manager and colleagues to watch your presentation and critique it. Filming yourself and watching your presentation will help you improve.

Remember to not be nervous and to convey your enthusiasm through your tone of voice and body language. Do not cross your arms and make sure to make eye contact with your prospect. Make sure to speak slowly, clearly, and in a loud voice.

Delivering Your Presentation

Your presentation should include a demonstration of your product whenever possible. You should coordinate with your prospect to make sure there is a projector available if you are going to use visual aids. Also if you are going to use PowerPoint or any visual aids, make sure to use them only when necessary to supplement your presentation. Remember you are conducting the presentation, not the visual aids.

Customer/Prospect Engagement: Making the Presentation Customer Centered

Make it a point to get prospects involved in your presentation. It is about engaging your prospect. Have them plug things in, play with the buttons, etc… You want the prospect to develop an attachment with your product. Presenting in a way that prospects feel comfortable learning and processing information.

How do buyers learn best?

There are three learning styles, Visual, Auditory, and kinesthetic. 65 percent of learners are Visual but this is not everyone.

Handling Objections & Stalls from Prospects

In sales, everyone has to be able to overcome objections to be successful. The best way to overcome objections is to prevent them. This can be done by providing a thorough sales presentation that covers all the information about your products and services. Also, you must address any questions the prospect has immediately. However, objections will come up from time to time. Some of these objections are real buying signals and others are just stalls to put you off. As a Salesperson, you need to be able to tell the difference.

1.I am happy with my current supplier.

When you call on a prospect they say we are happy with our current supplier, this can mean one of two things. The first is that they are truly happy and the second is that they want you to get lost. (A stall) You need to be able to tell the difference. You should be able to tell by a prospect’s body language and level of attention.

If it is the first scenario, you should find out what supplier they currently use. When the prospect tells you it is your job to demonstrate how you are better. Once you feel that you have demonstrated how you are better, ask for a commitment or small order. By asking for small order, you provide the prospect an opportunity to take a chance on you with minimal risk. I have had a lot of success with this approach.

If the scenario is the second one, the prospect will not provide you with any information or say that they deal with a company or person for 20 years and they do not want to change. In this case, I would still ask for the order. Should the prospect say he is not interested again, I would thank them for their time and leave. You should call on this prospect a few more times and then only call on them every two months. You need to focus your time on prospects that are receptive to you and your offering.

2.I want to think it over.

When you hear this, what the prospect is saying is I am interested but I am not convinced. You should ask the prospect what specifically about this offer do you want to think over? Your goal here is to uncover the real objection. If the prospect gives you a specific answer, you are in business. Address the objection and ask a closing question. Say if I can handle XYZ, is there any reason why you would not purchase this product. Should the prospect say, no you covered everything, this means that they are either stalling, not interested in your offering, or will not tell you the real issue they have with your product. If this is the case, ask when they plan on making a decision and follow up with them in that time frame.

3. I need to consult another party.

This can be a stall to put you off. You will need to determine this by the prospect’s body language and the level of attention you receive. When the prospect tells you this, you should ask for a meeting with the prospect and the person they need to consult. Should the prospect agree to this, you have a chance. If they will not agree to a meeting, it is a stall and they are not interested in your offering. However, I would still call on them a few more times. If you have no success, call on them every two months.


4. I am not the Decision-Maker. — The Columbo Technique

During some cold calls to dental offices, I was not able to obtain the information that I needed to overcome prospect objections. This occurred because the person I was speaking to was not the decision-maker. As a result, they were reluctant to talk for fear that they would say the wrong things or give away too much information on their bosses’ business. Despite their reluctance, I would continue to talk with them, build rapport and bond. I would ask to speak to the decision-maker but many times they were not in the office, or the person I was speaking with would not want to disturb them for fear of getting reamed out when I left the office.

When this was the case, I would use the Columbo technique to get the information that I needed. I would turn to leave the office, put my hand on the doorknob and ask who their supplier was or when I could catch the boss. Usually, the person I was speaking with would provide me with a lot of information about the prospect. Even more, than I expected! This is because the person that I was speaking with put their guard down. After all, they thought I was leaving the office so one last question didn’t seem so bad.

During other cold calls, I was able to speak to the decision-maker. I would build rapport with them and try to obtain as much information as I could to overcome their objections. Many times the prospect would be reluctant to give me information; stating that they were happy with their supplier or they were too busy to speak to me. When they used the supplier objection, I would employ the Columbo technique; turn to leave and ask who their supplier was. Many times they would tell me and I would ask them for a few moments of their time to show how my products were better. I would get the time and close the prospect on giving me a trial order. I developed some of my best customers this way. Other times, I was able to obtain a follow-up appointment with the prospect.

The key to the Columbo technique is to get prospects talking. Even if it’s about things not related to their business at first. You want to make them comfortable talking with you. Next, you want to save the question you want to know for the end of the conversation because the prospect will most likely answer it thinking you are going to leave their office. In other words, their guard is down.

The Columbo technique is a great way to close sales and obtain information.

  1. Your price is too high.

Emphasize the quality of your product along with the level of service you will provide. Next, you should demonstrate to the prospect how your offering’s total cost is less than the competitors over the life of the product. This is when you can bring up the competition showing how your products are superior in terms of product features and benefits using market research. Testimonials or social proof from loyal customers can also help. By taking these steps you demonstrate that your product is valuable and increase your chances of making the sale. (Provided this is the real objection.)

5. We spent our budget.

If they say the money is not the budget, ask If I can offer delayed billing or a payment plan would you be able to take delivery? If the person needs approval from another person, ask to present your product to that individual with your prospect’s endorsement. Should the company want and need your product, they will find a way to pay for it.

6. I had a bad experience with your company.

I would apologize to the prospect about the experience. Tell them you are the new rep and that you will not let anything bad happen on your watch. Ask them to give you a chance. This will not work all of the time.

7. Call me After the Holidays.

During the holiday season, many people are in holiday and party shopping mode. from Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and many other things. Also, everyone is thinking about going to parties. So the last thing on your customer’s and prospects’ minds is to make a year-end purchase; unless they receive a year-end tax advantage. As a sales rep, you are under pressure to close deals so you can earn that bonus. Unless your customer is in a buying mood, you are going to hear the objection “call me after the holidays”. If you have done business with this customer, you will have an easier time than if you are making a cold call.

To combat this objection. You have to attempt to get around this objection. If your offer is time-sensitive or if you can provide a break on pricing or payment through a special promotion for example no payments for 3 months; make your customer aware of them. However, at this time of the year, you will get customers and prospects who just don’t want to deal with you and your offering. As a sales rep, it is your job to be able to tell if the customer and prospect are telling you the truth. In other words, you need to qualify their objections. This means following up with every customer and prospect even when things look bleak.

Should your customers and prospects insist that call you after the holidays, I would find out which holiday they mean. Next, I would pin them down to a specific day and time to call back. I recommend sending your customers and prospects a holiday card with a little note reminding them about the appointment; stating how you look forward to speaking with them on the specific date and time. Once this time comes, I would hold them to their promise. Deliver your presentation and ask for the business.

Post Presentation Follow up

After you leave, be sure to follow up with a hand-written thank you note. Even if you did not make the sale, it is important to be grateful to the prospect for their time. You want to stay in front of the prospect because things always change. There is always a next time!

How do you create sales and marketing content and presentations?

Share your strategy and ideas in the comments.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference. I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

Articles and insights have been featured, mentioned, and, referenced in:

Tractica in the News

The Future of AI

https://medium.com/@DanGalante/the-future-of-ai-insights-from-the-ai-summit-ab6267eca70b

Digital Marketing World Forum

https://www.digitalmarketing-conference.com/key-insights-from-digital-marketing-world-forum-north-america/

Voice Summit

Compilation: Our Favorite Post-VOICE Coverage So Far

https://www.voicesummit.ai/blog/compilation-our-favorite-post-voice-coverage

Engage Bay

7 Steps to Align your Marketing Automation Strategy

https://www.engagebay.com/blog/marketing-automation-strategy/

Relay 42

The Role of Technology in Customer-Centricity

https://relay42.com/resources/blog/the-role-of-technology-in-customer-centricity

Databox

How to Improve Marketing and Sales Alignment (Gave background)

https://databox.com/how-to-improve-sales-marketing-alignment

Onalytica

Named as a Top STEM Influencer for EdTech and Education Industry Insights.

http://www.onalytica.com/blog/posts/stem-top-influencers-brands-publications/

The Arizona Republic

http://yourbusiness.azcentral.com/handle-top-10-sme-sales-objections-24845.html

Twitter Ads Blog

https://blog.twitter.com/2014/how-smartphone-users-engage-on-twitter-three-key-findings

Paper.li’s Wall Of Fame via Scoop.it

http://www.scoop.it/t/all-things-paper-li/?tag=Dan+Galante

I’ve been honored for my Social Profiles

•LinkedIn SSI Score in the Top 1%

•SlideShare for being in the top 5% of profiles viewed in 2014

•LinkedIn Profile was in the top 1% of profiles viewed out of 200 million members in 2012

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing. Reach out to start a conversation on LinkedIn or email me at dan@dangalante.com

Posted 15 weeks ago

How to use Market Research, Competitive Intelligence, Customer Marketing, & Product Marketing to Product Increase Sales

Before businesses can sell anything, they need to determine if there is a market for their products and services.

Most businesses will not necessarily be creating new product categories. As a result, they will be entering into a marketplace that already exists. This is true if you are a re-seller or distributor of products and services. Once you decide that there is a market for your products and services; you need to study your competitors.

image

Smartsheet.com template

You can see who your competitors are by doing internet research, reading trade publications, and attending industry trade shows. On the internet, you can view your competitors’ websites. Once you have all of this information you need to determine the sales, and marketing channels that you will use to sell your product. Are you going to sell products via a website, direct mail, social media marketing, retail space, trade shows, or a direct sales force? There are many options available to you.

Knowing who could use your product is also something important to consider. If you do not have any existing customers you will need to be the Sales rep for your business to get yourself set up in the marketplace.

To be able to make an effective Sales Presentation to a customer, you will need to compile your Marketing research in competitive analysis and intelligence chart.

You will need to perform a SWOT analysis by assessing your strengths and weaknesses, opportunities, threats compared to your competitors on the products you offer, the price, quality, the service, reliability, stability, expertise, company reputation, location, and appearance of your business along with how important it is to the customer.

This is a must-do even if you do not hire sales reps. But if you, do it should be part of their training. This competitive analysis should be done regularly.

This is how you can apply Marketing research to drive your product sales.

Product Marketing 

What is the role of Product Marketing?

I covered the Product Marketing Community workshop to find out.

Workshop Topics included how to:

  1. Build and execute go-to-market plans
  2. Develop actionable buyer insights
  3. Create effective Messaging and Content for buyers
  4. Enable Sales and Product Teams

Businesses should identify their ideal customer.

What are the challenges of Product Marketing?

image

Just as Marketing has a plan or brief, Product Marketing does.

SmartSheet.com Product Marketing Template

Here are nine things to address in a Product Marketing Brief.

  1. What does your company do? Does your product offering align with your business goals?
  2. What are the features of your product? Do others understand what you are building and why?
  3. Does this Product address gaps in the Market? Include an overview of a Competitive, win-loss, and, SWOT analysis.
  4. Who is your ideal customer or target market? Include an overview of findings of demographic, psychographic, and buyer persona research. Does your product solve customer pain points?
  5. How will you measure product success?
  6. What are can go wrong? Can failure be anticipated and corrected?
  7. What is the roadmap and schedule of the product? Who’s responsible and in charge?
  8. Who needs to be included in the project and who needs to approve deliverables?
  9. How will goals be tracked? How often will they be monitored? What insights are you trying to glean from the data?

Creating a Buyer Persona

A buyer persona is a guide to understanding the needs, challenges, and pain points of customers.

Questions to ask

What are these customers’ habits?

What concerns, needs and challenges do they have?

What actions are customers taking to address their needs and challenges?

Why do customers need to take these actions?

This question may be applied to multiple action steps described in Hooked by Nir Eyal as the 5 Whys.

What makes them want to buy?

Where do they look for information?

What type of content and medium do they use to access the information?

What days and times are the most likely to look for information and consume content?

It is important to note that businesses with multiple products and more than one target market will need to create buyer personas for each ideal customer.

Where to obtain information on the Ideal Customer

1. Interview current customers and prospects.

2. Send out targeted surveys via email, direct mail, and Social Networks. Offer incentives such as gift cards and discounts to encourage people to provide the information needed.

3. Read biography and history books about your ideal customer.

4. Study the news.

5. Study existing research conducted by Market Research firms.

Building buyer personas will result in:

1. Creating and implementing better and more targeted product messaging and communication

2. Getting the product in front of customers who truly will benefit from its use

How have you used Market Research, and Product Marketing to increase Sales?

Share your thoughts in the comments.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

Tumblr: http://www.askdangalante.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/today/author/DanGalante

Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/trendsettingsm

Anchor https://anchor.fm/dangalante

About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation, and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference. I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

Articles and insights have been featured, mentioned, and, referenced in:

Tractica in the News

The Future of AI

https://medium.com/@DanGalante/the-future-of-ai-insights-from-the-ai-summit-ab6267eca70b

Digital Marketing World Forum

https://www.digitalmarketing-conference.com/key-insights-from-digital-marketing-world-forum-north-america/

Voice Summit

Compilation: Our Favorite Post-VOICE Coverage So Far

https://www.voicesummit.ai/blog/compilation-our-favorite-post-voice-coverage

Engage Bay

7 Steps to Align your Marketing Automation Strategy

https://www.engagebay.com/blog/marketing-automation-strategy/

Relay 42

The Role of Technology in Customer-Centricity

https://relay42.com/resources/blog/the-role-of-technology-in-customer-centricity

Databox

How to Improve Marketing and Sales Alignment (Gave background)

https://databox.com/how-to-improve-sales-marketing-alignment

Onalytica

Named as a Top STEM Influencer for EdTech and Education Industry Insights.

http://www.onalytica.com/blog/posts/stem-top-influencers-brands-publications/

The Arizona Republic

http://yourbusiness.azcentral.com/handle-top-10-sme-sales-objections-24845.html

Twitter Ads Blog

https://blog.twitter.com/2014/how-smartphone-users-engage-on-twitter-three-key-findings

Paper.li’s Wall Of Fame via Scoop.it

http://www.scoop.it/t/all-things-paper-li/?tag=Dan+Galante

I’ve been honored for my Social Profiles

•LinkedIn SSI Score in the Top 1%

•SlideShare for being in the top 5% of profiles viewed in 2014

•LinkedIn Profile was in the top 1% of profiles viewed out of 200 million members in 2012

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing. Reach out to start a conversation on LinkedIn or email me at dan@dangalante.com

Posted 16 weeks ago

Sales & Marketing Strategies for Enabling Sales Teams, Handling Objections, Closing More Deals & Increasing Sales

Sales processes include the following: customer development, prospecting, discovery calls, closing deals, cross-selling, upselling, post-sales implementation, customer experience, obtaining referrals, and testimonials.

What is the hardest part of the sales process?

I surveyed my LinkedIn audience to find out.

Survey Results

image

Of those surveyed, 53 % said closing deals was the hardest part of the Sales Process, followed by understanding market fit at 22%, Calling on buyers, and knowing their needs at 19% with the lowest being cross-selling, referrals, testimonials, or other reasons at 6%.

Based on these findings, I have included nine ways to enable sales teams to close more deals.

9 Strategies to Empower and Enable Sales Teams to Make more Sales

1. Have Sales and Marketing Management discuss Sales Cycle mapping out Sales, Marketing, and the Customer Journey.

2. Have Marketing go with Sales on calls to observe customer interactions regularly.

3. Take notes from Sales calls to develop answers to customer objections.

4. Role play with the Sales to get better at objection handling.

5. Develop an on-demand LMS for Sales including Decks, Videos, Sales Training materials, Product training materials, Scripts, and FAQs.

6. Use feedback from Sales calls and objections to improve Sales and Marketing Collateral.

7. Assign readings on sales strategy and techniques.

8. Conduct market research to show how is your products and services are better than the competitor. Present market research creating a chart that Sales can refer to when dealing with customers.

9. Develop buyer personas to understand customer buying motives. Share the buyer personas with Sales.

8 Techniques to Overcoming Customer Sales Objections

In sales, everyone has to be able to overcome objections to be successful. The best way to overcome objections is to prevent them. This can be done by providing a thorough sales presentation that covers all the information about your products and services. Also, you must address any questions the prospect has immediately. However, objections will come up from time to time. Some of these objections are real buying signals and others are just stalls to put you off. As a Salesperson, you need to be able to tell the difference.

Handling Objections & Stalls from Prospects

1. I am happy with my current supplier.

When you call on a prospect they say we are happy with our current supplier, this can mean one of two things. The first is that they are truly happy and the second is that they want you to get lost. (A stall) You need to be able to tell the difference. You should be able to tell by a prospect’s body language and level of attention.

If it is the first scenario, you should find out what supplier they currently use. When the prospect tells you it is your job to demonstrate how you are better. Once you feel that you have demonstrated how you are better, ask for a commitment or small order. By asking for small order, you provide the prospect an opportunity to take a chance on you with minimal risk. I have had a lot of success with this approach.

If the scenario is the second one, the prospect will not provide you with any information or say that they deal with a company or person for 20 years and they do not want to change. In this case, I would still ask for the order. Should the prospect say he is not interested again, I would thank them for their time and leave. You should call on this prospect a few more times and then only call on them every two months. You need to focus your time on prospects that are receptive to you and your offering.

2. I want to think it over.

When you hear this, what the prospect is saying is I am interested but I am not convinced. You should ask the prospect what specifically about this offer do you want to think over? Your goal here is to uncover the real objection. If the prospect gives you a specific answer, you are in business. Address the objection and ask a closing question. Say if I can handle XYZ, is there any reason why you would not purchase this product. Should the prospect say, no you covered everything, this means that they are either stalling, not interested in your offering, or will not tell you the real issue they have with your product. If this is the case, ask when they plan on making a decision and follow up with them in that time frame.

3. I need to consult another party

This can be a stall to put you off. You will need to determine this by the prospect’s body language and the level of attention you receive. When the prospect tells you this, you should ask for a meeting with the prospect and the person they need to consult. Should the prospect agree to this, you have a chance. If they will not agree to a meeting, it is a stall and they are not interested in your offering. However, I would still call on them a few more times. If you have no success, call on them every two months.

4. I am not the Decision-Maker- The Columbo Technique

During some cold calls to dental offices, I was not able to obtain the information that I needed to overcome prospect objections. This occurred because the person I was speaking to was not the decision-maker. As a result, they were reluctant to talk for fear that they would say the wrong things or give away too much information on their bosses’ business. Despite their reluctance, I would continue to talk with them, build rapport and bond. I would ask to speak to the decision-maker but many times they were not in the office, or the person I was speaking with would not want to disturb them for fear of getting reamed out when I left the office.

When this was the case, I would use the Columbo technique to get the information that I needed. I would turn to leave the office, put my hand on the doorknob and ask who their supplier was or when I could catch the boss. Usually, the person I was speaking with would provide me with a lot of information about the prospect. Even more, than I expected! This is because the person that I was speaking with put their guard down. After all, they thought I was leaving the office so one last question didn’t seem so bad.

During other cold calls, I was able to speak to the decision-maker. I would build rapport with them and try to obtain as much information as I could to overcome their objections. Many times the prospect would be reluctant to give me information; stating that they were happy with their supplier or they were too busy to speak to me. When they used the supplier objection, I would employ the Columbo technique; turn to leave and ask who their supplier was. Many times they would tell me and I would ask them for a few moments of their time to show how my products were better. I would get the time and close the prospect on giving me a trial order. I developed some of my best customers this way. Other times, I was able to obtain a follow-up appointment with the prospect.

The key to the Columbo technique is to get prospects talking. Even if it’s about things not related to their business at first. You want to make them comfortable talking with you. Next, you want to save the question you want to know for the end of the conversation because the prospect will most likely answer it thinking you are going to leave their office. In other words, their guard is down.

The Columbo technique is a great way to close sales and obtain information.

5. Your price is too high.

Emphasize the quality of your product along with the level of service you will provide. Next, you should demonstrate to the prospect how your offering’s total cost is less than the competitors over the life of the product. This is when you can bring up the competition showing how your products are superior in terms of product features and benefits using market research. Testimonials or social proof from loyal customers can also help. By taking these steps you demonstrate that your product is valuable and increase your chances of making the sale. (Provided this is the real objection.)

6. We spent our budget.

If they say the money is not the budget, ask If I can offer delayed billing or a payment plan would you be able to take delivery? If the person needs approval from another person, ask to present your product to that individual with your prospect’s endorsement. Should the company want and need your product, they will find a way to pay for it.

7. I had a bad experience with your company.

I would apologize to the prospect about the experience. Tell them you are the new rep and that you will not let anything bad happen on your watch. Ask them to give you a chance. This will not work all of the time.

8. Call me After the Holidays.

During the holiday season, many people are in holiday and party shopping mode. from Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and many other things. Also, everyone is thinking about going to parties. So the last thing on your customer’s and prospects’ minds is to make a year-end purchase; unless they receive a year-end tax advantage. As a sales rep, you are under pressure to close deals so you can earn that bonus. Unless your customer is in a buying mood, you are going to hear the objection “call me after the holidays”. If you have done business with this customer, you will have an easier time than if you are making a cold call.

To combat this objection. You have to attempt to get around this objection. If your offer is time-sensitive or if you can provide a break on pricing or payment through a special promotion for example no payments for 3 months; make your customer aware of them. However, at this time of the year, you will get customers and prospects who just don’t want to deal with you and your offering. As a sales rep, it is your job to be able to tell if the customer and prospect are telling you the truth. In other words, you need to qualify their objections. This means following up with every customer and prospect even when things look bleak.

Should your customers and prospects insist that call you after the holidays, I would find out which holiday they mean. Next, I would pin them down to a specific day and time to call back. I recommend sending your customers and prospects a holiday card with a little note reminding them about the appointment; stating how you look forward to speaking with them on the specific date and time. Once this time comes, I would hold them to their promise. Deliver your presentation and ask for the business.

Why Customer Objections are Sales Tools

When the Customer does not ask questions about a product or service it demonstrates a lack of interest. Sales objections are sales tools because the customer shows interest by asking questions. These questions allow the Salesperson to build rapport and trust with potential customers. They get to demonstrate their product knowledge and expertise. Without any customer objections or questions, reps have no way to measure their progress during the sales call; making it impossible to pivot. This makes it hard to make sales and build a relationship with the customer.

Why Customer Objections are Marketing Tools

Certain things come up when customers raise objections. Over time, Salespeople will be able to see patterns of this objection. Objections are raised about pricing, bad past experiences, budgeting, being happy with a competitor, and product inferiority. While Reps need to be able to handle objections; if they keep losing the sales for the same reason, they need to share this information with the marketing and product development teams.

How Marketing Can Help Sales

Based on the feedback from Sales, Marketing Teams can Create and improve Sales/Marketing Collateral to address potential objections. Customer objections are Sales and Marketing tools because they provide customer intelligence that can be used to sell more/improve products.

Sales Teams

Sales teams can provide a lot of information about customers, product concerns or issues, and objections they face. They are front-line soldiers that have a direct line to customer intelligence.

Integrating the Sales Team into your Marketing Strategy

Meet with the sales team and encourage them to compile a list of customer complaints, objections, and questions about products that they face. Ask the team to create materials that address these concerns that customers can access. This could take the form of blog posts, PowerPoints FAQs, product demonstrations, and tutorials.

If the sales team feels uncomfortable creating content, they could be interviewed by the marketing department. The marketing department could take content /basic materials, emails from the sales team and polish them up into visually appealing content that customers can access.

Customer Service & Service

Similar to the sales team, your customer service and service teams are front-line soldiers to help customers with issues they face at call centers or through social media. Ask them to write down complaints they get from customers with the answers. These complaints of FAQs could be put up on a website via a PowerPoint presentation, blog, etc… If this is not possible for the team, interview them, collect basic materials, emails, notes and create the content yourself.

The sales and customer success and service team are an important part of a marketing strategy for customer retention. The more products a customer uses from a brand, the less likely they will switch to a competitor. Remember it costs more to obtain new customers than it does to keep existing ones.

Cross-Selling & Up-Selling

Sales, Service and Customer Success teams can also help with cross and up-selling by sharing promotions and new offerings with customers. The Sales and customer service functions of brands are essential to creating a great experience for customers.

This is how brands can integrate Sales and Customer Success and Service teams into their marketing strategy. How are you using content from sales and customer service teams to help your brand retain customers? What are the goals of your brand’s marketing efforts?

Obtaining Testimonials

Once you have made a sale to a customer, it is important to follow up with them. In Sales, it is important to deliver on the promises you make to customers. This means checking in with the customer throughout the implementation of your product or service. Staying in touch with a customer post-sale is also important to earn repeat business and referrals.

As an outside sales representative in New York City, making sales was the highlight of my day. Once I made a sale, I was itching to ask for a referral or a testimonial. In other words, I wanted to ask the customer the question Do you know of anyone who could benefit from my product and services? However, once I made the sale, my inner voice told me not to ask for a referral.

Now many people would want to ask because they feel that the customer bought their products or services and this shows a sign of trust. But what did the customer buy? Yes, the customer bought you and your products but the main thing that they bought was your promise to deliver value through your offering. How can you ask someone to put their credibility on the line when you and your solution are unproven? Yet many people do.

Asking for a referral right after the sale is a mistake because you have not delivered on your promise and you will seem ungrateful. The customer will think that you are not interested in building a relationship and that you just want to make a commission. Remember your job as a Salesperson is to build relationships with customers and to make sales by demonstrating the value of your products to the customer. Once the sale is complete, it is your job to deliver on the promises that you make to your customer.

When to Ask

Now you are thinking well this is great but when do I ask for a referral? How do I ask for a referral?

I would ask the customer for a referral when I know the customer is happy with the implementation of your product or service. In other words, ask when you have delivered on your promise. If you offer more than one product or service try to cross-sell or upsell the customer first. See if the customer will use more of your products or services or if the customer purchases more expensive offerings from you. Once the customer purchases more items from you, the customer is demonstrating that they like and trust you. This is the time to ask for a referral. I usually waited until this point to ask for a referral.

Ask the customer for a referral by thanking them for the business that they have provided. I would then ask if they knew of anyone like themselves that would benefit from my offering. My experience has taught me that customers were always willing to offer themselves as a reference. Customers who offered me a referral would let me use their names with other clients or pass my name along to their peers.

Testimonial Formats

Testimonials are like referrals. Testimonials can come in a variety of forms. There is a testimonial letter and a testimonial video. The testimonial letter is when a customer writes a letter stating that you did a wonderful job for them and endorses you. The digital version of this letter is the recommendation feature on LinkedIn and,/or uploading a letter to your website. The testimonial video is when a client speaks of your performance in a short video segment. This can be done by the sales or marketing team depending on if there are customer advocacy or referral marketers on your team.

When asking for a testimonial, offer the customer the option to choose the option they feel comfortable with. Also, be sure to tell them what specific aspect of your service you want them to focus on. Once you receive a referral and/or testimonial, make sure to thank your customer. Should you get new business through a referral, provide great service otherwise your customer will not give you anymore! Keep your customer informed on the status of the relationship with the referral.

Customer Evangelism

Providing customers with great products and experiences is a great way to get customers to help market your products and services.

Below is an example of how Hyundai used customer marketing & testimonials to roll out Connected Care at the NY Auto Show.

Previously, I wrote an article about what the auto show could teach us about trade show marketing.

Hyundai made one of the best presentations of this particular show. They dared to be different. Instead of the traditional press conference, where journalists sit, take in the information and ask questions post-conference, Hyundai included a Q & A session right into the presentation. The conference was not a conference at all; it was a town hall. John Krafcik, CEO of Hyundai Motor America, used the opportunity to roll out Connected Care. This is a service that allows drivers to get help in case of emergencies. The service also updates owners on the health of their vehicles.

To back up their claims, they had customers provide in-person testimonials of how their lives were saved. One of their customers survived a head-on collision thanks to the service. Unable to contact his family, the service notified them of the customer’s condition. Now that’s a testimonial. If I need a new vehicle, I would strongly consider buying a Hyundai.

The live customer testimonials are worth their weight in gold. Prospects will believe what customers say over any marketing campaigns that brands create. This is a strategy that any business or brand can use. Offer quality products and a great customer experience. Serve customers in this way, and they will be more than happy to share their stories with the world! This is the best kind of advertising that anyone could ask for. Certain customers may even become evangelists.

Customer Appreciation

The easiest way to make sales is to earn referrals and testimonials from your customers. Customers are usually delighted to provide referrals and testimonials for products that work. However, you need to show your appreciation to your customers who put their name and reputation on the line for you.

How you show this appreciation could take many forms. You could bring them baked goods or take them out to dinner. Taking them to a sporting event or concert of their choice is a great way to build your relationship. Find out what type of gift your customers want and try to get for them if it is feasible. Remember to do a good job for your new customer!

Customer Loyalty & Reward Programs

Another thing you could do is to show appreciation is to provide customers a coupon for 15 percent off any item that you sell once their referral has been converted to a sale. I would also provide a thank you note with the coupon. Also, I would develop a point and reward system that encourages your customers to provide you with more referrals. Credit card companies use a rewards and points system when customers make purchases. This can be a model you can copy and implement; depending on your budget. Gift cards can also be an option.

Building Communities

Brands can create online and offline events for loyal customers to reward them. They can also create user groups on social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Slack.

Brand Ambassadors, Referral, Affiliate & Influencer Marketing

Brands can also develop a brand ambassador, referral, and/or affiliate marketing program. Some brands use influencer marketing to help sell and market products. Some influencers are celebrities but some brands use micro-influencers that are known in a particular industry.

Remember, word-of-mouth marketing is a great tool to earn new business. Taking the time to say thank you is well worth the time and effort. Your customers have more weight with your prospects than you do! Let your customers help you earn new business. Your existing customers are one of the best sources of new business. Turn these customers into Apostles.

What Sales and Marketing strategies have you used to: enable sales teams, to make more sales, close more deals, and, open new relationships?

Share your thoughts in the comments.

Additional places to find my content and blog

WordPress: http://dangalante.me/

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Medium https://medium.com/@DanGalante

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About Me

I’m a Strategic Marketer with Field Sales, Sales Enablement, Content Creation and, Classroom Teacher/Trainer skill-sets using Marketing to drive Sales/Growth.

As a Marketer, I’ve worked with Start-Ups, a Political Campaign, and a Digital Marketing Conference. I’m certified in Inbound Marketing with classes in Marketing, Product Management, Product Marketing, SEO, SEM.

Before teaching, I was an Outside Sales and Marketing Rep. selling and marketing dental products to Dentists using consultative selling, trade show marketing, field marketing, and market research.

I publish Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today a blog covering industry events and trends.

Articles and insights have been featured, mentioned, and, referenced in:

Tractica in the News

The Future of AI

https://medium.com/@DanGalante/the-future-of-ai-insights-from-the-ai-summit-ab6267eca70b

Digital Marketing World Forum

https://www.digitalmarketing-conference.com/key-insights-from-digital-marketing-world-forum-north-america/

Voice Summit

Compilation: Our Favorite Post-VOICE Coverage So Far

https://www.voicesummit.ai/blog/compilation-our-favorite-post-voice-coverage

Engage Bay

7 Steps to Align your Marketing Automation Strategy

https://www.engagebay.com/blog/marketing-automation-strategy/

Relay 42

The Role of Technology in Customer-Centricity

https://relay42.com/resources/blog/the-role-of-technology-in-customer-centricity

Databox

How to Improve Marketing and Sales Alignment (Gave background)

https://databox.com/how-to-improve-sales-marketing-alignment

Onalytica

Named as a Top STEM Influencer for EdTech and Education Industry Insights.

http://www.onalytica.com/blog/posts/stem-top-influencers-brands-publications/

The Arizona Republic

http://yourbusiness.azcentral.com/handle-top-10-sme-sales-objections-24845.html

Twitter Ads Blog

https://blog.twitter.com/2014/how-smartphone-users-engage-on-twitter-three-key-findings

Paper.li’s Wall Of Fame via Scoop.it

http://www.scoop.it/t/all-things-paper-li/?tag=Dan+Galante

I’ve been honored for my Social Profiles

•LinkedIn SSI Score in the Top 1%

•SlideShare for being in the top 5% of profiles viewed in 2014

•LinkedIn Profile was in the top 1% of profiles viewed out of 200 million members in 2012

I’m seeking a full-time role in:

Inbound Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Product Marketing, Demand Generation, Social Media Marketing, Sales Enablement Enablement, Sales Strategy, Marketing Strategy, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing. Reach out to start a conversation on LinkedIn or email me at dan@dangalante.com

Posted 16 weeks ago