Seven Levels of BenchmarkingThere may have been a time when once a sales strategy worked, a company could “live” off of it for several years. Those times are gone now.  


This is my opinion, and my opinion by itself, is not reason to change.  I offer some stats from my friends at Hubspot and Forrester Research to support my view. 


Included with each fact, I provide some interpretive commentary.


  •  78% of B2B buyers start their research for products online
    • Many sales strategies today start with off line demand generation activities, such as trade show attendance, direct mail, and cold calling. Yet, their dream potential customers no longer respond to those tactics.


  • 200 million Americans have registered for the FTC’s “Do Not Call List”.
    • When was the last time you answered the desk phone in your office? My guess is it has been a while. Your prospects do not answer it either so why do you have your sales people calling them?


  • 91% of B2B buyers have unsubscribed to a company email they had previously opted-In
    • Sales leaders are executing “spray and pray” email marketing campaigns.  Sending a prospect an unsolicited email discussing something they don’t care about is the fastest way to reduce the potency of your marketing database. Update your sales strategy to include a buyer’s journey and send prospects things of interest to them, but only after they have given you permission to do so.


  • 57% of businesses have acquired a customer through the company blog.
    • You are reading my blog right now. It is the top lead producer for my firm. Yet, many sales strategies are void of blogging. Heading into 2012, not having a blog as part of your sales strategy signals to your prospects you have become obsolete.


  • Inbound marketing lead costs $143 vs. outbound marketing lead cost of $373
    • Lead generation budgets have been reduced. This requires a sales strategy that can produce more leads for fewer dollars. Yet, many current sales strategies are still based on outbound efforts.  If there was ever a statistic that proves a new sales strategy is required, this is it.



I urge those of you still clinging to the past to reconsider your sales strategy. The job security and income of your people depend on it.


Follow GregAlexander on TwitterView Greg Alexander's profile on LinkedIn 


Sales Strategy Tour


Greg Alexander

Leads the firm's focus on the CEO’s role in accelerating revenue growth by getting the product team, the marketing department, and the sales organization into strategic alignment.

Greg is the host of The SBI Podcast, the most listened to sales and marketing podcast on the internet.


He is the host of SBI TV, a monthly television program broadcast on the internet featuring top B2B sales and marketing leader sharing their strategies to grow revenues.


Greg is the Editor-in-Chief of The SBI Magazine, the leading B2B publication focused on sales and marketing effectiveness.


He is the author of two critically acclaimed books Topgrading for Sales and Making the Number.


Greg has authored over 100 articles on SBI’s award winning blog, The SBI Blog.


He graduated from The University of Massachusetts Amherst with a BA in English and received his MBA from Georgia Tech.




Transforming the Sales Organization inside Fortune 500 Companies

Greg Alexander and John Gleason, Chief Sales Officer of Ryder, talk about the unique challenges of transforming a sales team inside of very large enterprises.


A Better Way to Structure Your Sales Force

Greg Alexander and Tony Capucille, Chief Sales Officer at Heartland Payment Systems, discuss the pros and cons of the 7 B2B sales organizational models.


Build a team of A Players Inside the Sales Organization

Greg Alexander and Todd Cione, Chief Revenue Officer at Rackspace, talk about hiring, onboarding, and developing exceptional sales talent.




Fill Every Role on Your Team with an A Player

In this article, Greg Alexander makes the case for applying the TopGrading methodology to the sales team, and outlines how to do so.


What CEOs Need to Know About Their Marketing Strategies

In this article, Greg Alexander and Rashid Skaf, CEO of AMX, discuss the role the CEO plays in crafting a company’s marketing strategy.


What CEOs are Looking for in a Sales Leader

In this article, Greg Alexander and George Norton, leader of Heidrick & Struggles Chief Sales Officer practice, discuss what CEOs need in the chief sales officer role.

Read full bio >