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The Inbound Sales and Marketing Blog

Google+ Is Dying. What Does that Mean for Your Business?


Come August 2019, Google+ for consumers won't be a thing. We all knew this day was coming. As Mike Elgan puts it in his article for FastCompany:

Position Your Dealership as a Team of Experts

Your prospects have a long list of business problems.  They also have many questions related to how technology could be used to solve these business problems.

Most business leaders are open to getting help in solving their business problems.  However, most people have been burned at one point because they have made a bad buying decision.  This is especially true in the area of technology where many promises are made but the actual results end up not delivering.  As a result, today’s buyer is very skeptical.

How do you earn trust in this skeptical environment?  

Why You Need Case Studies

As you grow new business areas like Managed Services, Document Solutions, Production Print or Wide Format one of the most valuable tools you can have are case studies.  Let’s face it -- everyone knows and trusts you as a great provider of copiers. And, the value proposition for a copier or printer is fairly simple.

The trust you have for office equipment may not immediately translate into these new business areas.  Just because you have serviced someone’s copiers for 20 years doesn’t mean they will trust you with their network support or workflow software.

At the same time, the value propositions for these new areas is more complex than a value proposition for a copier.  Your clients understand what they are buying when they buy a copier (for the most part...) but they may not understand the full value proposition of a cloud-based document management system or a managed network security package.  

9 Common Mistakes Copier Dealers (and Others!) Make When Writing Blog Posts

Blogging continues to be the backbone of content and inbound marketing.

While video is an ever-increasing tool to use to connect to your audience, the humble blog will continue on as a way to bring in traffic. I mean, after all, one of the ways to share videos you create is – you may have guessed – a blog post.

Blogs have been around for roughly 20 years now. Blogs and “posts” are often used interchangeably. For this post, “blog” refers to the portion of your website devoted to sharing information while “post” refers to the individual, er, posts within the blog.

3 Common – and Simple to Avoid – Writing Mistakes Businesses Continue to Make

The most common mistake businesses make is writing like they're a business.

While I've noticed a shift to a friendlier writing style in the past decade, partially thanks to social media and I'm sure influenced as well by Millennials entry into the working world in large numbers, there's still waaaaay too much bad business writing out there.

It's boring. It's formulaic. It's about your business (not about your clients' challenges). It's full of jargon and insider lingo. Most likely, if you have an “assessment” of some sort you don't even describe exactly what that even is.

Quick test: have someone in your office copy a few pages from each of your competitor's websites as well as your own.

Do you know which one is yours?

Copier Dealer Websites: HubSpot or WordPress?

One question we frequently get asked by copier dealers and managed IT providers is, “Should we build our website on HubSpot or WordPress?” 

At Convergo, we manage websites on a variety of platforms including WordPress, HubSpot, and Drupal. Like anything, there are pros and cons to each option. The goal of this article is to give you a framework to make a great decision.

What Is a CMS (Content Management System)?

Today’s websites are built on Content Management Systems (CMSs). These platforms manage the content of your website and the design of the pages. Unlike the old days where editing a website required coding skills, a CMS makes it easier to edit pages and add blog articles.

The New Way to Win More Deals: Sales and Marketing as Co-Creators of Value

Why do sales people win? Until recently, the primary points of differentiation for companies have been based on two factors:

  • We provide great products
  • We back them up with great service

While that may be true, the challenge is that these provide little differentiation in a marketplace where the great product you sell can be sourced from dozens of vendors online. And while great service is rare, the reality is that there are many companies that provide great service.

In order to win sales, we need to differentiate ourselves. How do we do that? We have to bring value beyond the product and service. 

Marketing Isn't a Brochure or Leave-Behind

True confession – I used to think marketing was a load of BS.

Yep, before I got into content and inbound marketing, I was an editor. Marketing to me was an endless barrage of crappy email pitches and product press releases.

My job as an editor was to separate the wheat from the chaff to educate my readers. Oddly enough, that's almost exactly what I do now when creating content for clients – with the additional goal of also driving the audience to take an action.

I saw more than my share of bad marketing, brochure-ware websites and other marketing “strategies” focused on the glory of the vendor.

We still see too much of that for copier dealers and managed IT provider sites. No one cares about you. They care about how you can help them solve their business problems.

It’s Time To Face The Dial Tone - Cold Calling Doesn’t Work Anymore

Ok, that might not be entirely true. But it’s so true it might as well be.

Don’t believe me?

InsideView previously held a survey in an attempt to end the debate - is this the death of cold calling? The answers aren’t surprising to me as a millennial - according to the study, more than 90% of decision makers claimed they “never” responded to a cold call.

If you’ve read my previous posts, this isn’t a surprise -- I hate the phone. It’s true - I’ve written about cold calling before (and ignored four calls from numbers I don’t recognize today alone). My last post about phone calls - Call Me Maybe? Actually Please Don’t - detailed an undeniable personal fact : I literally will not answer my phone if I don’t know your number.

It’s easy to shrug that off, though, isn’t it? I’m one mid to late twenty something, surely I don’t speak for everyone, right?

Does Your Dealership Resonate With Buyers?

As competitive dealer principals, sales leaders, and sales reps, we all want to win. But in our highly commoditized industry it can be hard for buyers to differentiate between products that seem to have the same features and dealerships that all promise to deliver great service.

How do you differentiate in this marketplace? You need to resonate!