Beverly Rivas is an enterprise account executive at Ustream, responsible for developing and managing new business opportunities within target markets and verticals. During Beverly’s tenure at Ustream, she has closed upwards of 2M in revenue working with companies and organizations such as Fruit of the Loom, OpenText, CountryFinancial, and the U.S. Department of State. She is also responsible for identifying new market opportunities in LaTam.
Beverly holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication from Saint Mary’s College of California and in her spare time enjoys playing competitive dodgeball.
Q: You’re in sales at Ustream. Can you tell our listeners what part of Sales you’re in?
A: Yes, I’ve been at Ustream for 2 years and work as an enterprise sales account executive. Ustream is the leader in Live online video streaming and I am responsible for working with companies in excess of 1M in annual revenue that need and want to improve their corporate communication using Live video.
Q. What are some of the challenges you find in Inside Sales?
A. There’s nothing like face-to-face communication but in today’s fast paced world we don’t always have the luxury of meeting our customers in-person. That being said, it is important to connect with your prospects right away and listen carefully. This is one of the biggest challenges I find in inside sales is the lack of exercising active listening skills. When this happens you miss nuggets of critical information that can lead to asking engaging questions which get you closer to the sale. Another challenge I see with inside sales is not creating a sense of urgency and letting too much time go by between the next meeting. Each meeting should lead to a next step that both parties agree upon with a mutual goal.
Q: What is one of your biggest success that you can share with us with regard to Inside Sales?
A: One of my biggest wins was with OpenText the largest ERM company with over 8,000+ employees. This was a complex sales cycle that involved a lot of moving pieces and people. OpenText is big on building their own technology and successfully built a streaming service, however, could only support up 500 concurrent viewers at a time. We had to overcome several technical challenges to determine if we could even deliver a stream to across their global offices. After successfully meeting those challenges we entered a long negotiation and procurement process.
Since there were so many moving pieces, players and also the race against time I created a close-out map at the discovery phase to keep track of all the tasks, milestones, goals, and potential delays. The goal was to have this deal closed by the end of the quarter. The close out map allowed to me to organize all the steps that needed to be met in order to win the business. Each week we had a goal and before each meeting with the customer we discussed what our goal and next steps would be.
Fruit of the Loom- this was a fun opportunity to work on. Most the decision makers and individuals I work with is include the technical lead, CTO or engineer. In this case, I had the opportunity to work with FOTLs creative director who was in-charge of finding a streaming provider to broadcast their quarterly townhall meetings. They purchased a one-month plan for a trial period, and at this time they were working with a different rep. The stream was successful but the customer decided not to move forward with a renewal. Three-months later my colleague left and FOTL was my named account. My goal was to breathe life back into this account and identify areas of opportunity.
I started to build a brand new relationship with the prospect and wanted to learn why they decided not the continue streaming after a month and uncover other areas where we could see value for improving communication across all organizations/departments. What we discovered was they could use for more than just quarterly townhalls meetings, they could use to stream sales training meetings to their outside reps. while saving thousands of dollars in travel accommodations. This is where we identified the ROI for an annual commitment.
Q: Any best practices you can share with our readers?
A: Ask for the close. Don’t be afraid to ask for the business. If you have successfully been able to show the value in your product or service your prospect will have no problem signing the sales order. You and your prospect are on the same team.
Understand who you are talking with. What is their title, role? are they the decision maker, champion, influencer? Get to know your prospect. Check-out their LinkedIn profile and see if there are any similarities you can draw from. Look up the latest news/success stories about their company and bring it up during your call.
ABH. Always be helping. You want to make your prospect look like a hero. Respond in a timely manner, follow-up, set-up an agenda for each call and make sure both parties are clear on the goal. Serve as a resource. Even if there is not an immediate opportunity and prospect is not ready, when the time does come they will remember that you went above and beyond to help them.
Q: What are some of the pitfalls you see with reps?
A: Some of the pitfalls I see with reps.include not asking the right questions. It is important to ask probing questions in order to stay away from close ended questions that can lead to dead-ends.
Follow-up! Recap your discovery call to demonstrate to your prospect you are listening and engaged.
Be open to learning new skill sets. What works for one customer may not always work for another. Be open new ideas, test out new messaging, and stay up date to on your industry.
For more tips, download this free eBook: “Top 5 Tips for Crushing Your Sales Quota.”
This article originally appeared here.