Stories Feed

And People in Hell also want Ice Water: A Cowboy Sales Manager Whines about Salespeople

Some say it is the best story I have told. I told it to Dan McDade's readers on Viewpoint,  The Truth About Lead Generation.   


IStock_000008703366SmallHe stands 6’5” in custom-made cowboy boots and wears a wide-brimmed cowboy hat that cost as much as the boots. Likeable and direct, he pointed a lot and pointing makes me uncomfortable. Jabbing the air seemed like jabbing me in the chest, and as my mother would say, that’s impolite. But I know he is just western, real western, and he didn’t mean anything personal.

It was in answer to my questions about lead follow-up by salespeople that he grumbled, “And people in hell also want ice water.“

“If they just do their damn job and stop whining we’d all be better off,” he said with an interesting whine in his voice. He was frustrated; angry that the marketing spend wasn’t showing the ROI expected, and he blamed salespeople.

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Abbott and Costello on Sales Lead Follow-up

Of the enduing skits and comedy routines by Abbott and Costello Who's on First continues to amuse. And yet in many ways the misunderstanding, confusion and frustration is not unlike sales and marketing's discussions about sales lead follow-up or lack of it and the results which plague the bottom line of most companies.  For instance:  

AbbottCostelloWhosOnFirstCOSTELLO:  I’d like to talk about sales lead follow-up by salespeople.

ABBOTT:  Good subject; terrible times.  It’s less than 10%.

COSTELLO:  But I understand that 45% of all the leads are buyers.
 
ABBOTT:  That’s right; 45% will eventually buy something.  
 
COSTELLO:  You said follow-up is only 10%.
 
ABBOTT:  Yes that’s right, follow-up averages 10%, but 45% of all leads are buyers.   

COSTELLO:  So what happens to the other 35% who want to buy? 
 
234x60-join-slma-21careerbenefitsABBOTT:  It’s more than 35%, because unless the salespeople talk to 100% of the sales lead inquirers, they won’t know who the 45% are.  So they’ll only talk to 5% who are buyers, which are half of the 10% they followed-up.

 

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A Story: How a Marketing Manager Learned to Build a Demand Creation Plan Based on Sales Quotas

IStock_000018180137Small“How do you know,” I asked the marketing manager, “how much money to spend on marketing, and how many inquiries and leads to produce?”

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