Archives For Information Security

dan kennedyIf You Sell Technology, Are You Getting Enough Quality Leads?

This week, Russell Brunson, Entrepreneur and Founder of Click Funnels gave us some amazing sales insight!  If you want to grow sales, keep reading…

Right now I’m sitting in the Denver airport on my way home from the GKIC Info Summit – an annual marketing conference (See Dan Kennedy to the left – still using overheads in his presentation.) Of course, after 4 long but incredible days of marketing education, my flight’s been canceled. American claims they sent me an email months ago telling me about a schedule change, but you know how that goes. I get so many emails, it’s not really possible to read every one, so here I am with an expected arrive of 12:40 am.  So enough complaining – on to selling ideas.

7 Things Critical Steps If You Want Leads (in the SMB Market)

I say, SMB (Small Medium Business), because most of this conference was about marketing to smaller businesses. I’m sure many of the principles will apply to the larger F500, but it definitely applies to SMB.  So if you’re a reseller (VAR) or MSP – managed services provider, looking for Small or Medium Business clients, there are some things you should be doing right now!

  1. First, stop cold calling – it doesn’t work.  To make things worse, your marketing team is probably not giving you tons of leads either, so don’t expect it (if you even have someone dedicated to marketing). But the things Brunson showed us are simple to do. I’m already doing some of what he said, but he showed me an easier way. So easy, sales people can do this without a dedicated marketing person.  So if you want leads, you might need a mindset change on what sales people “are supposed to do.”  Leads come when you market, not sell.
  2. Next, take a look at your competition.  You probably attend channel events, so you probably know lot’s of resellers. Someone out there is generating traffic through online marketing and their website. Chances are when your company website was built, whoever gave the go-ahead to build it was looking for something cool and unique.  Big mistake. Why reinvent the wheel just to look different. If someone out there is doing something that is pulling in millions of leads, you might want to do the same thing. Note: I don’t know anyone who is pulling in tons of leads making cold calls. That doesn’t mean you never pick up the phone. It simply means the phone is a poor choice for that initial touch.  Brunson gave us several clear examples where he used online tools to figure out who was getting the traffic.  Once he found the 800 pound gorilla, he started the “Funnel Hack” process. Simply put, he clicked on their ads – on their website, FaceBook, or wherever they are advertising, to reverse engineer their marketing methods. Then he simply created something very similar.  Is this stealing?  No! You can’t copyright or patent the things I am talking about here.  If prospects like the way a certain ad looks, there’s no reason to do something new.
  3. The “Funnel” refers to the flow – what happens after you click.  A strong marketing strategy takes the prospect from an ad, builds rapport, gets an opt-in, and then starts selling.  Your website is probably one of the first things to look at. Is there a lead capture ad, above the fold, on the home page? If not, you should change it – if you can. If you can’t you need something else. FaceBook is actually a great place to put ads.  One of the speakers week showed us an incredible business, marketing to small business clients exclusively on FaceBook.  Can you do this for free? No. But if you are hoping to make big commissions in the coming year, it might be worth spending a few hundreds dollars. If you spend one dollar and two come back, will you be happy?  How much is one qualified lead worth?
  4. What happens next is critical. There should be an offer, and it should be a no-brainer to move forward. On my site I offer a free copy of my 2007 book, The House & The Cloud. Every week I get several leads from this one eBook.  This is called a lead magnet. The one problem I have is, my lead capture form is not on my home page. Expect to see an updated website in the near future.  You too need a lead magnet. It could be a book,  CD, video, eBook, etc. But it must be something the average SMB owner is going to want.  As soon as they opt-in, there should be another offer. Using the blueprint from my Marketing Success kit, your goal as a technology reseller should be to move them into an educational phone call using something like The House & the Cloud Message (Purchase the book if you don’t know what I’m talking about).  This message was designed to show SMB business owners the one BIG mistake just about every one of them is making as they look to leverage new technologies such as Cloud.
  5. The funnel continues – if they will take the call, you set one up.  This is where the phone comes in. If you have some basic information online or access to Webinar software, you can actually show them what’s going on without making an onsite visit. The goal is to move into a risk assessment. This should be highly qualified, but pro bono.  The purpose of it is to assess the likelihood of a compromise.  Given that most SMB companies have poor security, if you look in the right places you are likely to come up with something urgent!  Again, I explain all of this in The House & The Cloud.
  6. If they don’t take the meeting, your marketing campaign continues.  Use a combination of email, calls, hardcopy mail (like a detailed sales letter), video sales letters, and anything else you can think of. Hit them about 8 times over the next three weeks.  If they still don’t budge, put them on a less intense campaign. Perhaps inviting them to a future Lunch & Learn.  It takes some people years to ripen, but with enough leads coming in, and an automated drip campaign, you can afford to keep reaching out.
  7. One last thing.  One of the most effective things I’ve done in my own business is to invest in experts in different technology, sales, and marketing disciplines.  So for instance, if you want to see how to really work FaceBook ads, you could spend hours trying to figure it out, or you could find an expert.  Do one of two things. Either hire them to coach you through it, or pay them to do it for you. Obviously getting the coaching is cheaper. Generally in just a few weeks you’ll have what you need to move forward.   You will also need some technology such as landing pages.  Right now I am using Megaphone, but seriously considering Brunson’s FunnelClicks product.

You don’t need a bunch of marketing things going one…work on one funnel, perfect it, and measure the outcome. Fine tune it so that you have hundreds of new names every quarter.

© 2015, David Stelzl

Make sure you get The House & The Cloud if you want a message that is sure to get you to the next stage in your sales process!

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DemandGenLogoWhat Happened to the Biggest Attack In History?

Last Thursday I was wondering where the FBI and NSA are; today I’m wondering where CNN and WSJ are.  Googling this attack today, I found just a couple of posts; none from any major news networks.  Does that mean it’s all resolved, or not real, or what?

On Friday WSJ mentioned that this might be overstated or old news all rolled up into one number.  But surely a small security Boutique in Wisconsin (Hold) doesn’t own this whole issue.

On August 5th, Symantec featured a blog post stating, “The New York Times has reported the largest known collection of stolen Internet credentials by a Russian crime ring. These hackers reportedly amassed 1.2 billion username and password combinations, and more than 500 million email addresses from 420,000 websites through botnets (computers that have been infected with and controlled by a computer virus). The sites ranged from small sites to larger household names. Many of the targeted sites are still vulnerable.”

This is the last post they show, so perhaps they don’t know any more either.  Does that mean you can’t use the sound bites from this on your next sales call? No. Until we know more, it’s safe to assume that this type of thing is certainly possible, and that companies are in much bigger trouble than they realize. And it’s still a sound bite supported by credible news sources.  Just understand, if you get challenged by IT, that the news is somewhat sketchy.

Here’s a great sound bite from the above link: “Roughly 39% (2.76B) of the world’s population of 7.1 billion uses the Internet.” and 1.2 billion were compromised in some way according to the New York Times report.

Remember, sound bites don’t sell anything…however they are a critical part of the sales process. You can read more about this in the free version of The House & the Cloud << Download it here! 

Also, I will be talking more about this in a complementary sales training program being presented on August 12th – 4:00 PM ET.  It’s free to technology resellers – but you must register to attend.  << Click to register!

Hopefully we’ll get some clarification on this attack over the next few days – After just about every major news network reported on this global disaster, they should be responsible and follow up with either – more info, or “We jumped the gun – false alarm.

© 2014, David Stelzl

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! It’s just about 2014…and I’ve been working hard this month to put together some new things for the coming year. One of the most exciting things I’ve completed is my Completely re-engineered Marketing Success Kit, specifically designed to help you land new business in the managed services, security, and operational efficiency areas…

Save 40% right now… CLICK

Marketing Managed Services

What is the most effective way to market managed services?  Over the past year I have conducted dozens of live marketing events to help resellers position their managed services offerings.  This is by far the fastest way to gain access to the right people, and to build the right kind of justification.

As I’ve stated in my book, The House & the Cloud (FREE) – managed services is always a risk sale.  When you try to demonstrate ROI, you often end up giving your services away for less than their worth, or losing the deal to a lower-cost provider.

Managed services is almost always purchased by people looking to reduce risk – in order words, it should be positioned just like a security solution (assuming you position your security solutions as a way to reduce risk.)

Simply put, managed services allow a company to maintain an acceptable level of risk.

Marketing and Live Events

This toolkit is not for everyone – it’s specifically designed for those companies that plan to do lunch & learn events and other live events with their customers and prospects.  It is also uniquely designed for companies selling technology – security products and services, managed services, and technologies that lend themselves to improving a company’s operational efficiencies – such as BOYD, collaboration, cloud, mobility, etc.

After over 25 years of attending, organizing, or speaking at these types of events, I’ve compiled all kinds of lessons and strategies to guide you through the process of attracting the right audiences, finding the right speakers, focusing on the right topics, and offering something to move your attendees to the next step.

If you’re going to go through all the trouble of setting up an event like this – why not set it up with success and follow-on business in mind?

You can read more and save on this package right here – but only for a limited time… (CLICK).

In it you’ll find over 6 hours of audio teaching, step by step instructions in my 100+ page field guide, a quick reference guide,…and for a limited time, a special bonus audio program on building your managed services business…plus a FREE introductory membership to my Insider’s Circle Group…

Here’s the link to learn more…

© 2013, David Stelzl

Welcome to Duluth – tomorroIMG_2349w kicks off the 2013 Vital Conference in Duluth, MN where I will be presenting a keynote on Data@Risk, Building a Secure Mindset! – followed by a live hacking demonstration and several educational breakout sessions.  Thanks Citon for hosting this!IMG_2346

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lockWhat does the CIO really need to hear?  I’m sure you’ve thought about this question before. Anyone going in to meet with a CIO or other high-level executive has to ask this question – you only get one shot at establishing this relationship.  This was central to yesterday’s workshop session on selling security and reaching for that “Trusted Adviser” status.

Yesterday’s WSJ article, “CIOs in the Boardroom: Don’t Be a ‘One-Note Piano” (by By George L. Davis, Jr. and Chris Patrick) offers some insight into what these execs need and where you might be able to help.  Authors Davis and Patrick are right on from what I can tell – but CIOs can’t easily pull this off alone.  The article calls for CIOs to step up and be strategic when serving as a board member – but this also goes for meeting with board members.  Some of the key sound bites from this article might be helpful if you can’t access it here.

  • First, the title of the article is explained: “We once heard a board chairman call a CIO serving on his board a “one-note piano,” because the CIO repeated his same theme over and over.”  In other words, the CIO can’t be too focused – but rather must offer a board level of expertise or insight.
  • Some of the key subtitles offer insight into the content: Be a translator – leave the techno-babel behind and give clear concrete information; Be inclusive – meaning you’re not  there just to give your opinion, but rather to generate dialogue and gather ideas; Remember your role – a reminder here that the CIO does not sit on the board to make all of the technical decisions; Check your biases at the door – this is clear; Seek Feed Back – everyone in that room likely has valuable experience – draw from it.

Yesterday in our class we discussed the idea that CIOs are plentiful out there – and many are looking for more ways to stay relevant to their organization (in an effort to keep their jobs).  As stated in the above article, operationally focused CIOs are no longer in vogue.  Companies need someone who thinks about the business; marketing, selling, customer experience, business valuation, etc.  While the CIO does oversee the operational side of the house – networks, servers, up-time, etc., it’s not enough to stay in that world.  The board meeting is just one example where they are called to break out of the daily fire drills and be strategic.

On all sides they are going to need advisers to stay on  top.  So who is going to help them?  Who is going to give them the input they need to sound prepared when it comes time to report on the state of the business and where to head from here. When questions about applying new technologies like BYOD and cloud come up, how will the CIO answer?  IT is not going to give them this insight.  Even if they could, the prophet is never welcome in his own town – the CIO is not likely to go to IT for this.

So who?  It could be you…if you’re in sales or the consulting side of the business, selling IT solutions of some kind.  This requires more than a willingness.  It requires some study time, reading up on the trends, staying in tune with business, and taking the opportunity to talk with more business people.  If I could encourage you to do one thing today, it would be to prepare to talk to more business leaders, listen to what they are saying, and remember it.  Become the one person who is getting input from all kinds of business leaders – the portal of information and understanding that sits between all of the business leaders you work with.  People often ask me how I stay up on all of the trends, especially security – the answer is simple.  It’s actually easier for me than most because I am talking to sales and consulting professionals every day, and meeting with CIOS and CISOs on a regular basis through the educational events I do – and by getting input from all sides on a daily basis, I learn more than just about anyone.

© 2013, David Stelzl

 

 

Trump Building

Trump Building

Yesterday’s educational security event, just north of Chicago, was a great success. I am grateful to those who sponsored and hosted the event – McAfee, HP, and FireEye all had representatives there, along with the owners and directors of Paragon Micro, a nationwide integrator and reseller headquartered here.  This meeting was set up to explore the trends of information security and share with business leaders what steps to take in order to defend a company’s key assets in the coming 12 months.  Around 20 business leaders attended – most either presidents or CIOs of mid-market companies in the northern suburbs of Chicago.

At the end of my presentation, Jeff Reimer, president of Paragon Micro offered up a complementary assessment – from my count, every single attendee agreed it was time!  Over the next few weeks these companies will be taking one of the most important steps needed to stop more government security regulations (and more data misuse and theft) – that of assessing and fixing the things that end up on the front page of the Chicago Tribune.  At the same time, Paragon Micro has an opportunity to bring a valuable service to these companies – one that most of them really need right now.  It’s a critical time in IT as threats from all fronts threaten to steal data, disrupt production, and destroy brands.  Next week I will be sharing some similar things with law firms the central Florida regions.  But not before heading back to Charlotte for a relaxing weekend…

© 2013, David Stelzl

lockOver the past week I have received a number of questions about the upcoming Making Money w/ Security Workshop.  This morning I posted a new FAQ page, which answers some of the most frequently asked questions…

Here’s the link: (CLICK)

If you have never attended one of these workshops, here’s your chance: Read more right here…

Who should attend?  Anyone helping to drive new security business – that means both sales and marketing professionals, managed services providers, security vendors, and security solution providers.  I highly recommend presales consultants and SEs attend these sessions – right now I am over in Singapore working with a group of presales SEs on the direct vendor side of the business.  I’ll be presenting similar material at the end of this month via Webex.  This program will change to the way you think and sell…or I’ll give you your money back, no questions asked.

© 2013, David Stelzl