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3 Ways to Use the New Tout

In case you hadn't noticed, we rolled out an entirely new interface for Tout pretty recently. Beyond the basic facelift, we’ve made some major product improvements and introduced some cool new functionality.

Here’s three ways to use our product’s new features:

1. Group your contacts

Within our release, we’ve made it much, much easier to organize and categorize your contacts into groups to avoid an unwieldy address book. You can now add multiple contacts to groups and drag and drop an individual contact into a group. With this, you can also use mail merge to send large batches of personalized emails

 

2. Personalize your emails with tons of dynamic fields

Sometimes first name, last name, and company aren’t enough information to personalize your emails. If you want to reference a contact’s website, phone number, account type, or more using custom fields, we’re now able to automatically input this information for each contact.

Special bonus for anyone using Salesforce: we’ll import all the custom fields you’ve created so you can use them in Tout as well.

 

3. Look through your email history with a contact

Can’t remember what you said to a customer in an old email? You can now pull up your entire history of communication with each contact in Tout. There’s no need to switch between your mail client and your CRM to pull up your email history, or search through your entire Tout outbox.

Bonus: Use social media to strengthen connections

There are links to Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin in each contact’s tab now, so it’s easier than ever to do due diligence on your message recipients. If your future recipient is tweeting about their weekend, now you can ask them how it was in your messages. Bam. There’s your social selling strategy.

Take some time to look over all our new features and let us know what you think!

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Tout Partners with Salesforce to Bring You the Information You Need to Close Sales

Tout was proud to partner with Salesforce yesterday as we both shared exciting tools that help you improve communication. Marc Benioff's keynote addressed the Social Revolution – how quickly it's changing and how quickly businesses have to adapt. After the keynote, we talked with a lot of Salesforce users about how they're spreading their message, and we showed them how Tout can help them sell smarter – especially with our deep Salesforce integration. Not only is Tout in the cloud, easy to use on mobile, and fully integrated with social media, and it's a powerful way to give you real, actionable data and analytics on a process that takes you hours a day – your email.

Tout + Salesforce = The Power of the Cloud

Benioff has famously advocated cloud computing, but this year, he warned users to be wary of tools that he called the “false cloud”. It's important for businesses to understand the true cost of implementing software systems that live on their servers, and more importantly, the savings they're missing by ignoring cloud computing. We totally agree. The fact that Tout exists in the cloud means that we can offer Tout at a great price, there's no setup, and users never have to concern themselves with a software update. Tout just works.

Tout + Salesforce = Embracing Mobile

According to Morgan Stanley, the number of CEO's who allow mobile tablets at work has more than doubled in the past year, an unprecedented rate of adoption for new technology. It's become absolutely necessary for companies to embrace mobile, despite the fact that sharing rich information is challenging on a tiny mobile device. For Tout users, sharing information is easy, because your templates are saved in the cloud, and with our mobile app, you can access them from anywhere, combining the consistency of templates with the flexibility of mobile.

Tout + Salesforce = Selling with Social

Salesforce announced an innovative new Chatter tool to allow customers to interact with companies on Salesforce instantly, emphasizing the importance of social interaction. It's obvious that social tools are quickly becoming a central part of the sales process, as salespeople prospect more and more over LinkedIn and Twitter. The problem with social selling is that the fast pace and informal nature of social media creates gaps in your messaging. Tout solves that by allowing you to share a templated message across social media platforms. Not only is it faster, it brings your complete message straight to your customer, right where they want it.

Tout + Salesforce = Information

The true key to the Social Enterprise is information – your customers are doing everything they can to get the right information, right away. As a salesperson, the best thing you can do  is share information, quickly, consistently, and effectively. Tout gives you the tools you need to share information, and it also gives you the analytics and key data points you need to make your sales process smarter and faster. If you're ready for an email tool that works where you work, helps you do your job faster, and gives you the information you need to close sales, check out Tout.

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Sales 2.0: Is it really that different?

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about how the job of B2B sales has changed since I began my career (if I told you how long ago, I’d have to kill you).

When I started out in sales, the process was pretty clear-cut.

  • Prospect on the phone.
  • Set an appointment with the highest level contact possible.
  • Meet.
  • Ask questions, go through the consultative sales process. Discuss solutions.
  • Propose.
  • Provide proof.
  • Navigate corporate structures & politics.
  • Provide competitive information.
  • Renegotiate. Repeat several of the above steps.
  • Close.

Nowadays, people talk a lot about Sales 2.0, which as far as I can tell, really doesn’t have a solid definition. It’s the idea, based at least partly in reality, that “prospects have changed”, and therefore we as sales pros need to change too.

And I agree. To a point.

The tools we use are different. We spend less time in face to face meetings, in many cases. The duties that make up the day of most salespeople are different. We’re required to understand and utilize marketing. We’re active in social media and are constantly told that it’s a sales channel. We rely heavily on web content rather than printed materials, PowerPoint, and conference calls with the tech team. But when it comes down to it, B2B customers still buy the same way, and most importantly: for the same reasons.

They want a solution to a problem.

B2B customers don’t really care what’s “hot”, for the most part. They’re ready, willing and able to spend their budgets solving problems, not jumping on the latest tech bandwagon just for the sake of trying something new. Sure, they’ll still participate in social media interactions while they’re making their decision, but you’ll note that in these conversations they’re talking more with vendors than with peers. They’re looking for information. They want answers.  There's nothing really new about this. So has B2B sales really changed all that much?  What’s your opinion?

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3 Sales Tips for Today’s Sales Professionals

As we all know, a large portion of sales activity takes place over email. Whether it’s prospecting, scheduling meetings, providing product information, sending contracts or any other of the many functions sales pros do every day, we spend a lot of time in our inbox. Some studies show that we spend over 80% of our day is spend on email.  That’s a lot of emails!

 

If you’ve been around for a while, you might still be stuck in the “old school” style of writing rather formal, business-y emails. That’s OK for some industries and some types of customers, but most of today’s prospects prefer to be approached in a different manner.

 

The rise of social media, mobile phone apps, constant connectivity, and the explosion of professional and personal networking means that the old-school barriers to open and friendly communication have largely broken down.  In today’s business world, approaching sales communications in a personal (but not overly familiar) way will lead to happier interactions, closer relationships, and more sales.

 

So here are my three top tips to rock your sales emails:

Be yourself.

When writing an important email, I sometimes like to speak out loud, then transcribe what I’ve said.  Writing the way you actually talk ends up giving a much more personal, approachable, believable tone to the final product.  Customers appreciate being spoken to like real people, so give this a try!

 

Be concise.

For better or for worse, information today is dispersed in bullet points and brief quips, as opposed to lengthy dissertations on why your product or service is best.  Distill your value statement into three distinct relevant benefits, say a sentence or two about each, ask for the next step, and then stop while you’re ahead. And edit, edit, edit!

 

Be consistent.

When you find an email that works well for prospecting, save it and reuse it!  Same for all the various types of sales processes.  Here at Tout, we call this templating, and it’s a major part of our product offering.  Why reinvent the wheel if you’ve got one that works?  Refine your message over time, keep an up to date template of the each type of message, and save yourself a lot of time and typing.  Not only will you see better conversion rates, but you’ll work more quickly and efficiently, and ensure consistent and professional messaging every time you contact a prospect.

 

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How Kyle Jackson re-Kaptur’d a Day using Toutapp

Kyle JacksonToday’s featured Toutapp customer is Kyle Jackson, Director of Business Development at Kaptur, the seamless way to pull together everyone’s photos, videos and status updates in one place from your wedding. Kyle is one of Toutapp’s biggest fans:

“I’ve used Toutapp to send over 500 emails this year, which has saved me a full workday’s worth of time. I will never use a traditional email client to send repetitive emails again!”

Toutapp and Kaptur

Every day, Kyle reaches out to wedding sites and blogs that would benefit from a partnership with Kaptur. Toutapp drastically reduces the time he spends sending these emails, and it ensures consistent messaging around key information, such as the specifics of a potential partnership.

With all the time he’s saved, Kyle can focus on writing a highly targeted and personal message that really hits home with prospective partners, instead of the generalized email he would have to send using a regular email client.  Plus, the analytics help Kyle accurately identify which messaging is most effective, which, in turn, saves him even more time. He’s able to try different messaging and wording, see which emails are most successful, then use and tweak successful emails moving forward.

Getting Married? Check out Kaptur!

Kaptur is a great photo-sharing platform that finds and aggregates all the photos, videos and status updates from a wedding. Couples can use the Kaptur to search social media and photo-sharing sites to find all their guests’ pictures from the big day. After Kaptur finds all the photos, it’s easy to share one, organized, centrally located album with friends and family. It completely eliminates the need to search Facebook and Flickr to look at everyone else’s pictures from the wedding, and it’s super easy to set up – Kaptur is transforming the way we enjoy and share our wedding memories.

Tired of sending the same emails over and over? Try Toutapp.

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