This is Episode 3 of This Old New Business weekly business podcast with Jeff Korhan.
Join me and Jill Konrath as we tackle some of the challenges of selling that are just as relevant today as they have been for probably most of the modern era of marketing.
If you want to know how to sell in today’s ever-changing environment, you will want to listen to this the conversation. Forget about becoming an overnight selling success and learn from Jill what really works.
Agile selling isn’t just the title of Jill’s book, it’s what we all need to be doing to be relevant to buyers whose expectations are higher than ever.
Our Featured Guest: Jill Konrath
Jill Konrath is the bestselling author of SNAP Selling, Selling to Big Companies – and recently released, Agile Selling.
Jill’s expertise has been featured by ABC News, Fortune, Forbes, The New York Times, Inc, and many others. She’s full of great advice and fresh strategies for winning NEW customers in today’s evolving sales environment.
Close the Marketing to Sales Gap
Jill believes there is an inherent gap between marketing and sales because their respective charters are usually quite different. Marketing is often tasked with creating awareness, with sales responsible for closing deals that bring in revenue.
Customers these days often do not differentiate between marketing and sales, which means organizations need to get everyone working together. Episode 1 guest John Jantsch noted that sharing the responsibility for social media communications is an ideal place to begin.
Jill points out that more deals are lost because the customer fails to make a decision. Getting mixed signals from the sales and marketing teams is certainly one reason for buyers to choose the very common version of saying no – staying with the status quo.
Ask Customers How You Can Serve Them Better
Like many other sales and marketing pros, Jill strongly encourages learning as much as you can about your buyers. This means going beyond published information to ask important questions.
Is your business aware of how it can help your customer at every stage of the buying cycle? This is absolutely necessary if you expect to differentiate your business in selling situations. Asking the tough questions that others are not is a powerful way to earn their attention and trust.
Learn to be a Quick Learner
According to Jill Konrath, the most reliable way for succeeding at sales is to simply be useful and helpful. Her recommendation is to learn to be a quick learner.
Jill notes that even at the executive level, studies show the one core skill for success is the ability to be a quick learner. This requires focused attention and disciplined methods for learning. This could be as simple as making learning a game that challenges your perceived limits.
We all make mistakes in our work, but developing a practice of learning enough from them to then never repeat the same mistake is a habit of agile sellers. It’s actually the foundation for success in every endeavor, while also being a surefire practice for refining your selling process.
Lighting Round Tips and Advice
Jill’s Top Sales or Marketing Advice – Learn how to learn.
Her Favorite Productivity Tip – Protect yourself against distractions.
A Quote that has Inspired Jill’s Success – “Never say never.”
- Learn how to help your buyer at every stage of the buying cycle.
- Differentiate your business in selling situations by simply being helpful
- Learn more about Jill and her many selling resources at JillKonrath.com
- Check out Jill’s Fresh Sales Strategies LinkedIn Group
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How is your business adapting its selling practices to an environment where buyers have new expectations?
About the Author: Jeff Korhan, MBA, is the author of Built-In Social: Essential Social Marketing Practices for Every Small Business and host of This Old New Business podcast.