11min Watch

Sales Process at Directive

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All right, let’s chat sales process. So I’ve always had a sales process at Directive, but it’s taken a lot of different twists and turns over the years. So I’d say we first needed a sales process, at least me personally was back when I was still in like a co-working space. We woke up randomly, like on a Wednesday or something, and our email was like just packed.

Like our pipeline was slams and I didn’t know what had happened and I was trying to figure out I was like going into my Google Analytics, like, where are all these phone calls coming from? Because I was used to doing like couple calls a week, you know, like three or four or five calls a week. And I’ll be like, Great week if I could get one call a day.

I was pretty pumped. All of a sudden I have like seven calls on my calendar. I didn’t know what happened and I had all these foreign films to follow up with and I didn’t have a process. And it’s cause ten best SEO, I think eight or nine years ago made me number one on like a SEO agency. And this is back on your SEO shop to like show me how many leads I would get and then try to sell me like a monthly sponsorship for that spot.

Now, I did get it for free that month and it did actually totally change my business. So I built a sales process. I learned how to pitch better since I had people who are getting referrals before. So a lot of us, we get referrals, you know, we think we’re really good at sales, but a referral is very different than like a random prospect who’s talking to two other vendors.

And so by being ranked number one and having all of a sudden this pipeline, I develop the sales process. And the initial sales process we had was like an intro call to qualify someone and learn more about their business and ask them pertinent questions. Now I’d go straight to the proposal, like the pitch. I do a bunch of audits and free work and be like, based on our conversations and what your budget is, this is what I recommend we do.

And I would pitch it and frankly it worked really well. But as we went up market and we started having bigger contracts, you know, those are 2 to $4000 a month contracts. Once we started going to five K, 1020 K, 40 k k thousand dollars a month contracts, 12 month engagements, know out clauses. I had to do a little bit more selling.

I had to explain the value of the product better. I had to articulate our values more, our approach, how we service you more. And so I need to add a strategy, call too. So I sold qualified people, right? Because I didn’t want to do a bunch of free work and involve other people from my team on unqualified calls out waste their time, take away from their billable hours.

It’d be inefficient SEO to qualify them. But then we added a strategy call and we kind of copied winning by design. So if you feel like you’ve seen this before, it’s very much winning by design and their methodology. And I kind of just walk you through the sales process, the parts I like, the parts I don’t like, some of the stuff I’ve struggled with, but at least you can see all your different options and figure out what you want to apply for yours, your agency and your business.

So first stage, I just call it stage zero. It’s that initial call, right? Like I’m trying to qualify you mostly on BET. So budget authority need timing. That’s mostly what I’m doing here. I just want to make sure that you’re ready to work with us and then I’m not going to waste my time doing a bunch of, like, hours on a pitch for you, and then you’re just not a fit.

So I got to qualify you on this call, but also not make you feel like you’re like a peasant or a poor. You know what I mean? So you can’t just be like, what’s your budget? Oh, that buy. You’re going to get a bad reputation. So you have to figure out how to have an ongoing conversation with a prospect, learn about their business.

And for me, I always try to make sure they walk away with a ton of value. I want them to be a raging advocate for me and my brand. Every time I talk with someone and be as helpful and serious about the opportunity I see for them every time. So that’s kind of on the intro call. One of the key questions I started asking was like, when?

When do you want to start by? And then they’ll tell me the date I got this by winning by design. So like, okay, well we want to start soon. I said, awesome. Like, how soon? As soon to you is that like April 1st? And they’ll be like, Yeah, April 1st could work. And then I’ll ask the follow up.

This is important question What happens if you missed the April 1st start date? Now I can see how important this is. So if they feel like, Oh, nothing really happens, it’s not a top priority. Now I immediately know where I’m at on this pitch and how to approach it, and I need to be more of a value sell and it’s okay to elongate the sales process, go deeper with them, really form the relationship.

If someone’s like, Look, we got to start right away. I know they’re in a more transactional mode and they need to get more to how this is going to be practically applied to them. Who are they working with? How much does it cost? What kind of results than they expect? So it’s a little different of a sell. So I love that question is something you can try to bring into your calls.

Second is a strategy call. So this is where I involve in Smith. So I like to sell with two people, a salesperson and then a subject matter expert. So I like to take my most eloquent articulator speaker from my operational team and bring them into the sales group. They’re usually much more on the strategy side. They’re more T-shaped as a marketer.

They have a broad sense of expertize. They’re usually older in the sense that they have a certain amount of trust that they’re able to form with someone based on their years of experience and their age. And those people do very, very well. They’re also horrible at following up, negotiating and doing all the sale stuff. That’s what the is good at.

You know, that is terrible. At understanding the real value of marketing, what services you should actually buy to hit your goals. And so I found that if you had both, you’d be the

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