Some small B2B firms never actually do anything about price-driven market challenges. Year after year they eke out marginal success by squeezing their prices and margins, repeatedly trying to sell to the same hard-nosed customers, continually targeting the same markets and agreeing to be victimized by abusive procurement conditions. There are ways to reduce the effects of these challenges
In the early days of my consulting practice I would give a talk at venues where CEOs convened to hear about specific topics of interest. I would give my talk and folks would walk up to me afterward, hand me a business card, and say, “That’s real interesting stuff. I think it might be able to help us. Please give me a call to arrange a time to get together and talk.” Those introductions led to client engagements. Engagements led to client successes, and successes led to CEO-to-CEO referrals. QMP's business is still largely maintained through talks and referrals.
At its purest intent, and to be most effective, a marketing and sales audit should not be to uncover incompetence, to fix blame or to penalize, but rather to discover opportunities to make both marketing and sales more effective. If the motivation of an audit is solely to find a scapegoat or divert blame, the problem is not in the firm’s marketing and sales function, but rather in its culture.
Networking can consume a lot of a sales person's or consultant's time. In this QMP Insight's blog post by Jerry Vieira, CMC the incredible advantages of networking from the front of the room, aka public speaking, are explained.
Lean is the process of maximizing the value delivered to customers by eliminating any wasted marketing or sales activity or expense that does not create, communicate or enhance customer-received value.” In this QMP Insights blog we offer an approach for improving both top and bottom-lines through the application of “Lean” principles to six key areas in the marketing and sales function of a firm.
The Product Development and Management Association Glossary of Terms defines failure rate as the percentage of a firm’s new products that make it to full market commercialization, but which fail to achieve the objectives set for them. By that measure, it is not surprising that a quick internet search on the subject of product failure rate yields studies that claim anywhere between 50% (commercial) and 90% (retail food) of new product or service offerings fail. A lot can be done to improve the odds.
As a sales person, ask yourself, "Have I ever lost a deal to an inferior offering?" Most sales people answer, yes. The truth is that you never lose to an inferior offering. It may appear inferior in your eyes, and from your perspective. You may even be able to show the specification inferiority in absolute provable, numerical or physical terms. But, it’s not your eyes and perspectives that matter. The only eyes and perspectives that matter are those of the customer.
After many years of both conducting sales training workshops and personally selling, I have come to recognize six popular misconceptions about selling. And, I must say, every time I broach those myths during a sales training session I get push-back, disbelief, the wagging of heads and several audible "No Way!'s".
When we ask groups of salespeople in our workshops and talks to raise their hands if they have ever lost to an inferior offering, they always, almost universally, raise their hands - even though we have told them ahead of time, "It's trick question." The truth is: No one ever loses to an inferior offering. Read why this is true.
It's a Relationship Business! That four-word phrase is probably the most common statement we hear when we talk to sales people about their business. Read this QMP Insights blog post to understand, and avoid, the hidden risks associated with that belief.