Recently, I had the opportunity to represent PGi at the American Association of Inside Sales Professionals (AA-ISP) Leadership Summit in Chicago. The title of my presentation was “Evolve or Die: How to Survive and Thrive in the Changing Sales Landscape”. You can check out my the slideshare of my presentation above. In this post, I’ll share some of the key themes I discussed at the conference.

The Changing Sales Landscape

Overall, the role of a sales professional is dramatically changing. The “good old days” of dialing for dollars is over. Today, only 2% of cold calls result in an appointment. So, if you’re hoping your “dial days” will result in some big deals, you’re going to be very disappointed. Sales people today have to accept a basic truth: Your prospects really just aren’t that into you. They don’t want you calling or email them. When they’re ready to talk to you, they will reach out. Read More

The Blooper Reel

oops

About a year ago, I started doing video demos for iMeet with my colleague Jennifer Zember.  Since then, we’ve produced over 30 videos and generated several thousand views on YouTube.  You can read more about these videos in the post “Reinventing the Demo”.  If you’re interested, you can see the full library of my iMeet videos here.

Through all the video production, there were a significant amount of mistakes I made during the filming.  Flubbed lines.  Incoherent statements.  But, thanks to my friends at ECG Productions, the final videos always come out flawlessly.

As a birthday gift this year, my team decided to make me my very own blooper reel to showcase all my imperfections.  It’s really funny, and a bit painful to watch.  Take a look at the video below.  As I always tell people, it’s not as easy as it look.

taglines

The corporate “tagline”. It’s an often overlooked and under appreciated part of a brand’s marketing message.

Some brands have had the same tagline forever. Other brands seem to change the tagline every year. Some brands have multiple taglines. Others have no tagline at all.

There’s not universal agreement on what a tagline is and the role it plays in a brand’s marketing message.

Personally, I believe to tagline is critical. At best, it should be the most concise articulation of your value to your customers. At PGi, we just went though an exploratory which led to a new tagline. So, I’ll share some of the thinking behind it. Read More

SuperBowl 2014

So this is the second year I’m ranking the top 5 and bottom 5 Super Bowl ads. Last year Tide “Miracle Stain” took the top spot. Click here to see the complete list from 2013.

For 2014, the “Big Game” was a big flop. It seemed like Denver didn’t even show up. But, even in a blow out, the show must go on. Advertisers that bet on 2nd half spots were probably disappointed in the viewership. Nevertheless, the game provided some memorable advertising.

Interestingly, some of the best “Super Bow ads” weren’t even in the Super Bowl. Esurance and Newcastle found creative ways to highjack the big game without spending big money. They would both be in my top 5, but they weren’t “technically” in the Super Bowl. So, I put them in the “honorable mention” category.

Without futher adu, here are my picks for the top 5 and bottom 5 ads in the 2014 Super Bowl.

Read More

baby bath water

“Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water”.

I’ve heard that saying a lot in my career. It seems to be a staple in the conventional marketing vernacular.

It’s actually a horrible saying. I mean, the idea of “throwing out” a baby is really terrible. I guess that’s why they never say throw out the baby but save the bath water.

But, I think marketers need to retire that saying.

To me, it means that if what we’re doing isn’t working, let’s keep doing it anyway. Just make some minor tweaks and it will definitely start working.

That logic is usually misguided. If an idea or program isn’t working, it’s probably not going to work. No matter what you do to make the logo bigger or make the message clearer, the core idea might just be rotten.

Read More

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