It’s not every day that thousands of people from around the world get the opportunity to collectively set a Guinness World Record from the comfort of their homes or offices. But that’s exactly what happened on Thursday, June 20, when sales professionals from dozens of industries digitally attended the first ever Inside Sales Virtual Summit. InsideSales.com hosted the groundbreaking event, which featured more than 60 experts leading live webinars on everything from cutting-edge lead generation strategies to the power of sales analytics.
“The Inside Sales Virtual Summit accomplished the same goals of a traditional trade show – influence, leads, content – for minimal costs and with minimal lead time,” said Ken Krogue, President of InsideSales.com. “Just as sales has evolved from wining and dining the client to providing trusted expertise, so have events evolved. Events no longer need to be hosted in hip or exotic locations. They simply need to share quality content that will have value to the participants.”
We at InsightSquared were proud to take part in this innovative event, as our CEO Fred Shilmover led a highly regarded session on the “Best Practices of Sales Analytics” to improve your sales performance. Like many of the other sessions, Fred’s drew a large crowd – more than 250 attendees – and received high praise for providing useful guidance about building a culture centered on analytics.
But Fred was far from the only expert to share his insights with the record-breaking crowd. Here is a quick glimpse at 10 of the sessions we enjoyed (and learned from) the most.
Trish Bertuzzi – Effective On-Boarding: The Foundation of Success
Trish Bertuzzi, President & Chief Strategist of The Bridge Group, delivered an excellent session on the importance of, and best practices for, hiring superlative sales reps, which focused on giving reps the tools and guidance they need to succeed immediately.
Atri Chatterjee – Is Marketing the New Sales? Or is Sales the New Marketing?
Arti Chatterjee, CMO for Act-On Software, told attendees about an increasingly popular form of selling called the web touch sales model, which is important for understanding how the buyer’s journey has evolved in recent years. Today, 78% of buyers start the buying process with a web search, and 50% turn to social media and peer reviews.
Matt Dixon – The Challenger Sale
Author of the popular book, “The Challenger Sale: Taking Control of the Customer Conversation,” Matt Dixon discussed the five common types of sales reps: the challenger, the hard worker, the relationship builder, the lone wolf, the problem solver. Somewhat counterintuitively, Dixon explained how challenger reps – those who push and debate targets – perform better among both core performers and high performers. The relationship builder performs worst among high performers and the problem solver worst among core performers.
Guy Kawasaki – The Art of Enchantment
Best-selling author and former Apple Evangelist Guy Kawasaki gave a wide-ranging talk that touched on several new creative marketing techniques. One interesting note he made was that in Marketing 2.0 nobodies are the new somebodies. You have to plant a lot of seeds to reach them.
Ken Krogue – Top Lead Generation Methodologies for 2013
InsideSales.com founder Ken Krogue offered his predictions for up-and-coming lead generation tools. According to Krogue, coaching and reporting/dashboard are among the new tools that are likely to gain popularity in the coming year.
Steve Richard – Objection Handling 201
Steve Richard, co-founder of Vorsight, explained the keys to handling objection – 1) Listen 2) Empathize and repeat 3) Use client voice and phrase things from the perspective of your customer and 4) Have an objection handling toolkit.
Lori Richardson – Five Sure-Fire Ways to Inspire your Sales Team
In her webinar about inspiring your sales reps, Lori Richardson, CEO and founder of Score More Sales, made an interesting – and slightly counterintuitive – point about how important it is for sales leaders to not only motivate their reps, but to actually lead by example and embody the traits they want to instill in their team members.
“The sales leaders who really are leaders are demonstrating all of the things that they expect others to do,” she said.
Mark Roberge – Sales & Marketing Alignment
Mark Roberge, VP of Sales for Hubspot, explained the often dire consequences of not properly aligning sales and marketing – dubbing this unfortunate condition “sales numbness.” He suggested that sales and marketing teams create a “contract” to help eliminate the vexing problem of sharing low-quality leads.
Aaron Ross – Create Predictable, Scalable Sales Revenue
Author of the best-selling book “Predictable Revenue,” Aaron Ross provided attendees with helpful tips for creating a steady source of scalable sales growth, including the common mistake among sales managers of treating all leads the same. Instead, Ross recommends dividing leads into three types: “spears” (leads targeted by outbound sales), “seeds” (those found through word of mouth) and “nets” (those targeted by marketing initiatives).