A Day in the Life of a Sales Executive at Search Influence
April 25th, 2017 by
Meet Bailey Colomb! Here’s a glimpse into what an average day looks like for Bailey as a Sales Executive working at Search Influence. From her favorite breakfast food (hint: think Ron Swanson) to some of her favorite perks of the job, you’ll get an insider glimpse into what it’s like to join the SI sales team.
Where did you grow up? Where did you go to school?
I’m from New Orleans. I was born and raised in Lakeview and went to Mount Carmel for high school. I went to college at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, MS. I graduated in Hospitality and Tourism. I wasn’t interested in working at a job that was behind a desk with no social interaction.
When you’re not working, what are some of your favorite things to do around New Orleans?
I’m very close with my family. Almost my entire family lives in New Orleans. Every Sunday we’ll do lunch or dinner at my mom’s and my family will all come over. I also have a lot of friends here from college and high school, so we like to do a lot of happy hours. A lot of us after work will go out for happy hour, too. Anywhere that has live music, alcohol, and fries—I’m interested!
What is your ideal breakfast to get you through a busy workday?
Anything that includes bacon. I’m not a huge breakfast person before work, but my ideal breakfast would definitely be bacon oriented.
What led you to this position at Search Influence?
I was an account manager for almost a year and a half. I’ve been in sales a month, so it’s a very recent transition. I think as an account manager (AM), there are a lot of great things about it, and everybody on the AM team really enjoys being creative and thinking of out of the box ways to help clients, but sometimes the day-to-day responsibilities cloud that. That was an area of opportunity that I wanted to pursue. Being in sales lets you focus on this fresh canvas. These new potential clients have never been approached by anyone, and I get to create this really broad creative strategy to help them.
What was the craziest job you had before you started at SI? Did you learn anything from that experience that you apply to your sales position today?
I worked at the Royal Sonesta, which is in the 300 block of Bourbon. My shift that I normally worked was 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. I would get to work when people were going to bed.
I think that everyone should work in some sort of customer service job because it teaches you about literally everything. It taught me to listen first and hear what people really needed, and then figure out how to help them instead of just assuming. Sometimes you’re so quick to get to the solution that you’re not actually listening to the problem.
If I talked to your co-workers, what are some adjectives you think they’d use to describe you?
I would say outgoing and definitely chatty. People always make fun of me because I have a story for everything. I would hope that they would say knowledgeable because I feel like I really have learned so much since being here. It’s cool to be in a position where people are asking you the questions, instead of you asking the questions.
What is the first thing you do when you arrive at the office?
The first thing I do is make my coffee. And then I check my email, I check my calendar and get my whole day forecasted. At 8:45 we have our sales meeting, which is great. It’s a touchpoint at the beginning of the morning to see where we are, if there are any updates, check our metrics and any deals we’re working on. Then, we share our daily priority. That is the most important thing we think needs to get done. A lot of the priorities will be making calls if there are prospects to reach out and call. Or, if you have a call that’s in the presentation stage, then preparing the presentation to have ready for the next call.
Describe an average day at work.
Right now we are working through our cadences. The cadence is setup to have different touch points throughout the week to try to make that connection with someone who could use our help. After the initial conversation, if they are interested in learning more, then we set up a discovery call so we can get to know their business and get as much information as we can to put together a broad strategy. If all goes well, the next step would be to send a contract and have a kickoff call with an AM who gets into the nitty gritty details of the deliverables.
What are some big milestones your team is currently working toward?
We just rolled out our sales playbook, which has been really great. It’s a huge resource for all of us to turn to with tips and tricks for the best ways to leave a voicemail, best ways to send an email, or how to handle pushback when we’re on the phone. It’s been a really good resource for all of our new team members to use. The cadence is also something we recently rolled out that has been really successful. Since the cadence, we’ve had about five outbound calls that have turned into sales presentations.
What is the most challenging aspect of your job?
The most challenging is, coming from an AM perspective, you have a lot of platforms that tell you exactly what you need to do, so you know what your day looks like. I’ve had to adjust how I come in and organize since there’s less structure. It’s made me change the way I stay productive and organized throughout the day.
What is the most fulfilling part of your job?
The most fulfilling part of the job, for me personally, is that everything is a trial and error right now because it’s so new. We’re all learning together to figure out what works and what doesn’t. I get to be one of the people who is helping to get the department up and running. It’s all the more fulfilling to be able to build new relationships with people here who have so much knowledge.
What skills do you utilize from previous positions in your career to succeed in sales?
Definitely customer service, and with that, having no shame. The worst they can do is hang up on me or tell me no, so I might as well just call them. Being in the service industry for so long has helped me be a good communicator and make people comfortable. That’s important in sales because you want to be as conversational as possible and the least sales-y as possible.
What are some of the perks of a sales job?
Happy hours! Getting out of the office to mingle more. The second week I joined the sales team was New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, and we got to go out and network and hear speeches. That’s definitely been fun to meet new people.
What stands out about the culture at Search Influence that makes your job more enjoyable?
The people. I feel like everybody says that, but it really is what keeps people motivated, keeps morale up, and keeps people here as long as they’ve been here. I remember when I interviewed here, seeing the people coming in and out of the office, I knew I wanted to work here because everyone looked so cool and laid back. Everyone is so easy to work with and collaborative. I think that is one of our strongest competitive advantages.
What’s your favorite work memory at SI?
Me and my friends at SI have a “Ladies who…” group, which is just an event once a week where we do something different. Like ladies who lunch, who happy hour, etc. It is super fun to not only build those relationships in the office but also build those friendships out of the office, too.
What would you like others to know about your job that they may not expect?
I think, for me, it was hard switching my AM brain to a sales brain. But, it was interesting to see how much in common the positions had—sales encompasses a lot of the things that each department does each day. Also, it’s just not that scary. I thought it would be really intimidating to pick up the phone and talk to a doctor, but we don’t know what they know, and they also don’t know the things that we know.
What are your biggest goals for your career in the next 5 years? Beyond?
My biggest goal in the next few years is just not to get too comfortable and to always stay challenged and learn something new every day. It’s easy to get in a rut and just do what you do because it’s a routine and not because it’s challenging.
Looking ahead, what are you most excited to achieve and take part in at SI?
Some big sales! I’m excited now that we are really focusing in on the direct side; it’s exciting to be part of the team that is supporting and growing that. I think we have great clients now who have supported us for a long time, and it’s cool to be a part of the team that’s going to help contribute to that.
Sometimes it can be hard to explain what we do in the SEO world. What are some successful tactics you’ve used to inform new clients about our industry?
The way I always describe it is that I help local businesses rank on Google. Obviously, there are a lot of little technical things that go into it. But at the end of the day, our main goal is that when a user searches for something and types in a keyword related to one of our local businesses, it’s our client that shows up in the first five rankings. That’s who the user clicks on and engages with. Everyone Googles things, so it’s easy to relate to that.
In your opinion, why does online marketing matter for small business? What role does it play in the local economy?
I think it’s important for small business because people might not know that you’re there unless you tell them. You do that through online marketing. That’s how you make your brand known in this day and age; not doing it is not an option.
What are prospective clients most surprised to learn when you talk to them about the benefits of online marketing?
I think that a lot of people obviously know about Google and know how it works, but I don’t think they know how or why those businesses are ranking. They are surprised by all the things you can do to improve your rankings. I don’t think that they understand the actual manpower it takes to manage all these things so that when you do type something into Google, it’s your business that shows up.
What were you most surprised to learn about this industry when you started working at SI?
I literally knew nothing. I straight up Googled, “What is SEO?” Every day was different; it was an uphill battle because it’s such a vast level of knowledge. My surprises were very similar to our clients’ surprises.
What advice would you offer to someone considering a sales position in this industry?
I would say go for it! I definitely do not regret trying something new. I had never done sales before. There’s an aspect of selling in everything you do, but I had never picked up the phone and tried to sell something. It’s changed the way I think about my work. It’s helped me build on the character traits I already had, and also build new ones as I get more comfortable and gain more experience.
If you’re interested in learning more about a sales position at Search Influence, please visit our careers page to view our current positions available. We look forward to meeting you and discussing a potential career at Search Influence!