This episode we discuss the ABC mentality and what that means in modern day sales
The working world was turned upside down in only a few days across March 2020. What has this done to the outbound machine? We have brought along industry-leading salespeople to discuss how this has impacted their business or industry and also to answer any questions you might have.
We are very excited to announce that our team has moved into a shiny new location just by Southwark bridge. Some of you, familiar with our old location, will recognise that this sounds just like the old office, and you wouldn’t be far off the truth. In fact as I sit here now typing this up I am sat next to a window with a lovely view of the old place. So why the move?
Space. We are growing. As well as the opening of our Sydney office earlier in the year we were starting to run out of space in the office. As well as simply offering more square footage the new office allows us all to work in one big space, allowing us to work closer both literally and figuratively.
Location. Okay so yes, we might not have moved far, but we are no longer the office just behind the Tate Modern, no not the Bluefin building the other one. We are now firmly planted just down from Southwark Bridge with a sterling view of the Shard. Not to mention that we are now marginally closer to Flat Iron Square for Friday night socials, every second counts.
Fridges. Yes this might not have been at the top of the agenda when deciding on a new space but there is no denying that sales is hungry working. Two floor to ceiling fridge freezers and a larger kitchen are a welcome addition to the office especially for those burning the late-night oil on our American campaigns. There might even be some room for a couple of those Friday afternoon refreshments, you never know.
So we are having to say bye to 185 Park Street however our new address of 24 Southwark Bridge Road is going to provide a ton of opportunity moving forward. Not to mention the fact that we now have a bunch of empty desks that need filling! If you are a recent grad, first jobber or have just left school then get in touch it would be great to have a chat!
That being said it is fair to say we are very proud of our new place so would love to show you around if you wanted to come in for a coffee.
Cold calling, yes this might be a bit of a taboo topic amongst a new generation of sales professionals, and often falls to the wayside in the busy working lives of salesmen and women worldwide. That said, effective prospecting over the phone still has incredible value… ask anyone at EngageTech and many of our partners and competitors.
In our experience many companies find it tough to coach and maintain inside sales teams – and that’s why the leading vendors, distributors and partners in the technology sector seek our help with appointment setting, lead generation services or sales training. Everyone is looking to build more pipeline and increase new business acquisition, so as a taster we have put together some tips.
Pick up the phone-
It is easy to put calling off, dive in at the deep end and start every day by prospecting. Cold calling, when done effectively, remains one of the most successful ways of connecting with a prospect. It provides an opportunity to build rapport, ask important questions to position a sale and impart relevant information. Just remember to keep it slow, have a bespoke pitch and open the conversation whenever possible. You will be surprised at just how much information you can get out of a cold call, allowing you to give a more impactful presentation or pitch in any follow up correspondence.
Keep it Human-
It is key to keep all communication as human as possible. Do your research on the prospect, break the ice and make your call stand out. Body language and smiling helps, spend some money on a mirror to put on your desk; if you look positive that will translate over the phone.
First impressions count, whether it be email, social media or over the phone, a friendly opening followed by an ‘Impact Statement’ is integral. Next up talk about the amazing work you are doing with your existing clients, telling a story goes a long way. Keep it short and demonstrate value quickly.
Simple and concise is the most effective approach (see Stephan Schiffman’s Cold Calling Techniques a recommended read for anyone in sales). “The reason I was getting in touch was to book a meeting, how are you fixed up later this week?”
Benefits not features-
Sales 101, when discussing your product, solution or service talk about benefits ahead of the features. How can you benefit the prospect’s business? Will you; help drive down costs, free up time for the workforce, or solve a well-known industry problem?
Be consistent with your time and make sure you have set aside a period to solely focus on this. Our suggestion is from the moment you arrive in the office until mid-morning, but if you are dedicated to this you will see results no matter what time you set aside. If you try to fit prospecting in around other commitments, it is easier to find reasons not to pick up the phone.
Watch this space for some more updates, there is value in prospecting across numerous platforms and we will discussing email, as well as social platforms in the coming months. EngageTech has a wealth of experience in prospecting and are currently driving millions of pounds worth of pipeline for our clients. If you need any help with this, or any other part of the sales cycle, then get in touch at email@example.com
Starting at the top, your process when you get a new list is key, the first time you call through the list:
Never skip a company – Put in the hours and effort to source and call even if it takes you a couple of days to get through the list – you will reap the rewards later.
2-3 relevant people at EVERY company – As an example this would bring your target from 100 companies to 300 prospects.
Never skim through.
Be Crazy Diligent!
As well as sourcing 2 or 3 people with the perfect job title:
Always try and source a DDi or a mobile by calling up the gatekeeper our using a solution like Lusha.
Or if you have comprehensive data in your CRM try and add someone that you can see has been spoken to before– this will be a person who is receptive to calls, and even if they aren’t 100% relevant they should give you info and a referral.
Push for the referral’s DDi or mobile from this contact too.
Be conscious that sourcing 8/9 people per company can be counter-productive, causing you to not be familiar with your list and ultimately less successful.
Next step is to never forget the basics in this job:
Whether you are on 6 meetings for the week or 1 for the month you need to make sure you are proactively sourcing new contacts through LinkedIn, speaking to people at the companies on your list and also checking your CRM for new contacts (Your colleagues should be improving your database every-day too). This will mean that you always have pipeline and new contacts to speak to.
Also, when speaking to a person make sure you update notes for multiple contacts from that company. For example they are using XYZ solution, or person ABC is best to speak to. This will allow you to make the most of your time as you won’t be contacting people needlessly when you already have better intelligence at your disposal to utilise.
Equally you won’t miss the chance to make your call relevant as for example you may know what tool they are using or that they are having a particular challenge at the moment.
Lastly there are a few more points that will help you when your target list appears overcalled and dry, these actions will help you to have more conversations:
Anyone who you believe to be a hot referral, make sure you source a DDi and mobile for.
It is also more worthwhile asking for the number outright on the switchboard, rather than asking to be connected to the individual you are looking to speak to. You have nothing to lose, worst case you will be connected even if you aren’t given the number outright.
You will likely have a repetitive calling pattern, it is important to make sure you flip the order regularly (top to bottom, rather than bottom to top for example) this will allow you to catch people at different times in the day. Sorting alphabetically or by job title occasionally will help provide variety. If you are looking for help around the timing of your conversations then please send me an email, we have a solution that can help.
Never turn down an opportunity to add more data by finding new companies to prospect into. Remember though, bad pitches which aren’t thought out will burn companies, and data can be finite so treat every organisation with care.
Leaving your list and targeting a different industry or working on a different campaign for a few days and coming back with a fresh pair of eyes is also beneficial, this will also allow pipeline to mature.
Re-pitch people who you have marked as cold – sometimes they might have just been having a bad day. We all have those once in a while.
Make sure you are sending speculative emails daily – not everyone answers their phone and with marketing automation tools and lots of literature on email engagements this can’t be ignored. Hubspot who are a vendor in this space have produced an interesting article – https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/best-time-to-make-a-sales-call
The worst thing you can do in any prospecting job is to mindlessly call through a list. Make sure you don’t cut corners on sourcing, use alternative techniques, vary your tactics and make sure you aren’t burning leads. If you do feel like your list is dry or you are going through the motions get in touch with me – firstname.lastname@example.org