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    4 Ways to Create a Collaborative Sales Coaching Culture

    By David Jacoby

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    When most of us think of great coaches, the picture that frequently comes to mind is that of tough, no nonsense “field generals” screaming at players, officials, and opponents. Vince Lombardi, John Wooden, or Joe Torre, for instance.

    But this is only one aspect of coaching. As fans we usually don’t see famous coaches acting as teachers during practice sessions, and getting their players to buy in to new ideas, techniques, and strategies with a goal of constant improvement. 

    One of the most essential qualities of effective coaching is that it’s highly collaborative. Collaboration is key to transferring the heavy lifting of changing behaviors ... Read More

    5 Types of Clients to Fire ASAP

    By Colleen Francis

    If you are miserable working with a client and you know that they are not profitable for you or your company, they are not going to be well served by you. And, if they are not being well served by you, they will not achieve their desired results and you have created a lose/lose situation. You’re not helping them reach their objectives and they’re not helping you reach yours.

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    How to Use Psychological Biases to Sell Better and Faster

    By Emma Snider

    For all the powerful processing work the human mind can do, it's still prone to making bizarre assumptions or jumping to an illogical conclusion every now and then. Problem is, we don't even recognize these patterns as strange. Since they're built into the fabric of our thought, they just seem normal.

    However, upon examination, they're revealed to be anything but. Why else would we buy Beanie Babies in bulk, or consider a rhyming tagline to be truer than a non-rhyming one? Thanks, psychological biases.

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    How to Follow Up On an Inbound Lead: The First 3 Days

    By Frank Paterno

    Unfortunately, leads don’t always answer your calls on the first attempt. So in order to systematize inbound lead follow-up, we created a visual aid that details how and when to reach out.

    For each of the first three days after the inbound lead is received, we’ve highlighted the daily tasks required for an effective follow-up process.

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    Traditional Salespeople Are Obsolete, & 5 Other Takeaways From "To Sell Is Human"

    By Jordan Benjamin

    Even if you're not in sales, you're in sales.

    No, this isn't an oxymoron. In Daniel Pink’s book To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Othershe argues that the business world has shifted over the last decade to a point where everyone -- regardless of job title -- is a salesperson. Everyone is working to persuade, negotiate, or pitch others on ideas, approaches, products, and so much more.

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    How to Become Super Referable

    By Bill Cates

    Are you referable? How do you know?

    One barometer of your referability is that you’re getting referrals without asking for them. Are you? Do you have such a good initial process with new prospects and clients that they are thinking of people to refer you to before you even do much work for them?

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    How Product Packaging Influences Buying Decisions [Infographic]

    By Jami Oetting

    A shopper paces the aisle, looking at one laundry detergent after another. All offer essentially the same thing -- clean clothes, fresh smell, easy pour ... the list goes on. 

    So how does a shopper make a decision to buy one over another? Is it the color of the bottle, the price, a familiar logo? Does she rely on the brand her mother is loyal to, or does she care more about a brand with a phosphate-free formula and environmentally friendly packaging?

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    7 Questions to Ask a Rep During a Sales Management Interview

    By Kelly Riggs

    Sales reps are often considered for sales management positions due to exceptional performance as individual contributors. While sales leaders should certainly consider their strongest players for promotion opportunities, it also creates a challenge within the organization: The qualities that make a successful sales rep don’t necessarily make a successful sales manager. So asking a star rep to expound on his or her sales performance during the interview process may not be the best barometer of their management ability.

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    How to Set 4 Crucial Sales Comp Levers: Target Pay, Pay Mix, Upside & Threshold

    By Mark Donnolo

    Once the C-level goals and sales roles that create the backbone of an effective sales compensation plan have been established, you will then need to tackle four factors in the program design. 

    Similar to effective performance measures, a sales leader should be able to take a well-designed sales compensation plan and identify the specific job that the plan supports. She should also be able to consider an assortment of sales compensation plans and describe the sales strategy of the entire sales organization. If the plans are designed well, they’ll directly reflect the organization and sales strategy. 

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    5 Simple Ways to Improve Company Culture

    By Gary Vaynerchuk

    Company culture is something that is very close to me. I refer to myself as an HR-driven CEO, and I mean it. If someone at VaynerMedia is unhappy, it is entirely my fault. Period. Because of that, I spend a good amount of time making sure my ideas on company culture are loud and clear. Not all companies have great culture, and it can be difficult to change when it’s been one way for so long. But it is possible to improve and shift until those changes are permanent.

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    5 Tactics to Influence Prospects to Buy

    By Pascal Landshoft

    Salespeople are in the business of influencing people to do something which they would not have done otherwise. Even though purchasing a product or service might be in the prospect's best interest (and it should be if the rep is doing their job correctly), it still takes some pushing to get them to realize it.

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    7 Career Lessons Learned the Hard Way

    By Debra Walton

    Today’s job market is fiercely competitive. With the advent of new technologies and growing global competition, companies need to be nimble -- and ready to fearlessly embrace change. Everyone from college grads entering the market for the first time to seasoned executives must have a laser-like focus on their careers. I’ve experienced my share of bumps, obstacles, twists, and turns on the path to what I consider a successful career. They may have occasionally slowed me down, but they never stopped me.

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    6 Causes of Disastrous Sales Busts

    By Colleen Francis

    Remember “cramming” in school? You tried to compress three months of preparatory work into 24 hours of nightmarish tension, and you were lucky to scrape by with a barely passing grade. Why would you subject yourself to that repeatedly as part of your career -- constant stress to be mediocre at best?

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    5 Ways to Fine Tune Your Mindset for More Sales Referrals

    By Bill Cates

    Your beliefs about sales referrals is what will ultimately determine your success in generating them. If you believe something is possible, then you’ll see the opportunities. Once you see opportunities, you can apply the right strategy or tactic to produce results.

    On the other hand, if you do not believe something is possible, your awareness will be shut down, along with the potential of taking action and producing results.

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    30 Types of Sales Trigger Events and How to Track Them

    By Emma Snider

    If I offered you a sandwich right after you ate lunch, you're probably going to refuse it (no matter how scrumptious it may look). But if I offered you the same sandwich when your stomach was audibly grumbling, you'd immediately snatch it from my hands and gobble it down. 

    Timing is everything in most things in life. This goes for eating, as well as selling.

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    The Science of Persuasion [Infographic]

    By Emma Snider

    To sell something, you have to convince a buyer that they not only want your offering -- they need it. To be clear, I'm not talking about fooling them into buying a piece of junk. Oftentimes prospects stand to benefit considerably from purchasing a new product or service. However, that doesn't mean they're any more eager to fork over their money. And this is where the fine art of persuasion comes in.

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    10 Ways to Convert More Customers Using Psychology [Infographic]

    By Ginny Soskey

    While experimenting with the latest trends can be fruitful, sometimes, jumping on them still doesn't make a dent in your close rates, no matter how well you've implemented them.

    So to make sure you're hitting your goals every month, sometimes it's smart to make optimization choices based on something that's been around for a while: human behavior. Read up on what makes people tick -- and adjust your strategy accordingly. 

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    What's a Qualified Lead? Depends on Who You Ask [Data]

    By Emma Snider

    Anyone who works in a marketing or sales role can tell you at a high level what a qualified lead is: A prospective customer who matches the company's ideal buyer profile in terms of need, budget, timing, and other factors.

    Okay, so far so good. But taking it one step further, what are those ideal prospect characteristics at a particular company? Um ... This is where you might run into trouble.

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    Choose the Right Gamification Platform for Your Company [Flowchart]

    By Emma Snider

    Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you've heard the buzz around gamification. According to some experts, the trend of incorporating game mechanics into business scenarios will fundamentally change the way people work and customers engage. In others' opinions? It's an overhyped fad that died before it even really got started.

    The reality falls somewhere in the middle.

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    5 Types of Prospects to Disqualify Forever

    By Colleen Francis

    Qualifying the prospect is a huge step toward completion of the sales pipeline. At this point in the sales process, you have to make a critical decision: Is the information received in the qualification good enough to continue the relationship or is it time to disqualify the prospect?

    There are only three outcomes of a completed qualification. One, the prospect is qualified fully and can move to the next pipeline step.

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    How to Align Sales Roles With Compensation Plans

    By Mark Donnolo

    Organizations change, as do sales strategies. As those strategies are modified, sales roles either evolve or fail.

    When companies grow from year to year, they don’t grow in a straight line. Typically, companies retain revenue from current customers, gain revenue when current customers purchase additional products or services, and add new customer revenue.

    Read More
    Watch and Close: 8 Videos That Show How to Close a Sales Deal

    By Emma Snider

    It's one thing to read an article on how to close a sales deal -- prepare the buyer this way, focus on these types of results, present the contract at this point, and so on. But it's another thing entirely to actually watch someone explain how to or actually close a deal. How are they uttering the key phrases? What are their mannerisms like? What are they portraying through their gestures and body language?

    Read More
    11 Things to Think About Before Deploying a CRM System [Infographic]

    By Emma Snider

    Rolling out any new piece of technology to an organization's sales team is a big deal, but especially when that tool is a CRM system. After all, CRM tools are sales leaders' primary portals into their teams' pipelines and revenue forecasts. For that reason, it's critical that these systems are set up correctly, function properly, and are used effectively and consistently.

    The key to achieving these goals? Preparation.

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    How Your 2015 Sales Compensation Plan Is Pitting Salespeople Against Your Buyer and Your Business

    By Mark Roberge

    Traditionally, a well-designed sales compensation plan rewards salespeople more for the first revenue obtained from a customer than the follow on revenue. Historically, this made sense. It’s a lot more difficult to find a brand new prospect that’s never heard of your company and convince them to buy your product than it is to sell upgrades or add-ons to existing customers.

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    How the "Rule of 78" Can Help Calculate Sales Quotas

    By Frank Paterno

    The Rule of 78 is a quick math equation that estimates a full calendar year’s revenue for businesses that charge recurring, monthly fees.

    Using the rule is easy. Simply multiply the amount of new revenue you plan to bring in each month by 78, and viola: You have the total revenue earned in a 12-month time span.

    Read More
    6 Types of Sales Pitches Every Seller Should Know

    By Emma Snider

    The term "sales pitch" might be a little old school, but the concept is not. At its core, a sales pitch is just a way to explain your product or service's value to the buyer. Call it what you will, but convincing prospects of an offering's worth is still central to sales.

    What has gone out of style are sales pitches that are long, product-focused, and boring.

    Read More
    20 Mantras Great Leaders Live By Every Day

    By James Curtiss

    Leadership can be a difficult characteristic to understand. What qualities make someone a good leader? Do those same qualities translate to all aspects of life, or can a person successfully lead a sports team, but fail in the boardroom? Are leaders born or can anyone inspire others to follow them?

    I won’t pretend to know the answers to these questions and I doubt that many people do.

    Read More
    Is Your Sales Messaging Stale?

    By Laurie Page

    Today, you wouldn’t consider wearing the same clothes or driving the same car that you did 30 years ago. Styles and preferences change with the times, and the same holds true with sales messaging.

    In my opinion, at most companies, sales messaging isn’t updated nearly enough. And when you don’t change with the times, sounding outdated can be the least of your concerns

    Read More
    9 Ingredients of a Compelling B2B Sales Pitch [SlideShare]

    By Emma Snider

    In the past, sales pitches started and ended with a product. There might be a slight reference to the prospect's problem in the middle, but the product was front and center. Salespeople hoped buyers would be so dazzled by snazzy features that they'd whip out their checkbooks before the meeting was over -- and sometimes, they did.

    But today, this playbook doesn't work. Prospects are inundated with product-focused pitches when what they really care about is their businesses. So instead of being more aggressive with messaging, salespeople need to scrap their old presentations in favor of an entirely new approach.

    Read More

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