Movies have always been an inspiration to business owners and wannabe entrepreneurs. It gives them ideas, new insights and sheer motivation to go out there and make that move. Sales, as a concept has always been a topic of debate in any business environment. No matter how big or small a company might be, sales are something that no one can get away with.
Unfortunately, one can never learn how to sell just by going to a high class B-school or by reading a few books on how to sell. Moreover, “sales” is not an art or a defined science that one could learn; it is more of an attitude. You just need to go out there and find new ways to get the attention of customers and offer them your product or service. The more differently you do it, the more experienced you get in selling – yourself, your idea, you product or your service.
Here are a set of 5 most popular films based around the concept of sales:
The wolf of Wall Street (2013):
Directed by Martin Scorsese, the film is about the famous New York stock broker Jordan Belfort. The film shows Belford’s rises to success, from being a penny stock broker to becoming the most affluent business owners of the 80’s. It depicts Belford’s rather colorful life – filled with drugs, women, greed and his passion for selling. The film talks about a lot of concept on how to never stop selling in life, motivating your team, focusing on training and embracing adversity.
Gelengarry Glen Ross (1992):
Directed by James Foley, the film is and adaption of the 1984 Pulitzer Prize- and Tony-winning play of the same name written by David Mamet. The film shows two days in the life of 4 desperate real estate salesmen. The film like the play is notoriously famous for its foul language and use of profanity. The film is famous for its famous dialogue, “ABC i.e. Always Be Closing”, meaning that no matter what you do, a salesman job is to always be “CLOSING” sales.
Boiler Room (2000):
Written and directed by Ben Younger, the film is based on interviews the writer conducted with numerous brokers over a two-year period. The film is a true depiction of the so called concept of “boiler room operations” which refers to the use of high pressure sales tactics to sell stocks to clients who are called randomly, most likely after being picked out of a phone directory. If you are looking for adrenaline pumping sales action, then this one is a must watch.
Thank you for Smoking (2005):
A comedy-drama film written and directed by Jason Reitman, the film is about a lobbyist named Nick Naylor, for the tobacco industry whose job is to promote cigarette smoking in a time when the health problems related to cigarettes are obvious to most people. This film clearly shows how business, media, and government interact to influence the choices consumers make. The film depicts how day-to-day consumers are blind towards unethical sales tactics that many corporations undertake to sell their product.
The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Harder (2009):
Directed by Neal Brennan, the film is a comedy based around how Ben Selleck’s car dealership, in Temecula, California, is failing and he is forced to hire a mercenary, Don Ready. Don is more like an “outside” person who along with his team, sells cars for Ben, by any and every means possible. The film depicts, that a salesman should have the courage to go to any extent to sell!
MBO – more popularly known as Management By Objective, is a term that was first coined by Peter Drucker in 1954 in his book The Practice of Management. The essence of MBO is to define clear objectives within an enterprise, that helps management and employees work towards a common goal. The process involves setting short term and long term goals, choosing a corrective course of action and making strategic decision.
In any organization, typically all employees should be involved with the goal setting process and should choose the appropriate course of action to be followed. That way they are more likely to fulfill their responsibilities and in-turn achieve organizational goals.
The first step in implementing MBO is to establish long-range company goals in such areas as production, marketing, services, sales, R&D, human resources, finance, information systems etc. A business owner should begin by defining the company’s current business status and looking for emerging market trends that may require adaptation. This is kind of long term planning provides a framework for forecasting the organization’s future staffing levels, marketing approaches, financing needs, product development focus, and facility and equipment usage.
Typically, companies should plan yearly and then break down these long term plans into department wise objectives and eventually as achievable goals for employees. A point to note here is to make sure employees from all departments clearly understand and support the overall goal of the organization. As a manager or business owner, it is important to be involved in such goal setting activities, from the very beginning, as this will increase their commitment to achieving the goals, allow them to communicate the goals clearly to subordinates, and help them to create and align their own goals to support the company goals.
Overall, establishing an MBO system in any organization may be difficult, but it is usually worth it. It is always advisable to introduce MBO slowly into an organization, and all employees should be given the opportunity to set short terms goals to start.
The most difficult aspect of implementing MBO may be simply getting people to think in terms of results rather than activities. Therefore, a formal training program for business owners is always a necessary tool that helps them understand the importance of MBO. Hiring an outside consultant to explain the process of setting an MBO program within an organization is always a good start.
MBO is not a definite theory, but more of a collective goal setting activity. It helps business owners actually analyze their actual goals by looking at the bigger picture.
There are times when we are interested in knowing about a service or a product. We get online or go to a store to shop for more information. We eventually get that information or see the product, but are not ready to buy. We think, we take time and then most of the times, forget about it!
Email nurturing is a way to connect with your current and prospective customers. It is like staying in touch with potential leads that are not quite ready to buy. According to a recent survey almost 75 per cent on inbound leads are not ready to make a buying decision. They need time to judge and understand your business or product.
Online marketing is incomplete without appropriate email nurturing campaigns. The reality is that “conversion” is not a quick event. It takes planned and tactical nurturing. No matter how great your service or product is, it is important to recognize the importance of email nurturing.
1. Emails that introduce educate and get you connected: This is one of the most important formats, as you just have one chance to actually catch the attention of your lead. Introducing & educating your prospects is a vital step in closing a sale. It is important to display your value, and tell them about the things they want to know based on their on- and off-site behaviors. Invite them to subscribe to your blog, connect on LinkedIn, follow each other on Twitter etc. The more ways, through which you and your prospect are connected, the better chance you have of closing the sale.
2. Emails that help them improve: Everyone is looking for things that make them better, as a business person, as an employee and also as an individual. It is important to send emails that target these personal choices and goals. Free offers are a great way to promote your brand and help prospects improve. Asserting yourself as someone who can make their lives better makes you their ally and helps establish the trust you need to turn them into a customer.
3. Emails that remind and re-engage: This is by far the most important of them all! It is more like, “out of site, out of mind”. If prospects have fallen off the radar send them something to re-engage them with your company such as a feedback or a survey. Worst case scenario: your prospect either doesn’t respond or opts out of your emails. That way you actually weed out the ones that are actually interested in your offerings.
In the digital marketing world, PPC, SEO and email nurturing go hand in hand. In fact, emails are the most important and effective nurturing mechanism by far. Emails help leads get more information to make better decisions and they need to be nurtured after the initial point of contact to eventually increase the conversion rate.
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openCRX is an open CRM solution that meets the needs of organizations requiring multifunctional, enterprise-wide coordination of sales generation, sales fulfillment, marketing and service activities to customers, partners, suppliers or intermediaries:
openCRX features lots of groupware functionality enabling users to manage e-mails, contacts and calendars (shared and/or private ones); openCRX features AirSync and can act as an ActiveSync Server, i.e. you can connect with any ActiveSync client including Apple’s iPhone and Android-based PDAs. You can either use your browser or specialized third-party applications like Thunderbird, Sunbird, Evolution, Kontakt, MS Outlook, etc.) to connect with openCRX. Contact information is available in the VCF/vCard format, calender information is available in a variety of formats including CalDAV, ICS/iCal, and FreeBusy so that users manage their calendars with their preffered calendar client. E-mails are accessible with any IMAP-enabled E-mail client. openCRX AirSync can also act as an ActiveSync Client enabling backend synchronisation between openCRX and MS Exchange.