When most people picture a successful salesperson, they often think of ‘the closer’ – the one celebrating the big deal coming in, money showering down, and gongs going off.

These folks, particularly in enterprise companies, are often called Account Executives (AE). They manage the account, ultimately building and owning the relationship, then closing deals.

Ever since the switch to ‘inside sales’ became the dominant way to initiate deals –  over the phone and over email – it’s been the role of sales development representatives to start but not finish the process. Once a lead is qualified, it turns to the AE to make it happen.

Something watches your every move. It casts a dark, deceptive, and often destructive, shadow upon each and every salesperson as they go about their day. It threatens to wreak havoc in the most insidious and unexpected ways.

It is the perfect ally to have on your side, but it often stands as a formidable and unforgiving adversary. It cannot be bought or owned, yet it is yours to use as you like.

Let’s face it: Google AdWords is expensive. Especially because “more leads” doesn’t necessarily mean “more sales” – unless you’re thinking the process through.

Even though the average cost per click is “only” $1-2, research from Wordstream found that even small businesses typically spend between $9,000-10,000 a month (more than $100,000 a year) on Adwords campaigns. Large companies like Amazon, State Farm and Lowe’s spend between $40 and $50 million each year – not to mention that popular keywords can cost upwards of $50 per click.

The most gifted public speakers seem natural, authentic, and knowledgeable. They inspire people to act. These orators don’t sound like they are reading, nor do they sound as if they are fumbling around to find answers. As a sales professional, this is the level of delivery that you and your team should aspire to with every sales call you make. Remember that many eloquent speakers prepare by practicing a written speech; salespeople should follow suit by using a terrific call script.

It is technically possible to make 100 sales prospecting calls per day. In fact, I’ve seen sales development reps make upwards of 300 dials in a single day. But every good SDR knows there’s danger in focusing too much on vanity metrics like dials alone.

The old-school thought is “If you put in the hard work, you’ll see the results.” It has certainly been said that “sales is a numbers game, and the more people you talk to, the more you’ll sell.” While there’s truth in these ideas, it’s a fallacy that the only key to success in prospecting is the volume of calls you make. Here are four concrete steps companies should take to improve connect rates, enable more relevant and personalized conversations, and ultimately close more business.

Last year my wife purchased a new Jeep Grand Cherokee.  She did her research up front. Before she ever walked into the dealership she knew more about Jeep Grand Cherokees than the people selling them. She knew exactly what she wanted: silver exterior, dark leather interior, navigation system, and sun-roof.

She’d compared prices across multiple dealers and her research was neatly arranged in a folder. The only thing left was the obligatory test drive.

One enticing benefit of the sales profession is the freedom and independence it offers. The rewards, of course, are reliant on how hard one works to be deserving of them. Reps that perform at or above the expected level are often left alone by their managers. Great performance invariably leads to corresponding degrees of support …

A lot happened in the world of sales and sales technology in 2016. To help summarize – we published 80 articles in all this year – you’ll find below some of our most popular blog posts, and LinkedIn write-ups. I’m super stoked that nearly 30,000 people viewed my fun YouTube Video using different sales methodologies …

Most organizations live and die by quota. Quotas are derived from financial projections which are created and necessary for companies to operate. We rely on quotas as a method for measuring sales rep performance. They need to have a number to shoot for and we need to know whether they are performing as expected. In …