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Tony Karrer (Browse My Stuff) and Tom Pick (WebMarketCentral) have created and launched the B2B Marketing Zone as a filter to aggregate content for us in one spot. Similar to the idea of The Customer Collective for sales and marketing professionals and My Venture Pad aimed at SMBs and Junta42 for content marketing, this site focuses on a niche. I'm excited to be one of their launch bloggers along with the terrific expertise provided by Brian Carroll, Paul Dunay, Newt Barrett and Jon Miller. I love that it also includes some new perspectives such as Cece Salmon Miller (PR Meets Marketing), Jay Lipe (Smart Marketing). There are a couple of unique features of the B2B Marketing Zone that I think you'll find useful. Navigation: On the left you see navigation around Concepts, Tools, Types and Companies such as Forrester. This makes using the site much easier than only ha... (more)

Boosting Your Confidence in Presentations

How is it that normally secure, confident, outgoing people can feel so nervous about giving a presentation? A recent survey of the top 10 things people most dreaded showed Public Speaking as top of the list closely followed by Death! Presumably if you were asked to give a eulogy at a funeral you would prefer to be in the ‘box'. It is likely, as a manager, that you will be asked to present in some form or other to an audience. It may be something informal such as a "Good Luck and Thank-you" speech to a departing employee or a full-on presentation to the board. So what is it that prevents people from being themselves when it comes to public speaking? The main factor is ‘stage-fright', when you move centre stage and all the attention is on you, and you freeze. You are like a rabbit caught in the headlights of an oncoming vehicle at night. You are powerless; your legs fe... (more)

2010 Annual Predictions Bonanza

New-Media on Ulitzer This year we have seen almost every company, every blogger and his duck, feverishly posting their "annual predictions" before the December 31 deadline, as if there is such a deadline, and as if anyone cares about what they think in most cases. This is followed by a dozen or so 'paid' predictions news releases every day by companies who are pushing their "wish lists from 2010" as "predictions" and hoping that they come true. If you do a quick Google search on "2010 predictions" you will land on a predictions potpourri of more than 5,000 stories (the last time I looked). I especially enjoyed Fly Fishing Predictions for 2010, Identity Theft 2010 Predictions, The 2010 NFL Mock Draft Predictions, and Plastic Surgery Predictions for 2010. You even have the predictions of the "magazine industry" here. What magazine industry? I didn't know dinosaurs ma... (more)

My Quota is Gigantic!

Dear Lee, Last year I was a record setting sales rep at my company selling high tech solutions. Today I received my annual quota for the new year and was shocked to see that my account list shrunk by 10% and my quota is the highest in the company.  I am  very frustrated with this. I attempted to negotiate a reduced quota with my manager but he dismissed my request, saying that he has full confididence that I will figure it out. My quota is gigantic but my spirit is weak. Any suggestions? Down in the South -   Dear Down in the South, I am sure that you are familiar with the biblical story about the tiny frail warrior David slaying the Giant, Goliath. If Goliath had been  a man of average height - who would've noticed? Who would've cared.? Remember the bigger the challenge the greater the rewards when you overcome them. Last year when you received your annual quota... (more)

Pick the CEO, Not the Company

Most organizational experts will tell you that when joining an organization, the company's culture is the key to determining whether you will thrive or suffer in a given work environment.  While this is true for a mid-level manager or individual contributor, the closer you get to the top, the less a culture matters and the more the CEO's leadership and management style impact your work satisfaction. I learned this when early in my career I was a director at a privately held company that was acquired by a much large public company.  In a matter of a few weeks our approachable, personable CEO was replaced by a top down, autocratic manager who announced at our first management meeting, "there's a new sheriff in town, and if you don't like my way of doing things, feel free to leave before I make the decision for you." Later on, with a few battle scars and bumps along the ... (more)

Tales Keep Prospects Talking

We all talk about defining leads, managing leads, the nurturing process and other facets of lead generation, but the most important component of good lead generation is overlooked - the content strategy. Demand generation communications are often approached in a one-off fashion as a reaction to an upcoming milestone, like a new product launch, or an event, such as webinar registration. When that’s over, the campaign is discarded in favor of the next “hot” idea in the market. We talk at our prospects and customers in single threaded, one-way electronic statements – when we have the opportunity to have ongoing, interactive conversations that keep them talking. Lois Kelly sums it up succinctly when she says, “…the goal of marketing is not to assert conclusions but to engage an audience in a dialogue, which leads people to discoveries of their own.” [Beyond Buzz, 2007] ... (more)

A Brigadier on Leadership

Gavin Bulloch  Brigadier Gavin Bulloch (British Army, Ret.) served as an infantry  officer for 36 years and was involved in counterinsurgency operations in several theaters during his service. He is a  graduate of the Army Staff College and the National Defence College. Brigadier Bulloch commanded a battalion on duties in Northern Ireland, served at NATO Headquarters on the Strategic Plans Staff, and finally served in Greece as a Defence attaché before retirement. He recently updated and revised the British Army's doctrine for counterinsurgency. Brigadier Bulloch works as a consultant for the British Army's Directorate of Development and Doctrine. An interview including anecdotes, examples and stories around leadership, decisiveness and the personal qualities required of senior officers in the British Army What was your last position and responsibilities? I was Defenc... (more)

The Most Important Marketing Question

I was listening to a product launch webinar early this morning. The speakers were droning on and on about technology and architecture and innovation.  Not a customer benefit in sight - other than the usual generic claims of 'market leading' performance,' unmatched' reliability, 'next generation' features and all the other 'me toos'.  To be fair, the vendor was presenting the product facts quite well.  But they were leaving it to their listeners to sift through the technology claims to apply its capabilities to their own situation. This is a high risk approach. Especially if your competitors are sharing powerful stories that hits those listeners right between their eyes. The simple fact is that marketing is not about you. It's about your customers and how your company or solution can help them be successful in their business. You're probably thinking "But I have cust... (more)

Top Sales Executive to Share His Insights on Ulitzer

Lee Novak, one of the top sales executives in the country, launched his Ulitzer blog to share his experience, insights, and sales coaching tips. Lee Novak, a Sales Management Executive for 25 years, uses a proven people-first, client-first philosophy. Lee has a reputation for building teams that not only are high-performance groups but also that do business the right way, at the right time and for the right reasons. Novak publishes his Ulitzer blog posts on his two topic sites: Lee Novak on Ulitzer (http://leenovak.ulitzer.com) Team Building (http://teambuilding.ulitzer.com) Sales Coaching (http://salescoaching.ulitzer.com) He received numerous awards for his sales leadership, innovativeness and measured performance while working in various executive roles at ADP Dealer Services (a Fortune 500 company in the technology and service sector) for 21 years - where he was... (more)

Twenty Five Motivational Quotes and Thoughts for Today's Sales Leaders

The following represents twenty five of my favorite motivational, thought provoking and inspirational quotes which I have accumulated through the the years. I hope that you will find them useful, enjoyable and entertaining as you prepare to slay the competitive dragons! OVERCOMING OBSTACLES AND SETBACKS 1) Fall Down Seven Times Get up Eight. 2) If you are going through hell (lost a deal, behind plan, etc.) keep going. 3) Believe that you are going to turn this setback into a comeback! It is inevitable that some defeat will enter even the most victorious life. The human spirit is never finished when it is defeated... It is finished when it surrenders. PATIENCE 4) Walt Disney was turned down 302 times before he got financing for Disneyland. 5) A handful of Patience is worth more than a bushel of brains. 6) Patience is the ability to idle your motor when you feel like stripping... (more)

You Don’t Know Your Competition…

Let’s make a little wager… I’ll bet you just about anything that I know your competition better than you. “How much?” you ask. Well, how much do you have? Let me immediately apologize for the arrogant nature of the question. However, I still feel confident that I’ll win the bet. Not because I’m smarter, have researched more, or have some innate psychic abilities. It’s because you think of the wrong business — or an incorrect individual — as your competition. Most of us believe our competition is the company that is selling a product or service that is the most similar to our own. (Or, a professional who works for that company calling on customers and prospects in a similar territory to our own.) However, from the customer’s standpoint, your competition is vastly different from that. If I have a great night’s stay at a Ritz-Carlton, I do not say…”Wow! What a terri... (more)