COVID-19 has put many businesses in the tough position of choosing what to cut rather than where to invest. But businesses are still looking for products and services that can help them adapt quickly and become more resilient, as well as plan for a post-pandemic future.
This gives sales teams a big opportunity to fill that gap and build a long term relationship.
According to TOPO’s 2019 Sales Development Benchmark Report, best-in-class SDRs generate $415k in pipeline per rep every month.
At 6sense, we broke through the benchmark and generated $787k per BDR every month… all without cold calls and emails.
But it didn’t happen overnight.
We did this by focusing on three things that help us engage and connect with every lead we have.
Here’s how we did it.
3 Ways to Engage Prospects and Move Deals Forward
Set the TONE for the Week Ahead
Many people forget that selling is a team sport, especially where BDRs are concerned. That’s why, with my team, I start each week with a TONE meeting, which stands for:
Targets: Where do you currently stand with prospects?
Objectives: What are you committing to this week?
New: What tactics or strategies are you testing out, and what are the methods behind them? What are the key takeaways?
Execution: What’s your execution strategy to hit your numbers and quotas?
These meetings and the central questions involved serve several purposes.
First of all, it allows us to highlight our teammates and hold everyone accountable. We celebrate the wins, and we can offer help and advice when someone falls behind.
Second, these meetings create an open dialogue around what’s working and what’s not along with a culture of testing, so we’re basing our work on data.
Lastly, these meetings allow us to spend time on learning and development that might otherwise be put off or deprioritized.
Having a clear plan that you prepare and share with the team helps keep the emphasis on what your goals are and how you expect to achieve them.
If you’re a sales manager, I highly recommend you try implementing a weekly meeting like this. If you’re a rep, mention this to your manager, or start an informal group with your other reps to hold each other accountable and improve.
Inspect and Refresh Your Cadences Regularly
Creativity counts for a lot when engaging and connecting with prospects, but reps should also have a structure they’re sticking to in an effort to be accountable.
Create several different email cadence templates for different goals. You can personalize these cadences for each send, but the fact that they are set up in a template means you can gather valuable data on subject lines, click-through, open rate, etc.
If you want to know how to write awesome cadences, this article is a great place to start: “How to Write Hard-Hitting Cold Email Sales Cadences That Actually Convert.”
Then you can use your own creativity and proactiveness to optimize the metrics that you’re struggling with.
Part of keeping a cadence relevant and personalized, though, is refreshing it on a quarterly basis.
In doing so, you’re looking back at specific aspects of each individual cadence. Did it achieve its stated goal? This is why it’s so important to have specific intentions behind each cadence rather than creating hundreds of random ones.
This allows you to look for any weaknesses and correct them or repurpose what’s working really well in another cadence for the next round.
Centralize Your Data, Analyze It, and Then Use What Works
Engaging prospects is all about personalization and timing, and personalization and timing both rely on having the right data, fast. That means consolidating your data into one place so you can quickly find what you need and act on it.
Here’s a great article on how to prepare for and get started with AI and machine learning: “3 Ways AI and Machine Learning Will Affect Sales (& How to Prepare).”
Depending on your tech stack, you may already be using AI and predictive analytics solutions. In which case, it’s critical that those solutions speak to and improve your CRM. if you aren’t using AI tools, there is no better time to start than now!
But regardless of how you build your tech stack, you need all your tools coordinating and consolidating information, ideally to your CRM.
You shouldn’t have to go into separate systems to get all the account information you need to move a deal forward. Make sure all your data lives in one place and that the tools that support or enrich it integrate seamlessly.
Your predictive analytics solution should tell you where accounts are in the buying journey, how and when they’ve engaged with your business, which contacts are in the buying center, what those contacts are interested in, and the next steps you should take.
And this should all happen within your CRM.
Once it’s there, you can use this data to be more personal in your outreach, analyze trends of what’s working and what’s not, and continually optimize your process.
Get Creative and Stay Persistent
The winning combination for engagement is the same across almost every field — detailed account and contact data, a customized cadence, and personalized messaging based on buyer behavior.
When you’re unsure what to try next or how to improve, the answer is always to look at every aspect of your outbound motions. And ask yourself what needs to be changed, cut, or copied.
Did you dig into your open rates? Click rates? How do they compare to this time last year?
How many meetings do you have booked?
How are the interactions with your cadences and messaging?
The answers to those questions, with the support of your team and intelligent solutions integrated with your CRM, can teach you how to turn obstacles and roadblocks into stepping stones instead.