Tag Archives: “other sites”

Shout Out to Dave Dupre for CIO of the Year Award

13 May

A shout out to my co-founder and CTO at Inquisix, Dave Dupre, for being nominated for WINNING the 2012 CIO of the Year Award from MHT and Boston Business Journal. No surprise to me, Dave was clearly the best engineer back while we were getting our degrees at Boston University and he accomplished amazing things at Inquisix by building a pretty sophisticated application behind the covers that was so simple to use. He’s got didn’t even need my vote for winning the award next month!

Your Prospect Tells You How to Sell to Them

30 Nov

Not often that your C-level prospect will tell you how to sell to them.  They’ll hide behind email spam filters and executive assistants but won’t take the time to tell you what you’re doing wrong.  Until this CEO opened up with their automated email reply telling you to do more than just call the vendor hotline at purchasing – a voice mail no one ever picks up.

Top ways to get noticed:

  • Let your prospect find you – ie Inbound Marketing
  • Get introduced by someone they trust – ie Referrals

Top ways to annoy:

  • Constant cold-calls
  • Mass emails to entire executive team
  • Trying to connect via social media

Thanks to Hubspot for the full article.

Follow-up Follow-UP

5 Nov

Ivan Misner posted on his blog – What Is the Number-One Trait of a Master Networker? this week and I thought, “Absolutely dead-on!”

Nothing frustrates me more than giving a referral to someone and then they DON’T FOLLOW UP. I’ve asked my colleague if they’d accept this referral to and now I have to explain why there was no follow up. This affects my reputation. That’s why Inquisix allows members to rate the referral in both ways – rating how well one party handled the referral and how well the other party gave the referral.

Inquisix – Business Relationships that Last

27 Oct

BusinessRelationshipsThatLast

I just ordered this book because that’s what Inquisix members do – they build business relationships that last.

If you’ve already read the book, please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Learning from Previous Mistakes

19 Oct

Fabulous article about Hulu from Fast Company magazine. Great lessons for every entrepreneur, every growing company or company wishing they could grow.

Can Hulu Save Traditional TV?

Lessons to be learned for all on:

  • Improving user experience
  • Using analytics to figure out what users want instead of asking them (because they don’t tell you – think Edsel)
  • “Dinosaur” TV networks learning from a lesson (missing out on YouTube) and taking the appropriate steps.   RIAA needs to do the same
  • How to build revenue and market share.  Amen!

Yes, I know this blog post is not about referrals. But I’ve been reading Fast Company a lot lately and find so many of them to be well written and insightful.  Their articles should be required reading for anyone looking to grow in the new economy.  Maybe that’s why it’s called, “Fast Company”

hulu fastcompany

Free Up Your Time to Do the Important Stuff

10 Oct

2 great tips for freeing up a bunch of your time – from the in-box and out-box side of your desk.  First tip is from the out-box side on how to decide whether to respond to an RFP or not.  It’s tricky to tell if it’s a real RFP because they can just take SOOO much time.  What’s worse, coming in second or not having it awarded?  The second tip has really freed up my day to tackle my to-do list instead of read and respond to trivial stuff.

  • How To Avoid Deals Where No Vendor Wins – Really enjoyed this post from Geoffrey. In discussions with other sales reps in various industries, there seems to be an uptick in RFPs being issued but two items stand out –
    * RFP decisions are pushed out out out. The company wants the RFP response back in 2 weeks but the decision drags drags drags. Hence the timeliness of Geoffrey’s post
    * RFPs in purgatory. In addition to new RFPs being issued, old ones are getting dusted off and sent out again. When you ask, “Why” the answer boils down to, “We’re getting ready JUST IN CASE…”
    Always a challege for a small company responding to an RFP from a F500 company when there’s no real good understanding (or belief) in whether the RFP’s really real or not.
  • Improve Your Connect Rates – Absolutely spot on commentary. Emails are so easy and cheap to send that readers are bombarded by them. Therefore, they don’t read them or at best, scan thru them. I’ve even set up my BB to only accept emails from people who are already in my address book as all other emails get saved on my PC. Guess how many of them are read on my PC?

    Jim’s critical point – call & leave a message pointing out the details in your email. I’ve had a much higher connect rate when I both call (leave a message) and send an email. And as he says, “Persistence is key.”

Quick sales tips & reminders

2 Oct

There were a bunch of quick and valuable reminders and tips on the web this week on improving your sales process.

  • Making You Suprisingly Unforgettable To Your Customers – Loved this post – in these days of too many competitors and too many choices offered to our prospects, here’s some great tips make yourself unforgettable. How many of you think of Nat & Natalie Cole when you hear the word, “Unforgettable” like I do?
  • Three Tiny Changes That Drive Success – Nice reminders to help get you out of a sales rut. Don’t forget Dale Carnegie’s, “21 Days to Making it a Habit” as you try these changes. Assuming you don’t do them already!
  • Quiz: How To Bypass a Gatekeeper – Real good quiz on bypassing the Gatekeeper when you just can’t get in. Interesting decision by Geoffrey on which department you should call into to ask for the transfer. Other ways:
    – try Jigsaw for direct dial # of executive
    – try Inquisix for a referral to the executive by someone they know.

Geoffrey’s idea is manipulative but sometimes you just have to try it. But only after you can’t get an Inquisix referral or JigSaw is not coughing up the direct dial numbe

Dig It's Great Quote of the Week

18 Sep

“You can’t have a better tomorrow if you’re thinking about yesterday.” — Charles Kettering

Quote of the Week – Great quote that should strike a chord in any sales rep, manager or business owner bemoaning their poor 2009 sales attainment. Sales people are usually very good at moving on whether the last month was a win or a dud but for anyone needing a reminder, read and internalize this quote. Now go get them!

Boston-area VC funding for startups – where is it?

9 Sep

Since many Inquisix members are also entrepreneurs and business owners (like us), perhaps you’ll find these articles as interesting as we do.  The first article caused a big commotion and discussion amongst the Boston startup crowd.  Isn’t that what good articles do?

  • Why Waltham Doesn’t Matter – Finding early stage funding is always challenging for startups and the chances of getting a, “No thanks” are close to 99%. So when a noted Boston Globe business columnist calls the VCs on the carpet, everyone in our community takes notice. I was at a TechCocktail networking event last week and the VCs I spoke to all had lots of comments and head shaking. One was upset that they weren’t mentioned with the “good guys” in Boston. So if Scott was looking to stir the pot, he accomplished it in spades!
  • Hey, Boston-area VCs, angels: Loosen up and connect with startups – To continue the commentary from Scott on Waltham VCs and lack of Series A fundings, one of the Angels that rec’d kudos from Scott is offering his suggestions. It’s one all Inquisix members believe in – the referral. “If you can’t/won’t do the deal then referral them to someone you think will.”

Follow Salesforce.com's path to the top & other thoughts

4 Sep

The blog articles I read this week worth commenting on and sharing:

  • 111 Successful Plays That Led Salesforce.com from an Idea to $1 Billion in 10 Years – The company (and the man) that made the hosted-elsewhere software applications (whether you call it SaaS, Cloud Computing, ASP, etc) a non-issue with big business. Before <a href=”http://salesforce.com”>salesforce.com</a&gt; there were too many concerns about security, up-time, bandwidth and more. After Salesforce.com paved the way, look how many sites are now in the clouds, including Google Mail, Quicken & TurboTax along with photo sharing and desktop hard-disk backups. You can put your customer data, every email, financial data and tax data all online and not think twice about it. Thanks to Marc and Salesforce.com
  • Tips From @ChrisBrogan on How to Beat Dunbar’s Number – I’ve heard (and repeated the item myself) that the limit of real social relationships is 150. Even mentioned it during the BTR show with Jon Hansen last week. A fact I had not verified before but thanks to HubSpot’s blog and a link to Wikipedia, the source of 150 can be attributed to Robin Dunbar.
  • Have you met your competitor yet? Maybe you should. – Great article about the reasons why you should meet your competitor. Back when I was at Sybase, we were taught to hate our version of the Evil Empire, Oracle. Well, we all know how that battle turned out and many of my Sybase colleagues ended up working at Oracle. They didn’t suddenly become evil although we were both more careful about sharing war stories. Similarily, I’ve always been impressed at the end of hockey games when both teams line up and shake each other’s hands. Geoffrey’s reasons for meeting your competitor:
    1) Learn more about how they sell
    2) Use that knowledge to build credibility with your customer
    3) Never know when you’ll be looking for a new job

For those of you in the US & Canada, enjoy the long weekend!