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    Only 1 in 4 Salespeople Know How Use Social Media to Sell [New Research]

    By Emma Snider

    confused_on_laptop

    Despite the hype in the sales space about social selling, adoption numbers remain fairly low. A new survey from PeopleLinx reveals that a scant 31% of reps incorporate social media into their sales process.

    However, the lack of social selling adoption isn't due to a lack of interest or perceived value. It's just that reps don't know how to do it. Only 26% of respondents felt as if they knew how to use social media to sell

    Surprising? Not to Gorka Amian, business intelligence manager at PeopleLinx.

    "This makes sense -- at least to me. A lot of the salespeople I meet tell me ... Read More

    How Your Tech Policy Might Be Killing Your Sales Team's Performance

    By Anece Ahn

    The arrival of a paperless office has been anticipated for a long time. A very long time. In fact, it has been over a 40-year wait.

    Even with the monumental advancement of technology within the past four decades, many organizations have been struggling to progress with time. Some still rely on manual pen and paper data entry and slightly upgraded versions of paper forms (think Excel spreadsheets).

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    What Type of Salesperson Are You? [Quiz]

    By Greg Schryer

    There are four primary selling styles. Most of us are a combination of two or more styles, but one will be predominant. However, not every style is appropriate for every situation, so it's important to be aware of your specific bent. 

    So what kind of seller are you? Find out with this quiz. 

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    5 Deal-Killing Mistakes Sales Reps Make on First Calls [Infographic]

    By Emma Snider

    Contrary to popular belief, closing is not an activity exclusively relegated to the end of a sales engagement. If done right, a rep should be securing mini closes through the process; for instance, a commitment to another meeting, a pledge to introduce the salesperson to the decision maker, or an agreement to make a decision by a certain date. 

    Viewed from this perspective, closing starts on the very first interaction.

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    19 Surprising Sales Stats & More Articles You Might've Missed This Week

    By Emma Snider

    It doesn't matter how likeable you are or how much you've researched your buyer -- if you send your email at the wrong time with the wrong subject line, it's not getting a response. Ditto if you call a prospect at the wrong time, or leave an overly long voicemail.

    The when, how, and what of sales messaging provides a solid foundation for the content.

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    How to Make a Sales Kickoff Last All Year

    By Emma Snider

    If done right, a sales kickoff is a highly motivating event that rallies sales reps, managers, and leaders around their new mission for the coming year. According to Phil Harrell, chief revenue officer at Firecracker Inc., "Kickoffs are all about excitement. You want to get people to run out of that kickoff and get back on the phone and in front of customers because they're so fired up."

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    Sales Word of the Day: May

    By Emma Snider

    If your teachers were anything like mine, the difference between "can" and "may" has been ground into you permanently. After many times of asking "Can I go to the bathroom?" instead of "May I go to the bathroom?" I finally internalized the distinction between the two words: "can" implies possibility, while "may" implies permission. 

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    Are You Closing The Wrong Person?

    By John Holland

    Anybody that has seen the movie Glengarry Glen Ross will remember Alec Baldwin’s role as a high-powered sales manager addressing a tired group of salespeople. His advice to “always be closing” probably caused many B2B sellers to cringe. B2B salespeople that use high-pressure tactics risk alienating their buyers.

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    9 Sales Phrases That Simply Sound Dumb

    By Sean McPheat

    Sales is challenging enough that we don’t need to make our jobs even harder by saying dumb phrases. Our prospects and clients are far less forgiving than they once were, so even one word or phrase out of place and we could be sunk.

    Sometimes we’re not even aware what we’re saying is turning prospects off. If you want to sound more professional, please avoid these nine phrases at all costs. 

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    Sales Word of the Day: Value

    By Emma Snider

    B2B purchases usually begin with a business case centered on a particular result. Some common desired outcomes include improving productivity, increasing revenue, reducing risk, or cutting costs. A less common objective? Getting all the latest product bells and whistles.

    Because salespeople are so familiar and immersed in the products or services they sell, they sometimes bog their presentations down with information on features.    

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    The Art of Asking Open-Ended Questions

    By Bill Cates

    You bring value to your prospects, clients, and yourself through the questions you ask -- but only if they're good questions. Allow me to introduce you to a concept I call "high-value questions."

    Simply stated, a high-value question is one that creates a learning experience for either the questioner (you), the person being questioned (your prospect or client), or both.

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    Sales Word of the Day: Hope

    By Emma Snider

    "Hope" is a nice word to use when you have good intentions but little control. For example, New Englanders have been saying "I hope it doesn't snow anymore" after every winter storm for the past few weeks. Their hopes have been dashed, but it was still a happy wish.

    When it comes to the weather, "hope" is very appropriate.

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    15 Tips to Accelerate Your Sales

    By Emma Snider

    Before you sell your thousandth customer, your hundredth customer, or even your tenth customer, you have to sell that crucial first customer. For a new startup with no case studies or testimonials at its disposal, this can be a daunting task.

    But eventually, one client signs on, and then another, and another. With a bit of luck, the lead flood gates open and you're now tasked with scaling the sales process that got you this far.

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    The Ultimate Sales Kickoff Playbook [Free Ebook]

    By Brittany Leaning

    A sales kickoff playbook is vital for companies that want to hit their goals and scale exponentially. It’s important for sales leaders to regroup and focus on a new strategy, and for sales reps to look at organization tactics, getting educated on new updates, and nailing the pitch.

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    Call or Email? 3 Tips to Determine When to Use Which in Sales

    By Jeff Hoffman

    The method of outreach sales reps use for a first connect makes a significant difference in response rates. So rather than basing your decision of calling a new prospect or sending an email on your personal preference or what you’re more comfortable with, you should choose according to what the prospect is most likely to respond to.

    It’s a classic question in sales: Phone or email?

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    Sales Word of the Day: Unique

    By Emma Snider

    According to Dictionary.com, the word "unique" is defined as "having no like or equal; unparalleled; incomparable." The example sentence the website provides is "Bach was unique in his handling of counterpoint."

    It's not every day that a Bach is born, so to be unique like the composer is a pretty high bar.

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    6 Ideas to Increase Social Selling Stickiness on Your Sales Team

    By Jill Rowley

    It’s not unusual for reps to get fired up about social selling at the beginning of a new month or quarter … and then trail off a week or two later. Social selling doesn’t deliver immediate results, and salespeople can become frustrated with spending time on something that isn’t bolstering their closing power in the short term.

    But sticking with it pays off.

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    The Science of a Perfect Sales Email [New Research]

    By Emma Snider

    Writing interesting and compelling sales emails is definitely an art. Crafting a message that effortlessly ties together attention-grabbing statistics and customized insights on the prospect's business takes an adept wordsmith. 

    But no matter how lovely your email's prose is, it's not long for your prospect's inbox if you send it at the wrong time, or with a bad subject line. 

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    For Savvy Salespeople, School Never Ends [Q&A with Jill Konrath]

    By Emma Snider

    Remember how you felt on the last day of college? As you tossed your cap into the air, a jubilant thought popped into your mind: “I’ll never have to take a class or test again!” With school in your past, it was now time to join the workforce.

    But today, school and work aren’t diametrically opposed. In fact, they’re tightly interconnected.

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    What Sales Reps Really Thought of Your 2015 Sales Kickoff [Infographic]

    By Emma Snider

    The annual sales kickoff meeting is a time to drum up excitement about the coming year while celebrating the achievements of the last. Field and inside sales reps are gathered together to talk strategy and socialize, and leaders dole out awards and lay the foundation for crushing new goals. If done right, the entire sales team leaves the meeting with a fresh mission in their minds and a thirst to achieve it. 

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    Sales Word of the Day: Problem

    By Emma Snider

    Think about the success of Staples' "easy button" ads. This campaign ingrained in consumer's minds that finding appropriate office supplies and furnishings should be as easy as pressing a button. And if life wasn't exactly so simple? Shoppers could actually purchase a giant red easy button and press it when they wished their problems would disappear.

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    An Open Letter to Salespeople: Stop Talking, Start Listening

    By Mark Lowry

    Most sales reps are looking for an edge to increase their performance. Sales is a discipline that requires many skills and talents to be consistently successful in the long run.

    Sales methodologies and following a process are important, but there is one simple thing I’ve observed that may have the most significant impact on sales performance -- listening. 

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    How a CRM System Can Upgrade Your Sales Process

    By Emma Snider

    When a company first starts out, the founders aren't concerned with establishing a clearly delineated sales process -- they're worried about getting any sales at all. The scant sales team (VP, and maybe one or two reps) is often given license to get customers in the door whatever way they think works best. And prospects aren't hard to keep track of when there's only a handful. 

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    6 Tips to Leave the Perfect Sales Voicemail

    By Jeff Hoffman

    No doubt about it -- leaving a good sales voicemail is hard. And even if you do record a well-crafted message, do prospects actually listen to them, or take the time to call you back? Not usually. 

    So what’s the point? Should salespeople even bother with voicemails? Absolutely, and here’s why.

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    Sales Word of the Day: You

    By Emma Snider

    At a party, the person who won't stop talking about themselves tends to drive others away. But the person who asks thoughtful questions of their company? They draw in party guests like moths to a porch light.  

    One of the chief complaints buyers have about salespeople is they're too self-serving.

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    12 Motivational Quotes From Some of the World's Most Successful Entrepreneurs

    By Emma Snider

    Starting a new business requires taking an idea from a founder's head and bringing it to life. With no supporting team and no guarantee of success, startup owners must perform every necessary task and fulfill every necessary role day in and day out. And when they stumble -- which they inevitably will -- they have to quickly recalibrate while keeping their morale and drive high. 

    Read More
    Sales Word of the Day: New

    By Emma Snider

    B2B business leaders don't make buying decisions lightly. When they purchase a new product or service, it's because the offering lines up with strategic goals and promises to take the organization to new heights. They don't want the same old results that prompted the purchase in the first place -- they want to achieve totally new targets that will put distance between the organization and its competitors. 

    Read More
    The 7 Parts of a Perfect Elevator Pitch [Infographic]

    By Emma Snider

    As organizations flatten out, employees don't have to corner senior management in an elevator to get their thoughts heard. They could just schedule a meeting, or even walk up to a leader's office or desk. So is there even a need to have an elevator pitch at the ready?

    Absolutely. Although accessibility to managers has increased, the amount of time those managers have at their disposal has decreased.

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    Sales Word of the Day: Just

    By Emma Snider

    Say you urgently need a coworker to turn in a report to get the ball rolling on a project, but they've been dragging their feet. Time is running out. What do you do?

    You could send an email that gets right to the point: "When are you going to have this done by? It needs to be completed by the 30th." But that sounds awfully demanding considering that you're not this colleague's manager -- and maybe not even their friend.

    Read More
    Sharing Is Caring: How to Get Your Sales Team to Share Content

    By Rachel Clapp Miller

    More and more B2B buyers are using social media to make purchasing decisions. If you want to gain the edge over your competitors, you need a sales team that can capitalize on social channels to make connections and close opportunities.

    A survey from IDC shows 75% percent of B2B buyers use social media to make purchasing decisions. And that number jumps to 84% when you factor in C-level and/or VP Executives.

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    Blogging on LinkedIn: 3 Tips to Maximize Your Reach

    By Pascal Landshoft

    Don't have a blog? No problem. As of last year, everyone and anyone can write and publish posts on LinkedIn. Your last excuse as to why you couldn't be a blogger just vanished.

    I've been blogging on LinkedIn once a week for about six months now, and I've experienced a fair amount of success. One of my posts reached 2,500 views, which I think is pretty good considering that I am not an industry influencer by any means (for now).  

    Read More
    Prospects Want What They Can't Have: 6 Breakup Emails to Make Response Rates Soar [Free Templates]

    By Emma Snider

    It's a plot rehashed in romantic comedies time and again. What's the best way to capture your paramour's attention? Giving them the cold shoulder, of course. As soon as the object of affection feels the drop in attention, they start scrambling to become the apple of your eye once more. 

    This tactic doesn't just work in matters of the heart -- it also applies to business.

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    Sales Word of the Day: Show

    By Emma Snider

    Even in this era of self-directed learning, people still crave demonstration. Consider the popularity of YouTube tutorials and "how to" articles. People like to learn when they want and how they want, but they'd still like someone to walk them through the process. 

    The promise of an experienced teacher is reassuring when venturing into a new subject or concept; for instance, learning how to use a newly purchased product or service.

    Read More
    Are You Still Drawing Plays in the Dirt?

    By JB Bush

    We just wrapped up another football season, so the game should be fresh in your mind: the athletes and coaches, the team mechanics, and the strategy coordinated with every play. So let me ask you this -- when you watch the games on any given weekend, can you imagine coaching one of these teams of elite athletes with no playbook, or strategy?

    The parallels to running a sales organization are many.

    Read More

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