7 Types of Prospects that Are Wasting Your Time & How to Spot Them

7 Types of Prospects that Are Wasting Your Time & How to Spot Them

How do you spot an uninterested prospect before they take up too much of your time? How do you maximize your time on making calls to prospects that are actually interested in buying something from you? Our CRM Implementation Specialists have compiled a list of potentially “uninterested” prospects to help junior sales reps filter them out in the early stages of the sales cycle.


1. The Ignorer

We all encountered this person in sales. This is a person that after the first call does the disappearing act. Your emails go unanswered. Your calls divert to voicemail. My rule of thumb unresponsive prospects turn into unresponsive clients. Which is unproductive. I typically reach out once. Twice. A third time. And then, I move on. Three strikes and they are out.


2. The Discount Seeker

This is a person who does not care about how upscale your product may be or the number of extra features it boasts. They simply care about finding the best deal possible. Every question they ask is centered on the price. They will push for a discount or try to get your product for free.

It is important not to cut corners and not to jeopardize the quality of your product simply to win a lead. Ask yourself: how happy will the customer be? How long before the customer will cancel or move on? Will I be able to retain the customer on an ongoing basis?


3. The Researcher

The researcher is a person who has been tasked to learn more about your product, industry, and market. They are neither the decision-maker nor the purchaser. The only thing they are in the business of is learning on behalf of someone else in their company. As a sales rep, you want to cut out the middle man and get the actual buyer/decision maker on the phone. That way, you will avoid potential misconstruction of the information, as the researcher passes it on.


4. The Undercover Cop

The undercover cop in sales is a competitor that pretends to be an interested buyer. They will have a sense of curiosity that goes beyond that of the typical purchaser. If they’re not asking questions that are centered on how your product will solve their problem, they are not a consumer.

They might ask questions like: Are you funded? How many employees work at your company? What upgrades are you releasing next? Their questions will sound very senior in the way they understand your product and the market.


5. The Introvert

When a prospect is reluctant to give out their personal information and identify themselves, they are (in majority of cases) not serious about buying from you. Before you discount them as not serious, it is important to find out the exact reason why they do not want to give out personal information. You should continue chatting with them for 3 to 4 calls in order to establish a trust. The best rule of thumb is to drop them if they do not release the information after three follow-up communications.


6. The Power House

Some business prospects you are trying to go after are just too large to keep investing resources in. Since you likely want to close deals within a certain time frame, a larger company might take months to close a deal. Because larger prospects take far more resources to land, you are better off focusing on the smaller leads, which can add up to more in the end.


7. The Irrational

This is a person who does not make decisions rationally. They are afraid of making commitments and refuse to identify their decision making criteria, and do so on purpose. As well, they change their mind on a moment’s notice. If I spot a prospect like that, I steer clear. If they’re behaving that way before the deal is done, imagine what they’d be like after they become a client.


Let InfoFlo help make your sales cycle more productive. We can help you keep track of every call, every task, and milestone. Download your 30 day free trial today.


How to Convert a Negative Review into a Happy Customer with a CRM Tool

No entrepreneur wants his or her customers to be unhappy. Not to mention that it is bad for business. The following are 6 proven ways to reply to upset customers and their negative reviews and potentially win them back. Having a Customer Relationship Management Tool (CRM) can significantly make the process of Online Reputation Management easier on you and your CSR staff.


How to Convert a Negative Review into a Happy Customer with a CRM Tool


1. Investigate the Review

Ask for some honest feedback from all parties involved to determine if there is truth behind the complaint. If you are using a Contact Management Tool, review all the appropriate notes and files attached to the case. Respond only when you have a clearer picture of the situation.


2. Sleep on It!

Ignore your impulses. Have something written down within seconds of reading the review? Sleep on it! Studies show that a period of unconscious thought leads to improved decision making. Review the message again in the morning. Have a friend or objective party review the message and revise it if necessary.


3. Respond!

You should always respond to the review no matter how frivolous the claims are. Use your CRM tool to customize the message and make the customer feel that their business is valued. To appear less general, online reputation management experts suggest breaking each point down and addressing them one by one using bullet points. Those seeing the review and the response will be pleased to know that you care about your customer service and go the extra mile to ensure your customers’ happiness with your product/service.


4. Apologize with Sincerity

You can easily deflate a tense situation with an apology. Use the LAST acronym to help guide you: Listen, Apologize, Solve, and Thank. It is essential not to skip any of these steps and to do them in the order listed when responding to a negative review.


5. Act as Humanly as Possible

Show empathy, communicate in a friendly tone and use your real name. And if the forum supports it, it helps to include your actual photo. That way if the reviewer has any questions they know who to approach. Most consumers will contact businesses offline to resolve the matter once and for all and give the business a chance to rewrite a wrong.


6. Take it Offline

If the issue is not a quick fix or involves confidential information, opt to take it offline. The best way to reach an agreement is to start a dialog in person. First, you already know the customer’s troubles and can think how you can make it better by offering compensation. And live conversation won’t let it seem bribery. Once the issue is resolved the happy consumer will most likely remove the negative review or at least revise it to include new developments.

We hope this article has provided you with some tips to consider when dealing with all types of online reviews, and how to turn any type of customer feedback into an opportunity to grow engagement and brand loyalty. Let us know what you think in the comments below.


5 Amazingly Helpful Sales Tips for Introverted Entrepreneurs

Introverted Entrepreneurs Can Sell!

Introverted entrepreneurs can be just as effective as their extroverted counterparts, if they know how to use their strengths to pitch a good deal. The most important thing to remember is to avoid the use of the same techniques as extroverts. You will only end up looking bogus and ingenuine to your prospects.

The following are 5 amazingly helpful tips for introverted entrepreneurs trying to test the sales waters. They helped me, an introverted copywriter, break free from my personal bubble and innovate by taking risks and trying new approaches. I proudly share my experiences because I feel have overcome many obstacles, including a speech impediment, to establish myself as a successful entrepreneur. I hope you can do the same in the coming months or years and take these tips to heart.

1. Be Yourself

The key to being confident in sales is knowing and owning your sales style. Think of it as your trademark. Many people have a false perception that you must be pushy, extroverted, or “salesy” in the sales department. That’s not entirely true and I am the first to admit this. You can be quiet, introverted, goofy as long as you remember to be honest, yourself, and knowledgeable about what you sell.

2. Don’t Quit on the First Try

Depending on the industry you are working in, not every customer is ready to buy your product/service the same day they call or drop in. If someone tells you they are not ready, it does not mean the deal is a dead end. You will still need to follow up. 63% of deals are closed after the fourth chat, yet 9 in 10 sales people quit after the fourth call. Those 10% are making a lot more money because they are persistent and show perseverance.

3. Speak Less, Listen More

Contrary to popular belief, the best sales staff do not have to be great talkers to close leads. The sales people who talk more end up talking about a whole lot of things that do not really address what their prospects need. As an introverted entrepreneur, you use your exceptional listening skills to listen to what someone is telling you, and gain a fuller understanding of your prospect’s situation. What I am saying, your superior listening skills will help you match products/services with customers with more accuracy.

4. Make it Personal

Connect with your prospects on a personal level. Sometimes it is the common interests, other than sales, that help you connect in ways other sales people cannot. Talk about yourself and what makes you unique. Your hobbies, your family, your love of tuna subs etc. People remember the person, not the product. Make it look like no one can question your knowledge in yourself.

5. Invest in a CRM Tool

As an introvert, developing new leads may not come naturally. Cold-calling strangers may not be your strength. Investing in a CRM tool like InfoFlo can help ease the load. InfoFlo will help you better search, sort and qualify leads, follow up on sales opportunities systematically, increase target reach rates faster, and prioritize and rationalize following activities. Click here to learn how. You may wish to download our free 30 day trial to reap the benefits immediately.


10 Questions to Make Testimonials Authentic

Tips for Soliciting Authentic Testimonials

Testimonials are  powerful and cost effective selling tools you can use as marketing arsenal. They will prove that you are legit. Your prospective clients will be much more inclined to do business with you if you can show examples of their peers achieving success with your help.

Here are ten questions you can ask your customers to get meaningful, authentic testimonials for your business’ products or services:

1. What made you to choose my business to assist you with your needs?

2. What were your preconceived notions about using our products/services?
3. How has you perception changed since you hired me/bought my product/service?

4. What do you like most about working with me/using the product/service?

5. Did you expect it would work as well as it did?

6. Did you have any objections/hesitations before you decide to hire us? If so, what were they? How did we overcome your hesitation?

7. What are the three biggest benefits of working with us?

8. If you were to recommend me to a colleague, friend, or business associate, how would you describe the way I provided my service to you?

9. Is there anything else you’d like to add that I haven’t yet asked about?

10. Can I share this information on our website?

If you don’t have any client testimonials on your site, it’s not too late to go out and solicit your customers for some. Use some or all of the questions noted above to increase the trust visitors have in your services and products and increase your sales dramatically!


10 Essential Elements of Effective Teamwork

What is it with team work? Some teams seem to work better than others. Those teams that work well get consistent high level results and people love working in them.

Other teams wallow in never ending mediocrity. It’s like watching a horrible movie played out day after day after …

If you are responsible for leading teams, you obviously want one to be one that gets results. But how does that happen?

Fortunately, effective teamwork isn’t a great and obscure mystery. Here is an infographic that highlights the ten essential elements of teamwork:


10 elements of effective team work

Certainly, you don’t have to be the actual leader of a group to successfully lead a group, nor should you sit back and say “not my problem” and let the group collapse around you. Anyways, this is what I learned. What elements work for you? Share your insight in our comments section.


The Secret to Hiring the Best Customer Services Reps

I believe that hiring the most productive customer service employees really comes down to hiring for attitude over skill.

I once heard a quote at a business conference I attended in Toronto, Ontario, Canada that is very applicable here: “Hire slowly, fire fast”. Taking your time with this decision is crucial, regardless of how badly you need the extra help. Think of the Japanese word “Kaizen” – it means taking a little time to get better every day.

Your mindset should be set on long term growth and success.  You want your business to be a kaizen. Think for 10 years from now. Sure, hiring the first person to crop up might solve a need short-term, but it will destroy you in the long run.

Here are a few tips to help you wield out the good recruits from the bad:

1. Are they making good eye contact?

If a person does not maintain great eye contact during an interview, you would never want to hire them for a customer service position. Customer service is all about being social and finding ways to connect with colleagues, management, and most of all, customers.

2. Can you hear empathy in their voice?

Another key trait of a great customer service rep is having an empathetic vocal quality that will have them practically drooling to make customers feel good and to feel comfortable. As well, their empathy should also be used to diffuse a bad situation before it escalates, i.e., a key customer terminates contract.

3. What kind of personality do they have?

The 4 most important things to learn during a phone screen are: 1. Is this person socially adept? and 2. Will this person get along with my company and my team? 3. Does this person speak with confidence and pride? 4. Is the person positively responsive to the information you provide?  Things like when to talk and when to listen, how to respond appropriately, and correct tone of voice are difficult to teach. You want someone who has those things down. And the phone screen will reveal this.

4. Create a profile of your ideal employee

Have a plan. Try to avoid simply hiring anyone that looks good or comes in with an application. Create a profile of what makes a good employee, and what makes a bad employee, and look for those that stick to that plan. Speak to friends and colleagues to see if they can refer someone to you.

5. Check References

You really need to check references carefully and do background checks. In the litigious society in which we live you need to pursue every avenue to assure that the people you hire can do the job, contribute to your growth and development, and have no past transgressions which might endanger your current workforce.

6. Simulations

Have your team engage with the interviewees as if they were customers. You can learn a lot and get to see if they were friendly or standoffish. If we were unable to get them to engage in conversation on the sales floor, it could be a sign that they may not bode well in your work environment.


6 Mental Skills All Successful Sales Managers Have In Common

Looking to become successful in sales, especially if you are in a cut-throat, competitive industry? Here are 6 mental skills that all successful sales managers have in common. It would help you to have them as well.


1. Attitude

Successful sales managers realize that attitude is just a choice and that they should always choose the one that is positive. They view each prospect as an opportunity to compete and learn from their successes and failures. More so, they pursue excellence, as opposed to perfection, and realize that being a successful sales manager does not always mean being perfect.


2. Motivation

Successful sales managers realize the rewards and benefits of their work. They are able to persist through the difficult tasks and slow times, especially when the rewards and benefits are immediately imminent.


3. Goals & Commitment

Successful sales managers have goals that are realistic, both short term and long term. They are aware of how well they are currently performing and are able to develop detailed plans that will help lead them to their goals.


4. Self-Talk

Successful managers in sales are able to maintain self-confidence during slow times with realistic and positive self-persuasion. They would coach themselves as they would their best friends or colleagues. They would also use self-talk to control negative behaviors and thoughts during competitive and slow times.


5. People Skills

Successful managers in sales realize that they are part of a team and that they cannot prosper alone without the help of their teammates. When appropriate, the managers communicate their thoughts and feelings to the people that listen to them. They also have effective skills for dealing with difficult clients, opponents and colleagues.


6. Customer Intelligence

The best sales managers understand that their business cannot survive without customers, and the better they understand their customers, the more successful they are likely to be. They thereby create specific personas for their target customers.


To be successful in sales, you need access to a powerful tool that will enable you to measure and maintain your sales pipeline management. You need a tool that will allow you to quickly calculate such things as Number of Leads, The Average Cost Per Conversion and Drop Off/Win Rate. That’s InfoFlo! Click here to learn more about InfoFlo CRM.


The Winner of Our “Get Organized for 2013” Twitter Contest Is…

As you may know, from Monday January 28th until February 4th, we held our first twitter contest. To enter, individuals simply had to follow us on Twitter @Infoflosoftware and tweet why they loved using our Infoflo CRM Software to win their choice of the Infoflo Core System plus two add-ons, or  any three add-ons of their choice.

We loved seeing all of the tweets! It was great to hear why people loved our CRM software, and how they were using it to organize their businesses and improve their sales. Take a look at a small sampling of great tweets from our happy customers:

The winning tweet, (chosen by http://textmechanic.com/Random-Line-Picker.html) was:

We enjoyed this Twitter contest so much, we’re thinking about doing another one. Tell us what you think!


Join Our Twitter Contest: Get Organized For 2013

 Infoflo Software “Get Organized for 2013”  Twitter Contest
Terms and Conditions


Infoflo’s   “Get Organized for 2013” contest starts on Monday January 28th, 2013  at 12pm  EST and ends on Monday Februrary 4, 2013  12pm EST.  The winner will be notified by a Twitter direct message. The winner will have 7 days to respond before an alternate is chosen.

How to Enter:

Entering is free. Just use your Twitter account to complete both steps below:

1) Follow us @InfofloSoftware*
2) Post a tweet about why you love using InfofloSoftware. You must include @InfofloSoftware and the hashtag #CRM in your tweet to be entered into the contest.**

Please note:

*If you don’t have a twitter account, you can get one for free at http://www.twitter.com
**If you have not tried InfloFlo CRM software, you may download a free trial at http://www.carmelvision.com/downloads.htm


This contest is open to anyone who is currently an infoflo user. No purchase is necessary.   If you have not purchased Infoflo software, you may download a free trial here, http://www.carmelvision.com/downloads.htm , try it and enter the contest.


One follower  will win The Core Infoflo System with free lifetime updates, plus any two add-ons.  Approximate Value: Up to $237.  If the winner already owns the Core Infoflo system then they may have three add-ons of their choice. Approximate Value: Up to $207

Additional Rules:

  • You may only use one account to enter the contest. Anyone found using multiple accounts to enter will be ineligible to win.
  • Tweet only once per day. Multiple Entries in a single day will not be accepted.
  • Be sure to include our username (@infoflosoftware) and the hashtag #CRM  in your tweet so that we will see your entry.
  • Chances of winning are unknown. It will based on the number of tweets.
  • The contest begins on Monday January 28th, 2013  at 12pm  EST and ends on Monday Februrary 4, 2013  12pm EST.  Winners will be announced on Tuesday, February 5.

How to Profit with Contact Management Software

Contact management software choices can be quite baffling when you consider what’s available. Making the best choice for maximizing profit can be even more difficult. For businesses with existing CRMs, owners may be only skimming the surface when it comes to profit potential. With a few hints and tips however, you can yield the return your investment deserves.

First, contact management software is most beneficial to business when it’s easy to use. The less cumbersome the better. Simple systems are easier to learn which will decrease the time it takes to get things up and running, and what saves time, saves money. Beyond that, the ability to streamline communication between different users- clients, customer service, execs and bookkeepers – is best achieved with the least complicated CRM software available. Better communication means, you guessed it, better profits.

Data security features should be top priority when considering how to profit with data management software. Contact management software can only be profitable when it’s as safe and secure as possible. Without the right security features in place, the risk of having information stolen or mishandled can outweigh any legitimate investment costs, so be sure to include this factor when selecting the right CRM for your business. For CRMs already in use, stay ahead of the curve by equipping your system with the latest updates frequently.

All in all, how to profit with contact management software can be summed up with one word: flexibility. Go beyond being synched with Outlook and shoot for software that transcends functionality limitations across as many different platforms as possible. If you’ve already selected your software solution, try to increase usefulness by ensuring that top execs are are well-informed of the system’s quirks and functions and are willing to lead the way forward with implementation and improvements down the line.