My name is JoBeth Hanak (she/they) and I love sales! Back in 2017, I graduated with honors from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Corporate Communications Studies and a Business Foundations Certification.
I started my sales career while in school and have now been in sales for 5+ years with 3+ of those years being in SaaS. Most of my experience is as a full cycle AE, but the past year I have been in sales development roles to learn how to sell software to enterprises. Currently, I am about to start as a Sr SDR at Chargeback, which was just acquired by Sift this week. I can’t wait to learn about the fraud detection and dispute management space!
My interests outside of work include art (drawing and oil painting mostly), hardcore music, riding my motorcycle, and getting more tattoos. However, the most important thing to know about me is that I have a super adorable and slightly intelligent one-eyed rescue pup who keeps me constantly on my toes as she finds new, thrilling ways to get into trouble.
[Podcast Transcript Using Artificial Intelligence]
Umar Hameed 0:01
Are you ready to become awesomer? Hello everyone. My name is Umar Hameed, I'm your host on the No Limits Selling Podcast where industry leaders share their tips, strategies, and advice on how you can become better, stronger, faster. Just before we get started, I've got a question for you. Do you have a negative voice inside your head? We all do, right? I'm gonna help you remove that voice and under 30 days guaranteed not only remove it but transform it. So instead of the voice that sabotages you, there's one that propels you too much higher levels of performance and success. There's a link in the show notes. Click on it to find out more. All right, let's get started.
Umar Hameed 0:41
Hey, everyone, I'm really happy to have JoBeth Hanak here today, she is a sales warrior, one of those weird people that pick up the phone and lands appointments, which is freakin hard to do. JoBeth, welcome to the program.
JoBeth Hanak 0:56
Thank you. Thank you so much for having me.
Umar Hameed 0:58
So I just want you to know that cold calling is dead. And if you want to make a grown salesperson cry, tell them they have to cold call. It doesn't work. Don't make me do it, please.
JoBeth Hanak 1:09
Oh my God, I've definitely heard that before. And I can guarantee it does work. You know, it's just you got to get more creative, for sure.
Umar Hameed 1:16
Yeah, so let's deconstruct that. But I was chatting with a friend. This was like years ago, and she was telling me when she came out of university, she was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, and the world was our oyster. And so she worked at this architectural firm, and they said, We want you to call CEOs of significant companies and land appointments.
JoBeth Hanak 1:34
Umar Hameed 1:36
And then she did. But all the people around her is like, how are you doing that? They were too busy, they didn't want to talk to you. And after about a month and a half, she couldn't pick up the phone again. Because when she was too dumb, she just did it, proving that it works. And then all these people gotten ahead and like screwed it up.
JoBeth Hanak 1:53
Yes, I've definitely been there. You know, in college, and after college, I worked as a personal trainer, which was, you know, like basically learning how to hustle and to get appointments walk up to random people in the gym.
Umar Hameed 2:04
JoBeth Hanak 2:04
But, you know, whenever I first started the tech, you know, I had a very similar experience where I was just, like, just happy to, like, you know, be doing something new and to be talking to people. And so, you know, I was just like, I had a lot of really early success. And then I did eventually get in my head at one point, you know, a few months later to where I experienced what your friend did, where it was just like, ah, like, this is not fun anymore, you know? And so I kind of work through that and, you know, refined, you know, the fun and the excitement and the confidence. Because definitely, it's hard to not let like the naysayers get to use sometimes.
Umar Hameed 2:42
Absolutely. And I think you made a mistake, when you were like a personal trainer, just like everyone else, what you should have done was be an in personal trainer, just be rude, obnoxious people would be lining up at your door. But anyway, so let's talk about that. So let's say, how do you find the target for what you guys do. So let's talk about your company. First, it's Zilliant. And you guys help people determine the optimal price to sell their products and services. So walk me through one of your clients on how they were pricing before and once they got your software, how they started pricing, and how it helped them.
JoBeth Hanak 3:18
Sure. So um, you know, sometimes whenever I talk to companies, they are kind of stuck in the dark ages, still, they're doing everything off of it based off of Excel. You know, a lot of the companies and speaking to you, they have up to like 180,000 different skews, you know, different things that they're having to price for. And they're managing all of that through an Excel sheet. So I'm talking to one guy right now who, you know, we're meeting with next month, who he's, for the past couple months, for the beginning, since the beginning of the year, he's had to go through and update every single price. And it's taken him literally 10,000 years. Yeah, it's, it's terrible. So, you know, sometimes I speak to companies who are at the very beginning of, you know, setting up pricing like that, you know, some people don't even have a pricing team. And the pricing is fully in the hands of the sales reps, which like, as a sales rep, I'm like, that's great. That's how I like, but danger for the company and, you know, 99.9% of the time, they're not getting the best margins that they could be so so we have a couple of different products around that, you know, we have a way to just start, like start from square one and manage the prices and replace those Excel sheets and to be able to get some segmentation going on. But you know, for some of the companies we speak to, they already have like a few processes in place, you know, it's working really well for them, and they're looking for more optimization on the data side.
Umar Hameed 4:38
Nice. So we know what you guys do. So you're minding your own business and it's like, started the quarter and you're going, Alright, so the first thing you need to do is to target a set of victims, I mean, potential clients. So how do you go about targeting the people that you want? So walk us through that?
JoBeth Hanak 4:57
Sure. So I have an account list. You know, my territory is you know, people who are headquartered in like the South Central US or the Northeast. So sometimes, you know, I'll search based off of like, which vertical, I want to talk to you again, maybe I've built like a cadence for building products, you know, manufacturers or something like that. And so I'll look at those companies, you know, find some key players, and then just plug them in and start calling them.
Umar Hameed 5:23
So we break that down, who would be a key player in a company that would be interested in pricing was, is that the CFO? Is it the head sales guy or the CEO, like who's that in the company? Typically?
JoBeth Hanak 5:35
Yeah, sometimes it's, you know, the CFO, usually, we're starting kind of more in the middle with, you know, breaking into a company. And so, you know, a lot of people I'd speak to would be a director of pricing, if they have a pricing team, if they don't have any sort of pricing team, then pricing could be owned by sales. And we do have, you know, sales products that we use, as well. So we do guidance for sales, you know, which would be if they have a lot large account list, you know, being able to figure out which accounts to target, in addition to the pricing. So I talked to a lot of, you know, a lot of VP of sales, you know, that's probably like a lot of the people that I am calling, but as well, it's like just anyone with a pricing title. But you know, if pricing is not if there's not a pricing team, it could be on by sales, marketing, product operations. So sometimes it's just a little bit of an Easter egg hunt.
Umar Hameed 6:25
So you first person you actually get on the phone, you ask who's doing this, and off they go. And if you go to that area.
JoBeth Hanak 6:31
Yeah, you know, typically, because we do like two different things. And I find that sometimes, you know, someone, they're really, you know, content with what they're doing for pricing. And so then I'll like try to pivot and go into like, what they're doing for sales. But I never really try to assume you know, which one of those two things I'd be interested in because I found that I shoot myself in the foot. So I usually, to start off by asking, what would be more relevant to your role? Is it sales growth? Or is it finding the right prices to give to your sales team?
Umar Hameed 7:01
Brilliant. So let's say sales growth, and the person you found wasn't the right person, but as sales growth, and then you suss out like the head VP of sales, you finally get that person on the phone? What preparation are you doing before? And what's the first 30 seconds of that conversation? What does that sound like?
JoBeth Hanak 7:18
Sure. So um, so whenever I get someone that I want to go after, I'm typically looking at their LinkedIn, I'm looking at, you know, my notes in the account to see, like, okay, like, you know, have I spoken to someone here before? Do I have any notes that I can rely on to give me a little bit of context to be able to add to the conversation or which direction to go if I've already narrowed down that they have a particular problem? And I use the, to start off a conversation I use, like a Josh Braun technique, which is just, you know, calling out like the obvious, which is to say, Hey, this is JoBeth from Zilliant. This is a cold call. I know, you probably just want to hang up. But you know, I'd appreciate it if you gave me a minute to tell you why I'm calling.
Umar Hameed 8:01
Pause right there. So when people hear that, what percentage of people say, Yeah, go ahead, Jobeth.
JoBeth Hanak 8:08
I would say like 90%.
Umar Hameed 8:12
Which will be shocking to most people because they.
JoBeth Hanak 8:14
Umar Hameed 8:15
Heads, they've got it, like 90% are gonna say get out of here. But the opposite is true.
JoBeth Hanak 8:21
I'll tell you, my boss had been telling me to use this technique for quite a while. And I was really resistant to it because I was like, man, like, No one likes cold calls, you know, they're just gonna hang up and some people still do hang up, you know, which is totally there, right? But a lot of people just kind of laugh and they're just like, okay, like, what do you have? Or Okay, you know, go ahead.
Umar Hameed 8:42
So, I'm gonna suggest something else for you JoBeth. There was a previous guest on the show. And this is what he does. He goes, you know, hey, JoBeth, this is Umar, we don't know each other. Should we hang up? Chuck can say no. What do you want?
JoBeth Hanak 8:58
Right, right. Yeah, I've heard of something like that being used, you know, saying like, you know, you'd we don't know each other. Because whenever people pick up the phone, they're trying to figure out like, okay, who is this person? Do I know them? You know, should I, you know, am I forgetting someone's name? You know, oh, yeah, I'm sorry. I like just kind of starting off the call, just clearing the air and setting the tone for the call. So.
Umar Hameed 9:18
So you said hey, this is who I am. So you are this is a cold call? Can I have a minute? They say yes. So that's the first 10 seconds of the call. Take me through the next 30 seconds, the first minute of the call, what do you do from there?
JoBeth Hanak 9:35
So you know, I start off, you know, sometimes I'll just make a little comment like Thank you. It's been a long day of doing this or you know, some sort of you know, brief little comedic you know, break or whatever. I give like a little like, small like one sentence, you know, to tell them like give them a little bit of context of like, what the heck Zilliant is. Some people are familiar with us. Some people are not, Things we do like a lot of different events with different organizations and pricing, so they may be familiar with us. And that's where I asked question to narrow down, like, should I go in the direction of sales? Or should I go in the direction of pricing? And sometimes people say both. But you know, I usually that gets people talking enough to where then I can kind of figure out like, where I want to take the next part of the call. And, you know, typically, it's trying to figure out like, what are you doing now? You know, are there any problems with it? You know, what could be done better?
Umar Hameed 10:28
Brilliant. And then once they're talking, you're talking and then you can figure out where to go from there. And typically looking to land an appointment, or what's your end goal for the call?
JoBeth Hanak 10:38
Best case scenario would be an appointment, sometimes, you know, they point me to a better contact, sometimes they, you know, want me to send over a little bit information and book the call from there. That's obviously not my first choice. But, you know, I have, you know, been some people just need to see a little bit more, you know, before they're interested, and I have booked appointments that way, but ideally, it would be scheduling a call with my regional sales director for them to go over in a more in-depth into, you know, get that, you know, sales cycle moving along.
Umar Hameed 11:10
Brilliant. When we used to have events, there was a gentleman called Steve Richard, he is like a guru of this kind of stuff. And yeah, yeah, so he's on stage, and he's got his phone. And it's like, who's trying to make a call on an appointment? I am. So go, Okay, what industry who are you trying to call and then he was just on stage, calling an industry he does not know, and figures out that the guy that our heroes trying to get ahold of, is not the right person, figures out who the right person is gets transferred. And then they're not the right person, but they tell them the ultimate right person, all within like five minutes, he finds the exact target and what they really need without anybody dying. And everyone in the audience is like, Damn, that's good.
JoBeth Hanak 11:49
Yeah, I'm familiar with Steve Richards. He actually I've actually been in like one of his, you know, trainings, workshops, and everything. And he does, you know, I don't remember if he did it during that workshop. But that was like, the whole thing that people talk about is like, he'll actually cold call like one of your, you know, your people and like, show you like how he would do it and get somewhere. So here's a cool guy.
Umar Hameed 12:13
Brilliant. He was talking about one of his pieces of software because now he's in the exact vision, which is like fancy software. But before he got there, there was a piece of software he got for all his inside reps that had a web camera, and had, they would record the calls. And each one of his employees had pointed the camera towards the ceiling, and there was lots of resentment in his organization, big brother is watching me. And it was just a, Steve's a brilliant, brilliant guy.
JoBeth Hanak 12:39
Umar Hameed 12:39
And they just not communicated well what the intention was. So then they had to have a company meeting. And then they finally went, Okay, the intention of this is as follows that this week, you're going to have a bunch of calls, and I want you to self select the call that went really, really well and a call that went sideways. And then you got to sit down with your manager, and we'll take a look at the playback of that call. And on the one that was phenomenal. We go, good job, or, oh, wait a minute, you said this thing here. And this, like frickin genius, will put this in the archive of Hall of Fame's other people learn it, and where you went wrong. Instead of Yeah, I was on a call and went sideways. It's like, who knows, but now you and your manager are auditing the call, and then the manager can go, oh, when the guy was saying this, notice his tone of voice, what he was really saying was that and all of a sudden, all his reps started getting dramatically better results. But it's an I think it's knowing what to improve. And then the other lesson was, we need to communicate better with not only ourselves, but when we're on the phone with people, the more elegant we are, and we set expectations, the better results we get.
JoBeth Hanak 13:46
Oh, for sure. And exact vision is a really cool tool. And I think that you know, having some sort of way to record your calls, and to be able to go back over them to see how you can improve is just crucial, you know, and in sales, you know, otherwise, you know, it's just fully going off of your memory. And you may remember things going way differently than they actually did. You know, definitely early on in my sales career, you know, I would, you know, go over a call with my manager, I'd be like, I don't know what went wrong. Like I did everything right. It was so great. He was just a jerk face. And then, of course, we'd listened to it. And they would be like, like where you messed up.
Umar Hameed 14:24
What's kind of interesting is this, is that you can have two siblings. But let's say twins, for our example, twins in this family function eight years ago, and when you ask them what happened, they both have totally different experiences of what happened. And Betty was nuts. And I bet he was amazing. And so when we're trying to remember back a call from Monday, there's no frickin way I'm gonna remember any of it. So having that recording really helps a lot for my manager to help me get better at what I do.
JoBeth Hanak 14:55
Oh, for sure. Yeah, I mean memory is not like a videotape recorder or anything. It's we're gonna have all of our emotions and everything tied to it, and how we remember things for sure.
Umar Hameed 15:05
Absolutely. So if you were coaching your replacement, they finally Zilliant, you know, gets it together as like, Oh my god, she's a genius, we need to move her up. And you are training your replacement, rather than taking her through the same training you received? How would you redesign it to bring a newbie in somebody that's, you know, good social skills, good level of self-esteem, they've not done this industry before, helped me through how you design the training to get them up and running in being functional?
JoBeth Hanak 15:34
That's a really interesting question. I think it's really good to start with a script, just like a loose script to go off of, you know, I know, there's like two camps. You know, some people like love scripts, some people hate scripts, I'm kind of in the middle, you know, I think it's, like, for me, like, I call someone and then like, someone answers in my mind just goes blank. And so I think it's important to be able to have like, okay, like, you know, I say pretty much the same thing for like, the first, you know, 20 seconds of the call, you know, it's just getting someone to get that permission to proceed and to talk to someone. But from there, I think that you know, I think like, for me, what really helped me figuring out was, okay, what's my intro going to be what works well, and then just adding in the piece to be able to let the person get talking about which way they want the conversation to go, whether it goes into the sales or in the pricing, because one of the things that I found really challenging about Zilliant, is we sell so many, like different types of products, you know, it wasn't just like, Oh, we sell one thing, you know, it's you have to kind of figure out, like, what you should be talking about, that the person will be interested in. So I think from there, just being able to ask, like, some basic questions, you know, maybe having like, some suggestions of like, okay, these are some good questions that we've come up with, you know, here's, you know, for me, like, one of the things that I'll say sometimes is that sales rep spend about 80% of their time on 20% of their accounts. And whenever I started telling that to VP of sales,
Umar Hameed 17:09
JoBeth Hanak 17:09
They're like, Oh, yeah, absolutely. That's exactly how it is. And so I think, you know, just maybe being able to, like, I think some, like sales organizations, have been in, whenever you're in the office, you know, because I've been onboarding remotes, this last year, you get to hear a lot of those stories, you know, so I think, you know, it's important
Umar Hameed 17:28
JoBeth Hanak 17:28
To have newer reps, you know, spend some time like reading some of the case studies and reading about, you know, people who have, you know, bought the software and how they've been helped and what their experience has been, you know, I think that is, you know, definitely, something that should be part of training is just use cases and being able to start to get those stories in your head. Because typically, you kind of build that up over time, you know, as you're talking to different people and hearing how their company works. But I think, you know, being able to have like, just like a few phrases that you can say that, like, let the other person know that you're familiar with how their company works, is very helpful. Because whenever I say that, you know, to a VP of sales, they're like, you get it, you know how it is, and then that gives me so much more credibility to be able to.
Umar Hameed 18:16
Yep, brilliant. So what's the skill set missing for you? Like if there was a better version inside you? What's the one behavior you wish you could do? Or something that you do right now is like, you know, I wish I wouldn't do that anymore. If I could stop doing that I'd be a frickin Rockstar. So what is something you want to add or something you want to subtract?
JoBeth Hanak 18:35
Sure. So um, you know, I've asked managers in the past and been like, hey, like, you know, I'm leaving I'm heading off to this new company. I would love some feedback like what would you say are like my strengths and weaknesses? And my weakness is always,
Umar Hameed 18:49
To no drinking at work.
JoBeth Hanak 18:50
Yeah. Or you know how startups are but I actually haven't drunk in five years just as a side set but um, but yeah, the feedback I've gotten is just that my confidence and then just I get in my head You know, you and I talked a little bit about this on our intro call like how important like mindset is, and so for me, like I was just like, I would love to be one of those people who are just like blindly confidence and just can just you know, go into a call or like you know, they just have like this iron you know, mind and for me, it's definitely something I have to constantly work at and I have to be really careful like what sort of like energies I get around you know, I can't let negativity and because then I'll start doubting myself and you know, we talked a little bit about that the beginning of the call.
Umar Hameed 19:35
That's why you don't have a green Christmas tree you have a hot one.
JoBeth Hanak 19:39
I know it's the last year.
Umar Hameed 19:41
You'd make sure you in the right mindset.
JoBeth Hanak 19:44
I know my fiance and I are moving in together pretty like I think next month or something like that. And he's not a fan of the pink Christmas tree, so I got to get rid of it. So but I don't know how to dispose of a Christmas tree. I guess I just throw it in the dumpsters.
Umar Hameed 20:01
It's a good question. JoBeth, thank you so much for a delightful conversation. You know, when we were about to start this conversation, it was like, What am I gonna talk about? Like, where are we going to go? But where we went was where the rubber meets the road like this is what you do to land appointments. Because the number one thing that stops salespeople from reaching their potential is not getting enough quality appointments. And thank you for sharing your wisdom today.
JoBeth Hanak 20:26
Yeah, for sure. Absolutely. Thank you so much for having me.
Umar Hameed 20:33
If you enjoyed this episode, please go to iTunes and leave a five-star rating. And if you're looking for more tools, go to my website at nolimitsselling.com. I've got a free mind training course there that's going to teach you some insights from the world of neuro-linguistic programming and that is the fastest way to get better results.