Recently, I read an article written by Ron Baron, CEO, CIO, Portfolio Manager and Trustee of Baron Funds. Each quarter, he writes extensive letters to his customers with the reports on why his fund invests in certain businesses and how they arrived at those conclusions. As I read the letter, I thought to myself, this is something to share and it's definitely worth reading. I hope you also see the same value in his act of kindness. First and foremost, Ron says he really needs to understand the leadership of the company on a personal level. It helps to understand the principle foundation of their leader so Ron is confident that he's investing in an honest, hardworking and accountable business. His analysts have an approach that is a repeatable process, their MOO (Mode of Operation) - Here it is:
- Why did you start your business?
- Why can’t others do what you do?
- Why can’t someone else do it better?
I would like to share with you, my answers to these questions. These are also questions I ask my customers because they help me fully understand how to market and sell their services.
Why did you start your business?
I started Sales-Link 16 years ago, and there was a time when it was explained to me the difference between a "hunter" and a "farmer.” This person said that a hunter will try to catch its target and tear down their doors, if necessary, to get what they want. The hunters believe that you don’t start selling until someone tells you “No” - otherwise, you are just an order-taker.
The farmer is a great tiller, but they don’t start making things happen until they are given something to till. They are great at organizing, planning and implementing; their communications are typically direct because they know what to do with a preset order. But without the hunter, there is nothing to till.
Back in 2001, I started in sales opening doors and knew how important it was to have something important like a "mic drop" moment in my back pocket and when to use that to my advantage. I could see that was an uncommon skill; something I could bring to the industry to make it better.
Why can’t others do what you do?
I have always been an advocate of encouraging others to do what they have a passion for in life. If you do what you love, it really isn’t work, rather you are on a mission to fulfill a vision that becomes a life full of happiness. My passions have always been technology and mentoring; these two passions allow me to do my job through the trials and tribulations of opening doors that lead to new sales.
You need thick skin in the sales industry and the ability to step up to the plate each day. The daily grind of making cold calls and obtaining/reviewing advanced metrics are great tools that are so hard to perfect; it takes time, interest and constant improvement.
Putting yourself out there is vital, not only in front of new potential prospects but also in front of your existing clients. By showing them you are knowledgeable about their business and how you plan to get them where they want to go; you build long-term trust.
Today, and moving forward, you have to be interested in asking questions about the latest technology available to help you work more efficiently. I question everything (in a good way), but I always test new innovative technologies or know how they would be beneficial to my business. I'll watch videos and participate in demos for new products, not only in lead generation and sales but also the ones that are competing against my clients.
Why can’t someone else do it better?
In any business, there is always competition. However, when it comes to lead generation, sales and marketing, the company implementing these services should match the demographics and psychographics of their customers, to some extent.
Size does matter, but every company small or large must market themselves on a daily basis. The people in charge of marketing need to be experienced in every role; not just being a manager, a COO or sales person, but they are willing to understand the business and the world that business is a part of.
You have to understand your competition and the impact of your product/service in your industry. Many say they can do sales and marketing, but are they relentless in their daily quest?
There are other companies out there that can do what we do at Sales-Link, but the space is not crowded.