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Friday, Aug. 29, 2014
6 revealing sales interview questions
Posted Wednesday, August 27, at 2:10 AM
The new hire failure rate is astonishing and expensive; and it's even worse for sales candidates who can be among the toughest to properly vet. Leadership IQ reports that of 20,000 new hires tracked in a recent study, 46 percent failed within 18 months...

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Cold email mastery -- a click away from anyone
Posted Wednesday, August 20, at 2:41 AM

Cold calling is a tough business, though a necessity for many companies. The cost of sales is high, as is sales rep rejection and fatigue. Imagine if email could significantly improve your engagement rate with otherwise cold prospects. If executed well, it can, explains Scott Britton with life-longlearner.com, the forensic accountant of the email world whose company was acquired by Constant Contact for $100M in 2012...

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How is your brand changing the world? Lessons from Apple.
Posted Wednesday, August 13, at 1:48 AM

The essence of a brand isn't so much about rationale arguments; instead, it's how it makes the market feel emotionally. So believed the late Steve Jobs. "Nike sells a commodity; they sell shoes. And yet when you think of Nike you feel something different than a shoe company. In their ads, as you know, they don't ever talk about the product. ... What's Nike do in their advertising? They honor great athletes and ... great athletics. That is what they are about."...

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5 Pinterest marketing myths debunked
Posted Thursday, August 7, at 12:15 AM

There's no denying virtual scrapbooking site Pinterest's explosive growth, now boasting more than 40 million active users per month. The Webs 2014 Small Business Digital Usage Survey cites 20 percent of small businesses who use social media view Pinterest as a top social media channel for marketing their businesses...

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Right-brained sales reps in a left-brained world
Posted Wednesday, July 30, at 8:42 AM

According to Albert Einstein, the definition of insanity is "doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result." Yet it's all too common for sales managers to feel like they're beating their heads against the wall trying to get their sales reps to follow established processes to manage orders and track progress. It can be frustrating for both sales managers and sales reps alike...

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10 surprising social media facts
Posted Wednesday, July 23, at 7:41 AM

With the pace with which the social media landscape changes, it can be tough to keep up. Here's the abridged version of the top 10 most surprising social media facts likely to have the greatest impact on your company's social media strategy. No. 10 -- Social monitoring site "Mention" reviewed over 1 billion social mentions and discovered over 90 percent of mentions came from users with fewer than 500 followers. Simply engaging power users is therefore not a sound strategy...

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Top 10 email marketing best practices
Posted Thursday, July 17, at 8:42 AM

Email marketing has advanced significantly over the past decade, with the potential to be one of the strongest performers of all weapons in your marketing arsenal due to its unique ability for highly personalized content and comprehensive tracking delivered straight to the consumers' inbox. Unfortunately, it's also, perhaps, one of the most poorly executed of the marketing channels...

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10 deadly sins of email marketing
Posted Tuesday, July 8, at 10:13 AM

Data released last year, by a research firm called Return Path, cites that the average individual receives more than 400 commercial emails per month -- emails from businesses selling products and services versus email from colleagues, friends or family. It's no wonder that so many of these promotional emails are immediately discarded; they just aren't breaking through all the noise competing for recipient attention...

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9 steps to build prospect trust
Posted Wednesday, July 2, at 7:41 AM

Buyers want to trust the salesperson they're buying from before they part with their hard-earned money. That's why building trust is a minimum cost of entry in the sales profession. If your prospects don't trust you, you'll always be working much harder than is necessary...

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5 Steps to Grow Your Email List
Posted Tuesday, June 17, at 4:07 PM

One of the most cost-effective strategies for driving web traffic and generating online leads is email marketing. Unfortunately, most small and mid-sized companies have an email database filled mostly of current clients, business partners and other friends of the firm. To put a fire under your email marketing and dramatically boost results, follow these seven steps for growing your email database...

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Repeatable Sales Process Essential for Scalable Growth
Posted Tuesday, June 17, at 4:07 PM

For many B2B companies, the ability to grow correlates directly with the ability to effectively expand the sales team. If each member of your team has his own approach to selling your company's products and services, replicating success and scaling your company can be difficult. ...

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Marketing Lessons from Startups
Posted Tuesday, June 17, at 4:06 PM

Having spent the lion's share of my career marketing national corporations, I would certainly say there is a science to marketing at that level and the better brands market like well-oiled machines. Opening my own business eight years ago, however, and partnering with countless startups through those years, I've also learned there's a thing or two startups can teach the big boys about marketing...

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Save Your Sales Team from Extinction (Part 2 of 2)
Posted Tuesday, June 17, at 4:05 PM

The Information Age has created a marketplace built predominantly of connected buyers who have largely determined whether or not to buy from us before they ever make contact with a sales rep. Due to readily available info about your company and competitors, sales support is unnecessary early in the buying process, forever changing the role of the sales rep...

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Selling to Connected Buyers (Part 1 of 2)
Posted Thursday, May 29, at 5:06 PM

The buying experience has been completely reinvented over the last decade, and companies slow to adapt are losing revenue and market share as a result. A 2011 Sales Executive Council study showed 57 percent of the buying process is completed before a prospect even makes contact with a sales rep. ...

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Why Most Sales Proposals Fail
Posted Monday, May 19, at 8:51 PM

You put so much time and energy into getting a prospect to agree to a meeting, preparing for that meeting, pitching your services, and gaining agreement from the prospect to consider buying. So why, all too often, is so little time spent on the sales proposal itself? It's like running the ball to the ten-yard line and then sitting down on the field...

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The Opportunity in "No"
Posted Tuesday, May 13, at 3:06 PM

When your business is young, you naturally welcome every new customer with open arms in an effort to generate cash flow and get on your feet. Too many business owners have trouble breaking that pattern even after their business is more established, with the "say yes to everything" mentality trickling down to the front line sales team. If you're not careful, this can be a death sentence to a business...

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Are Traditional Websites Dead?
Posted Tuesday, May 6, at 4:04 PM

While reports of the death of corporate websites have been exaggerated, there's no denying that traditional sites are experiencing significant traffic declines. WebTrends analyzed the number of unique visits to Fortune 100 websites. Sixty-eight percent of these sites experienced declines in unique visitors compared to the previous year with an average annual decline of over 20 percent. ...

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A Calling Card That Speaks Volumes
Posted Thursday, April 24, at 1:43 PM

For those in marketing, there is never, ever enough time in the day to get it all done. That's why savvy marketers seek passive marketing strategies to compliment their more active techniques. It's like having a secret squad at work for you 24/7. A passive marketing strategy, much like a passive income stream, requires little to no upkeep once the initial investment has been made, and it continues to work for you behind the scenes...

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Cold Calling Gets Bad Rap
Posted Tuesday, April 15, at 9:56 PM

Cold calling gets a bad rap. Sales reps dread it, due to the anxiety and rejection that too often accompany it. In reality, the make or break moment in most cold calls is just the initial conversation starter -- that first 10-20 seconds from your first word to the point at which the prospect gives you permission to continue talking. If you can make it past that all-important hurdle, it's all down hill from there...

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Talk Like TED In Your Sales Pitch
Posted Thursday, April 10, at 10:34 PM

TED is a nonprofit committed to spreading ideas in the form of succinct yet powerful talks that are all 18 minutes or less -- the ideal length of time to connect with and persuade viewers. TED Talks have a distinct style -- a formula that often results in spectacularly high levels of viewer engagement. This style is predicated on several guiding principles asked of TED Talk presenters, as outlined by Carmine Gallo in "Talk Like TED."...

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Guerilla Sales & Marketing
Lori Turner-Wilson
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Lori spent over 15 years leading corporate marketing and communications divisions in the financial services, hospitality and franchise restaurant sectors. As Director of Target Marketing for the Hampton Hotels brand of Hilton Hotels Corporation, Lori managed promotional, direct and Web marketing, as well as custom publishing, for the brand's franchise system. In her role as Vice President of Employee Communications and Development for First Horizon National Corporation, she managed the corporation's internal culture initiatives, communications, and employee recognition programs. Other positions held include Sr. Communications Director/Corporate Editor for TCBY Enterprises, Inc., and Vice President of Marketing for First National Banking Company. Lori is a founding sponsor and member of the Board of Directors for LaunchMemphis -- an organization committed to developing an entrepreneurial community in Memphis comprised of investors, entrepreneurs and local organizations. In addition, Lori is on the Board of Directors of the Sales and Marketing Society of the Mid-South and on the Advisory Board for the Humane Society of Memphis and Shelby County. She is a sought-after speaker in the Memphis area, delivering sales and marketing keynote addresses and workshops to organizations like: the Memphis Chapter of the American Advertising Federation, the Sales & Marketing Society of the Mid-South, LaunchMemphis, EmergeMemphis, the Memphis Regional Chamber, the National Association of Women Business Owners, and the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International. Lori holds a B.S. in Marketing from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, in addition to having completed the University of Colorado's School of Bank Marketing and Management. She is the recipient of numerous industry awards including local and district Addy's, Communicator awards, and a Telly. She received recognition as one of the Memphis Business Journal's "Top 40 Under 40" recipients in 2009. Lori also served as a contributing ghost writer for the renowned "Complete Idiot's Guide to Guerilla Marketing." Beyond her passions for marketing and dogs of all shapes and sizes, Lori is an avid traveler, runner and foodie.