Dan McDade

ViewPoint | The Truth About Lead Generation is a blog exploring issues related to B2B sales, marketing and lead generation.

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Authored by Dan McDade, president and CEO of PointClear, ViewPoint draws on his 20-plus years of experience helping companies develop prospects and drive revenues. Named one of the 50 most influential people in sales lead management in 2009, 2010 and 2011 by the Sales Lead Management Association, as well as a 2012 Top Sales Expert and one of the Top 50 Sales & Marketing Influencers for 2012 by Top Sales World, Dan offers insights into how to close the gap between marketing and sales and explorations on the most effective means of reaching target audiences. Using real-world examples—Dan fosters productive thought and collaboration among executives.

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A Salesperson's Wishes from Marketing

Salesperson's Wishes

James Obermayer, Executive Director and CEO of the Sales Lead Management Association and President of Sales Leakage Consulting is a regular guest blogger with ViewPoint.

“So, what do you want from Marketing?” I asked the gathered salespeople. “Don’t hold back; tell me like it is. Don’t be shy; open up and let me have it.” And that is how the conversation went with me saying very little for the next hour. It’s interesting…ask salespeople their opinions about a marketing campaign, copy, creative, or any number of marketing’s creative options and you’ll hear very little. But on this topic, their ‘wish list’ from Marketing, it was passionate and heartfelt, with a hint of mischief and desperation. I could give you an essay of ten thousand words, but these are the high points.

“We want qualified leads.”

“Webinar attendees aren’t leads; get me leads.”

“Please tell us about a campaign before you launch it so I don’t have that ‘deer in the headlights’ look when a prospect says, “So tell me about the free iPad mini if I buy from you by the end of November.”

“I keep hearing that I have to increase sales activity to increase sales. How about the marketing department putting a little skin in the game to help us increase sales activity? How about a little marketing activity?”

“I need to sell seven of these (bleeped) medical devices a month and I get 2 leads. What gives? If they want me to sell more, give me more leads.”

“When we look at a new CRM system (I refuse to use the one we have because it is so time consuming), can you have some of the users look at it first, and can we have some say in how it is set up, etc.? Why does Marketing or Operations get to choose the CRM but Sales has to live with it?”

“Can you qualify the unqualified sales leads before you give them to me?”

“We need sales meetings not sales beatings.”

“I’d like it if the marketing manager would travel with me on sales calls!”

“I need to produce $75K to make quota and $100K a month to make a decent living; can you give me at least 10 qualified leads a month to help me make quota?”

“The sales stages in the CRM system are nuts. If I make a sale early, I can’t just jump to ‘sold.’ I know it sounds crazy but they make me close out each sales stage before I go to mark it sold. It sounds minor, but I already spend at least an hour and a half a day on this CRM system.”

“This doesn’t have to do with marketing, but why does management cap my incentive system? Do they intentionally want to cap my potential? They give me commissions to motivate me and sell more, but when I reach $100K in sales a month they stop motivating me by stopping commissions. What gives?”

“We need phone numbers on leads.”

“We need e-mail addresses on leads.”

“How about some leads on products I have a quota on?”

“Webinar attendees aren’t leads. Can someone qualify these before we are given hundreds of these students and competitors and maybe a few prospects?”

“How about someone in Marketing forecasting the leads we need to make quota?”

“We need some information about the lead: how soon are they buying, what’s the application, and are they the decision maker?”

“I need more leads; good leads.”

Last month we ran a list of the wishes from marketers to salespeople. It was interesting and relatively a nice polite list, for the most part. This list from the salespeople has a tone of frustration, sometimes anger and a pinch of fear.

Marketing: read it and take their thoughts to heart. Anyone else want to chime in?

Tell us what you think!


Insightful, I can related having been on all sides of the table at various times. We are all faced with the conundrum from internal and external customers "that's what I asked for but that's not what I want". The best sales oganizations I've seen are active listners, top to bottom. Sure, salespeople can fall into the trap of "whining" often when they get to that point you already have a problem. Their instincts to "get along" are overwhelmed. That doesn't mean that when as sales managers we don't keep reminding them to be part of the solution. More often than not sales managers forget that Leaders lead people, managers manage tasks. Guess which group get's better results. Good one Dan.
Posted @ Thursday, November 29, 2012 7:20 AM by Craig LaFrance
Thanks, Jim! I compare sales people to printers. A press date is immovable (just like a quota). However, mistakes, under-performance and delays along the way can't be used as an excuse for missing a press date (or quota). It is no wonder sales people are so frustrated. Based on what I see being passed to sales as leads they should be.
Posted @ Thursday, November 29, 2012 8:11 AM by Dan McDade
I'd like to add "Predictability" to the list - so that Sales can count on real leads to enter our funnel predictably - so we can better plan our efforts and activities. Great list - I sent it out to my sales teams, will add anything additional I hear back.
Posted @ Thursday, November 29, 2012 10:02 AM by Kevin Coppins
As a marketer, getting the sales team to use our CRM effectively always seems to be an uphill fight. It has never crossed my mind that maybe we should reconfigure the system in a way that works better for them. It's easy to get stuck in the mind set of "the way it's always been done." Good insight!
Posted @ Tuesday, December 04, 2012 4:39 PM by Mike Frizzelle
Thank you Kevin. You're right on, a salesperson that can count on the predictability of inquiries and leads coming in consistently to match the sales quota requirements will win consistently.
Posted @ Sunday, December 09, 2012 1:05 PM by Jim Obermayer
Am I only the one one who also believes that sales should be generating their own leads? If salespeople are not getting what they need from their marketing team (and not everyone has one) what stops them from pursuing opportunities themselves instead of waiting for marketing? LinkedIn and other social networking sites are a goldmine if you know how to use them. 
What's missing from the list? In the world of social prospecting, networking and engagement, salespeople also need their marketing teams to help cue up relevant content that is of value to prospects. I'm not talking sales pitches or silly contests for an iPod. Salespeople need to be able to share case studies, white papers, industry trends, etc. in order to stand out from the competition. 
Note to marketers...I routinely listen to free webinars and download your white papers, but that doesn't mean that I am a qualified buyer for your product or service. The old "raising your hand" thing just doesn't apply anymore. You need to find other ways to qualify opportunities for your people.
Posted @ Tuesday, December 18, 2012 10:10 AM by Barbara Giamanco
Barb - I love it! "The old 'raising your hand'thing just doesn't work anymore." I totally agree. However,I am not a proponent of making a great "hunter" beat the bushes looking for qualified leads. That task belongs to a "beater".
Posted @ Tuesday, December 18, 2012 10:40 AM by Dan McDade
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