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Sales 101: Presentation given at DreamIT Ventures
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Sales 101: Presentation given at DreamIT Ventures



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  • Started as a programmer – founded my own start-up – quickly moved into salesBeen doing sales for over 15 years for start-ups and other small and growing companiesBuilt sales teams – and never missed quota
  • Types of Customers Consumers Small Businesses Enterprises Marketers
  • How to get volume up: PR is the best – qualified leads Articles. Blogs, Linked-in, etc.
  • The Genius of never logging into the software I was selling.Focus on how you are going to change their world – not how its done with your productIf you can convince the customer that you will change their world… the rest is gravy.They can live with imperfections in the product – they understand the true valueAngelsoft: Came in and changed the presentation from walking through the day in the life to value
  • No Demos! Demo’s are chances to screw up, Show pre-recorded videos if you have to
  • Why?Too expensive,
  • SPIF = need a customer in Consumer packaged Goods, need a contract over $10,000 in value


  • 1. Sales 101 for your Start-up
    Mark I LaRosa
  • 2. Things to consider
    Who do you sell to? (sniper or shotgun)
    Do you market or sell? (both)
    When do you hire someone to focus on revenue?
    Who do you hire? Blue Jeans or Grey Hair
  • 3. Different types of sales / salespeople
    Type of customer and product drives type(s) of sales functions needed:
    Business Development
    Inside Sales / Tele-sales
    Outside Sales
    Account managers
    Hunters vs Farmers
  • 4. Pipeline
    • Deals currently being worked in
    various stages
    • More calls = more leads = more sales
    • 5. PR is best (driving inbound) = qualified leads
    • 6. Outsourced lead-generation
    • 7. Hourly / Success-based
  • Selling Value over Function
  • 9. Embrace the word “NO”
    Ask for the sale
    No gives the chance to ask why?
    No can mean:
    Not now
    Not in that way
    Not at that price
  • 10. negotiation
    If I… will you….
    Good Cop – Bad Cop
    End of quarter pushes
  • 11. You never call anymore
    Use the phones….
    SEO is great, but nothing beats personal contact.
    Don’t expect your prospects to do the hard work
  • 12. Managing sales people
    Manage to metrics
    Ultimately expect results
    Let comp plan do the heavy lifting
    Press on accelerating the close
    Flush out deals that are not real
    Don’t let salespeople trend to the easier conversations
    Great salespeople are easier to manager
  • 13. Compensation terms and basics
  • Your biggest capital expense
    • Finding great salespeople is biggest bottleneck for a growing company
    • 22. Failed salespeople are the biggest waste of capital
    • 23. Right sales team = life or death
    • 24. Don’t Scale until you know your head from your feet
    • 25. Never more than double any sales force
  • Finding Good people
    • 55% of sales professionals are in the wrong occupation1
    • 26. Sales professionals that are
    job-matched outperform their counterparts by 40% and are twice as likely to stick2
    • Try all angles: recruiters, job boards, recommendations
    A Players
    Top Performers
    Account for 80% of Sales
    C Players
    Should not be in sales at all
    B Players
    Should be selling elsewhere
    1. Croner, Christopher and Richard Abraham, Never Hire a Bad Salesperson Again, Inner Workings LLC, 2006.
    2. Greenberg, Herbert and Jeanne, ”Job Matching for Better Sales Performance,” Harvard Business Review no.80505
  • 27. What to look for
    • Expensive Hobbies
    • 28. Confidence
    • 29. Ability to listen and answer questions directly
    • 30. Grasp general ideas around your product quickly
    • 31. Creative thinking on new ways to pitch your product
    • 32. Construct a pitch on the fly…