Cindy: We’ve been doing so many promos before NAB just helping all the exhibitors we work with get ready and follow up stuff ready for after the show and white papers and social posts and figuring out about driving traffic to the booths. I always say that this is my most favorite time of the year. I’m happy there are 36 hours in the day in March because that allows us all to get enough sleep and still work on anything else.
Nick: Hey Cindy, hey Brett.
Cindy: Hey, Nick.
Nick: Cindy I agree. The month of March, thankfully there are more than 24 hours in a day.
Cindy: So grateful.
Brett: The only way to get stuff done.
Nick: I know. I know. It’s great we have smartphones now and everybody can reach us at any time. All that’s done. Brett, thank you so much for doing this. I really appreciate it.
Brett: It’s my pleasure. I hope everybody gets something out of it.
Nick: I think this is great. I was just telling Cindy, not only is it a great topic, but it’s also, it’s very timely because we’re right at the cusp of the show here. I think this is gonna be a lot of really relevant information that people can use in about a week’s time. So this is a little more than a week’s time, but.
Brett: I hope. Boy, that’s sneaking up on us fast too.
Nick: Yes indeed it is.
Brett: Hopefully, yeah. It’d be nice if it worked every time, but hopefully, it helps someone.
Nick: I think it will. We’ve done a lot of great work and Cindy too.
Cindy’s been telling me, and I’ve heard it from audit exhibitors. This is the second season, second year of our program with this and it’s really helped a lot of people so far. People have viewed it a lot live on both of our blogs. It’s been great.
Brett: Good. Just saying that you and I talked a little bit ahead of time. I can make the first point of when you’re out at NAB or a show like this, it’s awesome because obviously your customers are coming to see you. That is a nice situation. One thing that I always talk about is working with my sales team, is I call it throwing up on the customer. We tend to have the … as sales people when we give them these type of situations, that’s what we do. We get into a situation where we have customers coming to us and they may ask a question like, hey well what’s new? And we just say, here it is and we just are throwing out all sorts of information. This is what’s new and we’re doing very little, if any qualifying. That’s for me and the way we try to work as a sales team here at Utah, a big part of our job and our whole sales process is built around qualification, talking to the right people, knowing the real opportunity, making sure that we are a good fit. That we’re not just unloading, again, a bunch of feature sets.
Here’s this, here’s this, here’s this, here’s this. We’re trying to gear our message to what the potential customer wants. This is the sales process that we’ve identified at Utah. This is nothing that probably a lot of people don’t have something similar. Obviously if you look at this, this is how we break it down. Lead generation, lead qualification, needs assessment, proposal, and then the eventual sale. NAB is mostly about lead generation. One of the things that I try to again, in working with the sales team we always try to do is really spend a lot of time because it’s a perfect opportunity to do some of these other things. Lead qualification, needs assessment, and then you’ll see how I have the arrows going in one direction and then kind of back and forth. What we try to do here at Utah is really spend our time in those three areas. The lead qualification, the needs assessment, building a quote, and then going back to the needs assessment. Is this correct? Oh no. Okay, let’s rebuild that quote. Okay back to the needs assessment, back to lead qualification. We try to spend most our time there.
Including at NAB because if everything you’re doing at NAB is all about lead generation and there’s no qualification, how do you then follow up? We’ve got ten thousand leads, what ones matter? What leads are the people that actually have decision making authority? So on and so forth.
Cindy: Right. That whole lead scoring thing is so important so you really know what to do next.
Brett: Yes. Some of the things and I won’t do the PowerPoint too much longer, I promise. Some of the things that maybe don’t get asked a lot at NAB and really it’s the perfect time to ask these type of questions. Because once you get down a sales path, sometimes it’s hard to un-ring a bell. If you’re talking to somebody and you find out two or three months down the road that they’re not the person that you should be talking to as far as decision making quality or ability, it’s hard to go backwards and be like, oh I actually need to talk to your boss. That’s an awkward situation. NAB is a great opportunity to get some of this information. If they can give you an exact date and this is classic at NAB, you say when do you need this. Oh, I needed it yesterday. Oh I needed it last year. That does nothing for us. No, really? When is this project? When is the exact date? Why is that date? Again, do you have a contract expiring? Is some equipment failing? Do you have a new project? Is this money that has just been all of a sudden allocated?
Why do you have this date? Why are you telling me you need this tomorrow? What happens if this doesn’t happen? Do you get fired? Do you lose another sales opportunity with another company? These are the type of questions that are perfectly appropriate at NAB and I don’t know if they get asked enough. Again, a great time to ask who is actually the decision maker on this. Are you the one with approval? Is it your boss? Is it your boss’s boss? Is it maybe you have the decision making authority, but it still has to go through purchasing? The more information we can get in these first few meetings, the better of we’re going to be after NAB in our follow up. If we know the answer to these five questions and they’re all positive, then you know that’s someone I need to follow up immediately after NAB. Then those are our time requirements there at the bottom, number six. We always try to be very up front with that right off the bat that this is the time it’s gonna take to build some of this equipment. So please, make this part of your plan. I’ll stop sharing now.
Cindy: They’re good though. That’s great stuff. Brett, for some of the people on the call, some of the people on the call have a lot of sales experience. They’re completely comfortable with that asking for the implementation date and who’s the decision maker. For some of the folks that are on the call that I know people I’ve worked with who are like, well I feel embarrassed. I feel like it’s an inquisition. I feel like I’m asking too much. Are there ways to maybe for the newer sales person be able to ask those questions and still feel comfortable?
Brett: Well again, I think that’s what’s so great about doing it at NAB. It is a much better time to do it. I mean the sooner you do this, the better because you’re right. If you get down the road with this person and then you find out, wow. This is not the right person. Then it’s awkward and it’s awkward for everybody. What better time than the first time you meet this person? It’s not being in my opinion, it’s not being overly inquisitive because it’s like, hey we’re just meeting right now. I need to know this information so I can be sure I’m giving you the correct information from the company. I would as far as being more comfortable doing it. That comes with time for some of the newer sales people. I’ll tell you what. It makes it easier the sooner you do it in the process. The longer you wait, the harder it gets.
Cindy: I think that’s true. I know from my own experience that’s true. If you get that info right away, and it did take me awhile to feel comfortable asking those kind of things. Is there anybody else that’s involved in the decision making process that I should meet so that we can make this really work for you? I’m always turning it back to the benefit of that they’re gonna get. If I know who the other people are, I can make this project go more smoothly for you and take it from that way. I was at NAB show one time and I saw someone, oh it’s a customer and we get along great. He came up to the booth and we’re chatting and stuff. It was just a good chat. He left and we didn’t really … I didn’t say, what projects do you have? Later I found out that he did have a project and he ended up using someone else’s equipment. I felt so re missed because I thought, I didn’t do my job. I took this time to chat and be friendly and stuff but I didn’t actually then go, do you have a project? Is there anything I can help you with? Whether he would’ve bought the equipment that I was selling at the time or not, I don’t know. The questions are important. To make sure that happens with every prospect, it’s a good thing.
Brett: Absolutely. Yeah. Again, it’s the social part of it is part of it at NAB. The days are so long and the nights can be really long too. Everything like that so sometimes it’s nice to just relax and be us for a little while. That’s part of it too, but you’re right. Then at some point you just have to be like, okay is there something I can help you with? Again, I think that’s a good approach as far as … again, this is tough because a lot of times the person comes into the booth and says show me what you’re doing. When you have a brand new product, it’s hard to not just say hey look at this brand new shiny product I have. Again, if you ask the question that you mentioned Cindy that is, hey what are you working on. Sometimes when they say show me what’s next, say what are you working on. It’s funny the reaction you’ll get. They’ll be like, oh. They’re surprised that you’re actually asking that question instead of just, again, throwing up on them.
Cindy: Then I usually come up with a quick answer to that what’s new. Because people do, well just tell me what’s new. I’ll think I know this person. I have ten new things but I’m gonna pick two. If you tell ten, it’s way too many. You can say, we have this and we have this. What things are interesting to you right now? What projects do you have so at least I answer the question and I’m not not being responsive, but still avoiding that jumping and dumping the entire 30 minute product pitch. Which I’m shocked when I go up to a booth. I’ll be like, hey what’s going on in here? They’ll go right into a demo. I think, I’m not actually a prospect. At this point in my life, the number of demos I get is shocking.
Brett: Again, there’s all different theories on what NAB is about and everything. Cindy and I were talking before this and we were near a booth. I won’t say what year, but in the last couple years. They literally had people out in the aisle that were just scanning badges and almost haggling people in the aisle. Not really but really obnoxious about just getting the lead. I’m just like, as a sales person in my opinion that would be just the most frustrating busy work ever to have to try to follow up on what had to be thousands of leads. But to try and follow up with them and have them being like, yeah I was walking by your booth and I just got scanned. I have no interest. I can’t imagine a worse. I hope there’s no on out there that does that, that’s watching right now. It may work for you if you do. To me, it would be a very long and possibly frustrating follow up process.
Cindy: Right. It’s the quality versus quantity and what’s important to your company. That goes back to one of our other sessions that we had a couple times ago, a few weeks ago where we talked about what are your KPIs. What are your key performance indicators or just in regular language. What are your goals for the show? If your goal is to, I just want to grow my database and get as many people as possible, okay then yeah. That’s a way to do it. If your goal is I need to sell something in the next quarter, in the next two quarters, well then we’re going back to qualifying and doing that work that you’re talking about Brett. That’s a great thing to think about. If you guys feel like chatting that into the chat box if it doesn’t feel to revealing or if you just want to chat to Brett and I, you can do that. Just tell us what your top one or two goals are for the show. If you can define that, that is an awesome thing. Brett, what do you think the most important question is to ask people? You gave a list of really great bunch of stuff there. What do you think the top question is? The top question that you would ask someone in the booth. You gave us a whole list of awesome questions for qualifying.
Cindy: If somebody is on the call here and thinking, oh man I can’t do that. Or I want to work into it, what would be the most important question that you would suggest to start with?
Brett: To me, it is again what is your project? Everybody’s company is different. That might be different for some companies. What we do, it seems at its heart pretty simple. We route audio and video, but there’s so many different things that go along with that. What is your project? A close second is again, who is involved in the decision making process. It’s just so important to know because you can spend time and effort and money and be with the wrong person and it just gets overridden by somebody completely out of the blue.
Cindy: I’ve done that.
Brett: It happened to all of us.
Cindy: I’ve done it. I’ve put a ton of time into working with someone only to find out he was a nice person who was genuinely interested and had 5% influence because we have the decision makers and the influencers, and then you also have people who can make a sale not happen, who can veto the whole thing. So it’s good to know when you’re talking to someone, what category does this person fit into?
Brett: Listen to what they say. I know that sounds crazy, but I used to work on the other end of this. I used to be a chief meteorologist at a TV station. I would get a lot of phone calls from potential vendors and I’d say, hey this, I love it. What you’re showing me, I would use and I would be thrilled to have this but I don’t get to make that choice. I would tell them, here’s who you need to contact. They would, some, would still call me back and still ask more … I’m like, look. I told you what you need to know from me. You need to get with my boss and in many cases my boss’s boss. They’re the ones who are gonna make the call on a project like this. I’ll give them my opinion, but I don’t have the authority to buy something like this.
Cindy: It’s true.
Brett: Listen to what they have to say.
Cindy: It’s true. Sometimes I would just say, hey is it okay if I call you back in a week? If the person says yeah, or if they say no I’m really not the right person. Like you said, asking some really simple questions like that can change everything. One of my favorite questions is, I might not use these words with the prospect, but what’s the implementation date? You talked about that. When do you have to be on air? When do you have to have the proof of concept? When do you have to have this happen? Okay, let’s back time from that for just a moment here. That can really, when you get into that timeline stuff. Outside of the who’s the decision makers, the implementation date and timing can be huge in terms of really thinking about your sales projections and who you should call after the show.
Brett: Especially as a manufacturer. Again, in some industries it’s not as important. It’s hugely important to us that we forecast correctly and get our timelines right or as close as possible because to get stuff out the door, it just takes time.
Cindy: Who on this call actually does sales forecasting and needs to maybe has a sales budget or sales quotas that they have to meet? Just chat in. Just curious. Again, you can chat to the whole group or if you prefer to just chat to the presenters and keep it private, that’s fine as well. Just curious who really has that going in their company. Brett, one of the things that we talked about is taking notes. I loved your take on it. Tell everybody what you’re saying about that.
Brett: One thing is I always like to because people … it helps people to feel important if you basically you’re talking to them and then you go ahead and just ask the question. Hey, do you mind if I take notes? Then they’re like, okay. This person is number one, serious. And number two, really cares about what I say. I always try to ask, do you mind if I take notes? I do it on paper. I have my excellent notebook. It’s right in here. Well, it’s in my backpack. But I’ve got my notebook and I’ll get a brand new one for NAB. I carry it around. I have my pen in there and everything like that. I just try to … I like doing it by hand. I like to write my own notes and draw pictures and do things like that. It helps again, follow up a little bit easier. Obviously the sooner you can get this into your CRM, the better because you know how it is. I’ll remember that, I’ll remember this person said that and everything like that. Then you don’t get it into your database and sometimes it’s easy to forget.
Cindy: Oh man. I do that now. I think, I’m doing a call with a client and I always take notes. It ended up being a short call and we just did one thing. Then I’ll go back a month later and go, now what did we do on that call? Oh no. I didn’t write it down. I too, also do that.
Brett: I like this comment from John. He says it also let’s you know that you’re not trying to text somebody.
Cindy: It’s so funny.
Brett: That’s a good point.
Cindy: Are you texting or taking … if I do use my phone to take notes, if I do and I’m more of a paper person myself, if it’s a quick note or something like that. I will look at the person and say, hey I’m just taking a quick note.
Brett: There you go.
Cindy: They don’t think I’m just off making dinner reservations on an open table or something like that. I would say, I’m-
Brett: Which is also a big part of NAB of course.
Cindy: Now, who here uses paper and who goes for tablet or phone? Just chat in. Super curious about what everyone does. My thoughts are, I know it’s old school. If you’re gonna take detailed notes that paper, I think is better. Here’s a thought about it. I know it’s not popular and especially with my daughter and some people who are younger for sure because they’re so used to doing it. But I feel like part of why we’re at the show is to make a personal connection with that person in the booth. It’s why we’re there. We want to help them to know, like, and trust us. That’s what trade shows do. We’re making in person sale calls. No like and trust. And that happens when we’re looking at them and understanding because the percentage of communication that happens is non verbal is huge. Well over 50% of communication is non verbal. I don’t want to waste that when I’m standing in front of them looking down at my tablet or trying to tick a box on the experience thing. It’s fine. It’s fine if you do that and stuff. I’m just giving my two cents that it’s all about the relationship.
I believe that we’re still able to look at someone and jot down a quick note. That is tougher on a device in my opinion because you don’t know how the entry is going and stuff like that. If there’s a way that you can use the experience lead system and paper and that works for you, I recommend it. You can get some of your staff to enter the notes. One time at a place I worked it, we actually brought someone from the office to enter notes, which may sound completely crazy, but actually they worked in the booth half day and then half day went back and edited notes. It had to happen at some point so why not do it right there. Note taking is a huge and important topic because it really makes the difference in making that sale or not later on.
Brett: Agree. It looks like most people do paper. Everyone looks like they do a combination I’m sure. But a lot of paper for sure.
Cindy: Nice. Nice. Nick, if you’re here in a moment, I’m gonna ask you to help us with the Q and A.
Nick: I am here.
Cindy: But first, but first before I bring you on Nick. I just want to give you a heads up Nick that I was gonna hit you up to help us today. Brett, some of our audience may not have ever used a sales process or maybe they just want to improve the system that they have. If you were gonna say, based on everything we talked about today, if you were just gonna do one thing, take action on one thing, what would you suggest to them Brett?
Brett: Qualify. Qualify your leads. Is that too broad? To me the second to what do you … what do you want to do is probably question number one like I said. Who is involved? I know not everybody is in the same sort of industry that I am. Instead of just presenting them with here’s what we’ve done, present them … qualify them by saying, what’s your project so that you’re presenting the correct information and then qualify them to make sure they’re the best ones to be talking to. If they’re not, then how to get a hold of the people that do need to be the ones that you talk to.
Cindy: I love that. I think that’s super clear. For me, taking what you say and just applying it to the idea of a sales process. For people on the call, do you have a sales process? You talked about it earlier on Brett. Do you have step one, we meet them and a sales person talks to them and sends them a brochure by PDF? The next thing we want them to do is do a demo. The next thing we want them to do is meet with a sales engineer. Or whatever the steps are. I just made that up. Pick three or four, or five steps and if your customer deviates from that path as they’re purchasing, it’s okay. They don’t need to keep that. At least set a sales process and a path in place for them. Make it easy for them to purchase. Hey, after you do this, we normally do this. Is that fine with you? That way you know you’re walking down that yellow brick road to if they buy something from you, everybody is happy and everybody benefits.
Brett: I would just echo that. In that process … I’ll go back to this one here really quickly. Let’s see. Let’s do that. Again, it’s so easy to try and jump from lead qualification again … okay. I’ve qualified the lead at NAB and I know this person is a decision maker. All right. Let’s go ahead and … it’s easy to try and jump from lead to sale or lead to quote or needs assessment to sale. You really got to do them all and you’ve got to spend that time. You’re gonna go back and forth. That’s one of the things I tell our team when we’re building our pipeline. I’m like, I want to see a lot of quotes because I know if you’re quoting the same person again and again, and again. You’re further assessing their needs. I don’t want to just fire out one quote and think that’s the last time I’m ever gonna do any kind of needs assessment and proposal for this customer. Again, the more we see that quote process, that means we’re further qualifying them. We’re answering questions, we’re addressing concerns, we’re spending that time in those three. The lead qualifications, needs assessment, and proposal. We’re jumping back and forth between those three and then sale. Boom.
That’s one last thing. We just can’t jump to it too … we can’t try to jump too quickly to it.
Cindy: So good. So, so good. Guys, whether you got something out of today’s session or on a previous session, if you have 20 seconds, jump to the NAB exhibitor LinkedIn and put something in there that’s just two, three words about this webinar series and what you got out of it. That’ll tell NAB show that we want to keep doing these. And if you have a vote for upcoming topics that’d be awesome.
Brett: Hey Cindy, a comment from Bill here. It’s valid totally. I find determining the decision makers to be challenge as people want you to think they are the decision makers. No question this happens.
Brett: I think what helps with that Bill is some of those questions that I detailed before that you can ask, that if they don’t know the answer to, then they’re not the decision maker. You don’t have to be confrontational about it. You just ask them, when’s the exact date that this has to be installed? I don’t know, some time in the fourth quarter. That tells me maybe this person is not as involved as we think. If you just ask them, once a decision is made, what’s the process from there? If they can give you that answer, okay then we go to purchasing and purchasing will issue, you’ll have to fill out these forms as a company to be a vendor of ours. If they know those details, that usually means okay that’s a little better qualified person. Again, another great question to ask I think that helps to qualify this without being confrontational is be like, well okay let’s say that this project for whatever reason doesn’t happen. What does that mean to you? If they’re like, oh well then we’ll move on. It doesn’t have a huge effect. That tells you a couple things.
Brett: This project may not be that important and again, this person might not be the right person to talk to because they don’t have that information. If they can tell you if this project fails then we lose this other deal or another deal or if this project fails, I’m fired. Or if this project fails … if they can give you that kind of information, again that let’s you know I’m talking with or at least a better idea that I’m talking with the right person.
Cindy: They’ve got skin in the game. It matters to them. Hey Nick, can you help us with the Q and A. I can’t see the questions. If you could just look through there and tell us if there’s anything we should answer, that would be so beautiful.
Nick: Sure. No problem.
Cindy: Thank you.
Nick: One thing I will say though, as we are for move in starts next Monday for the 2019 NAB show, which is for a lot of us exciting. For a lot of us daunting. I think for me it’s always a little bit of both. I know we’re really excited to get the show underway this year. As we’ve discussed in previous webinars really a lot to look forward to this year. For anyone on the call on the webinar today, we want to thank you if you were entered into the product of the year awards. We had over 200 nominations for that. Just to clarify what that is. If your unveiling a new product for the first time here at the 2019 NAB show, you are eligible. As I said, we had over 200 entries for that. We’re really, really excited for that as a new initiative this year. Of course, as I mentioned the past few months Cindy has been great in heading a marketing call campaign for us. I hope for those of you that were able to take advantage of that for our first or second timers that you found that extremely helpful. As I know so many did.
As far as what’s happening on site, move in as I said starts next week. If anyone still has any questions about their move in date, their move in time, it’s gonna be anywhere from next Monday to next Friday. That depends upon your location of your booth, the size of your booth. If there’s any last minute shipping questions, the advanced shipping deadline is tomorrow for Freeman. After that, shipments can be taken direct to site starting the 1st, which will go directly to your booth. Make sure you properly label your shipping labels with your company name, your booth location, otherwise it’s gonna be very difficult for Freeman to get everything to you. As I hope everyone knows this year, there is the unlimited material handling policy. Regardless of how much you ship, there is a flat rate for Freeman to transport it to your booth this year. I know a lot of people really, really excited about that program as well, as well as our other discounts with labor and electric.
Hopefully this is a really great year as we’ve had for the past few years now. This year really is a huge, huge focus on exhibitor discounts. I hope that everyone is satisfied with that. I’m available of course via phone, via email if you have any questions. I will be on site next Monday. I’m sure I’ll see a lot of you there. Be coming and saying hi around the booth. Our staff office is in C102. That’s right outside of the main entrance of Central Hall. Feel free to drop by with any questions and I’m available. Thank you for all of you that have been on this webinar this past webinar season. As Cindy said, please let us know what you’d like to see in the future. We do have one more webinar coming up post show. For that webinar, we are going to address post show sales, how to get the most from your leads. That’ll be on the 23rd. We’re looking forward to doing this again next year. As I said, let’s have a great show and if you have any questions, please let me know.
Cindy: Thank you so much Nick. Thank you Brett. Thank you everybody. We will see you all in Las Vegas.
Brett: Thank you. We’re in booth SL7616. So there you go. Come by.
Cindy: I am there. I am there. Brett, I loved all your sales process pro tips today. I’m super happy that we could do this together. Thank you so much.
Brett: Thank you. I appreciate it.
Nick: Thank you Brett. Thank you Cindy.
Cindy: Bye everybody. Thank you.
Nick: Bye everyone. Thank you.