When you are working predominantly with inside sales reps and their immediate sales leaders, it is easy to only think about being in the office and not ever going out at all.
Within a couple weeks' time, I have been to three insight-filled, amazing events. Each was amazing in their own way. All combined made for a brain swell.
The AA-ISP Frontline Event - Boston was on September 9th. From there I hopped on a plane to Seattle to host my own event with 33 Sales Shebang sales experts, and immediately after that I spent three more days in Boston at INBOUND 2014. It's not surprising that my brain has expanded and in upcoming posts you'll here more about take-aways from each of these events that help sellers sell more - and help their managers lead better.
For now my main thoughts are just that it is a great thing to occasionally be able to get out and meet directly with prospective clients, existing clients, partners, and vendors.
If you are an individual contributor in an inside sales role, is there one big event each year you could somehow get to? Do you already attend at least one? Assuming your manager is supportive, why not set a goal to hit which rewards you by attending that event? Better yet, your management just sends you because everyone knows it is good to get out once in a while, and that you can make great inroads at that event for future business.
If my boss did not understand the value of me going to a specific conference or event, I would find a way to prove him (or her) wrong. I'd put down a challenge to close some business or accomplish something unexpected.
It's important to be able to occasionally get out to where buyers are - especially at a conference or industry event, because:
You'll gain more industry insight than any other way due to how these events are usually set up
You'll meet potential buyers and even more importantly, many potential strategic partners and referrers.
You'll gain a new point of view through the experience of being a bit outside your comfort zone.
Bigger conferences and events have an ROI (return on investment) document to help you "sell" the idea to your boss. At the upcoming Dreamforce event for Salesforce.com customers, potential customers, and partners, they have an ROI calculator you can fill in and then generate a letter to give your company leaders showing the potential return if they send you.
You can't attend everything - so be selective. What is the ONE conference or event that will expose you to more potential buyers and help your revenues grow? Focus on making the case for that one.
Need help making your case? If you are a B2B seller, drop us a note about it. All serious questions will be answered.
Lori Richardson is recognized on Forbes as one of the "Top 30 Social Sales Influencers" worldwide. Lori speaks, writes, trains, and consults with inside sales teams in mid-sized companies. Subscribe to the award-winning blog and the "Sales Ideas In A Minute" newsletter for sales strategies, tactics, and tips in selling. Increase Opportunities. Expand Your Pipeline. Close More Deals.