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11 posts from May 2011

New role for salespeople after Great Recession

Purchasers are saving money by cutting down the amount of time spent with sales people. Not that they don't appreciate the attention, but it's just not efficient enough any more. So good sales people will learn to target their efforts further along in the buying process. Instead of holding everyone's hand, they'll have to look for places where the buying process bogs down. 

FutureLab: Strategies for B2B Marketing in a Recession, 2011-May-6, by Jon Miller of Marketo

Unless companies begin to sell the way their customers want to buy, they might as well write a prescription for their own failure. According to Gartner, by 2020 customers will manage 85% of their relationship with an enterprise without interacting with a person. This means the relationship between and responsibilities of marketing and sales must change: as sales teams focus on the end of the revenue cycle, a highly effective and streamlined marketing machine will become even more critical to successful business function.


Establishing new routines for creating collections that work

At my heart, I am a collector. So now I'm trying to establish new routines that make the things I've collected valuable to other people. If I create contact databases, then I have to contact those people. If I build a web site, I require myself to pay attention to the traffic. If I have an art collection, then it has to be on display where we can all enjoy it. 

It's much more challenging than it sounds! Everything has to become embedded in a system, or it is kicked out. 


Finding a place that drives creativity

While people can be creative anywhere, some places do launch everyone who tunes into them. I think Caroline Collective is such a place in Houston. And I think that companies and cities which want to be seen as creative centers have to heed what we've learned. But there are no guarantees, as discussed in this article. 

NY Times: When Art and Energy Were SoHo Neighbors, 2011-Apr-28, by Michael Kimmelman

The grid had obviously been important to earlier generations of New York artists, just as the flotsam and jetsam of the city had been to older Fluxus artists. But for the settlers of SoHo it helped inspired the creative rebirth of a neighborhood.


The Morning Bunny has lost his friends

In an effort to enjoy Facebook and develop some skills, I created a fan page for our house rabbit (The Morning Bunny), and started posting photos and trying to write entertaining captions. When I check in today, all the photos, friends and posts were gone. The info page is still populated, but I can't find any explanation or news. I realize it may come back, but I can't understand why people invest in a company that behaves this way. 


Beginning again, every Monday

After recuperating from a Sunday afternoon volunteer slot at the American Association of Museums conference here in Houston, I'm curious to see what the new week will bring. I have to put together the prototype for the walking guide to 19th Street and get ready for a Columbia Alumni Association meeting. 


The opposite of cold calling

When I started reading this article, I was disappointed the reporter referred to inside salespeople working through their database of existing customers as performing 'cold calls.' Then I remembered that outside my world, much confusion exists about the jargon and techniques. So when is a sales representative just a telemarketer? When is a phone call 'cold?' Read through the interview and consider how proud of his job this employee is. I would call this the exact opposite of cold calling.

NY Times: Good Tweets Are Nice, but Group Sales Fill Seats, 2011-Apr-18, by Patrick Healy

“I can’t remember the last time we had so many star-driven, big-budget, well-advertised shows opening all at once, and our group buyers want the skinny on them,” Ms. Lee said. “Facebook is a way for shows to tout themselves and then hope fans will post on the site so buzz can go viral. That’s a great tool, but the buzz from all these shows can become deafening. We’ve found that on Broadway group buyers still want an agent they know who can tell a hit from a flop.”