Why I Can’t Talk About Being Rejection Proof or Sales 2.0 Anymore


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I want to ask for your help. Please read these two rants and then comment – I really need your comments, inbound links and outrage to support my position.

Rant #1: How many of your salespeople are rejection proof?

How would you react if I told you that I just violated somebody’s trademark by asking that question?

Last week I received an email from some guy who said just that. He claims to own a trademark on the term “rejectionproof“. I don’t know about you, but I felt something boiling up from way, deep down inside of me – outrage – at the possibility of this being true. My companies own trademarks and copyrights and everything I write on this blog is copyrighted. B U T – if someone can simply be awarded a trademark for a commonly used phrase, one that was surely being used prior to the award, one that does not represent a product, and then use that mark to extort money from people who are simply using the original term “rejection proof” in conversation….

He may have gotten lucky and had a computer determine that “rejectionproof” as a word was unique. To have the nerve to go after everyone who has ever used the common phrase “rejection proof” and tell them to stop using it (as in remove it from everything you’ve ever written. Remove it from my books?) and send him money…well I think that is extortion!

What do you think? Please comment below.

Rant #2 – Sales 2.0 Stupidity

I mentioned in yesterday’s article that senior executives still aren’t getting the sales pipeline.

At the same talk in DC, I asked the audience if they were familiar with the term Sales 2.0. Same response. Nobody. It seems that outside the blogosphere, and especially the more marketing focused sites, business people have no clue what Sales 2.0 is, and even fewer have heard of Customer 2.0. The bloggers and readers at CustomerThink.com and SalesEdgeOne.com will be outraged over this but let’s face it. Except for a small percentage of sales experts, Selling Power, who hosts the Sales 2.0 Conference, and most of the inbound, customer focused marketing experts, the terms Sales 2.0 and Customer 2.0 have no legs. They aren’t catching on. They don’t matter. And we should stop forcing it down the throats of business. While Sales 2.0 is about getting found, it’s really the art of using the new social marketing and sales tools. They’re tools! Selling, even with the tools, is still selling so let’s stop confusing people and talking about stuff they don’t care about.

What do you think? Please comment below but indicate whether you are a sales or marketing expert, or a sales or business leader at your company.

Republished with author's permission from original post.


  1. Dave, hope you feel better getting those rants off your chest! 🙂

    My feeling is that the sales profession has still not come to grips with the dramatic (and traumatic) changes that will be required to deal with today’s empowered customers. “Sales 2.0” is really “Sales 1.3” or so — there’s a long way to go.

    Making sales more “scientific” was the original idea behind Sales 2.0 — which technically is a trademarked term of Sales 2.0 and is licensed for other uses like Gerhard’s conference. So I’m reluctant to use the term because of this issue, although it’s routinely written about without respecting the trademark. (Do a Google search to see.)

    The bigger issue is whether “Sales 2.0” is anything new. Much (not all) of what I’ve seen/read in the past couple of years seems like warmed over and relabeled CRM ideas of 10+ years ago. Automate processes, use a methodology, blah blah blah. Still important, but not new aside from updated tools/vendors.

    To be fair, there has been some progress irrespective of the label used. Forward-thinking organizations are looking at the entire end-to-end marketing/sales process, and some use the term Revenue Performance Management (RPM) to reflect a more collaborative effort of marketing and sales to maximize revenue. Personally, I think this is a more important trend – call it Revenue 2.0 if you like!

    But even this idea falls short, because it’s still focused internally and doesn’t consider the buyer/customer experience. Dave Brock discusses this issue at Who Is The Beneficiary Of Sales And Marketing Automation?.

    My suggestion: a group of industry experts — from marketing, sales and customer experience — should come up with a new non-copyrighted term to reflect a customer-centric approach to marketing/sales performance.

  2. Thanks Bob,

    We need the voice of sanity to provide some history, background and persepctive on the sales 2.0, revenue 2.0, tools side of the discussion. I like your suggestion, but wonder if one more new term will be the things that gets everyone on the same page, or the source of more confusion, disagreement and misinterpretation.

  3. Dave, I wouldn’t discount the value of labels. They are like brand names for ideas.

    CRM means something in the market. Sales 2.0 means something too.

    When we talk about something new, it’s natural to want to call it something. We need some new thinking, but we also need a short-hand to talk about the new thinking.

  4. First Dave, I own the trademarks to salestools, salesassessments and their variations. I should be awarded the trademarks to “a” “an” “of” “and” “the” soon. You know where to send the royalty checks;-)

    To my real point, Sales 2.0 Stupidity, I wish I could be as positive as you. I don’t know that people really understand what Sales 2.0 is — it’s become all about technology, and less about what the technology enables.

    But it’s worse. I was at the Sales 2.0 Conference about a month ago and Dreamforce before that—two showcases of Sales 2.0. Since then, I’ve been deluged with emails and telephone calls from most vendors at these events. As recently as two days ago, a salesperson for a leading Sales Intelligence company called to talk to me about the value of Sales Intelligence (I wonder if he looked at my LinkedIn Profile, by Blog, or Website). The crowning moment, he tried to get me to trial their product, I responded, “I’m already a customer.” He didn’t even know what to reply.

    Too many Sales 2.0 vendors still use tired old Sales 0.1 and Marketing 0.1 approaches and methods.

    I’m in wild agreement, the the underlying principles of marketing and selling endure. The Sales 2.0 tools enable us to execute those principles more effectively and in applications we have never imagined before, but the are still tools. Without the sound foundation of the basic principles, these tools can also create Garbage at the speed of light.

    Finally, Bob, as far as a new term to capture many of the customer centric ideas, I’ve always been partial to supercalifragilisticexpialidocious 😉

  5. Bob, I have probably come up with as many names or labels aa anyone in the space, but most of them are for client, reader, or internal use, rather than push my labels on the business or sales communities at large.

    So I like names, terms and labels as muchnasnyou but introducing them as standards for others to adopt requires an awful lot of people agreeing and committing to a PR initiative and more.

  6. Dave, I know you have amgood sense of humor but this response was among your best!

    Your real point is right on – Thanks for making it.


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