Welcome to The Pipeline.


Forget Presenting and Start Engaging #Webinar0

June 9, 2016 10:00 AM PT/1:00 PM ET

Communication is central to sales success, and communication is a multi-faceted experience.  Sure the message is key, a bad message can set you back; while a great crystal clear message, delivered on target can be a crucial to your success.  But what happens with a perfectly crafted message that misses the mark, does not land the way it was intended?  Sale lost.

Among the things you can control is the how a message is delivered, and how it is taken on by a buyer.  In a world where death by PowerPoint is the norm in selling, presenting yet another sales presentation may not be the way to go.  We all want to engage buyers, encourage a dialogue based on their objectives and business driver, your visuals should align with those, not force the buyer to align with your visuals.

Join Michelle Schifrin and I, the Lead Customer Success Manager at Prezi, to explore how high performing sellers and leading sales organizations are facilitating interactions that deliver the message to a buyer in a way that drives the dialogue, drives sales, and drives mutual benefit for both the buyer and seller.

You’ll learn:

  • How to tell your story in a visual way that engages buyers, creates value, and drives action
  • Case studies from real sales teams who have successfully implemented visual storytelling with a positive ROI
  • How to tackle the challenges that come with transitioning to a more engaging approach to delivering sales presentations


Return On Objectives #Webinar0

Return On Objectives – Harnessing Objectives to Drive Better Sales Conversations

Learn how to change the sales conversation and who should be having that conversation with!

Presented by  

Join me on March 19, at 3:00 pm Eastern.  

Objective Based Selling looks at how to align the conversation with the buyer’s objectives, and leveraging those objectives to create a better conversation that drives mutual opportunities and success. With changes in the buying and selling dynamic, B2B buyers who are ready to buy are much better informed and more empowered than ever, and unless sellers are that much better prepared they risk being reduced to glorified order takers. Buyers who are not in the market, the so called Status Quo, are more time deprived than ever and are much less susceptible to traditional sales approaches and conversations. Impervious to pains, needs or solutions, a large segment of your market is better able to cocoon themselves from traditional sellers and sales conversations.

The presentation will cover how to take advantage of current realities and present specific ways sellers can successfully approach and engage prospects, but create selling opportunities where others may not see any, and in the process build credibility, expert status, and loyalty with existing and new buyers. Objective based selling is a process based, value driven four plank platform for success in selling to Status Quo buyers, the most overlooked segment of the market:

  • Breaking down “Value” to core components and why people buy
  • Leveraging past experiences – Won, Lost and No Decision deals – 360 Degree Deal View
  • Building a better question
  • Proactive exploration

D & R

Collective Connective No. 230

In November I had the pleasure of being a presenter at The Bauhub’s Collective Connective No. 2.

The Bauhub is a new way to connect creative and strategic thinkers with the visionary clients that need their expertise. At The Bauhub you’ll find an experienced team of senior members from all marketing disciplines, working everywhere, anytime.  This translates into the right person, with the right skills on the right project. They’re nimble, quick, on-demand and on budget.  Check them out.

The event held in Toronto’s Distillery District, the event explored the future of work. Aimed specifically at the challenges faced by independent knowledge workers, freelancers and entrepreneurs, I was one of a stream speakers in a unique, rapid-fire series of 5(ish) minute presentations, sharing focused insights and ideas on business development, lifestyle, technology and more.

My contributing is below, but I would encourage you to watch all the presenters, as they each brought some great, relevant and actionable points.

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

The “Right” Measure45

No this isn’t about metrics, this is not about steps you can take as a manager, no, it’s much more cynical and entertaining than that.

It is about a game that sales people and managers can play while presenting or watching a peer present is a selling situation.  It is about measuring how many times a sales person will say “right?” looking for agreement from the potential buyer.  As in: “Our integrated approach delivers efficiencies through process improvement and alignment, right?”

I don’t know!?

“Our e-commerce solution increases business by 12.6%, right?”

I guess, who knows, if you say so!?

The game is to measure the number of time the seller say “right?” without a meaningful response from the buyer.  As the game advances, you can score bonus points when the buyer asks the seller a question, and the seller responds with a statement again, ending in “right?”

The concept or the game came to me the other day when I was watching a rep present his solution to a group of decision makers.  The rep was dead out of the gate as he started off with a soliloquy about the company’s problems, and where they are “losing money, right?”  After some silence, he continued, “cutting edge solution, right?”

The biggest among the communication faux pas our boy made was clearly telegraphing to the group of decision makers is that he was squarely focused on his agenda, and all but oblivious to theirs.  “I am unprepared, I have no clue how to engage you, but I need to make this sale, I hope you go for this, right?”

In terms of the game, it is a lot like golf, the winner is the seller who needs to fall back on the fewest “rights?” while leaving the meeting with a real Next Step.

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

The Right Way to Use Demos in Technology Sales21

Not too long ago I wrote a piece on the misuse of “demos” by some sales people, called “Demo is  a Four Letter Word”.  The folks over at OpenView Labs, asked me to expand on the thought, specifically how it would pertain to technology sales.  You can hear the exchange below, and then visit OpenView Labs for a transcript on more great info.  As always, let me know if you agree, disagree, or I suspect, could care less.

Happy demoing, better selling!

Openview – Demos

Next Steps

  • Use the demo to “Close” not to open
  • Focus on the buyer’s objectives, and “demo” how you can address them positively
  • Agree in advance on expectations and how they will be measured

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

Demo Is a Four Letter Word27

This is not about bashing demos, but more about how many sales reps use, or misuse them, and the lost opportunities that result from the misuse.  The fact is that many in sales love demos because they feel that it creates the sale for them; and while it would be easy to blame the rep, it is often part of the corporate approach.  Many sales processes are built around the demo rather than discovering, deriving, driving and delivering value.  Nothing is more of a throwback to feature based selling than selling by demo.

What differentiates a good demo from a bad one is the demo’s timing and sequence in the sale.  In most instances, a seller meets a prospect, they have the right title, a pulse, and agree that they have the time for a demo; once completed, they spend time and effort retrofitting the “needs” of the buyer to things that seemed to appeal to them in the demo.  The net result is a longer sale, with more work, and generally reduced value for both the buyer and the seller.

Read On…

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

Assuming You're Right – Sales eXchange – 12033

We have all heard the popular saying about the perils and risks when you assume, and for the most part sales people are much less likely to make assumptions about prospects, their situation and motives.  But there is a type assumption that many sales people make hat is still costing them sales, or causing them to be much longer than they should be, which in itself brings risk.

The risk is when sales people assume that the buyer understands and defines many of the words that sales people use in the same way that the sales rep actually meant.  This is even more the case and the risk, with words that are used commonly in different professions, and for the wrong reason.

Take words like solution and value.  Having sat in on many sales meetings, I have seen a large number of them fail because of assumptions the reps have made about how the buyer views specific processes and products; assumptions about how the buyer defines value; assumptions about what a buyer may or may not be willing to do and invest in to address a specific situation.

Many brilliant sales calls ended up in no next step because the sales rep failed to take the time and effort ensure that the buyer’s points of reference were the same as the sellers.  When you spend much of your time with people who are using the same points of reference as you, that is your fellow sales people, product, marketing and other people in your company.  Add to that the fact that your competitors are using the same words to describe the same things you and your gang do.  It is easy to believe that everyone defines things as you do, everyone uses the same words or phrases you do.  But they don’t.

One example revolved around “document management” a number of industries and products proudly ware the label.  In any given meeting you can find that someone sees it the way that you do, while in the next someone in a similar role will see it differently.  Unless you take the time to understand you are at risk of clicking with one, and alienating the other.

This is a shame, because with a few well placed questions, and a bit of patience, and abandoning basic assumptions, both sales could have gone well rather than just the one where the assumptions were right.

What’s in Your Pipeline?
Tibor Shanto

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Free Live Webinar 2:00 pm EST Today!15

EXECUTION – The Last Word in Sales!

Everything Else is Just Talk!

What’s the one thing all sales methodologies have in common?

Unless they are executed, it’s all just talk!

Join Yves Matson, senior account executive at ActiveConversion, and I Tibor Shanto, of Renbor Sales Solutions Inc., as we discuss strategies around sales methodologies and proper execution.

In 45 minutes followed by a 15 min Q&A you will learn:

•    How to successfully execute sales methodology?
•    Why CRM systems fail to get adopted?
•    Why there is lack of execution?
•    What are the four cornerstones of execution?

Today, Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 2:00 PM Eastern; 12:00 PM MDT; 11:00 AM PST.
Click here to check your local time

Space is limited. Reserve your seat now:

All registrants will receive a copy of the presentation and a link to the recorded webinar.

Download the Execution – The Last Word In Sales! on line book.

Toronto Action Summit – October 16 -1714

If you are in Toronto this weekend, October 16 – 17, you should plan to attend the Toronto Action Summit.  This is an opportunity for entrepreneurs, individual business owners, or anyone looking to take things to the next level to not only hear from 9 leading experts, but to network with like minded successful local peers who can be there and help with you success.  From Marketing to Personal Healt, you will hear from people who are involved in making it happen daily.

I of course will be speaking on sales, specifically “Execution – The Last Word In Sales!“.

Register today, take advantage of special pricing offered to readers of The Pipeline.  When you enter the Code: FRIEND25, you will be able to purchase tickets for just $25 versus the regular $97, a $72 saving.

Your Price: $25
List Price: $97
Enter Code: FRIEND25
Please note if you are buying multiple tickets you will need to buy each individually and enter the code separately for each.

Click here for Details and to Register!

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