Ways to Break the Sales Stereotype: Way 6 – Be a Thought Leader

You should be an expert on how your products’ capabilities help your prospects or customers.  Your pre-sales person may know more about the technical features of your product but you should be a thought leader in applying your product’s value to the circumstances of your prospect.  And you should express that expertise often and in many different ways.

For example, one of my favorite blogs is Chad Levitt’s  blog called New Sales Economy.  He always has interesting articles on Sales 2.0 strategies.  He also guest blogs on other sites and has interesting guests write in his blog.  He is a thought leader in this space.

But guess what…

He is a sales guy for Hubspot, a company that sells inbound marketing software which helps grow traffic to your site, get leads, and make sales in this new environment.  Chad’s story is in alignment with what he does and who he works for.  Chad is part of that big conversation out there.  He gets leads by virtue of who he is and what he is passionate about.  Chad is in alignment with his story and there is a tremendous amount of power in that.

Think about ways that you can amplify your thought leadership and become part of that big conversation out there.  Be more than sales – be an authentic Thought Leader.

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One Response to Ways to Break the Sales Stereotype: Way 6 – Be a Thought Leader

  1. Why is a view like that so important? What has changed? Tech buyers want to see more and more business outcomes instead of solution benefits and product features only. They buy the value we can deliver to solve their business problems, they don’t buy a product because of great product features. That’s why we need to talk about their roles and responsibilities, their specific business problems, not so much about how great we as vendors are! We need to translate the benefits of our technology into business value, into their specific business outcomes. For instance, it is a difference whether an outsourcing deal must meet cost saving targets only or whether the deal must meet a certain EBIT contribution.All that has huge impact on content, messaging, trainings, metrics, on how to sell and to whom. We need sales content along the customers problem-solving-process, and we need sales content for different messaging levels, e.g. business leaders, CIO, IT management, SME’s. Then, we need a guide on how to sell and to whom along this journey (playbooks etc.). All that has to be aligned to trainings, and to be presented efficiently and easy-to-use and easy-to-customize on a sales enablement platform to the sales force – from a sales view point! Next, we need to align the selling and engagement models and we need metrics for all of that, we need to know, which pieces of content are working where along the buying/sales cycle (ideally for which sales persons) – without these metrics we won’t be able to communicate the ROI of the selling system to a C-level.All these challenges show the tremendous effort to orchestrate all these sales support activities to a common design point – the customer, in an end2end manner, including the whole bunch of leadership disciplines, execution, change and communication.

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