Digital Revenue Generation Guide - (Page 11)

SMART SALES BY DAVE STEIN The presidential sales campaign Take-home lessons from the 2008 political showdown part from the serious challenges we face as a country, I really am enjoying this race for the presidency. To me it has many of the characteristics of the biggest and most competitive sales campaign in history. I’m writing this column in the immediate aftermath of Super Tuesday, hence the omission of subsequent developments. But rest assured, you’ll still find the observations below to be quite relevant. At this particular moment, we’re still in the long-list phase. Different groups of voters (buyers), with their own interests and needs (buying criteria), are supporting the candidate (salesperson) they feel will lead the country where they believe it should be going. Some of the candidates have a strong and consistent message (customer value proposition). Others change their message regularly, depending on polls and their DAVE STEIN IS THE AUTHOR OF HOW WINNERS SELL AND CEO AND FOUNDER OF ES RESEARCH GROUP IN WEST TISBURY, MASS. (WWW.ESRESEARCH.COM). HE CAN BE CONTACTED VIA E-MAIL AT EDIT@ SALESANDMARKETING.COM. A team’s perception of their standing. You’d think they would have learned by now that that flip-flopping rarely attracts voters. The most successful big-ticket sales professionals will tell you that they most often win because they are able to paint a vision of a solution for the prospect and steadfastly align all of their activities, resources and messages to support that vision. There are candidates that may not have the financial resources (viability) to make it to the cut at convention time (the short list). Others will drop out because their platforms (features, functions and benefits) don’t resonate with enough voters. I’m having some fun watching how external influencers have an impact on the race. For example, think about John Kerry and Ted Kennedy’s early backing of Barack Obama. Are Kerry and Kennedy messengers 8 SALES &MARKETING MANAGEMENT MARCH/APRIL 2008 from the Democratic National Committee, sending a signal to Hillary Clinton that they don’t think she can overcome the unelectability claim of many Republicans? If that was the DNC’s plan, it certainly backfired on Super Tuesday when Hillary heartily won in Massachusetts. And what about Rudy Giuliani? His strategy was to ignore a significant number of voters (New Hampshire, Iowa, Michigan), playing to the ones in delegate-rich Florida. I’ve seen salespeople lose deals by ignoring the lower levels or certain departments within an organization, only to receive payback in the form of a mass veto from those who were left on the outside. Every debate is akin to a scripted bake-off, just like the ones vendors are asked to go through to win sales opportunities. The candidates struggle to articulate their unique differentiators, but in that venue, it’s tough. So they attempt to answer questions that weren’t asked, alienating their audiences. Salespeople often do the same, desperate to have their unique selling points adopted as new decision criteria by their prospects. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I watched carefully as Bill Clinton did what some CEOs I’ve worked with do on occasion: In a panic, he made the sales campaign all about him, while at the same time totally disregarding the candidate (sales rep) and the plan. He (and others in Hillary’s camp) also resorted to negative campaigning. It didn’t work for them, just as negative selling most often doesn’t work in sales campaigns. The whole issue of delegates and electoral votes is confusing to many. Those of us who sell for a living understand that when it comes to a committee evaluating and selecting a vendor, all votes are not necessarily created equal. As we all know, the bigger the stakes, the more back-stabbing, arm-twisting and influence-peddling takes place. We’ve got a way to go until next November, but you’ll find me with my sales hat on, watching the play-by-play. IF YOU HAVE SUGGESTIONS, TIPS OR TECHNIQUES THAT IMPROVE SALES PERFORMANCE, BE SURE TO VISIT YOUR IDEAS AND EXPERIENCES. AND SHARE

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Digital Revenue Generation Guide

Digital Revenue Generation Guide
Sponsorship Positions
Flash Belly-Band
Gate Fold
Flash Survey
Blow-in Card
Flash Animation
Flash Animation: Automotive Ad
Flash 360
Scroll Bar

Digital Revenue Generation Guide