Value-Based Selling Achieves Results: Now, How to Achieve VBS?

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Wed, Apr 09, 2014

Spring is finally starting to break through in the DC area, and I’m emerging from a runner’s hibernation in preparation for my spring and summer race schedule. This winter I faced a number of obstacles: an unusual amount of snow and particularly cold mornings, a nagging lower-back strain and a full travel schedule.


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Multi-Threaded Sales with Social Media: Three Ways to Get Started

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Thu, Jan 16, 2014

I recently heard Joseph Pine speak about his book The Experience Economy, in which he suggests there is a hierarchy of economic value: commodities, goods, services and experience.


In a business-to-business environment, the idea of experience may be synonymous with solutions: the combination of products and services that addresses a customer’s business needs in a way that is engaging and allows the customer to achieve their business goals.


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Social Selling Déjà Vu

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Mon, Oct 21, 2013

There is a lot of buzz about social selling to put it mildly—and the volume only continues to rise. In an earlier post, I commented about "social media strategy" and the associated hype. As I consider social selling, I think I could do a find and replace on "media" with "selling," as well as "marketers" to "sellers," and the post would apply. The gist of the earlier post was that social tools and a social approach should be considered as part of a broader customer engagement strategy, but not as a strategy unto itself.


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Don’t Strike Out Searching for Strategic Account Management Talent

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Wed, Oct 02, 2013

If you follow baseball, October is when the season gets truly exciting. After nearly six months and 162 games, the season comes down to 10 teams and a month of playoffs. It’s also the time of year when significant speculation surrounds where the best players whose contracts are ending will land next season. At the top of the list is New York Yankee Robinson Cano. Why is he so sought after? He’s a five-time All Star, two-time Gold Glove winner and one of only 16 active players with a batting average of more than 0.300. Next season, he’s likely to be playing with a multiyear contract valued at $20-plus million dollars a year.

So what do baseball and the free agent market have to do with sales and strategic account management? They are both reminders that winning teams are based on talent, and recruiting and retaining talent are high priorities for sales leaders.


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Achieving the Fifth E of Sales and Marketing Operations

Posted by Ashish Vazirani on Thu, Aug 08, 2013

During a recent discussion, the head of HR at a leading software and information services company introduced the COO to me as “chief enabler.” The COO cleverly responded, “I thought I was the chief enforcer.” I added that both were certainly true, but that operations also has two other E’s that should define the role: effectiveness and efficiency.

I went on to share my perspective with the COO and head of HR that the role of operations is to address each of the first four E’s—effectiveness, efficiency, enablement and enforcement—to ultimately improve customer and partner engagement.


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