Rapportive – The Customer Data Dashboard

How would like to have up to date client information accessible and in view everytime you send them an email, or they send an email to you?

Rapportive is an information aggregation tool that gathers information about your contacts directly from inside your Gmail account. Not everybody uses Gmail for their daily communication, but most everybody HAS a Gmail account simply because they use so many of Google’s tools that require a Gmail account for log-in.

Rapportive is a free extension for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari web browsers. Once installed, the information Rapportive gathers will display inside Gmail whenever you are reading or composing a message. It doesn’t take up any additional screen space as it replaces the AdWords that normally appear on the right-side of the window (you weren’t looking at those ads anyway!)

Once you open an email Rapportive begins combing the web for information and links related to the sender’s email address and displaying it to the right of the message. If you’re composing a message, the search begins when you enter the email of your intended recipient. There is even a technique you can use within Rapportive to effectively guess the email of someone you’re trying to connect with (perfect for finding that prospect’s email you haven’t been able to uncover!)

Rapportive gathers the information from public profile sources like Facebook, Flickr, Google Profiles, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. and then displays the data within the email window. You’ll usually see their social network links and latest updates along with a profile photo.

Your entire sales team should be using this!


 Right now Rapportive only works inside of Gmail, but even if you simply use it to find info on your clients and then flip back to your preferred email service to send the actual message, I think you’ll find Rapportive a powerful research tool.

Download this SalesToy at www.Rapportive.com.


WebinarJam Session

Have you ever attended a web-based seminar or “webinar”?
Have you ever wanted to host (and profit!) from one of your own?

There are a multitude of high-priced monthly webinar systems to consider. Webex, GoToWebinar, Marketo, etc. Their prices vary greatly (but all of them are pretty pricey) and they can get even more expensive based on how many people attend your session.

There are also a lot of free options, but these are either clumsy to use, have limited features, or contain advertising being foisted upon your attendees (as well as you, the Presenter.)

Enter WebinarJam

WebinarJam is the first affordable, easy-to-use, full-featured webinar system that can have you up and running within just a few minutes — all for a single, low, annual payment.

There are no limits to the attendees, there are no limits to the number of webinars you can host, you can make recorded replays available, and you can either make your webinars free or charge a fee for attendance.

The other feature I really like is the ability to insert special offers, open browser links, and even schedule mobile text-message reminders about your webinar to send to registrants.

Click through to see the current price (it was less than $300 for unlimited annual use the last time I checked) and to see a video demo and walk-through of the primary WebinarJam features.


WiseStamp makes your emails smarter

WiseStamp enables users to combine their emails with social, productive, and engaging Email Apps.

There is a huge gap between email (which is largely unchanged from its original iteration decades ago) and the new socially dynamic web of today. WiseStamp’s tools are easily integrated with your daily emails, adding a new level of functionality and interactivity that engages users and recipients.

WiseStamp apps are incorporated into your emails in the form of an email signature (a.k.a. email “sig” line). Your employees are probably using some form of an email sig now, but most were created individually with zero oversight related to company branding or image or marketing and promotional strategy.

Useful for every division of your company — Executive, Production, Service, Support, and especially Sales — creating a WiseStamp Team account allows you to feature your company logos in an approved size and format, embed your latest tweets or blog links, promotional announcements, and even include photos of your team members.

WiseStamp lets individuals create a free basic email signature, but they also offer three affordable paid Premium levels that offer escalating abilities to customize and access professional design templates, along with a cloud based company-wide branded solution with priority support features.

Evaluate it for yourself and then share the link with your entire team!


Don Snyder is the Sales Toymaster and also known as Don The Idea Guy. Don leads workshops and delivers keynotes on business creativity, sales, attitude, and customer loyalty. He is Gitomer Certified Speaker, personally chosen, mentored, and endorsed by global sales guru Jeffrey Gitomer to deliver the best of his programs and content with clarity, humor, and impact. If you’d like to have Don The Idea Guy speak at your company’s conference connect with the friendly folks at Buy Gitomer, Inc.



signupanywhereWant an easy and interactive way to grow your list of email subscribers and get on-site sign-ups for your email newsletter?

SignUpAnywhere is a free app that allows you to collect email addresses even when you are offline. It automatically syncs when you are back online and can be downloaded as a simple .csv file to import into any database.

Visit the site and sign-up (for free), name your mailing list, click to install, and open the app in your browser — you are now ready to collect email addresses on the go!

The app was designed to help you collect email addresses as quickly and as easily as possible. It’s actually kind of FUN for people to use and leaves your audience with great impression.

SignUpAnywhere was designed for the iPad, but works on any Android device or iPhone. Have your entire team at an event subscribing people to the same list from multiple devices, or manage multiple list sign-ups on the same device.

Every element of the SignUpAnywhere application operates over HTTPS with an industry-standard 2048 bit SSL certificate. All synced data is backed up on a nightly basis to multiple secure locations.

The developer says they are committed to providing a free version of the app forever, and you can upgrade to a branded version for a small fee.

Most importantly, you can download all your data whenever (and as many times) as you like!


Re-Kindle Your Love of Sales Toys

kindle-backpackLast week Amazon quietly launched a new service for Kindle tablets called Whispercast and with the cost of a new 7” Kindle Fire HDX starting at just $229 it has the potential to solidify the e-reader as a viable (and economical) business tool for your entire Sales team.

  • How many times has a member of your Sales team sold a package that had been revised, or a product already sold by another rep?
  • How many times could they have made a sale of some package that would have been perfect for the client if the salesperson had a copy of it in their binder?

It’s physically impossible to carry a hard copy of every sales package, and trying to get your team to keep the copies of the packages up to date on their laptops is like trying to bail water out of a sinking rowboat with a thimble.

Assign a company-issued Kindle to each member of your Sales team and you’ll see a savings in both the time and expense involved in keeping the newest and most updated documents in their hands (and in front of the customer) as well as initiating a distinct “wow-factor”.

Register for a free account at https://whispercast.amazon.com/ and you’ll be able to distribute content to members of your team based on their role, department, or team. You have control over registering (and deregistering) devices into your group and password-protect individual accounts.

Kindle Fire and Amazon Whispercast are great ways to organize your team and make certain everyone is on the same page (e-page or otherwise), while demonstrating to your clients (and competitors) you know how to use technology to your advantage.

And hey, it’s not gonna hurt anybody if your team happens to use the Kindle to read an extra book or two!

Don The Idea Guy has creative powers beyond those of mere mortals and is a Gitomer Certified Speaker. If you’d like to have The Idea Guy speak at a conference or event, or create a custom webinar for you and your sales team, just connect with him at www.DonTheIdeaGuy.com.

Creating Conversations

Hugh MacLeod is a longtime favorite of SalesToys, and his latest cartoon really sums up a major aspect of what we’re trying to help our customers do with imprinted promotional products — create conversations.

Hugh says:

I like to think about every market as a giant trade show.
Those enormous ones where you actually see everyone yapping.
Thing is, this happens every minute of every day, you just can’t see it.

If your market isn’t talking about you, but talking about your competitor, then you’ve got a problem.


Pretty powerful, right?

What are you doing to encourage conversations with your prospects and clients?  We post articles and links every week (almost!) with ideas we think will deliver value to you as a business person, and in turn, to the clients you serve.

If you don’t create a conversation with your customers in an area where you and your company stands out with distinction, the client will choose the topic. And if you aren’t suggesting important things to talk about, they will default to the easiest topic — price.

Products are conversations.
Price isn’t a conversation, it’s a negotiation.

Want to give them something to talk about?

Search the SalesToys database (we call it our Toy Box) of over 10,000 conversations just waiting to begin.

Customized Customer Experiences

coffee-printerWhen a Taiwanese coffee chain was trying to figure out how to gain customer share in of the most competitive categories in the world (coffee bean juice!) they came up with a clever way to get customers involved and engaged in ordering their coffee like never before.

Customers submit photos directly from their mobile phones to a machine that prints the image on their latte foam. The printer acts like an inkjet printer, but uses either coffee or cocoa instead of ink.  I think it’s a creative new twist on one of the oldest drinks, and I know I’d order a coffee from them if there was one in my city!

How long do you think it will be until they have counter-top models available for businesses (can you imagine the impact of bringing a coffee to a client with their NAME on it when they arrive for an appointment?)

What about at-home use?
How sweet to take your sweetie a morning cup of coffee with a romantic message on it, or to program your coffee printer to add a motivational message for yourself before you head out the door on your morning commute?

Until the day we can add this option to our own Mr. Coffee or Keurig machines, how about taking a look at these coffee-related promotional ideas from the SalesToys Toy Box?

coffee-kcupK-CUP filled with coffee
Great coffee gift for clients or an office treat. Call for flavor at time of order.

Normal Production Time: 7 Working Days



coffee-java-sleeveJava Sleeve
Easily slides onto a variety of paper or plastic coffee cups and protects hands from hot liquids. Folds flat for easy storage.

Normal Production Time: 5 Working Days



coffee-plastic-to-goTo-Go Tumbler
Plastic 16oz. tumbler styled after the classic coffeeshop to-go cup. Top it off with one of five colored lids. Mug has dual-wall construction for optimum heat retention and the 6.25″ height fits most corporate coffee machines.

Normal Production Time: 5 Working Days


Want additional information on any of the featured items?

Just connect with me on the Contact page or call me at (614) 340-7910.



Dan Pink’s Pixar Pitch

Pitching concepts and proposing ideas are all part of the job when you’re working in sales, and (if you’re doing it right) can be the most fun and rewarding part of the process. Pitching ideas has always been the area in which I could set myself apart from every other salesperson in the universe, and even build stronger rapport and personal bonds with my prospect (many of whom become personal friends and go on to recommend me to others based purely on the ideas I bring to the table.)

But as easy as I find pitching ideas to be for me personally, others struggle with the concept and event block themselves from getting an order because they don’t know how to structure their pitch in a way that effectively gets their point across in an engaging (and succinct) manner.

In Dan Pink’s (@DanielPink) most recent book, To Sell Is Human, he shares a fun formula you can learn in 30-seconds and begin using to more effectively pitch ideas today. Here’s how Dan structures the “Pixar Pitch,” a formula modeled after the very same one Pixar studios uses to pitch their own stories for movies.


Here’s the formula:

  • Once upon a time…
  • Every day…
  • One day…
  • Because of that…
  • Because of that…
  • Until finally…

If you think about it, this system of crafting a pitch pretty much follows the pattern of every Pixar movie!

Here’s my version of a Pixar Pitch for Remerge Marketing’s Sketch Video service I featured in a SalesToys post last month:

Once upon a time…
Video began taking over the internet as the most-consumed, shared, and created form of online content.

Every day…
Internet speeds got faster and the ways to access online streaming content became more and more common via cellular data plans and WiFi hotspots so that people could view these videos on their desktops at work and home, as well as out in public via their laptops, mobile phones, and tablets.

One day…
Videos all began to look alike. People were using the same tools to upload the same sort of videos that all followed the same format (and made the same mistakes.)

Because of that…
Many began to lose interest in the now oh-so-common “talking head” videos that featured one poorly-lit person speaking directly into a shaky camera recording bad audio.

Because of that…
Remerge Marketing thought there was an opportunity to reinvent the way videos were produced, in order to take advantage of the video boom in marketing companies using a fresh, high-quality, professional (and economical!) approach.

Until finally…
Remerge launched their Sketch Video service which allows anyone to get a professionally written script, studio-quality audio, and crisp video featuring fun and energetic animation that gets your point across while entertaining and educating your audience — all for just $599.

Get the details at www.GetSketchVideos.com!

Now YOU give it a try!

Follow the format outlined above and write a Pixar Pitch for your business in the comments section below. If anyone submits a really good one, I’ll hit up the folks at Remerge to craft it into a Sketch Video for you and share it right here on SalesToys.com!

To-Sell-Is-Human-Book_cvrIf you’d like to get a copy of Dan Pink’s book “To Sell Is Human,” just click here and be magically whisked away to Amazon.com!

Other Dan Pink books in my own personal library which I recommend include A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation (one of my personal all-time favorites!)

Seize Your Sales Destiny

Not everyone is blessed with a really good sales manager who challenges you to be better, coaches you where you need to improve, and holds you accountable for your own success.

iannarino_photoI’ve also seen (and worked for) enough disinterested and disillusioned sales managers (the ones who just want to keep their heads down and avoid making ripples until their retirement party) to know that most times it’s better to have no sales manager than a bad sales manager. That line is the blast-off point for a rocket-fueled little ebook written by my friend Anthony Iannarino.

Seizing Your Sales Destiny: The No Excuses Guide to Selling Without a Sales Manager is a pocket guide to the process, procedures, and improvements you need to make to your sales efforts in order to not just survive as a solo sales professional, but to thrive.  This guide can also serve as supplemental material for those of you with a less-than-supportive sales manager. (You might technically have a sales manager, but it may not always feel that way.) of your own.

Seizing Your Sales Destiny starts with defining your new job description, shows you how to hold yourself accountable, and provides complete action plans and exercises to help you set your goals based on the revenue and profits you want to generate. You will create your own activity plan and outline a model sales week to follow in order to ensure your personal success.  Anthony’s book not only provides details on the hard skills of sales, he advises you on the softer skills of finding teachers, mentors, and (most importantly) being honest with yourself (you don’t want to lie to the sales manager — especially when it’s YOU.)

iannarino_seize-sales-destiny-cvrOne of the best things about Mr. Iannarino’s book?  It’s free.
There’s no hard-sell here. Just great content and value provided by a guy who is at the top of his game as a professional sales trainer, author, and coach.

The price alone makes it a perfect place for the beginning salesperson to start planning their career, and to see if they really have what is required to be a successful sales professional. The free price also allows sales veterans to download and read this ebook at no-cost, just to see how they stack up and find ways to ‘sharpen their own saw.’

We can all get better at what we do.
Anthony’s book shows you how.

Click here to get your copy for free.

A Year Of Success

ayos_logo2What if you could get personal coaching messages from four high-level, high-profile (and high-dollar!) consultants, experts, speakers, and authors every week for an entire year?

What if these four experts delivered a personal face-to-face video message that focused on the four major areas that determine your ability to succeed both personally and professionally?

What if it each message came with a personal action plan and resources to help you put that advice into action?

What if it was ridiculously affordable and an evergreen resource that you can go back to and refresh and refocus your efforts anytime you wish and as much as you like?

Do you think that a year from now (52 personal success coaching sessions from now) do you think you’d be better off than you are now? Even if you didn’t put every piece of advice into action and only cherry-picked the lessons that had the highest interest level for you at that very second — you couldn’t help but to improve your situation a year from now (even if only by accident!)

A Year Of Success has done that for me
I’m near the end of my first full year on the program (I just watched weekly message #50!) and I can personally attest to the quality of the content, the reliability of the tools, and how easy it is to hear a message and put the principles into action two seconds after hearing it.

ayos_success-image-300x295Get advice from four global gurus in their respective areas of expertise


Larry Winget, The Pitbull of Personal Responsibility® is a five-time New York Times/Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Shut Up, Stop Whining And Get A Life, You’re Broke Because You Want To Be, It’s Called Work For A Reason, People Are Idiots And I Can Prove It and Your Kids Are Your Own Fault. He is a member of the International Speaker Hall Of Fame and has spoken to nearly 400 of the Fortune 500. He has starred in his own television series on A&E, been featured in two CNBC specials of The Millionaire Inside as well as two PBS specials and has appeared in national television commercials. Larry is a regular contributor on many television news shows on the topics of money, personal success, parenting and business.

Mark Sanborn is an acclaimed speaker and bestselling author who helps leaders at every level turn the ordinary into the extraordinary. He is the president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea studio for leadership development. Leadershipgurus.net lists him as one of the top 30 leadership experts in the world today.

Sally Hogshead will teach you how to persuade and captivate in 9 seconds or less. Based on her research of over 100,000 participants, Sally created the world’s first personality test to measure exactly what makes your personal brand fascinating. A frequent guest on national TV, Sally is the author of FASCINATE, and the Chief Fascination Officer of Fascinate, Inc.

Bob Burg will show you how to become a powerful influencer, obtaining what you desire in a win/win fashion, while helping others to feel good about themselves in the process. He is coauthor of the international bestseller, The Go-Giver, and author of the sales classic, Endless Referrals. He speaks for corporations and associations internationally, including fortune 500 companies, franchises, financial services and direct sales organizations.

As with all things, the decision (and the result!) is ultimately up to you.
It’s up to you to invest in the program and it’s up to you to invest the time to apply the principles.

Don’t you think you’re worth it?

A Year of Success – Extended Promo from A Year of… on Vimeo.