Salesforce & Pardot: Align Marketing & Sales

I’ve always been a huge advocate of collaboration. There is simply nothing better than smart people coming together to achieve greater success than they could apart. This is how strong businesses are built. Specifically, aligning sales and marketing departments is a no brainer.

Is it best to align sales and marketing?

Today I came across A Guide to Sales and Marketing Alignment by Salesforce and Pardot. This handy little guide cites a study conducted by Hugh MacFarlane, Founder and CEO of MathMarketing. MacFarlane surveyed 1,400 professionals in 84 countries to discover that business aligning sales and marketing efforts:

  • Grow 5.4 points faster than their less-aligned counterparts when compared with businesses in the same industry.
  • Lose 36% fewer customers to competitors.

There’s more in the study if you want to see other results. In these two results alone, I think the results are in, don’t you? Silos in business operations have been slowing down business growth for years. With today’s metrics, you can’t  deny it.

So what are you going to do about it?

Whether your sales and marketing teams consist of one person each team or hundreds of staff, you need to create a clean and mutually beneficial relationship between them. There are multiple elements to this.

  1. This is a cultural shift. Change is best accepted when it comes with transparency and appreciation for all. Explain your reasons for change throughout the various stages and be VERY open to comments from those in the trenches doing the work.
  2. Bring on the right technology to measure your results. If you’re going to shift the way your business functions, make sure you are collecting the right metrics in order to validate your decision and fine tune operations going forward. Two great tools to consider if you haven’t already are Salesforce.com and Pardot. I’ve worked with these SaaSs and they deliver great value.
  3. Create Marketing campaigns that feed directly into Sales. Once strangers turn into prospects, merge Marketing and Sales efforts. Then once Sales closes the deal, switch the new client to a retention marketing strategy.
  4. Give Sales FULL visibility into Marketing campaigns. Sales outreach should integrate recent marketing messages. The relationship should carry forward. This gives the prospect the impression that working with you as a client will be as seamless. Alignment is important to your brand and closing the sale.

 

The Psychology of the Rob Ford Nation

Meet Toronto’s Mayor

If you haven’t been following, Toronto’s Mayor Rob Ford has been faced with both allegations and undeniable proof in some cases, that he has done a number of unseemly things of late. From chronic drinking and “occasional” drug use to death threats, Rob Ford is challenging his City of Toronto. Interestingly, Ford supporters—known as the Ford Nation—have not abandoned the Mayor. As the Toronto Mayoral race begins to pick up steam, I can’t help but ask, What is the psychology of the Ford supporter?

Politics aside, there is a huge learning lesson to be had here. Torontonians have front row seats to an awesome display of human psychology 101. If I had to boil this all down to one idea it would have to be, the Ford nation (like many of us) can’t stand to be wrong.

Now, if this statement bugs you, pisses you off, irritates you—however you may characterize it—good! It should upset you. If you’re a Ford supporter and the bold statement above makes you feel attacked, or if you dislike Ford and get riled up over the above statement, you should read on to learn why.

Rob Ford, the simple man

What is most appealing about Ford is his simplicity. He isn’t cut from the same cloth as many politicians. He’s rudimentary, cut and dry, and uncomplicated. In his simplicity, there doesn’t appear to be any tricks or manipulation—unlike what many of us are used to seeing politicians lob at us every day. But, as Steve Jobs said, “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” In other words, there is a lot more driving the Ford supporter than s/he may think. Because it is so simple, there appear to be no tricks. And because there appear to be no tricks, we take our guard down. This first step is crucial to successful manipulation. In all fairness to Mr.Ford, I firmly believe he isn’t tricking anyone consciously. But, we have all been tricked.

The psychology of validation

The first psychological principle or trick here is validation. Mayor Rob Ford and the saga that has enveloped him in the past many months isn’t really a political game at all. People who voted for him think they did because they agree with his politics but that is simply not the case—at least not for most of his supporters. Most of Ford’s votes were cast for the man not the politician. Even if you like his politics, it’s the “Rob Ford spin” that many find attractive. In fact, there are many examples that his policy record doesn’t align with his political reputation. So, even if folks want to think so, Ford’s popularity isn’t about his policy stance.

There is something basic in the man that gives many people a source of personal validation. The mere presence of Rob Ford on the political landscape validates the existence of many individuals and their political opinions. Rob Ford makes people who are tired of apologizing feel like they have a ring leader. There are people who don’t like to speak with political correctness, people who don’t always have the right words, and people who are tired of feeling beaten down by a political system that they feel robs them of their tax dollars and panders to the down town core not the suburbs. Rob Ford validates his supporters’ existence by being an average Joe. And everyone is a sucker for validation!

Personal values unite people

The second principle to consider is personal values. While many politicians carefully craft their every statement, Rob Ford doesn’t pander to anyone. Rob Ford supporters, like Rob Ford himself, are tired of being sold something artificial. Mr. Ford is simply himself. He doesn’t play a game of policy—in fact, his policies often don’t reflect his promises—he plays a game of personal values. The values he championed during his election were simple enough and universal enough, they touched the core of many individuals. In simply being who he is, he brings out the core values and beliefs upon which many people have proudly built their lives.

What are those values? I’ve asked a number of his supporters and I hear responses like, “He speaks his mind.” “He means what he says.” “He doesn’t take other people’s sh*t.” “He’s honest.” That sounds perfectly likable to me. Who can disagree with operating values such as these? More importantly here, these are values individuals would use to describe themselves. In this way, the Ford Nation wasn’t voting for Rob, they were voting for themselves and the values by which they live. A powerful trick indeed.

Honour your words

The third psychological principle or trick is consistency. Hard wired into all humans is the need to honour what we’ve said in the past. Research proves that when individuals set a goal, the chance of success greatly improves when we repeat the goal many times, write it down, and tell more and more people. This is perfect for Rob Ford. He stirs so much controversy that every single one of his voters has likely had to explain or defend his/her choice to support Ford at least once. And every time you have to defend your viewpoint, your stance becomes harder and harder to shake. You have to be consistent because, after all, “good” folks are reliable.

For a man who has faltered so many times, Ford has given his supporters countless opportunities to remind themselves why they stood by him in the first place. And every time they do, their brains grow more and more loyal to him on a subconscious level. Once you’ve made a decision, you rarely rethink it. Changing your mind would require that you override your brain’s usual mode of operation. Standing up for Rob Ford becomes an exercise is standing up for oneself.

Survival of the … most correct individuals

The final principle I’ll write about today is survival. Each and every one of us is built with a modern brain (the cortex) and a lizard brain (the limbic system). While our cortex analyzes everything, the lizard brain keeps things simple and instinctual. One thing that is vitally important to know about the lizard brain is that it can equate being wrong with death. This is one reason we have a predisposition to want to be right. This is why we take our beliefs as Truths. This is why people die for their beliefs. This need for survival accounts for some of our most instinctual behaviours.

To have supported Rob Ford this long only to discover you’re wrong is very difficult for the lizard brain to process. Without a second thought, your auto pilot kicks in and you want to stand by your initial decision. Your modern cortex knows better than to think changing your mind would mean death, but this is all happening in your subconscious where your lizard brain often rules the day.

If you support Rob Ford because any of the above principles apply to you, it makes changing your mind that much harder.

1. If Rob Ford being in politics validates your political voice… changing your mind means overcoming the fear that you don’t have a place in politics or valid political ideas about your community.

2. If Rob Ford’s values align with your values… changing your mind means accepting your good values likely exist alongside some inner weaknesses.

3. If you pride yourself on being reliable and consistent, meaning what you say, being a wo/man of your word… changing your mind means accepting that you’re not always right and sometimes you have to break your word.

4. If your lizard brain is fighting to survive… changing your mind means forcing yourself to feel safe in spite of feeling weak and wrong.

Turning your back on Mayor Ford can feel a little like turning your back on yourself.

Most interestingly, Rob Ford is going through this very psychological battle along with you. And he may be doing so while also battling addiction, rejection, and fears about his self worth. Overcoming the tricks our brain plays on us is very hard to do. It is even impossible for some. The only fool proof way to beat your subconscious in this game is to know the psychology. While you’ve faced some of it in reading this article, I fear Rob Ford has little awareness. He is at the mercy of his lizard brain.

Have I upset you?

Earlier I wrote that this should upset you. I wrote that knowing full well, that if this upsets you, than this article hits a particular chord for you. I won’t pretend to know the psychology of all Ford followers, but I know the principles explained here are universal. We get bothered when we hit our psychological and emotional limits. This is a great thing, because these are the boundaries we must push in order to grow stronger and smarter. If you never hit these limits and embrace the discomfort that comes with it, you simply aren’t growing as a person.

If any of this strikes a chord…

It take a stronger person to fight the lizard brain and the psychological tricks I’ve listed here than it takes to fall for them. There is pride in swallowing your pride because only the strongest can do it. It takes inner strength to be objective. And I believe if you want to be strong, you can be.

The last thing I want to offer is the same thing I would say to Rob Ford himself: If you could speak to yourself 50 years from now and ask for advice, what would the older you tell the you of today? If you can answer that question honestly, I think your discomfort will go away because you already know what you need to do, you already know what you truly believe at your core. You don’t need me to tell you.

 

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Coaching isn’t therapy.

One-on-One Coaching

We have all had a trusted advisor. Sometimes it’s a close friend, sometimes an advice columnist. Even the toughest of men have been known to spill their guts to a friendly bartender. Talking to someone takes courage. Sometimes you need an objective ear that will respect you just for putting yourself out there.

It’s not therapy. It’s education.

I am not a therapist. I’m an educator. I use my expertise in soft skills, communications, emotional intelligence, rapport building, marketing, and strategic business development to help clients discover their true goals and overcome the obstacles (external and internal) that stand in the way. Whether you’re facing a specific problem or a general rut, we work together on setting and achieving goals that target the kind of life that you value.

360° Life Coaching

I work with clients on everything from their careers to their relationships. The reality is that our ability to communicate affects our personal and professional success. If we have a chip on our shoulder, it’s obvious when we talk to friends or colleagues. I believe that the formula to success involves harnessing self and social awareness (because they affect our ability to communicate strategically) and then mastering the skill of communications. If you are aware of your issues, tailor your message to your audience, and use communication tools effectively, you can have any available goal. If your goal is in any way achievable (by anyone) why can’t you be the one to make it happen?

I am sensitive to the issues that shape our communications and educate my clients to overcome barriers that belong in the past.

Regular meetings can be held in person, online, or via phone to accommodate a wide range of clients worldwide.

Please call 1.877.477.3250 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

If you’re unsure whether coaching is right for you, you are encouraged to book a complementary phone assessment. You can speak directly with Juliana for up to 30 minutes. The number of complementary phone appointments each week is limited so call now, 1.877.477.3250,  to secure the first available appointment.

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The Marketer’s Dilemma

I attended The Art Of Marketing in Toronto this past week. In his riveting presentation, Charles Duhigg (whose book I’m running out to purchase) said that the single most important and telling indicator of future success in a child’s life is… wait for it, wait for it …

Will Power

Apparently, research shows that four year old children that pass the Marshmallow Test have the greatest likelihood of success in life. The test goes something like this… “Child, here is a marshmallow. I’m going to leave the room. If you wait ten minutes to eat this marshmallow, I will give you another marshmallow.” Then you leave the room and watch.

Studies show that 30% of children have the ability to wait ten minutes and will over their lifetime experience greater success than the 70% of children who eat the marshmallow before the 10 minutes lapse. We define the ability to wait as will power.

Reward

In another part of his talk, Duhigg describes how marketers can use a reward structure to manipulate buying behaviour. In this reward process, it is particularly important that you reward behaviour immediately after the behaviour takes place. Delayed reward doesn’t have the incentive affect marketers are looking to achieve. For example, a spray of Fabreze delivers an immediate reward. For those that take pleasure in a clean home, Fabreze creates a reward for all your cleaning efforts immediately.

The Dilemma

I’m a parent and a marketer. Am I supposed to teach my child delayed gratification but manipulate the public with immediate gratification? How do I hold my head high while taking advantage of the fact that 70% of people fail the Marshmallow Test? Do I tell myself it’s ok to market to adults because they are who they are and my marketing to them can not shape them?

The fact is that I am mostly passionate about inspiring successful conversations. I believe that self awareness, social awareness and strategy make effective communications possible. I don’t like the idea of manipulating. I do, however, LOVE the idea of communicating something effectively to an audience that actually appreciates the message.

Where do you stand?

Do you want to teach life skills like will power to listening audiences or do you prefer to lever the lack of will power in marketing audiences? I have probably played both of these roles. But I’d like to think that every time I realized the choice before me, I opted for awareness rather than manipulation.

Be Aware

I’d like to be a marketer that tells you to be aware not one against whom you should beware. So all of this is simply to say, I learned something this week and I want to share it with you. BUT if ever I have an important and valuable message I believe will improve your life, I might just give you an incentive to listen to the message. If there was any reward in reading this article, I can offer you some delayed gratification: sign up to my blog for more.

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You Fear Failure… So You Fail

Trying to boil the ocean? Stop! Every business needs a niche.

Business start ups often result from unhappy employees going off to start their own venture. If most new businesses come with lessons from the businesses that came before them, why do most start-ups fail?

The easiest way to start a business is to take what you’ve learned or what you see your competitors doing, and replicate it. It’s an instant start up model. This is part of the reason franchises work. We find a formula and repeat it, ad nauseum. If this is fool proof, why do most new businesses fail?

I can’t list here all of the reasons I think businesses fail, but I tell you a good few reasons you may not have considered.

Why you fail…

1. Fear of Failure Leads to No Innovation

Out of your fear of failing, you don’t do anything innovative. You copy, repeat, copy, repeat. Then you end up in a commodity game… a lose-lose situation where even buyers lose because in the hopes of getting the best price, they drive down quality.

2. Trying to Say It All, You Say Nothing

When revenue is scarce during your start up stage, you fear losing any customer in the market. You cast a wide net and offer every product/service you know how to offer. You try to do it all. In an effort to tell the world about all the services/products you offer, you don’t leave any one lasting message about any one product/service. Your business is a blur against the competition and blending in is a bad thing.

3. Being Unique Opens You Up To Rejection

When your name is on the sign outside the shop everyone knows who’s responsible. Doing the things you know in your gut are crucial to success means putting the things you believe in to the test. Should they fail, you fear what that means about you.

In fearing failure, you set yourself up for failure.

Last I heard, 95% of businesses fail in their first five years. When I course through the reasons why, I find each is about fear. And I’m not talking about assessing risk and choosing not to take a risk that is too great. I’m talking about personal fear.

If you’re an entrepreneur you need to ask yourself if your personal fear is causing you to fail. Based on fear are you avoiding innovation, saying nothing meaningful, and hiding your unique value proposition?

Here’s what you must do

1. Realize that individuals with specializations are highly sought after and usually paid more. No one wants to pay a premium rate for a generalist. So innovate your way out of the mud, out of the blur of competitive offerings. What have you always hated about your industry? If you can solve the problem you’ve always hated, chances are your innovation will please many others too.

2. Be brave and direct. Pick one thing, stick with it. Instead of a full service spa, open an eyebrow bar. Instead of handyman, be the fridge repair guru. When you’re trying to make a splash in any market (by the way, most markets are saturated with competition in North American), imagine how easy it can be to market one thing.

3. Put yourself out there. Be the unique you that differentiates your business. Wear your differentiating quality loud and proud. Your confidence will be infectious. If you trust yourself, your clients will trust you. Hiding your uniqueness only means the buyers desperate for something new will never find you.

Fear not.

There are steps that will make finding and communicating your niche a lot easier. Ask yourself some of these questions, you might find the ideal niche for your business….

  1. Can I offer a locally focused product/service?
  2. What are my competitors doing poorly and can I fix it?
  3. What are my competitors doing well and can I amalgamate a few features to create a new product/service?
  4. What is one of my highly popular products/services that I should promote more aggressively/exclusively?
  5. What already highly popular product/service do I offer that I can improve or alter to create a unique differentiation?

Most importantly, try working with a mentor that is 10 – 15 years ahead of you OR hire a competent business coach! I hope this helps. 😉

 

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How to Win An Argument — Be Wrong

You need to be wrong.

We all have the unquenchable need to be right. Some of us need to be right more often and on more issues than others but the truth is we all like being right. In particular, when an issue is important to us it’s very hard for us to say, “You’re entitled to your opinion.”  Instead we try to prove we’re right. We make logical arguments, we point out others that agree with us, we even raise our voices, all in an effort to be “right.” The funny thing about it all, is that we’re often fighting to be right on issues that are all gray. Assuming there is a right and wrong answer requires us to see issues as black and white, as simpler than they truly are. But there is an even bigger problem.

Being right alienates people.

If I am talking to you about how to grow tomatoes and I insist that my technique is the right one, your way must be wrong. Perhaps both my technique and yours have merit. Or perhaps my technique is actually the best way. It doesn’t really matter… in an effort to be right, I am pushing you away. If I keep putting down your ideas, even if they are in fact bad ones, all I’ve done is teach you to keep away from me. If I keep insisting that I’m right, I can almost guarantee that will bother you on some level.

What’s the alternative?

So if being right alienates people and teaches them to keep their distance, what’s the alternative? It’s simple. Be wrong sometimes. Willingly choose to NOT win every argument. But why would you want to be wrong? Being wrong will make you feel uncomfortable, right? Of course it will. You’ve lived your entire life being taught to succeed, stand up for the things you believe. But every time we’re right there is a missed lesson.

Be Wrong

Being wrong helps us grow, brings others closer to us, and ultimately teaches us the truth. Most people do anything to avoid being wrong, blamed, or at fault. In that effort you’ll miss so many opportunities. When you let go and accept being wrong, suddenly your eyes open and you see the truth, the reality of a situation. You gain the advantage, friends and perspective. Once you accept you’re wrong there’s no longer any reason to keep your guard up. You’re no longer arbitrarily fighting. You sacrifice the need to be right in favour of the desire to learn new lessons, connect with others, and see reality as it truly is.

Communicating, The Right Way

We think of effective communication as being able to convince anyone of anything that serves our needs. Sometimes the “right” thing to do is to stop aiming to win the argument. Every time you try to win, you harden the position of the person you’re talking to. Letting someone else be right, gives them the opportunity to stop fighting, let their guard down, and… see the truth for themselves.

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You Believe in Anger

Anger Management…

Find Out Why You Choose Anger

After my most recent Anger Management Class I’ve been thinking about some of the beliefs we have about anger. Anger is just a form of communication. If it’s just one of many ways to communicate, why choose anger?

If we act out in anger it is often because deep down inside we believe that anger is the only way. But we’re all smart enough to know there are many more effective ways to communicate than to get angry.

Why do we believe in anger?

The answer is usually simple but buried so deep in our history that we don’t remember. Here are some potential beliefs you might hold about anger:
1. You possibly saw and responded to anger when you were growing up.
2. You may be so frustrated and confused that you believe throwing a temper tantrum will communicate your level of seriousness.
3. You may believe people need to hit rock bottom to change and you decide you can create that rock bottom for them.
4. You believe fear motivates.
5. You believe failure isn’t an option.
6. You believe the angriest, scariest, meanest, most violent person wins.

These are only a few possibilities. Ask yourself, Why do I believe getting angry will change a situation?

Your beliefs fuel your decision making. If you have a belief that fuels your anger you need to change that belief. In a tight spot with little time to think, your brain relies on your beliefs to decide what to do next. Without identifying and changing the beliefs you have that fuel your anger, you have little chance of ending your negative behaviour.

Start considering alternative beliefs:

1. Anger never inspires real change (only temporary compliance).
2. Seriousness is demonstrated through calm clear messages not confusing temper tantrums.
3. No person can change another. But everyone can set standards about what behaviour s/he will accept.
4. Fear discourages people. Purpose and pride creates commitment.
5. Failure teaches us a lot and shouldn’t be feared. Robbing others (or ourselves) of the freedom to fail robs them of great life lessons.
6. Winning a battle isn’t winning the war. Good Generals focus on the big picture and give up ground if it supports the ultimate cause.

If you believe anger has hurt your life (broken bones, failed relationships, legal bills, lost jobs, etc.) than you need to remind yourself that you create your life (physical safety, relationships, legal certainty, financial security, etc.).

What do you believe? Should you change it?

Curious about our Anger Management Class?
Feel free to call 1.877.477.3250 or email speakUP@jtcina.com!

 

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