Hunt Big Sales Blog
Insights for Finding, Landing and Harvesting Whale-Size Accounts
Latest "Tom’s Misc. Rants" Posts
The founders of jewelry start-up Altruette know what a difference the holidays make for small business. Here are some of their favorite products from start-ups and small shops.
By Lee Clifford and Julie Schlosser The holiday season is crucial for small businesses–especially those in retail. As the owners of a start-up retail operation–it’s called Altruette, and we sell jewelry charms associated with charitable causes–we found that last year close to 60% of our sales came in the weeks leading up to the end of the year. This fact radically changed how we do our own shopping. To us, there’s no better feeling than supporting entrepreneurs who have poured their heart and soul into getting a product they truly believe in to market. To that end we’ve rounded up our favorite gifts made by small companies. Happy holidays!
How’s this for a sweet story: Dawn Casale began baking in her tiny West Village flat in New York City, quit her job at Barney’s, opened a shop, and hired a pastry chef…who would eventually become her husband. (He spelled out “Will You Marry Me” in sugar cookies and asked her to check the oven). One Girl’s tiny delicacies–like this assortment of Whoopie Pies–are almost too pretty to eat. But One Girl’s second store in Brooklyn was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. Pitch in to get this beloved shop back up and running! Cost: $30 for 12
Tegu’s magnetic blocks are so addictively pleasing to play with that even adults will find themselves fiddling with them.
Postage stamps are the best lead-generation deal in America — even at twice the price, direct mail is a bargain
Follow these rules to ensure your business ranks high in online searches
Companies should make a priority of raising their visibility in the media and in their market
Everyone wants to use the latest technology in the workplace. Here’s how to determine whether a new item will be a tool or a toy.
When your sales people come to you with the “We need to get …” requests for new technology, what do you hear? Is it a request for a tool or for a toy?
Often, sales team requests for new equipment and software can sound like a burdensome and unnecessary expense. Recently, one executive said to me, “I don’t need my sales people with one more distraction in their day–[they need to] get off the iPad and go sell something!”
Of course, tablets are just one technology being offered up to companies to support sales activities. Smartphones, apps, CRM systems, software packages–the list is always growing. So how do you get the most out of your investments in technology for your sales force?
Reasons to Invest
Here are a few ways to look at possible investment justifications:
- Productivity: It’s about getting more with less. The smartest investments come at companies that have a clear line of sight to what functions they want to make better–and how much improvement would justify the investment. If I can see a cost-benefit improvement from one function that pays for the investment, I am inclined to give a green light. It’s when I hear of a combination of several benefits, none of which can stand on their own, that I get skeptical.
- Speed: I love time, but I am an engineer’s son.If you can show me that we save measurable time to get the same or higher activity yield, I am in.
The year’s best commercials are in! Cast your vote now! Check out my blog on CBS MoneyWatch.
I was recently interviewed for a very interesting book, “The Masters of Consulting Interviews: 9 Interviews with the World’s Leading Consultants.”
There are a lot of consultants out there. I affectionately refer to them as “unemployed, but with skills and a business card.” They are looking for a job, but to make ends meet they are selling their services as a “consultant” on a contract basis until a full-time job comes along.
This book is not about them.
Michael Zipursky from Business Consulting Buzz put this book together to capture the best practices of trusted advisers and professional consultants. Through these 9 interviews, he covered a broad-ranging set of topics like:
- How to make money, charge and create a sense of value?
- How do you find new prospects after you have tapped every person you ever met?
- What are typical mistakes, misunderstandings and misconceptions about the role of a consultant?
- What is expertise, how do you value it and how do you claim your own?
If you think about just this sample, it doesn’t take very long to figure out that this is about a lot more than just consulting. The applications for revenue generators and professional sales people is immediately apparent.
I am Interview #6 and to be honest, I don’t pull any punches. I am a fairly jaded past purchaser of consulting services and can tell you quickly whether a consultant brings value or just billable hours. I try to cover that value equation in my interview.
I encourage you to pick up a copy if you are in the business of generating individual trust with clients and securing their commitment to value at a 1:1 level.
Where’s our chance to brag? Those of us that are united by the desire to land that huge sale, compete against companies much bigger than ourselves and come out on top, to take the big swing rather than going for the easy single or double- where’s our parade? I want our awards show! We deserve a chance to showcase our biggest and best sales stories of 2010 and I am going provide that place right here-
The top 5 stories will receive full profiles in my future blogs – including deal details, company highlights and podcast interviews with the winners.
Here’s what I need you to do:
Post up, right here and now, your biggest deal profile from 2010. This is your chance to shine, so don’t be shy. Answer a few key pieces:
- What made the sale big?
- What did you do differently?
- What one tip would give someone else to land a big sale like you did?
I want to get this bragging opportunity to at least 1,000 people, so post this link into LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and anywhere else you interact with people who are part of this community of hunters: http://tinyurl.com/beststoriesof2010
I want to get 200 comments from coast to coast. I can’t do this without you so post your comment below right now.
Do this fast- We’re already into 2011 and I want to make certain that we get your glory now so you can take the lessons from the stories for your next biggest deal.
“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!” -Jack Kerouac,
You have to be crazy to want to “double your double,” to double the speed at which you double the size of your company. Thank God for the Mad Ones of 2010.
As we were doing our review of the year and planning for the new year, a theme revealed itself- We love the Mad Ones. The clients and projects that drove our greatest passions and growth were from the small universe of people who fit Jack Kerouac’s description….
Matty, Ally-Boy, Rob Daddy, Mama Bear, Kohai, Sonny-D-Madcap, Klaus, Backstreet Boys, Joe-Mack-Baby, Markie-Mark, the Dick, Shelly-Hell, Wild Bill, Winnie-lou…and many un-nicknamed, but just as mad people…
This last year, this group of crazies sold more, yelled louder, laughed harder, fought stronger… They got bigger and they made us better.
Our favorite work, our best work, happened with the Mad Ones. Bloody mad, every single one of them. So, we at Hunt Big Sales will open a bottle and raise a glass to the great Mad Ones of 2010. We are looking forward to a great 2011 with them and as many Mad Ones as we can find…
Ever since i called my marketing partner a “nag” in my post about Twitter a couple weeks ago, she’s been wearing the name around like a badge of honor. I always worry about people who mistake insults as compliments (I kid!), but I guess if you knew her you’d understand. She lives for this stuff…
So, as these things go, she’s now gone off and created a cartoon character of herself and even given herself an official title within the company (I wish I was kidding). If you didn’t already receive her newsletter this morning (yes, her newsletter), you can find her official announcement below. One good thing I CAN say about her new persona is that it, I mean, she, will now be doing all of the dirty work that I can’t bear to do myself. Workshop promotions, telling you how great I am, bragging about things that don’t need to be bragged about…that’s all her department now.
So, without further ado, The Marketing Nag has a “very important” announcement to make…