Jeremy Leveille: Maximize Your Inbound Sales | Do This Sell More Show 4
Written by Dave Lorenzo on April 18, 2019 / Podcast
The Do This Sell More Show is a weekly interview between Dave Lorenzo and a special guest. This week Dave’s guest is Jeremy Leveille.
Inbound sales is a significant focus for every business. On this episode of the Do This Sell More show, we focus on the best ways to grow inbound sales.
In this episode, Dave and Jeremy discuss:
- What clicked for Jeremy in sales.
- Jeremy’s approach – both in social settings and in sales settings.
- How your mindset shifts when you just go in without a fear of rejection.
- The connection between comedy and sales.
Key Takeaways and actionable tips:
- Interact with strangers in public, and your sales skills will become better.
- A brushoff doesn’t mean they aren’t interested, it means they aren’t paying attention, so reframe your question and get their attention.
- Be strategic in your prospecting – not everyone will connect to the same pitch.
- Be human, not a robot, in your interactions with others.
“Be comfortable and confident with who you are and being able to walk up to anybody, any stranger, and just be able to have that charisma and confidence to strike up a conversation with anybody.”– Jeremy Leveille
How to Maximize Inbound Sales
Here is the Transcript for How to Maximize Inbound Sales
Dave Lorenzo: This is the Do This Sell More show. I’m your host Dave Lorenzo, and we have a great show for you today. I have today for you the guy who’s going to teach you how to maximize your inbound sales. That’s right; this is someone who’s doing this every single day, and folks, that’s what makes us different here at Do This Sell More. We bring you the people who can make this happen for you, because they’re doing it themselves.
Dave Lorenzo: There’s no academic theory, there’s no people out there who wrote a book, and are just trying to hump a book, and get you to do techniques that they’ve heard about but never done. We’ve got actual experts using the tools that they’re going to discuss with us today.
Dave Lorenzo: So, let me tell you a little bit about Jeremy Leveille. Jeremy is an absolute expert on inbound sales, and he’s been in sales for 10 years with experience ranging from direct sales to channel. He really has found a niche in business development, and has exceeded his quota for nine months in a row, including one month with 69 meetings set. That’s more than two meetings everyday. Even if he’s working on weekends, that’s absolutely crazy.
Dave Lorenzo: This has resulted in him being voted sales development rep of the year at the Sales Development Conference by Tenbound, and this was in 2019. Jeremy’s with LeadIQ, which is a fantastic tool for you to use to get contact information for people so that you know you’re going to get through to them when you want to reach them. But without further adieu, I want to welcome Jeremy to the show.
Dave Lorenzo: Jeremy, thanks for joining us today.
Jeremy L.: Thanks so much, Dave. It’s a pleasure to be here.
Dave Lorenzo: Now, Jeremy, tell me a little bit. Just give me your background real quick. Tell me what drove you to get into sales and why you’ve stayed in it for so long. What gets you fired up about sales every day?
Jeremy L.: Yeah. I actually have a unique story as somebody that has overcome some challenges, and it’s like this underdog story; somebody that was down, and then was able to rise up from the ashes. In the beginning, I wasn’t very good at sales. I sucked at sales in the beginning when I wasn’t as mature, and I didn’t have the sales skills, or business acumen, or people skills that I do now.
Jeremy L.: I’ve been fired from three or four different sales jobs early in my career. Early, mid 20s. But then I didn’t give up. I stuck with it. I had some resilience and just along the way I was able to learn a lot of things and improve my people skills, and my confidence, and my business acumen, and my sales skills to the point where I started to get better at it, and then as I started to get better at it, I kept sinking my teeth in and learning, and immersing myself in whatever product I was selling.
Jeremy L.: And in the sales and marketing B2B world, networking with other people that I could learn from, and reading books to the point where I started to get even better.
Dave Lorenzo: Jeremy, what was the one thing that clicked for you, that lead you to believe you could actually do this? None of us are born being great at sales, and I think we all have a story similar to yours, where we sucked along the way and then, at some point, something clicked. What was the one thing that clicked for you?
Jeremy L.: Yeah. There was a few things, but one in particular, it’s kind of a unique story and different than what most people probably would expect me to say, but I wasn’t very … my people skills weren’t very good, and so I wasn’t very confident talking to strangers, which, if you’re in sales, prospecting, that is … you’re dead in the water, right there.
Jeremy L.: But what I was, at the time, I was living in a city, and I had some friends that … I started to go out more. I started to go out and interact with strangers, and all of a sudden, the more I went out with friends, and go to restaurants, and comedy clubs, and bars, and then I became more comfortable actually talking to strangers in public, and having actual, human to human conversations, and then my friends were … then I became known as the opener.
Jeremy L.: I was able to open conversations with anybody, including women, and get their phone numbers and stuff like that. It was like this flip side, from, I used to be the awkward guy in high school and college that couldn’t talk to girls, and couldn’t talk to strangers and stuff, but just from coming out of my shell, that was one of the things that really turned things around for me.
Jeremy L.: And that coincided with me being better on the phone and making cold calls, so that was one of the things that kick started some of the confidence for me.
Dave Lorenzo: That’s terrific. Now, tell me about your approach, and I want to talk about three different things. I want to talk about your approach when it comes to social settings, and I want you to tell me what’s similar in your approach to a sales prospect, and then I want to talk a little bit about comedy. Let’s talk about your approach in social settings and how that’s similar to your approach when you sell.
Jeremy L.: Yeah. I think it’s just being comfortable and justs being comfortable and confident with who you are, and being able to walk up to anybody, any stranger, and just being able to have that charisma and confidence to strike up a conversation with anybody, and you have to just go for it, you know? And that’s the same thing with cold calling. You can’t be afraid of what the prospect might say on the other end of the phone, or you can’t be afraid of getting hung up on.
Jeremy L.: You have to just go for it, and it’s just a mindset, and in the beginning, you know, I was scared and I was awkward and stuff, but the more I did it, then my mindset shifted, and I just started to not really care. You have to have this mindset of no fear of rejection, and not caring what that person is going to say if they reject you, and once you have that you don’t give a you-know-what mentality, and there’s no fear of rejection, then all of a sudden the confidence is there and you’re able to strike up a conversation with anybody and make that connection with the other person.
Dave Lorenzo: Yeah. I love that, and you know, one of the things I tell people all the time, specifically I tell my clients, is you’re not going to remember the 10 or 15 people who rejected you, but you are going to remember every single deal you close. Every person who gives you the time of day, who says, “Hey, you’ve got something valuable. I want to talk to you a little bit more about that.” You’re going to remember that and you’re not going to remember specific rejections, and, Jeremy, I don’t know about you, but I’ve never gotten into a fistfight over trying to sell somebody anything.
Dave Lorenzo: People tell me, look, they don’t want it, and I move on, and I go to the next place, but nobody’s ever hurt me because I tried to be their friend, or because I tried to sell ’em something.
Jeremy L.: Exactly. What’s the worst that can happen, you know? The worst that can happen is you get hung up on. And then I’ve had it happen before where I get hung up on, and then two weeks later, that person emails me back and is actually now interested in meeting. They don’t even remember that happening, so-
Dave Lorenzo: Exactly. That’s so true. That is 100% true. Sometimes people will call you back and they’ll say, “Hey, listen. I just got this email from you and it sounds like you’ve got something really great for me.” You talked to that exact person two weeks ago and they don’t remember talking to you.
Jeremy L.: Exactly. Or, you know, just try somebody else at the company if that person hung up on you, or rejects. You got to have thick skin.
Dave Lorenzo: My theory about rejection in sales is most of the time, the rejection in sales, and tell me if you agree with this or if you want to expand on it, most of the time the rejection in sales is not about you. It’s about that person and where they are in their business, where they are in their life. They may not need what you have to offer, or they may not see the value in what you have to offer.
Dave Lorenzo: It’s not about you. It’s about them and their situation, so move on, and maybe they’ll come back to you at a different point
Jeremy L.: Yeah, exactly. And also, I think we’re psychologically programmed, as humans, to … there’s that knee jerk reaction. You get a cold call or a cold email, and a lot of times, people, if it’s just … you’re catching them off guard, they don’t know who you are, they weren’t expecting this call, they initially say, “Oh, I’m in a meeting.” Or, “I’m not interesting.” You know, if they’re in a … nine times out of 10, if they say they’re in a meeting, they’re not in a meeting.
Jeremy L.: They’re just trying to get you off the phone because it’s a cold call, or they just say, “Oh, we’re all set.” Or, “We’re not interested.” They’re just brush offs. You know? It’s just because we’re programmed to do that, so in those cases, you just have to kind of reframe the conversation and just say something like, “Oh, I totally get that you’re not interested. Is there any way I could’ve approached this conversation a little bit differently that would’ve had a different result?”
Jeremy L.: If you can just kind of reframe the conversation, and then they’re going to take a step back and be like, “Oh, wait a minute. Who are you with again? What do you guys do?” And now you actually have their attention, but that first time, when you first got ’em on the phone, you didn’t have their attention at all. They weren’t listening to your pitch. They’re just trying to get you off the phone.
Jeremy L.: You have to be able to just kind of move past that, get past that initial brush off, and reframe the conversation, and you might actually get somewhere.
Dave Lorenzo: Yeah, and the reframing is so important, ’cause when you reach out to somebody, and this is true if it’s a referral, or if you’re cold calling someone, the initial shock of you being on the phone, and you talking to them, regardless of what your opening line is, their natural reaction is going to be, “Well, who is this? I’m not interested. I didn’t ask for this call.”
Dave Lorenzo: What I like to do is, whatever they say when you call ’em in that situation, I just say, “Oh, yeah. Me too.” “Oh, Jeremy. I’m in a meeting, I can’t talk right now.” “Well, you know what, Dave? I’m in a meeting too, and I thought this was so important I stepped out of my meeting to give you a call.” And they go, “What? You did what? Who are you again?” I mean, it completely stops them in their tracks.
Dave Lorenzo: “Oh, you know what? I’m super busy, and I know what it is you guys do, and I really don’t have time for this.” “You know what? I didn’t have time for this either, but I thought it was so important I wanted to reach out to you and give you a call.” And they’re going to say, “Well, wait a minute. How did this happen?” What’s your opening line? When you call someone, or when you walk up to someone and you want to start a relationship with them, what’s your opening line? What do you do to get the conversation started?
Jeremy L.: Yeah, if it’s a cold call, the line that I’ve been using a lot lately is, “Hey, Dave. I realize I’m calling out of the blue here and you’re not expecting this call. Is it cool if I explain the reason for my call in less than 30 seconds?” You know?
Dave Lorenzo: Oh, that’s good. And what do people usually say?
Jeremy L.: Nine times out of 10, they say, “Sure, go for it.” You know? They’re like, “Oh, yeah. Yeah, sure. Go for it.” And now you have their attention, and I’m not going to ask for a few minutes, or, “I know I’m calling out of the blue. Can I have 10 minutes or your time, or five minutes?” You know, I’m calling out of the blue. It’s a call that’s not on their calendar, and I’m calling a busy executive person.
Jeremy L.: I know that they don’t have very much time, but they did answer, so I probably am going to be able to get at least 30 seconds or a minute to at least get somewhere. You know, be able to generate their interest or pique their curiosity enough to be able to schedule an appointment from there. If it’s in person, I take a little bit different approach. I mean, you know, I just try to figure out, “Okay, where am I? Is it a networking event?” Then I try to reframe it, and instead of just saying, “Oh, my company does … ” you know, when they ask you, at, like, an event, “What do you do?”
Jeremy L.: Instead of me just giving a generic elevator pitch, “My company does blah blah blah blah,” and then they just tune out and they’re like, “Yeah, whatever. Sales pitch.” I try to frame it like, “Here’s the problem that we solve.” You know? “People come to us because.” You know, “People come to us because they’re experiencing problems with blah blah blah blah.” And then, “We’re able to help them so that now they’re able to blah blah blah.”
Jeremy L.: You know, you show the before and after, and then if any of those problems resonate with that particular person, which, hopefully they do. I mean, depending on what type of event you’re at, that you’re meeting them at, hopefully it’s similar people, you know, that you actually have some key prospects that are there, hopefully those things will resonate with them.
Dave Lorenzo: Now, when you’re calling to book an appointment with someone, your entire objective is just to get them interested enough to agree to an appointment. Right?
Jeremy L.: Yep.
Dave Lorenzo: How do you go about doing that? How do you show them enough value in 30 seconds so that they’re going to give you … ? What are you looking for, 30 minutes or their time or 20 minutes of their time in an appointment?
Jeremy L.: Yeah. 15, 20 minutes probably.
Dave Lorenzo: Okay, so give me your bitch. What do you say to get them interested in LeadIQ so that they want to find out more?
Jeremy L.: Yeah, I mean, I’m very strategic and targeted with prospecting, so it’s going to look different if I’m selling to a VP of sales for a company that sells an ERP system to law firms in the enterprise space, and most of their customers are in the west coast or something, versus somebody who manages an inside sales team of only five people, and they sell a security software to chief information security officers, for example.
Jeremy L.: You know, it’s always going to kind of look a little bit differently, but in general I might say something like, “Hey, problem that we solve is that a lot of companies are finding that their sales reps are spending too much time manually trying to find data on their prospects, and build prospecting lists, and figure out who they should talk to, and try to guess their emails and phone numbers, and get that data into their CRM. It’s on average taking sales reps six hours a week. If we can cut that out and, for you guys, so your reps can spend more time actually selling, would that help you guys out?”
Dave Lorenzo: The value you’re providing is you’re saving them six hours a week, and that’s time they can be more productive, and if they generally get one more appointment an hour, or close one more deal an hour, that’s six more deals you’re bringing them a week. Really.
Jeremy L.: Yeah. Exactly.
Dave Lorenzo: Right? So, that’s fantastic. So, Jeremy’s on the phone here looking to help me get six more deals a week. Why wouldn’t I give him 15 minutes? That makes sense to me.
Jeremy L.: Yep. There you go.
Dave Lorenzo: Alright. Now, let’s talk about how comedy has helped you in your role of sales, in your role as a sales professional, somebody who delivers value to people. Talk to me about what you’re doing with comedy and tell me about how comedy has helped you be more successful in doing what you do.
Jeremy L.: Yeah. I think it all comes down to just being a real person. You know? Being a human and not being a robot, and especially when you’re prospecting. You know, and even if you’re taking the deal from … it’s pipelined, and you’re trying to close it, or if you’re managing accounts, you have to be a person and not a robot. Let your personality out. I mean, if you’re not funny, then don’t try to be funny.
Jeremy L.: But I have done some standup comedy, and that’s helped me out a lot where I’ll do videos. I’ll send prospecting videos to prospects, and I use a software called Vidyard to do that where you’re able to really quickly record a video on your computer and it embeds it in the email, so what most people that use software tools like this for, these video emails that you can send people, they just turn the camera on and they just pitch their product.
Jeremy L.: You know they literally will just say the same thing that they would have said in the text email. It’s just a canned product pitch, but what I do is I’m like, “Oh, I’m going to use this opportunity to actually use my personality.” I’ll do goofy songs and dances, and freestyle rap songs, and stuff like that. I have one that I do where, if I noticed that a prospect has viewed my LinkedIn profile, that’s what’s triggering me to reach out to them, because it’s a little bit more of a warm lead.
Dave Lorenzo: Sure, absolutely.
Jeremy L.: They just looked at my LinkedIn profile, so then if I looked at theirs and I see that they’re a good account, they’re a good prospect, then the first email that I’m going to send them says, subject line will say, “Made you a music video.” Who’s not going to open that email, if that’s their subject line? Made you a music video. And then I have this video where, you know, the Michael Jackson and Rockwell song, Somebody’s Watching Me.
Dave Lorenzo: Yep.
Jeremy L.: I’m playing that song and I’m dancing to that song and then one of my coworkers is in the background peering around from around the corner, like, watching me from behind. Something around the corner, and it’s just a 30 second video of me dancing around, and he’s back there. But I put that, if they viewed my profile, and in the email I say, “Hey, so-and-so, I noticed you viewed my profile so I wanted to reach out but didn’t want to be weird about it, so made you this video.”
Jeremy L.: And then there’s the video that’s embedded into the email.
Dave Lorenzo: What a great idea.
Jeremy L.: And then right below that, below that I put a one or two sentence value prop that’s specific to them. I mean, I don’t just send a video, you know? There has to be some actual value for them and their business, but then I do a call to action. I send that. You know, that’s just one example of the ways you could kind of use humor to break through the noise and actually come across as more of a human instead of a robot.
Dave Lorenzo: That’s wonderful. That’s fantastic. And that tool, again, was called Vidyard. We’ll put the link in the notes. V-I-D-Y-A-R-D, is that right?
Jeremy L.: Yes. You’re right, yeah.
Dave Lorenzo: We’ll put a link to their website in the show notes so that people can go check out that tool. Now, tell me a little bit about LeadIQ. Tell me how it’s going to help. Let’s say I’m the CEO of a B2B company. How is it going to help my folks? It’s going to save us six hours a week, we’re going to wind up closing more deals as a result, but what does the tool actually do? Is it a contact database? How do you get the information? Tell us about it.
Jeremy L.: Sure. The main way a lot of people use LeadIQ is as an extension of LinkedIn. So, LinkedIn is the world’s most up to date and accurate database of people and where they work, and we work as an extension of LinkedIn, making it really fast, easy, efficient, for sales reps to find people on LinkedIn, whether it’s just one at a time, you’re on somebody’s profile and you’re just looking at that one person, or if you have a list of people and you’re looking at a list of people, that you’ve built this list in LinkedIn by putting in different search parameters and filters.
Jeremy L.: And LeadIQ makes it really fast and easy to push all those leads into the CRM with one click with their cellphone number and email address, and information about their company, technologies being used at that company, et cetera.
Dave Lorenzo: Wow. So, LeadIQ captures all that information off of LinkedIn, so if you’re a sales rep out there, and you’re spending hours and hours and hours going through and trying to find their contact information, this does it for you. If you are the CEO of a company and you have a sales team, this will save your sales team, on average, six hours per person per week. In that six hours per week, you could end up closing six more deals at minimum, so you’re making more money by using the tool.
Dave Lorenzo: How does LeadIQ work in terms of pricing? It’s software as a service I’m assuming, right? So, there’s a pricing model, and I’m assuming they get a break for the more people they have in their company.
Jeremy L.: Correct. Yep, so yeah, you have it right. It’s a per license model. It’s a certain amount per user, and then there’s price breaks, so as you add more users the price per user goes down. Yep.
Dave Lorenzo: Jeremy, if I’m an entrepreneur out there, and I’m spending my time, half of my time is selling, half of my time is doing my thing, can I just get one license for LeadIQ? Can I sign up for just one license, or is it only for big sales teams?
Jeremy L.: Yeah. You can sign up just for one user. Absolutely. Yeah.
Dave Lorenzo: And the website for LeadIQ is L-E-A-D-I-Q.com, right? It’s LeadIQ.com.
Jeremy L.: Yep.
Dave Lorenzo: Now, Jeremy, if our folks want to get in touch with you, what’s the best way for them to get in touch with you so they can learn more about you and what you do in sales and how you can break the ice and maybe meet girls?
Jeremy L.: Yeah, exactly. I’ll happily be your wing man if you’re in the Boston area. Yeah, you can look me up on LinkedIn. Just search Jeremy Leveille on LinkedIn. Connect with me there, or drop me an email, firstname.lastname@example.org. Happy to chat and help people out.
Dave Lorenzo: Perfect, Jeremy. Now, the last couple questions I always ask our guests, so that people know what the best conferences are and what the best places to go for good information about B2B sales are, tell me about conferences that you attend that you found valuable. Tell me about websites that you go to to check out what’s going on in the industry, and where you go to get better.
Dave Lorenzo: Conferences you attend. Where do you go to connect with other people and to discover new things?
Jeremy L.: Sure. I’m part of the Enterprise Sales Forum, which is a global organization that has different chapters. You know, there’s chapters in London, in Boston. You know, all these different cities, that puts on, they’re usually once a month, sales networking events, where they’ll have a panel of experts speaking on a particular topic, and before the panel discussion is networking with beer and wine and food and stuff like that.
Jeremy L.: So, Enterprise Sales Forum is definitely a good one that I attend a lot of those events. AAISP, Association of Inside Sales Professionals, puts on lots of really good events including the Leadership Summit with lots of sales leaders that go there. I enjoy going to those events, and then also there’s the Sales Development Conference that Tenbound put on last year, and I believe they’re putting it on again this year.
Jeremy L.: Outreach and SalesLoft, a couple other sales tools. They put on conferences as well. Outreach is called Unleash and SalesLoft is called Rainmaker. Very good conferences for sales, as well as Drift. Drift puts on a conference called Hyper Growth. That’s really good, and Outbound is another good one. There’s lots of good conferences to check out, for sure, as well as Dream Force. That’s probably the biggest one of all.
Dave Lorenzo: That Sales Force has.
Jeremy L.: The one that Sales Force puts on, yeah.
Dave Lorenzo: Alright. Terrific. Jeremy’s given us a bunch of resources. We’ll pull those out of the transcript for you and put them in the show notes so you can go check ’em out and see what’s right for you to attend. Remember, conferences are an opportunity for you to go meet other professionals who are doing what you do to network with them, to really discover new ways to connect with people and deliver value. Also, you never know who’s going to be at a conference, and if you’re a superstar sales professional, you could hook up with the next hot company and become the top sales professional for Sales Force, and make a boatload of money.
Dave Lorenzo: Or the top sales professional for the next Microsoft, and make a boatload of money. So, you have to go to … you have to pick and choose which conferences you go to, ’cause they take up time, but go to conferences and network with people who do what you do so that you can sharpen the saw, get better at your craft, and also meet people who can be influential in your career moving forward.
Dave Lorenzo: Jeremy Leveille, it’s been great to have you on the show. What is the one thing you want people to remember about you and about the time we spent together? What’s the one big takeaway you want folks to grab from the last 20 minutes?
Jeremy L.: Yeah, I think the biggest thing is when you’re prospecting and reaching out to potential buyers, don’t just play the volume game, and do spray and pray. Be relevant. Have some relevant insight that you can provide to that person. So, you know, you don’t have to spend an hour doing research on that company, and on that person, and know where they went to college, and what their favorite sports team and hobby is. You know, but just have some relevant insight that you can share with them that’s actually going to add some value so that they sit back in their chair and say, “Hey, that conversation that I just had with that salesperson was really valuable. I learned a lot of new stuff that’s going to help my business. I would actually pay for that conversation.”
Jeremy L.: That should be the goal, and that’s what’s going to move deals forward and help get deals int pipeline.
Dave Lorenzo: There you go. Deliver value first, and then worry about closing the deal afterwards. Jeremy has a singular focus: he gets on the phone, he leads with value, he looks for the appointment, and then he demonstrates even more value on the appointment, and that’s how he gets deals done. Jeremy, you’ve been an incredible resource for us. You’ve given us a ton of tips. Folks, I want you just to pick one of the things that Jeremy shared with us today, and I want you to do this and sell more.
Dave Lorenzo: Until next time, I’m Dave Lorenzo, and we’ll see you back here every Thursday with more great guests who give you tips that you can extract, and take, and put into action, and do what the name of the show says: do this, sell more. Jeremy, thanks very much.
About Jeremy Leveille
Jeremy’s been in sales for nearly 10 years, with experience ranging from direct sales to channel. He’s found a niche in business development, as he’s exceeded quota for nine months in a row including one month with 69 meetings set. This resulted in Jeremy being voted SDR of the Year at the Sales Development Conference by Tenbound in 2018.
Jeremy has also performed stand-up comedy and is proud of his NBA throwback jersey collection.
Connect with Jeremy Leveille
LinkedIn: Jeremy Leveille
About Dave Lorenzo
David Lorenzo is a sales expert, business strategy consultant, and author who has built five successful businesses during the past 25 years. Some of his most impressive ventures include taking a corporate housing company from start-up to over $50 million in annual revenue and leading a professional services firm from start-up to over $250 million in revenue.
Dave does three things: He works with business leaders to develop sales strategy and drive revenue growth. He develops and delivers speeches and training programs that increase sales. He coaches entrepreneurs, sales executives, and professionals on relationship-based sales strategy.
Dave received his MBA from Pace University. He also holds a Masters’ of Science in Strategic Communications from Columbia University in New York City.
Connect with Dave Lorenzo
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