In 2014, Incognitus began as an Events Agency. As an Events Director, the role I played was comfortable and familiar. Clients would invite us to bid for projects and our team would come up with concepts and budgets. When working on an event, our job was to streamline logistics from conceptualization to execution to meet the client's needs.
It was in September of 2019 when we decided to restructure and elevate Digital Marketing as one of our core services. Being a small agency, this led to us take on new and various roles. For me that meant adding content creation and business development on top of my usual roles. Taking on a sales position was daunting. I knew I had a lot to learn and that I had to learn fast.
During the second week of March, we decided that we needed more training to better serve our clients. We joined the 8-week HubSpot Pipeline Generation Boot Camp. A week later, Manila was under quarantine due to Covid-19. The next 8 weeks became a period of intense work and transformation for us. While we worked to fulfill the Boot Camp's requirements, we were also learning how to prospect and sell amid a crisis.
Here are the 8 major takeaways that have shaped my journey into becoming a Lion:
Step outside your comfort zone.
I entered my first session like a scared, little cub. I felt insecure, knowing that sales was new to me and that my classmates have been doing this longer than I have. Midway into the discussion, our instructor asked us for reactions on the Positioning Statements he was discussing. With a shaking hand, I unmuted my mic and started to talk. I was relieved that what I said actually made sense. That first step empowered me. It gave me a sense of courage that continued to grow, the more steps I took outside my comfort zone.
One of our first tasks was to make a vision board to represent our motivations, our whys. Visualization has since then been a helpful tool for researching clients, preparing for calls, or setting goals. Envisioning your intended outcome gives confidence and clarity when facing up to the task at hand.
Get a clear grasp of your company’s identity
You can't always do everything for everyone. It's important to define your identity as a company and what your specialization is. This is vital in searching for good fit leads who would match the solutions you provide.
Setting goals and conquering them
As an event planner, I'm used to ticking off tasks from a checklist. The Boot Camp was a reminder that I could do the same, to set things in motion for our Digital Marketing. Breaking down milestones into specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timebound goals propels you into action, making it easier to achieve consistent progress.
When we listen to our prospects talk, it's usually to think of what to say next. Our sessions reminded us to understand what the prospect is saying. This includes their words, language, tone, and non-verbal cues. Active listening fosters trust and commitment, encouraging your prospect to open up more.
There are no shortcuts
In today's world, we need to go beyond our skills and the services we offer. To provide value for our customers, we need to do the work. There are no shortcuts. Take the time to define your positioning and optimize your services. Research your ideal customers. Prepare for each call by studying your leads and the companies they represent. Reach out to your prospects where they are, using email and the different social channels. Most importantly, pick up the phone and make those calls!
With all the challenges businesses are facing after the Covid-19 disruption, be human in your approach. When you offer help to prospects, do so with sincerity. Listen to them first and sell later. Uncover where they are now and where they want to be. Provide genuine value by offering the right tools and services that fill the gap, not the solutions that would solve for your bottomline.
Educate, Experience, Execute
Armed with what we've learned and our experiences from events, these lions are now ready for action! Our team will strive to provide value for our clients by creating seamless customer engagement from online to onground.
A big thank you to Dan Tyre, Kathryn Phyo and Aaron Soh of HubSpot for your patience and guidance throughout this journey. Go Lions, go!