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Sales Lead Management Association Radio


Four Reasons Why a Pipeline Fails to Deliver Which Makes Sales Managers Look Clueless.


Sales pipelines that fail to deliver projected sales are a common and ugly fact of life in too many organizations. Sales managers are fired not just  because the sales department fails to deliver, but because the sales manager fails to forecast. No one likes being in the financial dark and CEOs and CFOs take it seriously when sales managers demonstrate failure to know the marketplace when they can’t forecast sales in a consistent manner.  In this 30 minute program, Rod Sloan, a frequent guest on SLMA Radio and our voice from the UK, gives us the top four reasons why pipelines (and the sales managers who create them) fail to deliver. Author of “Alignment, The Secret to getting your Sales and Marketing Teams Working Together” The host this week is Jim Obermayer.
Rod Sloane
Rod Sloane produces the UK based “No-Bull Sales & Marketing Alignment Radio Show” available on He is a conference speaker who tackles how companies manage leads, create opportunities and generate revenue. Mr. Sloane is the founder of the LinkedIn Sales and Marketing Alignment Group that has over 8,000 members. Rod says it is about your people, your language and your culture. Sloane has his own consultancy aptly named, Rod Sloan.     

Commercial  sponsors on SLMA Radio include: The Young CompanyThe Vanella Group and Vanilla Soft.

4 Ways Queue-Based Lead Management is Shaping Inside Sales


As the shift to insides departments grows while the number of field sales reps shrinks, the C-Level managers are doubling-down on expectations of  inside sales productivity. It isn’t enough that the number of prospects and customers spoken to on a daily basis quadruples for inside vs. outside reps. Nor that the average cost per inside rep is only 50-60% of the outside rep total compensation.There is a constant pressure for increased sales productivity in the face of high rejection rates while the count of salespeople per manager continues to grow. 
The answer everyone suspects is a technology boost that helps the ISR manage their workflow and this is all driven by the relatively new science of queue based lead management. In this unscripted, sans PowerPoint program, Kevin Thornton, EVP of Vanillasoft explains to the SLMA Radio Host Jim Obermayer how queue based lead management makes the difference between success and failure for any company with high lead volumes and inside sales people.

Kevin Thornton

A strategic, global sales & marketing executive, Kevin’s career spans over 20 years leading sales teams that have generated over $1B in software sales. Kevin has forged dozens of strategic partnerships and has executed the go-to-market strategy for hundreds of leading software solutions through multiple channels and regions.As Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing for VanillaSoft, Kevin is responsible for accelerating global customer and revenue growth and overseeing all new customer engagement and acquisition strategies. Kevin’s key areas of focus are SEO & Social Media Marketing, Business Development, Channel & Alliance Partnerships and Demand Generation.

Prior to joining VanillaSoft, Kevin served as Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing, Americas at Corel Corporation where he was responsible for all regional sales, marketing, alliances, and business development activities. Prior to Corel, Kevin served as Senior Vice President Sales for Sage Software’s Small Business Division. Kevin resides in Dallas, Texas and is an honors graduate of the University of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada.

About VanillaSoft

VanillaSoft is the industry's leading software for sales-by-phone professionals. VanillaSoft’s intuitive and easy-to-use inside sales software takes the best of CRM, Lead Management, Telemarketing and Appointment Setting applications to create the most productive phone sales environment available today. 

The VanillaSoft platform allows customers to see increased productivity, higher contact rates, and sales accountability in ways no other sales-by-phone solution does.  VanillaSoft’s queue-based lead management takes sales to a whole new level: it’s Sales to the Power of the Queue. Through queue-based lead management, inside sales organizations see increased productivity, gain performance visibility, and realize a greater ROI on leads.


Commercial  sponsors on SLMA Radio include: The Young CompanyThe Vanella Group and Vanilla Soft.


How Gamification provides triple digital growth for inside sales

Inside salespeople are growing at the expense of outside sales reps and with it comes difficulties. Inside salespeople are expected to make more “contacts” – 50-100 a day, keep the CRM system updated and deal with rejection 90-95% of the time. The push for revenue is measured hourly and is relentless in many organizations. And yet, a new sales productivity platform from Ambition shows that combining fun and motivation with accountability through gamification are all possible. In this short interview, Ambition CEO Travis tells us why Harvard Business Review sought them out for an article and why inside sales departments are reaching previously unheard of success; some report triple digital growth by using gamification.

About Travis Truett

Travis Truett is the CEO of Ambition, a sales productivity and analytics platform for Salesforce and other CRM solutions. A lifelong entrepreneur, Travis has built Ambition into one of the most respected performance management solutions for the workforce. Both Travis and the Ambition platform have been the subject of feature stories in the Harvard Business Review, the Wall Street Journal, Inc. Magazine, and Business Insider.

Truett attended the University of Tennessee where he earned a degree in Enterprise Management. Upon graduation he quickly put his diploma to work by spending two years snow skiing and rock climbing across the world with extended stints in Austria, Utah, and California.

Post-sabbatical Travis taught himself to program and co-founded companies Retickr and Fireplug, both invaluable learning experiences in making every mistake possible. Undeterred, Travis helped start Ambition which was subsequently accepted into the world-renowned Y Combinator program before raising Silicon Valley funding for a Tennessee Valley startup. Now serving as CEO, Ambition has achieved triple-digit growth including Fortune100 customers and numerous product accolades under his watch.

About Ambition

Ambition is modern performance management for proactive, data-driven sales organizations. It enables employees and management to more effectively track and optimize cause-and-effect between daily activities and long-term objectives with the secret sauce being a “Fantasy Football” gamification layer proven to drive sustainable results.

Ambition’s cutting-edge sales operations platform passively manages user performance. Ambition drives CRM adoption, KPI attainment, team accountability and cultural alignment across your sales force by tracking real-time performance, improving transparency and accelerating new hire onboarding.

Commercial  sponsors on SLMA Radio include: The Young CompanyThe Vanella Group and Vanilla Soft.

Lead generation and maximizing what you’ve already got.


Companies create new prospects every day, while often ignoring that salespeople give up on most prospects within 1-2 phone calls and in less than 30-60 days.  They move on to the low hanging fruit of short term buyers and ignore that research shows that 75% of the purchasing decisions are made in the 4th to 12th  months. In this interview with Chris Lynde, CEO of dbSignals he tells how to maximize the leads you have already. The host is Jim Obermayer.

About Chris Lynde
Chris Lynde is founder and CEO of dbSignals. Chris is an analytically minded, self-described “data geek” who has more than 30 years of experience in multi-channel database marketing, data, and analytic services. He has pioneered a number of large-scale, first-to-market database products and held several C-level roles with direct profit-and-loss responsibilities of more than $300 million in Fortune 1000 corporations, as well as pure start-ups.
In his previous role as senior vice president for Club Holdings, Chris led the implementation of multi-channel marketing technology, customer database development, and marketing campaign planning across the portfolio. Prior to joining Club Holdings, Chris was senior vice president and general manager of Source Marketing; senior vice president and general manager of Equifax Marketing Services; and president and CEO of Oaktree Systems, a public database marketing subsidiary of Gateway Industries.
A serial entrepreneur with a passion for music and golf, Chris in the 1970s co-founded Rainbow Records, the largest record chain in the Chicago metro area with 13 stores. He also founded TeeShots International, a direct marketing company specializing in golf products, and co-founded Destination Golf, a nationally syndicated television show that ran on Fox Sports and ESPN.
About dbSignals
dbSignals is ranked among the top marketing automation solutions for large, medium and small businesses by Raab Associates’ 2015 Vendor Selection Tool (VEST) Report. The company combines data, technology, and the science of machine learning to automate the sales and marketing process so customers can stay focused on running their businesses. dbSignals’ Customer Acquisition Prospecting Databases, coupled with real-time data management and self-learning technology creates smarter campaigns and the best results possible. The dbSignals platform sits on top of an integrated database that contains customer data, a national B2B and B2C prospecting database, and a complete system of record.
Based in Broomfield, CO., with offices in Phoenix, AZ., dbSignals is a wholly owned subsidiary of Club Holdings, LLC. dbSignals provides everything a business needs to acquire and retain customers on one easy-to-use SaaS platform. The services are available direct and through white-labeled resellers. Learn more at

Commercial  sponsors on SLMA Radio include: The Young Company, The Vanella Group and Vanilla Soft.

Trade shows and conferences: are they throwing rose petals as you walk in the door?


Conferences and trade shows are part of every industry. Whether you and your company participate in them is part of your marketing plan. Once you have your plan and schedule - how are you going to prepare to make the most of the money you spend on attending, exhibiting, sponsoring or speaking at these events?  Do you have enough staff to get it covered; and not only COVERED but NAILED?

Jim reminds us that planning for a conference needs to start months ahead of time. Communicating with attendees through inmail systems days before isn't good enough and will most likely be a waste of time.

Jim Obermayer will interview SLMA Marketing Director, Susan Finch, on this very topic. You may not realize how much of a mediocre presence you have once you realize all that you can do before, during and AFTER the conference or trade show.

This show had several ideas that to some, may be obvious, but making sure you do them can add to your successful conference experience before, during and after!

A bit about Susan Finch in her own words:

Her mission: Create marketing solutions that give you power, renewed excitement, peace of mind, knowledge, and a plan while making you look great.

I give you control of your marketing plan AND I translate geekspeak into plain English. I’ll create a customized marketing plan that includes video, strategic alliances, client advocacy and then you get to choose the parts you want to do, and get my assistance with the rest, including: branding, repurposing and creating your content, and developing training materials.

Learn more about this specialty of hers here >

Commercial  sponsors on SLMA Radio include: The Young CompanyThe Vanella Group and Vanilla Soft.

Threat Brief Survey Results and How it Affects MSPs


On this episode of MSPradio, we chat with Brian Coffey, Technical Channel Account Manager at Webroot, about the 2015 Threat Brief that Webroot recently published and what MSPs need to know to better protect their clients from the latest data security threats.

This is a replay from MSP Radio's show in May. We felt it was important enough to share again with you. 

 Highlights include: there’s absolutely a correlation between both having the right technology in place but also having a well-educated user base. So think that’s absolutely a strategy that MSPs to consider; am I putting the best security technology in place for my computers?

But also I might be making my customers aware of what the prevalent threats are, how threats get on to an end point and doing a little bit more endings or education I think could have a big impact in keeping their customers and partners safe.

and: We see the complexity of threats continuing to grow and the creativity that we see coming from these engineers.

We see it more and more focused on the financial rewards and benefits that they can achieve from these different models. I think that really illustrates the speed and the complexity that we’re seeing. It really illustrates that security has to continue to be a focus for both consumers and for businesses and there has to be an attention to what types of security products are we offering to try to keep end points and people safe. 

Listen to this replay to hear the full story.

Commercial  sponsors on SLMA Radio include: The Young CompanyThe Vanella Group and Vanilla Soft.

Why CRM is NOT a settled science!


CRM has been around as a “new” process for 30+ years in various forms. And yet even with giants in the industry, new entrants emerge almost monthly and new capabilities continue to be added to even the pioneers in the industry.  In the interview with industry veteran Paul Petersen, Vice President of Goldmine, we discuss why CRM is not yet a settled science and what the future may hold for this vital but aging process. The host this week in Jim Obermayer.
About Paul Petersen
Mr. Petersen is the general manager and vice president of the GoldMine business unit of HeatSoftware Inc. His career spans working with sales & marketing systems and process having developed, managed, and sold for companies including McDonald’s Corp, General Electric , Symantec, Allied Van Lines and now has 16 years with CRM background at GoldMine.  Mr. Petersen holds a JD from Loyola University of Chicago and was one of the first to be awarded  the Professional Certified Marketer designation by the American Marketing Association.
About GoldMine
Headquartered in Milpitas, CA., USA, GoldMine is a division of FrontRange Solutions. GoldMine is a leading provider of mobile relationship management solutions for small businesses worldwide. Over 1 million users have selected GoldMine to help them manage over 1 billion relationships. GoldMine has been selected by businesses in more than 80 verticals and 45 countries to grow their businesses and build enduring relationships.

How to connect SEO directly to revenue!


Revenue is rallying cry for marketing, as it has been since the last recession and seems to be accelerating.  In this episode Eric Kronthal of periscopeUP discusses how SEO is not simply a long term strategy for visibility, but it can be tracked for contributions to revenue. The host this week is Jim Obermayer.

About Eric Kronthal
Eric Kronthal is an experienced online marketer proficient in building custom solutions to meet online advertising and marketing objectives since 1996. Eric left PricewaterhouseCoopers' consulting services to become one of the early employees at (acquired by AOL) and he is credited with the launch of several industry leading online advertising solutions including Behavioral Targeting, Interactive Television advertising, and several self-service applications. Among the companies he worked with were Snap-on Tools, NASCAR,, USA Networks, H&R Block, PGA Tour, Southwest Airlines, TV Guide, and Comcast Cable. 
Eric started periscopeUP in 2009 to guide marketers toward accountable Search Engine Optimization. He and the team at periscopeUP believe success should be measured by the number of leads and sales generated, and not by search rank, clicks or visits. Customers include Trump Entertainment Resorts, Bon Secours Health System, Carnegie Mellon University, The Gettysburg Foundation, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and CARCHEX. 
Eric, his wife and two children, live in Chevy Chase, MD. 
About periscopeUP
SEO services are just one of many offered by periscopeUP, including: Pay Per Click Search Advertising, Search Reputation Management, Display Retargeting, Web Development and Web Analytics. Regardless of the channel(s) used, periscopeUP's philosophy for increasing website conversions and leads is to optimize the marketing message for customers and prospects first and the channel or platform second. Month over month periscopeUP's analysts track, measure and report on tactics to continually improve.
While based in Washington, DC, many of periscopeUP's employees work virtually from Boston, New York, and Houston.

How does iContact Pro measure marketing program success?


Every marketer worth his or her salt is on the hunt for marketing tools that yield an ROI for lead generation campaigns.  In this SLMA Live program and podcast replay we discuss with Geoff Alexander – President of iContact how they have made the necessary changes to iContact in their new Pro Program to help marketers not only communicate more efficiently but measure their program’s contribution to sales.  The host is Jim Obermayer.
About  Geoff Alexander – President, iContact
Geoff Alexander oversees iContact’s day-to-day business operations, including strategic direction, revenue, sales, services, and marketing. Alexander has 20 years of experience in management, marketing, product strategy, revenue optimization and business development with a concentration in business-to-business online/software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications. Prior to Cision and iContact, he held key management positions at a variety of innovative technology companies ranging from venture-backed startups to the Fortune 500 list.
Alexander holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from James Madison University. He is also a board member for the North Carolina Technology Association, and regularly advises early and mid-stage startups. Follow him @iContact.  919-957-6150

About iContact

Since 2003, small and medium businesses worldwide have achieved significant results by turning to iContact’s best-in-class email marketing solutions and knowledgeable team members. Made scalable to serve the needs of high-volume senders, professional marketers, and businesses new to email, iContact’s easy-to-use technology ensures that every customer has what they need – whenever they need it – to succeed. Headquartered in Morrisville, NC, iContact is an award-winning company in the Cision family of brands.

How to decide if outsourcing inside sales is right for your company.


This is a replay of a show from December with Jeff Feuer of Customer Solutions Group.

You'll have to listen to the full show, but here are some highlights:
Outsourcing as a TOOL, it can be used to great advantage or great disadvantage.

The in-house sales force that can handle the workload, probably doesn't need to consider outsourcing that much.

Some reasons you may want to consider outsourcing are trigger events. These trigger events may include:

  • Near term large expansion of sales force.
  • Perhaps immediate need or temporary need that would be difficult to ramp up and ramp down for in house.
  • Desire to benchmark the existing sales force against an objective third party that could trigger good healthy competition that could make both the in-house
  • Launching a new business or a new product is another trigger event that should cause a manager to think about outsourcing, because a fresh perspective can be valuable to assist in solving unique problems
  • Lack of scale to justify an impact, or telephone capacity issue that could hinder a successful launch and related scale issues.

*How to get ROI - is it more or less expensive?*
If you allocate the costs properly, in-house sales should be 10% less than outsource. That's typical.
Depends on where you are located and your in-house work force location - Silicon Valley is way different than more industrial areas.

After analyzing costs, you'll have to decide if you have a greater capacity for success keeping it all in-house or will you have a greater capacity of success if you outsource for this specific situation.

Jeffrey's company 130 front line full time sales people.
"Sales is part of our core DNA - we've been doing it for 21 years. We are a sales firm."

09:00 Quoting Gerhard at Sales 2.0, "Majority of firms are not hiring outside sales people, they are hiring inside sales" and then using outsourcing more when they have the extra need."

09:20 Technology and the way people work, really tends to favor inside sales today.
Someone can cover a lot of grounding a phone call. Inside is more economical.

Outsourcing offers a lot of flexibility.

Outsources see a lot of different sales problems. Where inside sales relies on one set of experiences from their own services.

10:30 Warm Transfer topic. How and why it's used.
It's another word for outsourcing the prospecting leg of your sales process.
The task is to find the decision maker. Outsourcer can do it less expensively. They have more experience in this piece of the sales process.

11:48 Using a divide an conquer approach where the prospecting is outsourced and the closing, demos and customer service remain with in-house.

15:30 Outsourcers are specialists in the infrastructure and execution of programs. Most have space to grow and create quickly.

How long does it take to get up and running?
3-5 weeks is typical. Depends on services are necessary.

Do most of your clients use CRM?
With over 90 CRM systems out there. Important to have one system, but not all of the bells and whistles.
I want my sales people to focus on SELLING, not filling in little forms and data. That's what they do best - SELL. Persuasion skills are more important to sales than administrative skills.