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How to connect with prospects on LinkedIn?

I send invites to prospects on LinkedIn to connect. Most of the time, I write a note. But I never try to sell. Do you know how will it be at the receiving end?

  1. Let’s say I received an invite from a person I don’t know. Just because I don’t know him/her, it doesn’t mean I won’t accept the invite.
  2. I do business with complete strangers but I make them my friends first.
  3. Whether I buy product/service or sell product/service, I need to build rapport first.
  4. I need to trust or become trustworthy as the case maybe.
  5. If you are not interested in investing your time and effort in building up this relationship, this will get nowhere.
  6. Do not forget to personalize the invite. Address the person by name. Understand what they are doing and talk about it. If they were in news recently, connect with it.
  7. GOLDEN RULE: Never sell anything without building rapport & trust or without getting to know the person offline.

Take a look at one of the invites I received recently. It teaches you what you shouldn’t do.

#HappyLearning

#HappySelling

#b2b #b2c #sales #marketing #prospecting

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Two University dropouts…

Two university dropouts had a dream. They dreamed of making computers that the average person could use. One of them had a family garage. Both of them started working in that garage. One of them sold his Volkswagen and the other sold his expensive Hewlett Packard Scientific calculator and raised US $ 1300.

They started their company with $ 1300. They took that money and convinced the local electronic suppliers to grant them a line of credit and started the production of their computer.

I am sure you would have guessed what happens next. They went ahead and revolutionized the hardware and software industries. They released their first computer for $ 666 and earned $ 774,000. Do the math. They sold 1162 units of their computer.

But their initial capital was only $ 1300 which is equivalent to the selling price of just two units of their computer.

2 years later, they released their next version and earned a whopping $ 140,000,000 in the next 3 years. Subsequent year they went public and on the first day of trading they reached a market cap of US $ 1.2 billion. #Unicorn

The following year, one co-founder left the company. The company went ahead and launched the next version of their computer 3 years later. The following year the other co-founder also left the company. 13 years later, he was brought back to revitalize the floundering company. Then there was no looking back for this company.

When this company became an unicorn, I was in my fourth grade at school and had never seen a computer. And the only #apple I knew then, was the delicious fruit red in colour.

When you believe in your dream and have the resolve to make it happen, (sh)it happens. When you simply don’t agree to live the life handed over to you, you go on to make the life of your dreams.

Make (sh)it happen. Now!!

The universe is with you in your dreams. And you have to work hard only till the first success. I am not saying you can get complacent after that. But I am saying that that first success will take you further and propel you into greater success because:

Nothing Succeeds like Success!

Happy Succeeding!!

#HappySelling!!

#b2b #b2c #sales #business #entrepreneurship

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Make mistakes early!

If someone had advised me to make as many mistakes as possible, at the start of my career, so that I learn from them, I would have discarded that advice then.

But now, I think that’s the advice I will give to someone who is in the early stage of his/her career or business.

Unless you make mistakes you aren’t going to learn. The best way to learn something is by doing it.

So, let’s do it!

#careeradvice #businessadvice

Happy Learning!

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TED Talks – a source of inspiration!

TED talks are a major source of inspiration. Think of your subject matter and there will be many TED talks on it. These talks are approximately 18 minutes long and are easy to grasp & have some actionable tips or lessons in them.

If you are drawn to some of these talks, then of-course, you can drill deep into the subject matter or the speaker and learn more to your heart’s content.

You can choose from a variety of topics:

  1. Technology
  2. Science
  3. Design
  4. Business
  5. Collaboration
  6. Innovation
  7. Social Change
  8. Health
  9. Nature
  10. The Environment
  11. The Future
  12. Communication
  13. Activism
  14. Child Development
  15. Personal Growth
  16. Humanity
  17. Society
  18. Identity
  19. Community

Here’s the link: https://www.ted.com/

Happy Learning!!

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My favourite apps are getting acquired!

The latest in this list is Bigbasket. They got bought over by Tata.

Last month, Urban Ladder was bought over by Reliance.

Slack was bought by Salesforce for $ 27.7 Bn.

Slideshare was bought long time ago by LinkedIn.

And, LinkedIn was then bought over by Microsoft.

“Taxi For Sure” was acquired long ago by OLA.

Maybe, I have an eye / taste for good products & services.

I am in the wrong trade, I guess.

Maybe, I should become an Investor / #Mergers & #Acquisitions Consultant.

A senior friend was working with an Indian CRM product company.

He quit that company & joined Siebel.

Then, Oracle bought Siebel.

He quit Siebel & joined Agile Software.

Oracle then bought Agile Software. What? Yes, they did!

I think Oracle was following him wherever he went. 🙂

He should have become the Head of Acquisitions at Oracle.

Because, he had an eye for excellence. And he was riding the wave.

What #apps are you using?

Your favourite apps like Instagram, Whatsapp were acquired by Facebook long ago.

There is talk of #SuperApp doing the rounds.

Choose your apps wisely.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Unless, your name is Tata.

#b2c #story #brands #marketshare

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Narrow the focus!

A delicatessen or deli is a retail establishment that sells a selection of fine, unusual, or foreign prepared foods. Delicatessen originated in Germany during the 18th century & spread to the US in the mid-19th century. [Wikipedia]

17 year old Frederick Adrian DeLuca borrowed $1,000 from family friend Dr. Peter Buck during the year 1965 to start something on his own. Dr.Buck suggested the idea to help DeLuca make money for college to study medicine. DeLuca’s plan was to begin a “fast-food venture that provided a healthful, less fattening bill of fare”. He named it as “Pete’s Submarines,” which sounded like “Pizza Marines”, so they changed the name to “Pete’s Subway.” Eventually in 1968, it was shortened to simply “Subway” as it is known today. They reached 1000 stores in 1987 & 1100 in 1993 when McDonalds had 800 stores that year. In 2018, the company had 43,700 franchisees worldwide. [Wikipedia]

DeLuca decided to focus on one type of sandwich, “the submarine sandwich” when other delicatessens sold a hundred different things from soups & salads to chips, muffins, doughnuts, cookies, ice cream, beer, coffee, tea not to forget the newspapers, cigarettes & lottery tickets.

Today, Subway sells more than just the submarine sandwich. They carry salads, breakfast, sides & drinks to signature wraps. But they are still remembered for the subs. And they are present in a number of countries – from Antigua and Barbuda to Virgin Islands.

When you narrow the focus, you become a specialist in that domain and your customers remember you for that “one thing”.

#Happy Selling!!

b2c #b2b #marketing #sales #brandidentity

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LinkedIn Top Voices 2020: India

LinkedIn Top Voices 2020: India is out. In case you missed it, you can view it here:

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/linkedin-top-voices-2020-india-abhigyan-chand/

In a world where people, ask you to double tap for a surprise or copy paste others’ stories or narrate stories about how they gave a job to the most deserving candidate or ask you to click on these icons – “like” or “celebrate” or “support”, if you like working from home or office or both, here is a list of people who genuinely drive engagement on their posts with their insights and tips in their domain.

If you are not following them, you should, depending on your interests.

LinkedIn has released Top Voices 2020 in various categories:

  1. Data Science and AI
  2. Design
  3. Education
  4. Entrepreneurship and Small Business
  5. Equity in the Workplace
  6. Finance and Economy
  7. Frontline Health Care
  8. Frontline Retail
  9. Job Search and Careers
  10. Marketing and Advertising
  11. Sales
  12. Sports
  13. Technology

Also, LinkedIn has released lists region wise.

Here is the complete list: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/linkedin-top-voices-2020-meet-professionals-driving-todays-roth/?published=t

#HappyLearning

#HappySelling!!

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#tech in #sales

Young couple. Jus’ married. That was their first movie together [b’cos it was an arranged marriage]. They went to the theater early, to beat the crowd. Stood in the queue & asked for corner seats when they reached the counter.

Not anymore. You can book seats of your liking online. Thanks to #technology.

You make your own pizza online & get it delivered in flat 30 minutes. You use their kitchen as if it is your own.

You assemble your own computer online. Dell revolutionized this concept long long ago. #directmarketing

In future, you will make your own coffee in your coffeemaker @ your home. You are already doing that. Aren’t you? What’s the difference, you ask. I hear that.

You will start brewing your coffee @ your home just before you leave from office. It will be ready when you get home. Just the way you like it.

And the AI in your car will look at the traffic & suggest you the best route to take to get home faster, easier, in style & with comfort.

#Sales has changed as well. We have bots answering our customers & taking care of them. Whether they like it or not, we don’t care. Jus’ kidding.

We now know when our #customers are opening our #proposals, how long they looked at it, whom did they forward it to, their email ids, what will be our revenue next Qtr, what our competitors are up to, who our customers are talking to, what’s the latest news about our customers, who in my target segment are ready to buy / looking for products that I sell, what our customers are talking about, what our customers are saying about us etc. We know much.

But as long as emotions & feelings are there with humans, sales cannot be on autopilot. Beyond a point, that is. You still need to sell. At every touch point.

I receive many automated emails. The senders don’t do any homework on me. Why should I then bother to reply?

Your customers have a need to feel special. And they are special, aren’t they?

We can / should use #tools & #tech [b’cos this is 2020] but it is our #humantouch that will make all the difference.

#standoutfromthecrowd

#HappySelling!!

#b2b #b2c #business #entrepreneurship #innovation

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Healthy Competition!

I am not sure if you had seen this tweet from Burger King that actually asks its customers to buy from McDonalds. Here it is:

This is not the first time that a brand has shown some love for its competition.

During Aug 2018, when swedish furniture giant IKEA entered India, online furniture retailer Urban Ladder welcomed them with a tweet and a video. Please see below:

Keep your #competition close to you and your #customers closer to your heart!

#HappySelling!!

#b2c #b2b #sales #innovation #creativity #changethegame