No One Can Sprinkle Sugar on Bulls--- and Call it Candy

Sometimes it doesn’t make any difference how much sugar you add to something it won’t change the outcome.   Sprinkle a little or a lot of sugar on bull and it won’t change the taste; you can’t make it into candy.   You have to start with meaningful ingredients.  Let’s take sales lead management (yeah, I know it’s a stretch, but read a bit more).

C-level managers want to spend only enough on marketing to make forecast.  That’s it.  Anything more from their perspective and the money is wasted.   CFOs and CEOs only have a hint of an idea on branding.  To them branding is just another way for marketing to spend money without being held accountable.

For most companies adding a CRM and Marketing Automation System to the sales process is like sprinkling sugar on the problem.    They know they need to do  something, and heck, everyone else is doing it, but managing sales leads crosses so many department barriers that it resists change.   Even the best CRM and Marketing Automation Systems can only do so much.  Why is that?

We all agree that the fundamental purpose of a company is to create a customer

As Peter Drucker said, “A company’s primary responsibility is to serve its customers. Profit is not the primary goal, but rather an essential condition for the company’s continued existence. There is only one valid definition of business purpose: to create a customer.”  That can only come about when marketing or sales creates a demand for the company’s products (when all else fails quote the master).  

 Creating and managing a customer when they have raised their hand and shown an interest, whether from a salesperson’s cold call or a marketer’s lead generation program will succeed or fail based on one single criteria: unfailing follow-up.  Failure to sell is ultimately based on the old sales saw that says,

“All things being equal people buy from people they know,all things being unequal, people buy from people they know.”

If you fail to follow-up and start a conversation it isn’t a surprise when you lose the sale. 
75-90% of all customers who seek information from a company are never followed-up with anything more than a brochure or an email.  And yet the typical B2B product takes from 3-6 touches (conservatively) to turn someone into a customer. 

To create a culture of unfailing follow-up requires a mandate from management to both sales and marketing, tracking systems (CRM) and information delivery systems (MA).  Companies that have a 100% inquiry follow-up can cut their marketing budgets by 50% and still increase sales within 90-120 days.  Marketing Automation programs are inexpensive tools (sugar) that provide insurance for lead follow-up when the salesperson fails. 
Take a solid lead generation program that delivers qualified leads, mix in rules for 100% sales lead follow-up by salespeople, a CRM system for tracking and accountability, and sprinkle a marketing automation program into the mixture and you have the ability to create a customer at a faster rate than your competitors.     

In this case you’ve sprinkled sugar on the process and it does come out as candy!

What Makes Fast Growing Companies Grow

In this interview with Scott Barker, Evangelist and Head of Partnerships at OutReach.IO and Sales Hacker, host Patrick Morrissey dives into what makes fast growing companies grow, without destroying the ship in the process. They cover:

  • Struggles: What are companies struggling with when on a growth trajectory?
  • Messaging: How a company’s messaging has to grow up as the company grows!
  • Alignment: How the alignment of the revenue teams of sales, marketing and operations need to have the same north star; the same APIs.
  • What is true immersion?: Why the best companies today are attempting true immersion and not just alignment
  • Diversity: How diversity and inclusion are “top of mind” in growing successful companies
  • Inclusion: Why diversity and inclusion are the smart thing to do

About Scott Barker 20190711-altify-barker-tweet

As a top performer in sales, business development, marketing and team building at B2B SAAS companies, Scott is passionate about building and strengthening authentic relationships with his team and partners.

Scott is currently living his dream, as the Head of Partnership at Sales Hacker, the company that aims to help the next generation of B2B sales professionals embrace innovative strategies, technology, hacks, and tactics from the world’s leading organizations.

With Sales Hacker’s recent acquisition by, Barker has joined the rocket ship as they continue their mission to make modern revenue teams as efficient as humanly possible!  Scott also heads up the Vancouver chapter of Enterprise Sales Forum and sit on the board of a great non-profit called Interfit.

Insta: @scottybarks
Twitter: @scottbsales 

Revenue Optimization Radio is a program sponsored by Altify and hosted by Patrick Morrissey on the Funnel Radio Channel. 

Karen Rubin - 5 Minutes on Deciding what's Important and What's Not

Karen Rubin, VP of Growth for Owl Labs talked about the learning curve of operations with start ups. With startups, it's the 80/20 rule where 20% of the tasks take the most amount of time.   

Karen says, "But actually, 40% is good enough in startups on the operational side.  Ask yourself, What part of the business does this impact now and how permanent is the solution that I'm executing on?

For example, you may have a solution that you need to do manually every week for a period of time until you know it's the right solution.

The common mistake is that people ask, "What's the perfect right solution I need to get to?" before they know if they are headed in the right direction.

"Start with the smallest thing you can do, do it for a while, then figure out how to automate after you are sure this is the right path."

Mike Volpe says, "It's OK to do things that you know will break. And it's OK to not fix things until they break or are close to breaking."

Listen to the full episode here.

About Our Guest

As VP of Growth for Owl Labs, Karen Rubin finds solutions to sticky problems and looks for creative ways to grow quickly. Prior to Owl Labs, Karen served as VP of Product for Qunatopian, Entrepreneur in Residence at Matric Partner, and Product Manager at HubSpot. She’s passionate about startup culture and the energy, creativity, and intelligence of the people who work there.

Delivering Qualified Leads Increases Sales and Reduces the Marketing Spend


Being a sales manager isn't easy, but neither is being a marketing manager.  Both have salespeople to feed and nurture.   

No matter how much you feed sales reps they always want more.  Give them more and they want better quality.  Give them quality (a qualified lead) and they want it only from the largest possible prospect.  Give them qualified leads from the largest possible prospect and they want more. 

True, they only want the good leads, but there is a limit. Qualified leads close at a 50% greater rate than unqualified leads.   Increase the number of qualified leads, reduce the number of unqualified leads and sales will increase and you and the sales manager will sleep better. 


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John Asher Explains Neuroscience in Sales in 25 Minute Podcast

We now understand that ancient human elements in sales processes are more deeply rooted than we previously thought. This August 1st Asher Sales Sense Podcast “How Neuroscience Disrupts the Sales Process” features an interview with John Asher himself. John is the CEO of Asher Strategies, a Washington DC-based business providing sales advisory services to clients from startups to Fortune 500 companies.

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How to Treat Gas, Bloat, Wrinkles and high Blood Pressure Caused by Salespeople

  IStock-1015296318Note: This is one of our most popular posts and brought back for your amusement. To see the how much the woman in the photo has changed since the first post, click here

It’s a proven fact that salespeople can cause premature aging in marketing people.  Wrinkles are the most visible indication that salespeople are stressing out the marketing department.

Doctors tell me that another symptom of premature aging in marketing people is increased blood pressure (usually within 25 feet of anyone from Sales, including sales management).   Other health issues may be gas and bloating; severe snoring and lack of sleep; heart palpitations and migraine headaches between the eyes.  Stomach ailments are also reported when salespeople fail to make quota and complain to Marketing.

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How to Spark Digital Transformation in Ten Steps

Kiyana Blog Entry PhotoInterest in digital transformation has grown notably since 2015. Although it isn’t as trendy a topic as Beyoncé, it’s still a hot topic in the marketing community. Yet, with the growing popularity around this phenomenon, there is still a steep learning curve for marketers today. How can marketers go about the steps needed to spark digital transformation?

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