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Ok, you got your funding, now what?

Ok, you got your funding, now what?

Right, you got your funding round, Series A, B, C or whatever. Time to start selling your product and taking over the world.

So what do you do next? If you follow the orthodox approach you start hiring a VP of Sales and have them start hiring inside and outside sales people.

Sounds like a plan but it’s likely to come undone for a few reasons. Here’s why:

  1. Your VP of Sales will take a few weeks to get familiar with the products and the company’s messaging (tick tock)
  2. It will take a few more weeks to hire the first sales executive or two (tick tock)
  3. It will take them to get a few weeks to get familiar with the products and the company’s messaging (tick tock)
  4. The failure rate for sales executives is quite high. Half of them probably won’t make it but you won’t find that out until 3-6 months into their tenure (tick tock)
  5. You replace the ones that don’t cut it and then their replacements take a few weeks to get up to speed (tick tock)
  6. While that is all happening you are burning cash, and burning cash and burning cash…

Bang! Before you know it 9-12 months have passed, you burned through a pile of cash and didn’t get very far.

So, what are your options? What we recommend you do is take some of that budget allocated to your planned sales team and invest it in a demand generation campaign. You can either use CPL campaigns or telephone driven nurture prospecting. CPL campaigns will cost you around $35-50+ for a good quality lead from a good quality vendor. Telephone or nurture ready leads will cost you $50-100. Thus a campaign to generate 100 email leads will cost you around $5K and nurture ready leads around $10K.

Why do this?

  1. Your sales leader has real opportunities to pursue almost from day 1
  2. The sales people he/she hires will have real opportunities to work on from day 1
  3. Good demand generation companies will shorten the prospecting component of your sales cycle by weeks and maybe months
  4. Your sales team motivation will increase from the excitement of having real leads to work on
  5. A good demand gen company will have the data and expertise to target your key addressable markets immediately – something that might take you weeks to do yourself

The bottom line

Take a little of the budget you would have sunk into sales headcount and generate some opportunities for them to work on from  day 1. You will reduce your pipeline and revenue risk by an order of magnitude.  And the gap and size between cash burn and revenue generation will be reduced.

Selling Simplified Group Appoints New CFO

by Kyle Griffin & Jackie Vendetti

New CFO comes in wake of organization’s first Inc. 5000 recognition

Selling Simplified Group (SSG), the parent company of Selling Simpified and Acquiro, announced today that Karen Phillips is joining the team as Chief Financial Officer. Phillips brings a lot of experience to the SSG Corp team, with an extensive background in corporate finance, financial planning and analysis, tax, strategic planning and risk management along with a deep appreciation for SSG and its unique position driving the global transformation of marketing data quality.

“I couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome Karen back to SSG where she will undoubtedly make an immediate impact,” said Michael Whife, President and CEO of SSG. “Karen’s commitment to SSG in her prior role as Controller has been vital to everything we have achieved so far. We are excited to have Karen re-join and take this next step with us as we move the company forward.”

With the performance the organization has shown since its founding in 2012, Karen embraces the opportunity to work in the pivotal role.

“My vision for SSG for 2017 is to see the passion, dedication and efforts of our amazing team come to fruition. Our international Board of Directors, and our people in Great Britain, India, Singapore, and throughout the United States are coming together in a way that is inspiring and exciting,” said Karen.

The organization has seen exponential growth, hence its first Inc. 5000 ranking at #1128. Having established itself in the booming tech industry, the organization is becoming a leader in the industry, both locally and globally, ranking #22 in Denver on the Inc. 5000 list.

“Selling Simplified Group has recognized, and addressed, an important business need – and that is to have credible lead contact information and cutting-edge technology unlike anything else in the industry,” Karen said.

Karen then continues, “We have successfully answered this need by providing our customers with leads that ultimately lead to results…With the entrepreneurial spirit that this company has shown, it is ready to become a leader in the Greater Denver area as a company that provides promising futures for its employees.”

Selling Simplified’s 342% four-year growth rate shows that the organization is not slowing down at all. 2016 was the defining year for the organization’s success, and a repeat in 2017 is nothing short of inevitable.

Selling Simplified Makes Inc. 5000 List

Inc. Magazine Unveils 35th Annual Inc. 5000 for 2016

Inc. magazine today ranked Selling Simplified Inc. 1128th on its annual Inc. 5000 list, the most prestigious ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. Companies such as Microsoft, Dell, Domino’s Pizza, Pandora, Timberland, LinkedIn, Yelp, Zillow, and many other well-known names gained their first national exposure as honorees of the Inc. 5000 award. Selling Simplified, launched in 2011, was honored with the award because of its 342% growth over 3 years.

“We are honored to be listed along with so many other notable names as part of an elite group of fastest growing private companies,” says Michael Whife, CEO, Selling Simplified Inc. “This prestigious recognition underscores the success we’ve achieved over the past five years with our continued revenue growth and global expansion, and serves as a testament of increasing customer adoption of our best-in-class Marketing-as-a-Service solutions.”

Inc. also ranked Selling Simplified number 22 on the Top Denver Companies list. That list includes local heavy hitters like Swiftpage (another software company) and iLendingDirect (a $200 million+ company). The companies on the Inc. 5000 list collectively generated over 640,000 jobs over the last three years and have an aggregate revenue of $200 billion. For full results, visit: www.inc.com/inc5000.

“No one makes the Inc. 5000 without building something great – usually from scratch. That’s one of the hardest things to do in business, as every company founder knows. But without it, free enterprise fails,” says Inc. President and Editor-In-Chief Eric Schurenberg.

“Independence Day!”

Happy Independence day from the Pune team!

Cultures and Their Affect on Lead Generation

With so many companies having a global audience you have to ask yourself: Does one Lead Generation message and marketing approach work for every market? Most Lead Generation vendors believe that it does

They basically use the same message to talk to different international audiences and simply translate the content into the different targeted languages.

However, we have found this to be an ineffectual approach. All cultures interpret the same ideas differently. They also communicate their ideas in varying ways. The same message may be a success in one culture and permanently damage your brand in another.

So why do companies open offices in multiple countries when they could deliver everything from a central location?

It’s very simple. The smart companies do this in order to understand, develop and adapt their products and services to the local environment. A good example is HSBC. They successfully offer what on the surface appears to be a generic service. However, in each country the solution and products are modified so it’s accepted and can thrive locally. If you travel a lot like I do then you will have seen the difference in advertising, and how this demonstrates what works in one country may be considered bad in another. That’s how diverse culture can be utilized across a successful global campaign.

So does it really make a difference in Lead Generation?

Let me give you an example. We recently opened an office in Singapore which will serve as our central hub for Asia. From this office we can better understand the Asian market and as a result, perform better for our clients. We have, like many others, performed Lead Generation campaigns from afar in the Asia market but now we are here. We’re employing local people and have started to understand the subtle differences between our cultures. Our campaigns are more targeted and are already showing a higher delivery rate which means more actionable results.

So if you are a marketing manager in Singapore and are looking to execute a Lead Generation campaign ask yourself this question. Who is going to get you better results? The company that calls you from a desk in the US/UK, or the company that has invested in your country, employs local people, understands your challenges and is there beside you every day equally vested in each other’s success – a true local partner.

Author: Michael Whife