How to get referrals without feeling “icky”

Asking for referrals can sometimes feel “icky”.Here’s why.You delivered something that helps your client do something better. In exchange, your client gave you money. So there’s a balance. You “gave” a thing that helps your client be more awesome. And in return you “got” money. Download the “non-icky” referral email template But when you ask for a referral, you’re “getting” …

How to use cold email to validate your idea

Early stage startups typically need to determine who their idea customer is and whether their product or service addresses a need.  In order to accelerate that process try this: Search LinkedIn for contacts at companies you think you can serve Use hunter.io, salestool.io or leadgibbon to find their email addresses Send an email like the one below Use rebump.cc to automatically “nudge” a response …

This question cost me a $125,000 sale

I once asked a question that cost me a $125,000 sale. This is actually a true story, but not the takeaway I hope you get from this blog post. Like most enterprise deals this had been an exercise in patience. After 3 months we were finally able to check all the sales qualification boxes: Do they admit they have a …

An effective cold call script you can learn in 45 seconds

I recently downloaded a cold call script that was 5 pages long. The were all sorts of psychological tricks like “pattern interrupts” aimed at persuading people to schedule a meeting. It was complicated. Difficult to master. And felt “icky”. Cold calling doesn’t need to be so complicated or slimy. And you don’t need to read a 120 page book on …

Don’t ever ask this question again

May 2014. I was in the market for a tool that would help the sales team increase call volume and turn more conversations with prospects into meetings. A quick Google search led me to a vendor who had lots of content aimed at making me smarter about my problem and the options for solving it. So I submitted my contact details in exchange for an e-book. 20 …

This 3 minute conversation led to a $45,000

Setting up a booth at a conference, handing out swag and scanning business cards is easy; scheduling demos with strangers that turn into revenue is hard. As a VP of Sales and a self-proclaimed sales junkie, I love attending sales conferences. Sure, the speakers are interesting, but I learn even more by observing HOW vendors sell. I often play guinea …

Do This One Thing and You’ll Persuade More People

I was recently in the market for a CRM so I signed up for a 30 day trial.  After kicking the tires for a few weeks I received a call from “Mike”.  Here’s Mike: “Hi Josh, this is Mike with ACME CRM.  How are you doing today?” Me: “Great Mike.  How are you?” Mike: “Doing well Josh. The reason I’m calling is to see if …

Pricing Page: How to nudge people into selecting your higher-priced option

I recently spent some time on growthhacker.tv listening to experts on startup growth reveal their secrets. (Very original and thought provoking content btw.)  You get to listen to 3 episodes for free before being prompted with the sign up page below. Typically pricing pages have two options.  You can either choose the less expensive option with less features or the more expensive option with more features. Sometimes this …

How to Diffuse “Can you give me a better price?”

“Good news.  We’re in!  But I need you to give me a better price.  What can you do?” Look, I get it.  You’re anxious.  You’ve been working this deal for 3 months.  You can taste the sale.  You just want to ask your VP for a 10% discount and close it. But offering a discount can actually work against you and your …