43 episodes

Expert at solving complicated sales and marketing problems

Aligned Podcast Sean Doyle

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 4 Ratings

Expert at solving complicated sales and marketing problems

    Ed Rusch | Marketing Myths and Misconceptions

    Ed Rusch | Marketing Myths and Misconceptions

    On today’s episode of Aligned, Sean is joined by digital marketing devotee Ed Rusch. Ed is passionate about customer experiences and is the current CMO of Blue Ridge. In a three-part series, Ed will articulate his major takeaways from his years of experience in the marketing space. Today’s topic? Common myths and misconceptions of executive-level marketing.
    Ed’s marketing origins:
    Born and raised in Cleveland, his first gigs post-college were hosting various radio (playing adult contemporary and Today’s Top 40 hits.) As he’s grown and learned more about the industry, Ed is now intrigued by the concept of modern marketing and what that means for professionals today. Primarily a B2B marketer, Ed emphasizes maintaining a learning mindset to understand the challenges and struggles of modern marketing. There is still a disconnect in how marketing is viewed. 
    A common misconception of marketing is its emphasis on “arts and crafts.” Sure, design plays an integral role in marketing. But that’s far from the only thing (or the most important thing) that marketers do. An exciting thing about marketing today is the ability to touch and impact many aspects of the business beyond what traditional marketing could do. But because the possibilities are extensive, it can be difficult for marketers to know where to leverage their influence. A clear marketing goal: make an impact on your company’s revenue growth. 
    Marketing can articulate a value message to the financial community, which is a needle-mover for those equity transitions. There's a need for both short-term success and long-term value creation, which marketing can create and influence. Marketing can be far more than a sales supplement when given the proper support. Ed’s past work exemplifies the importance of strategic marketing.
    Initially viewed as a technology company, Ed’s company had a commanding market share of their industry (an amalgamation of technology and construction.) They couldn’t grow until they found a new avenue to expand into. And that avenue was connecting suppliers to buyers. Establishing this new avenue involved creating not just a strategy but the story and messaging around their platform. It also involved creating a community between buyers, sellers, and logistics providers (and agree, as an organization, that they were a supply chain platform.) This means both internal and external factors were at play. Marketing adds value in ways beyond its traditional implications.
    For example, marketing attracts new talent to your purpose and mission. Why do people want to be a part of your organization? Marketing can explain that. From a marketing perspective, the ability to reimagine your story and then leverage that in both employee engagement and the acquisition of new talent pays dividends. Episode Resources:
    Aligned is a podcast for executives of emerging middle-market companies and executives pursuing growth or looking for new levers to pull.  Read more about cognitive marketing on FitzMartin’s website. Order Sean’s book Shift. To connect with Sean Doyle, find him on LinkedIn, or learn more about FitzMartin on the company web page.  To get in contact with Ed, connect with him on LinkedIn.

    • 24 min
    Donald Kelly | Mastering Rewards to Close More Deals

    Donald Kelly | Mastering Rewards to Close More Deals

    Both sellers and marketers can and should use reward-driven behavior to establish rapport and build relationships with potential buyers. In today’s episode of Aligned, Sean is joined by the founder and Chief Evangelist of The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, to discuss his take on reward-driven behavior and how marketing and sales departments can implement it into existing methodologies.
    Failure of the trade show fishbowl:
    Using rewards to gain something upfront (like an email) is not an effective reward tactic. You don’t want people to engage with you purely because of free stuff.  You’re giving stuff away without understanding why you’re giving stuff away. The same idea holds true for the dinners, the golf games, and the drinks. Don’t eliminate rewards. Instead, understand them. The most common mistake in sales and marketing is spending too much money too early in the sales cycle. Close the deals in the existing pipeline before allocating money to people who aren’t in the funnel at all. Understanding positive and negative rewards:
    Rewards can take two forms - positive and negative. A punishment could be removing a certain meeting or adding a certain call to an itinerary. Salespeople are bumblebees - misunderstood creatures. They’re crucial to the environment, but other people are scared of them. A punishment could be not having the time to meet with a prospect Positioning gives you power. When a company positions itself in a way where they aren’t dependent on specific clients to reach revenue goals, it can afford to make clients walk in line. Rewards can be positive.
    Rewards from the self - A prospect who, upon achieving a certain milestone, should be coached and guided to get a reward. Rewards from the others - Where sales and marketing can have a more direct input Business plan - late-stage only. If you give stuff away too early, it won’t convert the prospects and business leads you to want. Managing
    Give a verbal or written kudos Encourage someone to consider changing and being self-aware of the weaknesses and the self-reflection that results in accepting change  One of Donald’s past clients was moving to Google Suite, and he worked for a document management company. Remind them that going to Google Suite, while challenging while it’s happening, is the best case for a long-term growth strategy. It’s okay to give a reward for self-evaluation. And, if you’re confident with the position, you have the safety to make additional suggestions and comments to help guide those prospects. Contracting
    Right before a deal is closed, and there is no exchange of relationship, there are informal contracts that can move the decision-making team before a formal agreement takes place. It can be meeting at a restaurant, bringing a cup of coffee, scale the reward up and down depending on the situation If you see someone’s house, they have to give you a level of trust. A common practice is an NDA, but use it to get an idea of what the NDA includes. When you give the NDA to a buyer, it’s akin to a promise ring. You aren’t married yet, but there’s a level of commitment. The act of signing is almost the same level that would come if it were an actual agreement. The act of signing a piece of paper connotes the finality that an agreement is in place. Shaping
    There are lots of micro-wins that we can accomplish, and shaping is making small, incremental changes rather than a large sudden change. Instead of requiring one large bulk purchase, just buy a smaller quantity and work your way up to a larger amount. Shaping will reflect integrity and lower the potential risks that might take place. What’s In It For Me? (WIIFM) addresses the emotional and political capital a person might lose or gain from making a particular decision. This episode is sponsored in part by FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment:
    Why does proper sales and marketing alignment result in a 32% average lift in revenue?

    • 44 min
    Erin Sowell & Anna Svarney | The Next Steps: Working with Net Promoter Scores to Fuel Growth

    Erin Sowell & Anna Svarney | The Next Steps: Working with Net Promoter Scores to Fuel Growth

    A net promoter score is one of the best market research metrics available. With it, you can determine if a user is a potential promoter of the product, service, or company. In today’s episode of Aligned, Sean interviews research professional and founder of Thoughtful Research Erin Sowell and Fitzmartin’s Anna Svarney to discuss the utility of a net promoter score and why middle-market leaders should research before making decisions.
    Research shows areas you could improve.
    To transform for success, you can’t expect perfection. You must bring people to guide you as you make customer-facing company decisions. An NPS question often asks, “have you ever recommended or not recommended a line of research?” but human interactions are not always so cut and dry. An NPS gives more actionable data regarding who is a promoter and who’s a detractor. Limitations of an NPS score:
    NPS, from a performance standpoint, creates bias.  For employee NPS (ENPS), scores determining leadership interactions inherently contain interpersonal bias. The same holds true for service and customer relationships - the customer knows the score will influence the employee. Those happy with your brand should be training for advocacy, whether through a testimonial or follow-up, to understand how they experience your brand. Different testimonials influence people differently depending on where they are in the sales cycle.  Passive consumers and promoter advocates:
    Passives are people who have a good experience but are not good enough to warrant promoter levels of advocacy.  These consumers don’t need to speak positively about their experience, and they’re influenced by competitors.  With passives, you want to ask them different questions, learning what experience or change will drive them past passivity. Because they’re looking at different competitors, they’ll have a specific but essential market perception. What do they think about competitors, and how do they compare? Transactional versus relational loyalty from consumers:
    Transactional loyalty is using a product or service as long as it meets your needs. Relational loyalty is using a product or service because you like the company and are excited to work with them. Some businesses will function with either model - one is not inherently better than the other. An NPS can indicate which model your company uses but look for a directional trend instead of an absolute number in your NPS score. Research is about meeting customer needs to connect with audiences. Inspire your CEO to take steps to learn through research. Don’t let an NPS be your only insight into customers this year - there should always be some level of customer research within your company.
    For more insights from Erin, contact her at erin.sowell@thoughtfulresearch.com or via her website, thoughtfulresearch.com. You can reach Anna Svarny at anna@fitzmartin.com.
    This episode is sponsored in part by FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment:
    Why does proper sales and marketing alignment result in a 32% average lift in revenue? Because a unified company centered around its prospects can’t help but thrive.
    FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment program will analyze your current sales and marketing structure to deliver a plan based on the needs of your prospects, bringing you increased revenue, expansion opportunities, and (above all) a unified front when communicating with prospects. 
    To set your company up for success, visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to discover how to unify your sales and marketing for the best results. 
    This episode is sponsored in part by Fitzmartin’s Organization and Culture Alignment:
    Company culture and retention are directly connected. After all, if you fail to build good company culture, you fail to retain top talent. At FitzMartin, we help leaders like you raise their NPS scores from the low 60s to the high 80s (and, more importantly, present a plan to help you do the sa

    • 21 min
    Ed Rusch | The Missing Link to More Revenue: Standing up a SDR Department - Part 3

    Ed Rusch | The Missing Link to More Revenue: Standing up a SDR Department - Part 3

    Today’s episode of the Aligned Podcast continues Sean’s discussion with guest Ed Rusch, Chief Revenue Officer at Deck Commerce, to understand the best way to construct a high-functioning SDR department.
    Handling the SDR workload:
    SDR teams help buyers make private commitments before a public close. If you have one SDR who handles leads they come and just does outbound when they can, what gets dropped first when the workload is too great? The outbound calling. Assuming inbound teams close only 50% of leads, that’s an inherent problem. You must have dedicated outbound callers who can ensure the job gets done. Use specific KPIs to understand the language, verticals, and nuances of the selling process.
    Know the one or two KPIs most important to your audience and accompanying sub-verticals.  Is a conversation a valuable metric? Yes, if it achieves two pieces of qualifying (or disqualifying) information.  There’s a cost to everything - from emailing, writing content, and maintenance. Getting disqualifying people off the list is the best way to save money. Outsourcing an SDR team:
    Outsourcing can be a powerful solution, depending on your circumstances.  Part of Blue Ridge’s success is (in part) due to third-party work. However, what you do with an inbound SDR team is not the same as a third-party team.  Outsourced teams can support your company with the right direction and support, but you must mitigate third-party risk by being selective in where you deploy those teams. Using third-party teams to investigate adjacent verticals outside your primary audience is a smart way to gain insight into the viability of the vertical and in situations where having a conversation is better than no conversation at all.  Starting your SDR team from scratch:
    First, understand that few decisions are permanent. There are ideal and mediocre situations, and most of the ones you make will be somewhere in the middle.  Set expectations and metrics based on where you’re at today, in 90 days, and six months. After that period, adjust your KPIs and expectations as the team matures. Don’t look for a level of perfection from a new sales team. If you fail to allow growth and outsource, it will likely fail. Work with expectations to understand the journey and what you’ll do later to meet expectations. When building an SDR team, start with an internal outbound team that targets low-hanging fruit to secure funding and talent for scalable growth.  For more great content from Ed, connect with him on LinkedIn.
    This episode is sponsored in part by FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment:
    Why does proper sales and marketing alignment result in a 32% average lift in revenue? Because a unified company centered around its prospects can’t help but thrive.
    FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment program will analyze your current sales and marketing structure to deliver a plan based on the needs of your prospects, bringing you increased revenue, expansion opportunities, and (above all) a unified front when communicating with prospects. 
    To set your company up for success, visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to discover how to unify your sales and marketing for the best results. 
    This episode is sponsored in part by Fitzmartin’s Organization and Culture Alignment:
    Company culture and retention are directly connected. After all, if you fail to build good company culture, you fail to retain top talent. At FitzMartin, we help leaders like you raise their NPS scores from the low 60s to the high 80s (and, more importantly, present a plan to help you do the same.)
    Create your company culture based on a shared mission to attract and retain top talent. Visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to learn more.

    • 23 min
    Ed Rusch | The Missing Link to More Revenue: Standing up a SDR Department - Part 2

    Ed Rusch | The Missing Link to More Revenue: Standing up a SDR Department - Part 2

    Today’s episode of the Aligned podcast continues into part two of our three-part series featuring Ed Rusch. Ed has served as Chief Marketing Officer for several different companies, and his efforts yielded significant parts of their success. In this series, he and Sean discuss the importance of finding a happy medium between sales and marketing alignment. 
    Generating leads to fuel company growth:
    Growing a pipeline can be accomplished through multiple strategies. In general, aiming for a consistent and reliable method might be a better long-term strategy than others. If you have an ambitious 30-50% growth rate, driving growth relies on the sales development reps establishing an effective strategy to move mid-market prospects through the funnel. Developing the SDR team:
    Senior sellers don’t necessarily want to spend their time managing early-stage buyers - no should they. An early-stage seller uses the opportunity as a starting experience. SDRs shouldn’t complete sales development work throughout the funnel in a broad capacity.  Instead, an SDR team should be segmented into different areas of specialization and accountability. Inbound SDRs encounter prospects who know what can properly affect their problem and need guided content based on how they enter the conversion. As an outbound, we’re reaching out to the people, generating interest based on competitive analyses and market research.  A recent study found that, for the first time, prospects wanted a seller to enter the conversation earlier in the process than in previous years. Be disruptive and spark imagination (professionally.)
    Ensure your SDR team understands the buyer from their own perspective. You must have the external voice of the customer to be influential. It’s essential to see and contemplate the buyer's needs and take action based on those established needs.  There is no shortage of content. So, positioning your brand to put important, need-based content in front of a prospect will make the most headway. Don’t speak broadly about “SaaS” content as a SaaS company. Instead, make meaningful specific content that addresses prospects’ needs.  Tune in to our next episode for the conclusion of Sean’s discussion with Ed. For more great content from Ed, connect with him on LinkedIn.
    This episode is sponsored in part by FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment:
    Why does proper sales and marketing alignment result in a 32% average lift in revenue? Because a unified company centered around its prospects can’t help but thrive.
    FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment program will analyze your current sales and marketing structure to deliver a plan based on the needs of your prospects, bringing you increased revenue, expansion opportunities, and (above all) a unified front when communicating with prospects. 
    To set your company up for success, visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to discover how to unify your sales and marketing for the best results. 
    This episode is sponsored in part by Fitzmartin’s Organization and Culture Alignment:
    Company culture and retention are directly connected. After all, if you fail to build good company culture, you fail to retain top talent. At FitzMartin, we help leaders like you raise their NPS scores from the low 60s to the high 80s (and, more importantly, present a plan to help you do the same.)
    Create your company culture based on a shared mission to attract and retain top talent. Visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to learn more.

    • 23 min
    Ed Rusch | The Missing Link to More Revenue: Standing up a SDR Department - Part 1

    Ed Rusch | The Missing Link to More Revenue: Standing up a SDR Department - Part 1

    Today’s episode of the Aligned podcast launches a three-part series featuring Ed Rusch. Ed has served as Chief Marketing Officer for several different companies, and his efforts yielded significant parts of their success. In this series, he and Sean discuss the importance of finding a happy medium between sales and marketing alignment. 
    Run your business like you want to sell it.
    Many elements of sales and marketing would work if they were correctly integrated. Unfortunately, and most frequently, the gap between the two is where there isn’t enough support. In many ways, the closing game has not changed in its goals. However, the applications of closing are what have changed so rapidly. If you can combine these two facets, you’ll find new opportunities. SDRs, or Sales Development Representatives, play a vital role in that process. What would an SDR do?
    Also known as BDRs (Business Development Representatives), these roles provide many supplemental resources to pursue alignment. Marketing-based leads frequently produce prospects considered “low quality.” However, they aren’t low-quality; they’re just in the early stages of the sales funnel. Sales professionals like end-funnel leads because they’re closer to purchasing. SDRs can take those early-stage leads and nurture them later in the process so a sales professional can close more quickly. This also speaks to the increased ability to act on leads promptly. A company that responds to a form fill within 60 minutes will win almost every time. Frustrations arise when high-quality leads fizzle out. 
    This issue arises when there’s a difference between what they want to hear and what your business communicates.  SDRs keep this from happening by maintaining consumer expectations and aligning those expectations with what sales will bring to the table. Five qualifications Ed uses to define a sales-qualified lead:
    SDRs should book prospect meetings within 30 days. Have stated sub-verticals you know your business can support and win. Include revenue bands in your ideal consumer profile that automatically qualify if they pass that threshold. Determine if you can serve where they’re located.  The situation must be in an area your solution can help solve. Ed’s qualifications aren’t a silver solution for every business - decide that qualities automatically qualify a lead for your organization. Tune in to the next episode of Aligned to learn more from Ed and Sean as they detail how an SDR can contribute to the lead qualification process. 
    This episode is sponsored in part by FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment:
    Why does proper sales and marketing alignment result in a 32% average lift in revenue? Because a unified company centered around its prospects can’t help but thrive.
    FitzMartin’s Sales and Marketing Alignment program will analyze your current sales and marketing structure to deliver a plan based on the needs of your prospects, bringing you increased revenue, expansion opportunities, and (above all) a unified front when communicating with prospects. 
    To set your company up for success, visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to discover how to unify your sales and marketing for the best results. 
    This episode is sponsored in part by Fitzmartin’s Organization and Culture Alignment:
    Company culture and retention are directly connected. After all, if you fail to build good company culture, you fail to retain top talent. At FitzMartin, we help leaders like you raise their NPS scores from the low 60s to the high 80s (and, more importantly, present a plan to help you do the same.)
    Create your company culture based on a shared mission to attract and retain top talent. Visit fitzmartin.com/solutions to learn more.

    • 26 min

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JuniorSeller ,

Perfect blend!!!!

This podcast is awesome! It is the perfect blend of sales and marketing tactics. Applying these principles has truly helped my businesses bottomline tremendously. I highly recommend you subscribe and do everything you learned from Sean!!!!!!🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾

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