Continuum Senior Vice President and CMO Jeanne Hopkins was recently named one of the "20 Women To Watch in Sales Lead Management" by the Sales Lead Management Association (SLMA) for the third time since 2011. Leveraging her more than 20 years of marketing executive experience, Hopkins shared with ITbestofbreed.com five of her best tips for improving sales success at a solution provider organization.
1. Share Your Expertise
IT leaders have immense subject matter expertise, Hopkins said, and that is a huge opportunity for thought leadership marketing material. Whether it is in a blog post, a podcast, a video, a Facebook post or any other form of communication, bundling that expertise into some form of content will help get the word out there and let customers and potential clients know that the company is on the top of their game.
"I think that what ends up happening with many of our partners is that they don't consider themselves to be good at sales and marketing but what they are excellent at is solving problems … and taking that and flipping that on its head and saying, 'this is how we solve it,'" Hopkins said. "That to me is the ultimate in sales because they are [utilizing] their expertise, showing their knowledge and customers like that."
2. One Phone Call A Day
In order to move from a more proactive than reactive relationship with customers, Hopkins suggested setting a goal to reach out to one current client a day to check in and see if there is anything you can do to help. While it is important to have a "health check" with clients, Hopkins estimated that 9 out of 10 solution providers don't reach out to a current client daily. However, once it becomes a habit, it becomes easy, she said, and will allow you to better stay on top of client needs and get ahead of the curve.
"It's not unlike going to the gym," Hopkins said. "You have to almost force yourself to do it until it becomes a habit. Who are you going to call today?"
3. Connect With Your Vendors
Social media is a great place to connect with vendors, Hopkins said. Solution provider leaders can start by making sure they follow vendors on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. Vendors are usually very willing to share mutual success stories, which is a win-win for both parties, she said. Vendors are often willing to do the "heavy lifting," she said, to help get out a partner success story. Hopkins said she personally has helped publicize more than 70 such success story with Continuum.