Archive for September, 2012

The Sales Manager Sales Rep Relationship

September 29th, 2012

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I get emails all the time from Sales Managers looking for ideas on how they can improve their relationship with their reps and guess what?
I get plenty of emails from sales reps looking for help in that department too!
I thought it might be a good idea to do a little group therapy […]


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Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

You’re Lazy If You Don’t Cold Call . . . Really?

September 27th, 2012

There’s quite a debate going on these days in sales cubicles, conference rooms, classrooms and of course, Linkedin groups on everyone’s favorite subject . . . Cold Calling.
For the most part, I now avoid these debates much like I would religion or politics.
Not because I’m worried about offending anyone, but because much like religion and […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

The NFL Debacle… How to ruin your brand overnight?

September 27th, 2012

By now you have certainly heard of the issues related to the replacement refs in the NFL (National Football League).  To sum it up briefly, the replacement refs are working because the regular refs were locked out by the NFL owners over the summer of 2012 due to a labor dispute.

Some of you may be aware that the regular refs are part time, and they work full time jobs during the day.  Some are teachers, others are lawyers, and there are even airline pilots in the mix.  Even though they are part time, they do their job (for the most part) very well.  They get a great deal of training, instruction, and weekly reviews to tell them how they are doing.  The replacement refs have been brought in to referee the games, and their lack of experience has resulted in an incredible backlash against the NFL and in particular, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

The Backstory: There have been many performance issues related to the replacement refs; however, the culmination of errors directly resulted in two very high profile calls. These two fault calls were the deciding factor in the outcome of the games, all due to the inexpertise of the refs.  The first infamous call was during a Patriots vs. Ravens game, where a very close field goal that was kicked by the Ravens appeared to have missed to the right, but the refs called it good. The second controversial call was during the Packers vs. Seahawks game on Monday Night Football, where a Hail Mary pass was caught by the Packers defender but the refs said the receiver for the Seahawks caught the ball.

The public is so outraged at the outcome of the games that even the President of the United States chimed in via Twitter.

Brand Perception: For years the NFL has had a very strong brand, very recognizable and for the most part positive.  Currently as I write the post, it’s very clear to me that the NFL brand has a negative connotation and may not be able to return to its pre-lockout level for many years to come. In today’s super-connected world, one tiny blemish on a reputation can cause a lot more damage than it used to.

The Issue: Replacement refs have caused a great deal of harm to the brand of the NFL, and as a result have cost the organization clout and positive reputation. Allowing inexperienced team members to make important decisions that affect the entire organization is not a good idea, no matter what industry your company is in. Consumers, clients and fans in general want to believe that your company is staffed with experts and chock full of experience.

The Solution: Get the labor deal done.  End the lockout.  Speak out about the issues, without applying blame and commit to the fan base that you will make things right.  Then back it up! This advice applies directly to the NFL situation, but you can also take away an important corporate lesson from this situation. When your consumers are unhappy with the products or services you are delivering, you need to take a step back, look at the situation, and then make your consumers happy or your business will suffer. Cover-ups are impossible so it is important to have as transparent an agenda as possible and own up to your mistakes. Keeping your finger on the social pulse is easier than ever, simply by participating in social networking to find out how people feel. Not only will you be respected for accepting the responsibility for the issues, but the backlash will not be as harsh if people can see that you are taking steps to fix the issue.

Would You Like More Time For Money Activities?

September 26th, 2012

Most sales professionals feel like they’re running, running running with a severe shortage of what experts call “enough hours in the day”.
More often than not, we’re in “response” mode instead of doing things that are proactive.
Guess what?
Little by little, day by day . . . we miss opportunities simply because we can’t find the time […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

The Sales Playbook Facebook Community!

September 26th, 2012

I get several emails each week from readers of this blog who are surprised (pleasantly) that we have a Facebook community.
It’s not something that I promote often but even still . . .
We’ve grown by over 1400+ aspiring sales rock stars and . . .
I could sure use your help . . .
Would you please […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

A Cool Way To Brand A Thank You

September 25th, 2012

You don’t need me to remind you that we have to stand out!
Here’s a really easy thing you can do to brand your next “Thank You”
I create customized amazon gift cards. These cards aren’t physically printed, they are emailed and they can make quite an impact!
Here’s one of mine

Some other ideas/uses for a gift card […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Tuesday Tip #8: Inbound Links — How can links help my website?

September 25th, 2012

There are many ways to improve your website and luckily for you, we are here to share another tip this week! Click play to hear Matt describe another great way to help you rank higher in Google search engines. The higher you rank in the search engine listings, the more exposure you will have to people who are looking for you. They need what you offer, which makes them the perfect demographic to meet!

Transcript:

Hi, everyone! Matt Ward with inConcert Web Solutions, where we build effective websites, and here’s a great tip for you today.

In order to make your website effective, you have to get people there. Number 1 thing is content; number 2 thing, according to Google’s mathematical equation, is inbound links to your website. You need to go out to other websites, business directories, Manta, Merchant Circle, Yahoo, DMOZ. Get your business listed in those directories, including some of your clients’ sites. Get links provided back to your site from other websites and that will get you inbound links. That will raise your ranking.

Google always says that if you have got inbound links, hey, that’s probably some sort of authority saying you are important; your website is important. If you can get links to your website from .edu websites — those are the GOLD!! Go after those! If you have clients that are universities, colleges, educational systems, try to get them to link back to you.

That’s the tip for today, if you want more tips go to our website, inConcertWeb.com, click on the yellow button at the bottom; it says, “Top 10 Tips”.

“We Only Hire Sales Reps With Good Credit!”

September 24th, 2012

There are many companies that require credit checks as part of their hiring process for sales reps.
I’m going to skip all the foreplay and tell you, flat out, that I’m not a fan of it for several reasons . . .
1)   Unless this sales rep will have authority to sign checks, access the company bank […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Stop Beating Yourself Up!

September 24th, 2012

We can be rather hard on ourselves in sales!
Some of you might find yourself knee deep in beating yourself up right now, as you approach month end!
I have a quick 3 minute audio tip for you with 3 very cool things you can do . . . right now, to turn things around!
Please stop what […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Sales Reps . . . You Better Hide Your Awards!

September 23rd, 2012

As sales professionals, we can be a mighty proud bunch when it comes to our accomplishments.
Many of us, who have won awards, proudly display them in our office but we might be hurting our efforts with our customers and potential customers.
Dan Kennedy in his book, No B.S. Trust-Based Marketing tells an interesting story about this […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Staying In Touch Without Calling To Check In

September 22nd, 2012

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We all should know by now that there is zero value in calling someone to “check in” and yet many still do it.
They don’t do it to be rebellious or because they have a note on their calendar to “Sound lame today” . . .
They do it because they just don’t know […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Carving Out A Few Minutes For Y.O.U.

September 21st, 2012

Somewhere between the kid’s games, the weekend projects and getting caught up with those people who mean the most to you . . .
Make sure you carve out some time for Y.O.U.!
Whether it’s a quiet walk
Some thinking time
Exercise
Cracking open that book you’ve been meaning to read or . . .
If you’re like me, stringing up […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Does Business Come To A Grinding Halt On Fridays?

September 21st, 2012

In my last post, I wrote about how we need to seriously slow down.
Now I get to completely contradict that post.
I truly don’t get it folks.
We are willing to allow business to interrupt us after hours, at our meals and even in the bathroom and yet;
For many people they mentally check out on a Friday.
Somewhere, […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

Stop Being A “Hero”!

September 20th, 2012

I can’t even begin to tell you how many people I have worked with who are slowly burning themselves out at work because they think somewhere its written that they’re supposed to.
I kid you not!
I know of people who are sticking around the office after 5:00 not because there’s important stuff to do but because […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).

We Pay The Price Either Way!

September 20th, 2012

One of the best compliments I get on this website comes in the form of one of my readers recommending my training services to their boss!
In an ideal world, I’d get a thumbs up every time but you and I know life doesn’t work that way.
One of the most troubling rejections I get from time to […]


Go to Sales Playbook
Paul Castain is the Vice President of Sales Development for Consolidated Graphics where he oversees the training and development of 700 sales Jedis.

Prior to working for Consolidated Graphics. Paul was the Director Of Corporate Solutions Sales for Dale Carnegie & Associates and the owner of two successful businesses.

Over the last 27 years, Paul has trained and mentored over 3,000 sales professionals, written sales training content for several Fortune 500 companies and is the author of Castain’s Sales Playbook (which just won a Sales Pop award for best sales website).