Monthly Archives: March 2022

What’s more important, getting the strategy right or keeping activities up?

The phrase ‘putting the cart before the horse’ certainly comes to mind in this case, so here are a few interesting facts (kindly supplied by

  • The earliest known reference to this phrase was made by John Haywood in 1589
  • hysteron proteron is a figure of speech we inherited from the Greeks, in which the thing that should come second is put first
  • There are more ‘horse phrases’ in English than those referring to any other animal

Education moment over, let’s consider the question in the title, in terms of what’s more important; both a good strategy and quality activities are as important. The question to consider rather, is order and timing. The answer very much depends on your personality type and I have used some information from DISC profiling to explain this better below.

According to DISC research there are four key personality types:

  1. Dominant (D): Places emphasis on accomplishing results and “seeing the big picture.” They are confident, sometimes blunt, outspoken, and demanding. Whilst people who fall within the D behaviour style will appreciate the need for a strategy to run a successful course of action, they will generally feel that ‘the proof of the pudding is in the eating’ and would therefore want to see some timely actions they can measure and analyse.
  2. Influential (I): Places emphasis on influencing or persuading others. They tend to be enthusiastic, optimistic, open, trusting, and energetic. People who fall within the I behaviour styles generally have low attention span for details and could find a strategy document cumbersome and limiting unless it’s entirely their idea. High I’s would prefer to get out there and approach things in a way that suits them, the moment and complements their skill.
  3. Steady (S): Places emphasis on cooperation, sincerity, loyalty, and dependability. They tend to have calm, deliberate dispositions, and don’t like to be rushed. People who fall within the S behaviour style would want to make sure that any new approaches or changes are accompanied by a clear strategy ensuring everyone is on board and in agreement. Once they have approved the strategy, they are happy to turn to action.
  4. Conscientious (C): Places emphasis on quality and accuracy, expertise and competency. They enjoy their independence, demand the details, and often fear being wrong. People who fall within the C behaviour style find the notion of making a mistake terrifying and often procrastinate as a result. With high C’s, achieving timely action can sometimes be difficult.

So, the answer to the question does depend on your behavioural style but from a lead generation perspective our recommendation is to always create a detailed strategy first covering your goals, target markets and campaign approach. Once you have this in place, ensure you follow up with a timely action to ensure your sales are not delayed.

At YBDT we can help you create such a lead generation strategy and support it delivery. Read more about it here:

Selling clarity for your technical products

Some products are relatively straightforward to sell. Potential clients can appreciate the function and benefit of the offer. Other products need a certain a level of understanding before the business gain becomes clear.

An interesting example of this is Newicon, a client we started to work with sometime ago. They help companies to create effective digital products. That can mean websites, mobile apps, desktop software, or anything else that falls into the digital realm. One of the things that all their clients have in common is that they are doing something new and often untried.

Lead generation for a company like this is often about building confidence. Giving potential clients the information they need about Newicon to feel they can say, “I don’t know if this is possible but can you…” They have a vision for their business that they hope Newicon can turn into reality. This sort of confidence is not built in a single call or meeting and when Newicon approached YBDT to help them generate strategic leads they were clear that it was not an overnight project.

YBDT’s work was in two main areas, firstly, taking responsibility for the follow up for new and existing leads. The confidence we mentioned above is generated through understanding and building a relationship over time is the way to create understanding. YBDT’s telemarketing team spent time with the potential clients building trust and interest until they were ready for the more technical conversation that is the domain of Newicon’s own team.

The second critical aspect of this work was having a clear sales process through the efficient use of a CRM system that could keep the senior team up to date on the progress of prospects. This allows accurate sales forecasting and workflow management and can ensure that when a lead reaches the stage where the technical discussion is taking place that the resources to support it are available. Of course, “technical products” take many forms. Developing hardware solutions that fit the needs of a client demands the same level of understanding to effectively support development as software. Being clear on the potential customer’s values and expectations is often as important as their requirements for product performance.

The word “confidence” has appeared several times in this piece. Client’s confidence in Newicon to deliver the final digital product that they will build their business around, and Newicon’s confidence in YBDT to turn over a critical path to growth to us. Rich O’Brien, Newicon’s Head of Digital said of our work, “Since day one they have been attentive to our needs, provided expert advice, and patient support, and have been willing to go the extra mile to make the campaigns work.” Building a relationship with our own clients is the first step on YBDT’s path to supporting your plans for growth. Once we have your confidence, the possibilities are endless.

YBDT’s long experience in all aspects of sales and marketing support makes us the ideal partner for software and technology based businesses. We can help you create and implement a clear business development strategy and generate and nurture leads to the point that your sales team can take them on to orders. Get in touch to learn more about how we can help.

Can you build your business on referrals alone?

Here is a great quote from the American politician, Bob Bennet: ‘in sales, referral is the key to the door of resistance’. I could not agree more and nor can most companies we speak to. So much so that it is very common to hear business owners and sales directors say that their conversion goes up to as much as 90% when following up on referrals.

So why are referrals so much better than a lead?

It might be worth understanding the difference first, here is Ivan Misner’s definition:

‘A lead is a contact that may come from any number of sources. The contact is generally not expecting your call.  A referral is the opportunity to do business. When you contact them, they already know who you are and what you do. It is stronger than just a lead in that this prospect has talked to your mutual acquaintance and is generally expecting your call.’

For me, it’s not so much about the prospect expecting your call, you can get that through other methods of lead generation, but more about the building of familiarity and trust. This is what happens when someone they trust recommend you and effectively make you an extension of them in the eyes of the prospect. In a competitive market, it can be very hard to decide which supplier to use. The less you know about the topic you are looking to resolve, the harder is it to trust a third party, a good referral is therefore a great way to save time and make a better decision.

How can your business get more referrals then?

You could say that referrals happen over time through the building of your brand and reputation. In a perfect world, if you work hard and do a good job, customers should be coming to you. This is why many established companies see 70% of their business coming from referrals and repeat business which helps them build longevity and success. Whilst it will be great if you could just focus on your work and expect referrals to come to you, there are two key questions you need to consider here:

  1. How do clients purchase your product and service? Is it a very competitive industry you are in? What is the key deciding factor?
  2. How well do you stand out against your competition, do you really make a difference to your clients? Will they be happy to sing your praises?

In my experience, if you operate in a niche market and offer a unique service, you will get more referrals as there are not many people who do what you do. However, if like most businesses, you operate in a competitive market, you will need to build referral partner relationships to increase your referral rates. This can be done through a number of channels including formal and informal networking as well as client referral schemes and more.

However you get there, building an effective referral network depends on two key factors:

  •   Being clear on who you want to work with and why
  • Making a real difference to clients through your work

These may sound obvious, but they take some thinking and changing. 68% of customers who stop buying from an organisation do so simply because of a perceived indifference. When it comes to building referral partnerships, this can become even a bigger issue, making it hard for people to refer you effectively.

So, can you build your business on referrals alone?

At YBDT we prefer to have several funnels providing new business leads into our company. This is because whilst referrals are easier to convert, they depend on your networks’ availability and access to prospects who need your services at a given time. Therefore, you will find that referral numbers fluctuate greatly from month to month making them hard to forecast.

So, if you are looking to grow your business you will want to create other options to give you and even flow of new leads. However, referrals are key and learning how to become more effective at generating them is important. Our next sales enablement webinar will be offering tips on how to do just that, click on the link below for more information and registration: