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The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten - 512: The Sales & Marketing Grind

512: The Sales & Marketing Grind

The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten

Today on The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about the Sales & Marketing Grind.

This episode is inspired by a tweet from Hiten that pointed out how marketing is a grind, one that you need to get used to, as it requires you to do the same thing over and over again in order to be successful.

In today’s episode of the show, Steli and Hiten talk about the tweet that inspired this episode, what prompted this tweet and why marketing is different from sales and much more.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About today’s topic

00:34 Why this topic was chosen.

01:05 The tweet that inspired this episode.

01:40 What prompted Hiten’s tweet.

03:02 How marketing and sales is a grind.

04:09 How marketing and sales are like working out.

05:03 What makes Steli stay consistently on the sale grind.

08:22 A mindset that salespeople need to develop.

10:10 Why marketing is different from sales.

11:34 How Hiten gets through the grind.

3 Key Points:

  • The most difficult part of marketing and sales is getting used to the grind.
  • Just do more of what ended up working.
  • It’s the same thing over and over again.


Steli Efti: Hey, everybody. This is Steli Efti.


Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah, and today I’m going to start off the chat. Steli is prodding me to talk about a tweet, and this tweet was talking about how sales and marketing is a grind, and you have to do the same thing over and over and over again, and you might even quit before you hit gold. So what thoughts did it spur for you?


Steli Efti: Well, first let me actually read the tweet, right?


Hiten Shah: Yeah, go for it. I totally butchered it.


Steli Efti: So, “The most difficult part of sales and marketing is getting used to the grind, doing the same set of things over and over and over again, sometimes with such mediocre results that you think about giving up right before striking gold.” I like that tweet, because I think there’s a kernel of truth in there, but there are parts of me that instantly recognize the truth in this or my truth in this, but there’s also a part of me that wants to disagree, and then there is a immediate question that I have once in a while when you tweet, which is what prompted this? I literally go, “Huh, I wonder what prompted this? Probably something interesting. I have to remember to ask him next time I talk to him.” So let’s start the episode with that. I’ll tell you what I think about this, but first, what made you tweet this? What prompted this tweet, this thought?


Hiten Shah: Yeah, I think especially with sales and marketing, people look for the silver bullet, and the silver bullet is the one thing you can do and everything’s all taken care of. What I’ve noticed for sales and marketing, it’s not that. And so what prompted it, is nothing super in particular one event or anything like that, but I was just thinking why a lot of people have a hard time with sales and marketing, while let’s say with engineering or design or even product, they might not have as hard of a time. One conclusion I came to is you’re doing the same thing over and over again. When it comes to some of these other areas like engineering or product or design, the repetition is not the same. You’re not necessarily doing the same thing over and over again and likely seeing mediocre results. You have a tangible feeling of progress and momentum that can happen in those scenarios. While with sales and marketing, I don’t want to say it’s hit or miss, but especially earlier on when you’re trying to sell something or even marketing a product or service, the amount of grind is there. And then when something works, the next thing you have to do is just grind some more on the same thing. So even when it works, you’re just doing more of the same, it just happened to work that time, and you think you could make it work more. Whether it’s closing a deal because you changed your pitch all of a sudden, because you learned over many other conversations that you need to change your pitch, or with marketing where you do a lot of, usually you’re just doing a bunch of experiments early on to figure out what channels, what things work, and that’s like a grind in itself. But then when you actually figure something out that works, guess what? To do more of it, same grind. You just do more of whatever ended up working. And it’s not to say there’s no creativity to these things. It’s not to say any of that. It’s more about what feelings people go through and what motions they have to go t...

05/26/20 • -1 min

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