Helping Startups Understand Salespeople & the Sales Culture

Both Sides of the Table

Specifically what is often not in the DNA of founders are sales skills. Nor do they exist in the investors of early-stage companies. The result is a lack of knowledge of the process and of sales people themselves. I boil it down to this: sales people are sales people.

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Why Your Startup Needs a Sales Methodology

Both Sides of the Table

Like most startup entrepreneurs, when I began my first company in 1999 I had no formal sales experience. This is a very important to do when you first start a company. In my journey to better understand the sales process, my management team and I developed a sales methodology.

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How to Shorten Your Sales Cycle and Avoid Wasting Time

Both Sides of the Table

One of the questions I’m most often asked by CEOs is how to hire sales people. I’ve also written extensively on sales and on which sales execs to hire and how to think about the different kinds of sales leaders. Sales & Marketing Advice Startup Advice

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Here's One Tech Company With No Gender Issue: LA's Evite


With all the hand wringing in the tech industry over gender balance and equity, here's one company that apparently has no issue: LA-based Evite , the online invitations service. Evite said that women head up its Product, Analytics and Data Infrastructure, Mobile Development, Testing and Advertising Operations, in addition to HR Legal & Operations, Process Excellence, Sales Strategy, and Corporate Communications & Business Development. The company is led by CEO Victor Cho.

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Online Entrepreneurs: Get Sales Tax Compliant For 2016


One of the reasons I know way more about online sales taxes than I ever thought I would is due to Rincon Venture Partners’ investment in TaxJar , one of the leaders in this emerging space. Taxes may not be fun, but I am proud to be affiliated with a company that takes much of the pain out of the process. Hopefully you’ll get plenty of rest during the Holidays because soon after the New Year starts, online retailers must begin contemplating sales tax deadlines.

The Danger of Crocodile Sales

Both Sides of the Table

I’d like to talk about Crocodile Salesmen in 3 scenarios: 1) when YOU are selling (or someone on your team), 2) when you are trying to recruit a sales person. But how to apply “listening&# in a sales meeting? Let’s assume you run a Customer Support software company.

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How Event Farm Is Making Events A Part Of Your Sales Funnel

SoCal Tech Calendar

We spoke with co-founder Ryan Costello about Santa Monica-based Event Farm (, on how its software technology is being used to power high end, VIP events for large companies. Ryan Costello: We're a software company. We're in Santa Monica, and sometime people think we're a venue or rental space for events, but what we are, is a 100 percent software company. The most obvious, is to drive sales. How did you start the company?

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Improving Sales: The Excuse Departement is Closed

Both Sides of the Table

Specifically what is often not in the DNA of founders are sales skills. Nor do they exist in the investors of early-stage companies. The result is a lack of knowledge of the process and of sales people themselves. I boil it down to this: sales people are sales people.

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What is the Right Burn Rate at a Startup Company?

Both Sides of the Table

But what IS the right amount of burn for a company? Burn rate in case you don’t know is the amount of money a company is either spending (gross) or losing (net) per month. (it Conversely if you’re burning $600,000 per month (yes, some companies do) then you only have 5 months of cash left. I often see companies burning $100,000 per month (net) looking to raise $6-8 million. Ask other portfolio companies how your VC acted when / if they got in a cash pinch.

Maximize Your Exit By Not Selling Your Company


My House Is Not For Sale. However, in many cases, acquiring companies behave less rationally than Mr. Jackson. Citrix politely approached us, told us they had an interest in acquiring our company and then asked us, “How much?”.

Identifying Pain in the First Step in a Sales Process – Here’s How

Both Sides of the Table

In my first enterprise software company we developed a methodology for sales that we called PUCCKA. Having a methodology instead of just going on random sales visits helped force a bit of rigor and honesty amongst team members about how well or not we thought we were doing.

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What Do You Need to Do to Improve Sales? Here’s a Start …

Both Sides of the Table

I write about sales often both because it’s the lifeblood of any organization and because in my experience it is the area in which more startups are least experienced or inclined. I also write and talk about it frequently because raising capital is a part of sales and this is important for entrepreneurs to understand. To make it simple and easy to remember – there are three basic rules of sales: 1. And it’s the start of any great sales process.

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Why Taking Some Risks in the Sales Process Can Improve Results

Both Sides of the Table

Many people are too cautious in sales processes and as a result when they present their solutions they end up sounding milquetoast and undifferentiated from anybody else in the market. I recently wrote about the three rules of sales. That’s why anybody with real sales experience will tell you the three cardinal rules of sales, “qualify, qualify and qualify” your leads.

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The Biggest Reason Most Sales Campaigns Don’t Close

Both Sides of the Table

Every sales organization with more than a handful of reps or that is across multiple offices or time zones would benefit from having a sales methodology. I’ve been writing a series on a simple methodology that we used at my first enterprise software company.

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The One Key Person That Will Help You Improve Sales

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of a series that describes a sales methodology for technology companies or frankly many other types of companies, too. ” We developed this at our first company and called it PUCCKA – the overall methodology is described here.

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Startup Sales – Why Hiring Seasoned Reps May Not Work

Both Sides of the Table

A while back I wrote a bunch of posts on Sales & Marketing and have been meaning to get back to that theme for a while. Evangelical sales – Understanding startup sales people and process. This only works if you’re not a crocodile sales person.

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TrueCar Sells 1 Million Cars, Hits $31 Billion In Total Sales


Santa Monica-based TrueCar , the auto pricing and sales company headed by Scott Painter, said late yesterday that it has sold its one millionth vehicle through its service, and that $31 billion in sales have gone through its network to date. The company says it now has nearly 40,000 monthly transactions and accounts for nearly three percent of U.S. monthly retail vehicle sales. TrueCar said that it saw around 400,000 sales alone in 2013.

Verengo Solar Sells Assets In Bankruptcy Sale


Financial details of the sale were not announced. As part of the deal, Verengo said that Crius will provide "debtor-in-possessoin" financing which will enable to the company to continue operating during the sale process. Torrance-based residential solar installer Verengo Solar announced late Friday that it has sold substantially all of its assets to Crius Solar Fulfillment LLC , which is a subsidiary of Crius Energy Corporation.

Gumgum Names Sales VP


Santa Monica-based Gumgum , the celebrity image licensing and advertising startup headed by Ophir Tanz, has appointed a new VP of Sales, the firm told socalTECH today. The company said it has appointed Brennan Beyer as its new Vice President of Sales. Beyer joins the company from SocialVibe, where he also served as VP of Sales. gumgum sales executive advertising

Mogreet Opens Midwest Sales Office


Los Angeles-based Mogreet , coming off a new round of venture funding, is in expansion mode, saying that it has opened up a new Midwest sales office for the company. sales executive midwest marketing mogreetMogreet said it has opened up a new office headed by Joshua Pyne, who the firm snagged from ChaCha, the mobile questions and answers service. Mogreet recently raised $4.1M

Increase Your Sales Velocity By Saying No To Pilots


Pilot agreements are provisional contracts under which companies can assess the veracity of a potential, long-term relationship. Indecisive prospects diffuse a startup''s focus and slow down its sales velocity. A version of this article previously appeared on Forbes.

How Online Video Companies Can Increase Margin and Build Better Businesses

Both Sides of the Table

In my last post I pointed out that many of the media commentators who have criticized the YouTube video network companies as not having strong businesses were mistaken. The next part of the margin mix online video companies must get control of is talent margins.

Scaling Sales: Arming & Aiming – Objection Handling

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of a series on sales & marketing. I previously covered how early phase sales teams should be “evangelical&# and consultative in nature. Some examples of common objections across many companies: 1. More experienced sales leaders seldom compete on price.

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Why Focusing on Only One Buyer Will Lose You Sales

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of a series that describes a sales methodology for technology companies or frankly many other types of companies, too. We developed this at our first company and called it PUCCKA – the overall methodology is described here.

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THQ Details Buyers, Numbers After Fire Sale


Bankruptcy Court has granted a motion to approve a sale of the majority of THQ's assets to multiple buyers. THQ detailed the sale Wednesday night, saying the company's estate will receive approximately $72M in total through the sales of its owned studios and games in development. bankruptcy sale videogame court legal games publishing employees jobs layoffs

Startup Sales Lessons From TLC’s “Say Yes To The Dress”


If you have your eyes and ears open, you can discover sales lessons in unexpected places, including the cable TV show, Say Yes To The Dress. There are a number of solid sales techniques on display by the Say Yes team. Startup sales require high velocity.

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Fandango Sees Boost From Mobile Ticket Sales


Los Angeles-based Fandango , the online movie ticket and entertainment site, reported Tuesday that it is seeing a surge in sales of tickets via mobile phone. fandango mobile ticket sales phone iphone movie content theater theatre

Startup Children – How To Parent An Entrepreneur (Part II) - Sales Advice From Dr. Seuss


Man or woman, the tactics deployed by Sam are applicable to any sales situation and can be put to use by any salesperson, irrespective of their gender. Right from the start, Sam must endure the most painful of all forms of sales rejection, the personal attack.

3 Sales Tips for Startups – Creating a Burning Platform

Both Sides of the Table

Many entrepreneurs who start technology companies are product people, technologists or savvy business people who worked previously for a larger company. Most start-up entrepreneurs have little or no sales experience. You need to qualify VCs the same way you qualify sales leads.

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DFJ, Pasadena Angels lead $1.4M funding in Edufii

Ask the Angels

Blog Company Creation/Operation Fundraising General News Angel Capital Angel Investing Company Sale Exit Strategies Pasadena Angels Startups Valuation VC DFJ Frontier and Pasadena Angels have led a $1.4 million Series A funding in Edufii Inc., the social/mobile platform for skill development.

Mogreet Expands Sales Chops


Los Angeles-based Mogreet , the video-based, mobile marketing firm headed by James Citron, reported today that it has named Jesse Silver as Senior Sales Director. Mogreet said it is expanding the sales team to drive new business for the company. mogreet sales executive mobile marketing servicesSIlver was previously at OpenMarket, and also served at MX Telecom.

GumGum Snags Amazon Vet For Sales Efforts


GumGum , the developer of in-image advertising technology headed by Ophir Tanz, is bolstering its sales efforts, and has hired an Amazon veteran to head up western sales. According to GumGum, Matt Weisbecker has been appointed Vice President, Western Sales for GumGum, a new position for the company. gumgum amazon sales executive image advertising

How to Make Sure Professional Services Don’t Take Over Your Software Company

Both Sides of the Table

So when I meet with GRP portfolio companies that do enterprise sales I try to emphasize the following: 1. But you do need to be sure your company doesn’t just become the internal R&D department for a large corporation. Referenceability is the lifeblood of sales.