John Barrows

Timing is Everything

John Barrows

The more experienced I get in business the more I realize how important timing is with almost everything. I can’t tell you how many ideas I’ve heard about (or come up with myself) that were great ideas at the time, but failed because the market wasn’t ready for them. Good Ideas, Bad Timing.

The Biggest Sin In Sales

John Barrows

Do you know the biggest sin in sales? It’s not to lose a deal. It’s to take too long to lose a deal. You know the ones: they sit in our pipeline or forecast as the 20 percenters and get pushed out month over month over month because we’re “saying there’s a chance.”

How Not to Close End of Quarter Deals

John Barrows

For many of us, April marks the start of a new quarter, fresh targets and quota and new opportunities to focus on. Sometimes you hit your quarterly number with weeks to spare, other times you’re pushing in any deal you can to Make It Happen by the end of that third month.

How I Made the Mental Shift with Social Selling

John Barrows

As a GenXer, when Social Selling hit the sales scene I thought it was a joke and yet another thing I was supposed to do to be successful in sales. Fantastic, add it to the list. The whole idea of tweeting and posting sounded and felt ridiculous to me.

Why Conversational AI Is Key to Customer Service in the Customer Experience Era

In today’s hyper-competitive market, every business must become a customer experience-first business. Customer satisfaction has become more important than price or any individual feature. Read the new Tractica white paper to learn how important conversational AI is to your CX strategy.

Why is Authenticity So Rare Today?

John Barrows

At Salesloft’s Rainmaker conference this year I delivered a workshop, a keynote, and I participated in a panel. In each of these presentations, my focus was on providing as much value as possible to the audience.

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LinkedIn Voice Messages

John Barrows

You may have heard about the benefits of LinkedIn voice messages. Many sales reps, including Morgan, are using them with great success. Of the 125 Morgan has sent, he’s seen 50 responses and booked 25 meetings. That’s a 40% response rate, and 20% success rate in getting next steps.

We Give Waaaay Too Much in Sales

John Barrows

We are givers in Sales. We give and give and give in the hopes that at the end of the sales process, we get what we want – which is the signed contract and commission. The problem is we tend to give a bunch of stuff away without really getting much in return.

IF You’re Going to Make Cold Calls, This is How to Do It

John Barrows

“Cold calling” is getting harder and harder to justify these days. Less people are picking up the phone, some executives don’t even have office lines anymore, the layers of gatekeepers are getting thicker and harder to navigate. It’s brutal out there. With all this, I still think cold calling has its place and can be effective IF done right. First, let me be clear on my definition of what successful “cold calling” does and does not look like.

How I knew I was going to lose a $200k deal

John Barrows

There are a bunch of key indicators that happen throughout the buying/selling process that help us understand the true ‘health’ of any opportunity we’re working on and whether we’re in a good or bad position to win the deal.

4 Steps to Developing Your Customer Care Strategy

The quality of a customer care strategy can make or break a company, but simply resolving a customer service issue or complaint is no longer enough. Learn the 4 steps that address the major points you need to consider when building a customer care roadmap.

How I Prospect Every Day

John Barrows

I always refer to myself as a sales rep who happens to train rather than a trainer who happens to sell. While the days of making 400 cold calls a week (and they were truly cold calls) are over, I still prospect every single day to keep a big fat pipeline.

5 Voicemail Tactics to Get More Callbacks

John Barrows

Reps always ask me whether or not they should even leave voicemails anymore since they almost never get a callback. My response is yes – as long as they are good ones. If you’re leaving ‘touching base’ and ‘checking in’ voicemails then I would not to waste the prospect’s time.

Gap Selling with Keenan

John Barrows

Keenan, CEO, President and Chief Antagonist of A Sales Guy, Inc. has been selling something to someone for his entire life. With over 20 years of sales experience, he has been influencing, learning from and shaping the world of sales for a long time.

A Guide to Getting the Most Out of Networking Events

John Barrows

With Q4 around the corner and event season (September) upon us, we here at JBarrows will be making the rounds at all the events coming up like Tenbound , HyperGrowth , INBOUND , Digital Sales World and of course Dreamforce.

Successful Social Selling Best Practices Guide

This best practices guide focuses on helping you organize, harness and capitalize on the information, buying signals and qualified prospects identifying themselves to you online every single day.

Top Takeaways from My Interview with Chris Voss, Author of Never Split the Difference

John Barrows

This week on the podcast I chatted with Chris Voss, author of Never Split the Difference and founder and CEO of Black Swan Group about all things negotiation. Below are just some of the takeaways from our conversation plus the video of the full interview. If you haven’t read his book, it’s a must-read for anyone in sales. Go grab yourself a copy! You Probably Aren’t Listening. Chris is really big into what he calls, Tactical Empathy. That begins by listening to what the other side is saying.

Want to Know Which Deals Will Close by End of Year? Do This Right Now.

John Barrows

I’m getting a lot of questions from reps right now about what they can do to make sure the deals in their pipeline will close by the end of the year or how they can create urgency to get them to close.

Prospecting is Not About Selling

John Barrows

At least it’s not about selling your products or services. Can you sell your product or service in a 30-second pitch? Can you sell it in a one-page e-mail? I hope not. If you could your company wouldn’t need you. Prospecting is about selling the next step. It’s about selling time.

The Why?

John Barrows

I’m re-sharing this post from last year because I really want to highlight that Sales, when done right, is the best profession in the world. When done wrong, it’s the worst.

In the Race to Win More Customers, Sales Needs Digital Transformation

Salesforce users were surveyed about the forces shaping today's workplace. Discover the results and why investments in digital transformation and automation are pushing sales teams ahead.

Should you leave a voicemail?

John Barrows

Something I get asked a couple of times a week and usually has a lot of engagement when I share it on social, is the topic of voicemails. There is always a debate if leaving voicemails still makes sense in 2018. The answer, for a number of reasons, is yes. Why you should leave a voicemail.

Finally! A Contact Strategy That I Appreciate

John Barrows

There are three types of contact strategies in my experience: 1) Tailored: where you do research on a specific person or company and then craft multiple, relevant, and direct messages, 2) Targeted: where you segment contacts based on similar characteristics and develop messages that focus on their broad priorities or challenges, and 3) Templated: where you create various, self-serving templates about your great solution and then blast messages out to everyone on a list.

Free Sales Training: 6 of My Favorite Sales Tips

John Barrows

There is no shortage of free sales training resources out there. Today there are more videos on YouTube than you could watch in your lifetime and more books on Amazon or Audible than you could ever get through even if you read one a day.

Put Your Shoes On! Plus 12 Other Tips to Do Travel Right

John Barrows

Last week I spent 40 hours on planes flying to India and back. Each year I log over 250,000 miles in the air, and with 25 training days booked in January and February 2019 will be no different.

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Sales Training Playbook by Lessonl

A step-by-step guide for building a comprehensive training playbook for your sales team.

Your #1 Competitor…

John Barrows

Recently I’ve noticed reps and companies spending a lot of time worrying about their competition and trying to figure out what they’re doing or how to defend against them, etc. I don’t know why but I’ve never really worried too much about competition.

Sell The 20%

John Barrows

Think about all the products, technology and services you use. I bet you only use about 20% of whatever they’re capable of. Take Excel for instance. Excel is an insanely powerful tool yet most people just put a few numbers in the fields and click the “sum” equation to add them up. The same is true for what and how people buy. My experience is that customers only care about 20% of what our solutions offer and mainly only want the parts that align directly with their priorities.

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Our Dreamforce 2018 Recap

John Barrows

With Morgan, Lucas, and John attending Dreamforce last week, we wanted to all share our perspectives from Morgan’s second time attending, Lucas’ first, and John’s countless time at Dreamforce. In no particular order, here are our top takeaways from Dreamforce 18. The power of voice.

Deep and Active Listening Skills for Sales

John Barrows

One of the most common questions we’re asked is “How do I become a better listener?” There are countless books, and articles on things like active listening, focused listening, passive listening etc. Besides putting down the distractions, and focusing on the conversation you’re having, there are a few tactical things we can all do to become better listeners. Episode 81 of the Make It Happen Mondays podcast featured an expert in deep listening, Oscar Trimboli.

7 Marketing and Sales Strategies to Grow Your Revenue Fast

Speaker: Christopher Ryan, Founder and CEO of Fusion Marketing Partners

Join Christopher Ryan, CEO of Fusion Marketing Partners and writer of the recent book The Expert’s B2B Revenue Growth Playbook, to discover seven steps that you can immediately take to grow your company’s revenue quickly and consistently!

Confidence Overcomes Most Shortcomings Except For…

John Barrows

… An Ego. If you have an ego you’re not going to get very far in sales or in life in my opinion. However, if you have confidence you can achieve almost anything. People gravitate towards confidence and want to be a part of it. This is true in all aspects of life and especially in sales.

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Sales Lessons from the World Series

John Barrows

One of the great things about sales is that you can practice it everywhere you go. You can also use just about every opportunity as a teachable moment, including the 2018 World Series – GO SOX!!

Looking For Your First Job? Consider A Job In Sales

John Barrows

Lately I’ve seen lots of graduates on LinkedIn and I’d like to say “Congratulations” to everyone moving on to the next chapter of your life journey. The good news is you’ve made it. The bad news is these upcoming chapters are what actually matter. What job will you land?

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The Downside of an Acquisition: How to Navigate Your Career and Life Better than I Did

John Barrows

Be authentic and do what you feel is right, even if it means upsetting your boss. For millions of people, it’s the big dream: Join a small startup. Build it into a powerhouse. Get acquired by a massive corporation — and enter a whole new tax bracket.

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Fulfilling Today's (Changing) eLearning Needs

Speaker: Bryan Marriott, President, P1 Learning

eLearning cannot be a “one size fits all” proposition. It’s not enough to post 1,000+ courses and leave training up to chance. Join Bryan Marriott, President of P1 Learning, as he walks through the process of identifying learner needs, and then delivering training that specifically addresses those needs – in a short, effective, and entertaining manner.

Time to Value

John Barrows

I’ve been paying attention to some of the recent data about the sales process and keep thinking about the concept of Time to Value (TTV). I’ve heard of it before but never put much thought into it until now. Here’s a good description of it by the Baremetrics Blog.

A Phrase You Never Want To Hear In Sales

John Barrows

“I’ll need some time to digest what you just said.”. As a younger, less experienced rep, I used to think this phrase was awesome.

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Goal Setting

John Barrows

January can be a tough month. The holidays are past us, winter won’t end, and there is a good chance our quotas have gone up. For me, it’s my busiest time of the year, which is why I rely on goals to keep me on track. Without goals you get lost.

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Trends We’re Seeing on LinkedIn

John Barrows

I’ve written before about making the mental shift on social socializing. It seems like every conference we attend, from Rainmaker to Hypergrowth to Dreamforce, more and more people are coming up to Morgan and I with questions about personal brand building. Here are some of the best practices we’ve found when it comes to building, and leveraging our personal brands, specifically on LinkedIn in 2019. A few years ago, simply sharing articles was enough to be considered “social selling.”

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Sales Training That Gets Results – With or Without Classroom ILT

Speaker: Mike Kunkle, VP Sales Enablement Services, SPASIGMA

Most sales ILT (instructor-led training) has historically not been very effective, if we consider “effective” to mean “changes behavior, improves results, or produces a ROI.” In this webinar, sales enablement expert Mike Kunkle will break down how modern technology removes the need for ILT in sales training - and will also explain how to effectively integrate ILT into your modern training, if you want to continue using it!