Are you “flying blind” when it comes to what your sales team is working on?
Do you know the answers to the essential questions:
- How many calls/day are my sales reps making?
- Average talk time?
- How many conversations it takes for sales to create an opportunity?
- What level and type of activity do my top reps do on a daily/weekly basis?
- Is a hunter’s activity different than a farmer’s?
- How many calls/lead does your team make?
- How many dials/lead is considered “optimized” for your company? (Industry standard is 9 dial attempts per lead)
- Do I have a prescribed process for following up with leads and contacts?
In the past several years, I’ve personally seen companies like WebEx, ON24, and Riverbed (three companies I’ve worked for from 2005 to 2012) implement a “commodity” dialer application that enables sales leaders to get a baseline and see the baseline of what’s going on with the sales team–daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly. This is a great first step and absolutely essential to know the answer to these questions. If you don’t know the answers, companies like ConnectAndSell can help you answer them.
But wait… that’s not all. Once you have visibility, you will find out:
- It takes 18 – 22 dials to have a SINGLE phone conversation! No wonder it’s quiet on the typical sales floor!
- 91% of marketing leads are WASTED! Never qualified. Why? See point #1. As hard as Reps try to reach them, physics won’t let them!
- There is an overall LACK OF CAPACITY in Inside Sales (and Sales) organizations. Simple exercise: Calculate the # of leads generated by marketing x 9 dials/lead = Capacity needed. Then add up the capacity you have. By leveraging a parallel dialer like ConnectAndSell, you can add capacity at about 1/5th the cost of human capital.
Imagine if… you had a sales team of 9 Account Executives who could drive over 150 conversations in < 2 hours. I do. In the past, I would be LUCKY if the sales team could drive 150 conversations in one week. Consider the value. My sales team will be 8 – 10X more productive then my closest competitor. If you want to learn how to 1) turn on the lights and answer the questions above, and 2) learn how your sales team could be 8-10X more productive, I’d love to chat with your Sr. Sales Leadership. Email me anytime at email@example.com!
Are you plagued with the lack of a plan to hire new Account Executives for your company?
Do you have aggressive hiring goals for end of year as you head into 2014?
As the VP of Corporate Sales for ConnectAndSell, and Director of Frontline Fridays for the American Association of Inside Sale Professionals (http://www.aa-isp.org), I’ve found a better way – and proven that you can hire a lot of A Players in < 3 weeks!
The Process For Finding, Interviewing, and Staffing 9 Sr. AEs in < 3 weeks:
- Download a bunch (3000+) of contacts from Zoom Info – I searched for “account executive” in title, you could do Lead Gen in title and Business Development. (note if you don’t have zoom ConnectAndSell has an OEM relationship with Zoom and others). I PERSONALLY DO NOT RECOMMEND Data.com anymore – the data is often outdated, the cost is on the high end, and ZoomInfo has higher quantity, higher quality.
- Import all 3000+ into your email marketing tool (I used Mail Chimp for free up to 2000 emails), and then tweak the introduction email to your company, and the sales position you are staffing for, 3-4 times over 2-3 weeks. And send multiple emails.
- Everyone who opens your email, load them into ConnectAndSell and call them when they open. The pitch goes – Did you get the email about the sales role for Company ABC? Do you know any A Players in the area, or would you yourself be interested? (Note: Calling the Opens, 400+ contacts each week, would be nearly impossible without a parallel dialer like ConnectAndSell. And with ConnectAndSell you pay per conversation, so it’s success based!).
- Go to LinkedIn and just add a bunch of folks – I did 200+ over a few weekends. Right when someone accepts, send them an email introducing your position, and make sure to embed the link below – the MySqore link.
- Post the position on Career Builder, Monster.com, CraigsList, OR try http://ziprecruiter.com, I just did Zip + CraigsList and between calling the opens, and gaining exposure this way, had plenty of candidates to talk to!
- IF YOU ARE HIRING QUOTA CARRYING SALES REPS – Include this link in the emails and ask folks to “apply” via the link - http://www.mysqore.com/#!whats-mysqore-salesrep/c1v0f, short version: http://bit.ly/17AH0MM. (Note: Prior to using this service, you’ll want to email firstname.lastname@example.org and have them set you up so that you receive the scores by email).
- If you are hiring Lead Gen Reps – use this http://bit.ly/1aWxIIv. Make sure to email email@example.com to get you set up prior to launching. (Note: This solution for scoring candidates is currently FREE! I built it to give value to Inside Sales Leaders and standardize the scoring process for Inside Sales Professionals).
- You’ll get an email with the answers to their questions, a resume attached, and their MySqore every time someone submit. The candidates love this process too! It reflects positively on your brand to invest in a process like this.
- After you phone screen the candidates, bring them in for an in person interview. Once again you and your managers can use the MySqore solution to ask each candidate similar questions (pre-built) that will provide a score by candidate.
- Once you’ve done the interviews and considering sending out an offer, use MySqore to do the reference checks! Simply send out a link and MySqore scores the candidates references.
The ABCs of ConnectAndSell: How does ConnectAndSell help you accelerate this process?
- Accelerate your HIRING process w/MySqore (www.mysqore.com)
- Build a solid list of prospects – ConnectAndSell has dialed 14M outbound calls in 2013, so we know direct dial numbers. And we’ve OEM’d nearly 9 vendors into the process so you can procure these prospective AE names from ConnectAndSell – at a reasonable rate!
- Call in parallel! Serial dialing is the old way, why make 30 – 50 dials in a day to reach 2-3 people, when you can use CAS and dial 150+ in an hour and reach 6-8 per hour!
- Drive sales productivity 3-5X!
Why I Love My Job @ ConnectAndSell!
Brought to you by guest blogger, Erik Kubec, Sr. Account Executive at ConnectAndSell
- I get to talk to someone every five minutes
- No matter the result of any of my pitches, I get to move on and have another one in five minutes.
- What would dating have been like if it was like ConnectAndSell?
- I get to pitch / talk with sales people
- It would be a sign of disrespect to them if I didn’t objection handle them a few times
- “Look Mr. VP of Sales, you just asked me to ‘email you something.’ Are you really going to have any respect for me if I settle for that?”
- It would be a sign of disrespect to them if I didn’t objection handle them a few times
- I get to believe in what I sell
- Conversations matter. The math on how your conversations matter will be the key to determining if we do business.
If you are working in the Denver area and DON’T LOVE YOUR JOB, check us out at http://www.ConnectAndSell.com, we’re hiring AEs and Sr. AEs in Denver. You may also apply here: http://www.mysqore.com/#!whats-mysqore-salesrep/c1v0f
After three intensive days of new hire sales training with the Executive Leadership Team of ConnectAndSell and the newly hired Denver office, Stu Schmidt, CEO of ConnectAndSell wrapped up with a very forward thinking and game changing “send off”.
He asked the team, “What is THE most important job of a sales professional?“
The team said things like:
Listen to the customer
Know how they serve their customer
Solve the customers business pains
Stu agreed that these are all very important things, and that the #1 goal of a Sales Professional has to be to CHANGE THE COURSE OF HISTORY.
What did he mean? He went on to share that if you as a sales professional don’t add value to the buyer and can’t challenge the status quo – then what value are you adding? He recalled days where field sales reps would do the “check in” calls with prospects with not much to say and just dropping off some donuts.
In February of 2005, Stu Schmidt trained the new hire class at WebEx–sales reps, managers, and others who went on to become incredible sales leaders, sales reps, and Executives in some pretty big name companies. Stu changed history.
So… when you self-assess your skill set and the OUTCOMES you are delivering, “Are you changing the course of history, or are you just checking in”?
Blog post by Erik Kubec, Sr. Account Executive at ConnectAndSell.
Your top sales rep walks out of the conference room after a call with a good prospect.
“How did the call go?,” you ask.
“Really good,” he replies.
Later, you will check his notes in Salesforce.com to qualify how good ‘Really good’ is. However, from his body language and his voice intonation, you know the information your organization needs to qualify a sales opportunity–BANT, business drivers, objections, competitors, stake holders, next steps (both for the prospect and the sales rep)– will be there.
He didn’t get to be your top rep by being sloppy or lazy.
And marketing has done a great job providing information to this prospect, and tracking—with Marketo or Hubspot—what white papers they have downloaded, what webinars they have attended.
Later, when you are prepping for the board meeting, you look at the notes from the call (it’s all there) and your spirits lift a bit as this prospect is a good opportunity.
But that is your problem—this call stands out too much because the number of quality conversations happening is too low.
What to do?
Some of the human processes of sales are as old as language: trust, commitments, asking, reciprocity. Certainly, new ‘sales theories’ come along every couple of years—from Dale Carnegie to Challenger Sales—and they add real value. They provide new ways of understanding and executing sales conversations to drive more revenue and improve results.
And the Internet has enabled new tools such as Salesforce.com and WebEx that improve productivity around sales. SFDC provides ways to track, organize, and report on sales conversations, whereas WebEx provides a cost-effective way to have remote sales conversations.
The ubiquitous adoption of these tools (or tools like them) by sales forces across the globe speaks to the industry-acknowledged belief that conversations matter. Yet there has not been a soup-to-nuts solution that offers the generation of quantity of quality sales conversations on demand, outside of increasing (expensively) head count of reps.
That’s why I am pretty excited about the opportunity of ConnectAndSell.
And if you are accountable for revenue generation, you might be too when you see how Connect and Sell can improve real productivity of sales reps by 5x- 10x. And did I mention that the CEO of ConnectAndSell, Stu Schmidt, was responsible for global training of sales professionals at WebEx, and for bringing the Professionals Services team to market at WebEx!?
Brought to you by Guest Author, Jennifer Piehl, Sr. Account Executive at ConnectAndSell.
Sales through relationships has long been touted as “the” way to make it in B to B sales. Develop a trust, we’re told, build a rapport, we’re encouraged, and sales will follow. It’s what I have used in my 20+ years in sales, and I have been very successful. But what if you’re selling a product that seems too good to be true?
The new company I just joined, ConnectAndSell, promises that in one hour a good salesperson will have the number of conversations they would typically achieve in one day. When I heard this, I was skeptical. As a salesperson, who has called 40-60 people in one day, only to have 4-5 actual live conversations and, ConnectAndSell will deliver that in one HOUR? Amazing, right?! If it works!
And now you see an interesting challenge emerge. Just how DO you sell a product whose results are seemingly over-stated, to a C-Level decision maker, who you’ve just reached, and with whom you have no relationship?
Dale Carnegie once sold us salespeople on the phrase, “If I could show you a way to _______, would you want to hear about it?” It seemed like pretty good advice 20 years ago; however, who uses that approach anymore? We’ve all learned it, yet it seems old and outdated now doesn’t it? It’s clear that as sales people we need to evolve.
With a product like ConnectAndSell that does deliver what it promises, and whose results seem too good to believe, it’s clear a new approach is needed, or our prospects could vaporize like smoke. Twenty years ago, Dale Carnegie presented us with the cutting edge sales methodology. My customers loved it – so did I. Now we must create a NEW mindset that empowers our customers to open their minds, enables them to accept the possibilities that can exist. Even before they know they’ve done it. How? Challenge-based empowerment.
- We need to challenge them. If they are entrepreneurs and business leaders, they already think differently. In today’s world, if they aren’t different, they aren’t making it. Let’s invite them to accept a new reality, one where sales numbers can improve, while the headcount in their new hires can go down, results will increase exponentially. All companies say their product works, but what can we do to show them results? Prove to them by showing them results your product will bring them. Show them that you have done the very things you are promising them. Proof is more than promises.
- Challenge them to accept a new sales process whose only limitations are their own internal systems. In our case, the only limitation they have is their call lists. (we can help with those, too.) Invite them to imagine how their company would look in a sales world where 10,000 live conversations can be had, where one company grew from $3 million to $12 million without adding to a sales force.
- Show them success. Know their business and how your product will make their sales improve. Show them that we aren’t making promises; we are promising to deliver beyond their wildest expectations. Getting them to say “you can’t do that,” opens the door for us to show that, yes indeed we can (and just did).
Ultimately, businesses still follow a bottom line which basically boils down to “what’s in this for us/ROI” model. And, as we all know, a bottom line does run, and grow, a business. Well, if I could show you, and your team, a way to have 8 sales conversations in an hour, vs 1-2 DAYS, would you want to know about it?
Uh-oh. Maybe Dale Carnegie was pretty smart, after all!
This blog brought to you by Guest Writer Hailey Williams, Account Executive at ConnectAndSell.
In the iconic 80′s film, The Breakfast Club, the Princess, the Criminal, the Athlete, the Brain and the Basket Case take on the complicated social hierarchy that is High School. During a Saturday detention session, the five high school students come to grips with the realities facing them and they break down the one-dimensional impressions they initially had of each other.
1. there is more to each character than meets the eye and,
2. as a whole, they are powerful in their diversity.
When we come into contact with new people, we usually have only a few pieces of information about them that, whether intentionally or not, first defines them. In other words, we create a first impression based on relatively little.
I happened upon the movie this past Thanksgiving evening. As I watched, I realized that it sheds light on my recent experience joining a new company. ConnectAndSell, a San Mateo-based sales enablement software company, is opening a new Denver office that I’ll be a part of. CAS veeps Chad Burmeister and Jim Reiss meticulously recruited, interviewed and hired eight salespeople for our new team using CAS’s own parallel dialing software to accelerate the process. Fortunately, we ended up with the most interesting, dynamic and diverse sales team possible.
The range in experience is from 3 to 30 years and spans many industries, ensuring that each team member will bring his/her own special “sauce” to the table. At first glance we might have been the Beauty Queen, the Baseball Player, the Clint Eastwood, and the Newbie, etc. However, as the Denver players begin to take shape the overwhelming feeling I have is one of unfettered opportunity. The opportunity for success and perhaps more importantly, the opportunity to learn. I’ve never been surrounded by so many talented and successful people in my career. As I get to know my new co-workers, I’m blown away by the environment of encouragement and collaboration. The only thing we have in common with the angst-ridden, teenage, rebellious Breakfast Club, is that we too are more powerful in our diversity.
I joined ConnectAndSell for one simple reason: the technology. As the “Newbie,” my career consists of 3.5 years of experience in print advertising sales. Not only did I lack technology sales experience, I also lacked experience with just about any sales enablement technologies in my own sales process. I felt the pain of manually calling 30-40 clients or prospects a day and perhaps having at most 5 conversations. ConnectAndSell brings you conversations on demand, a concept so new to me I had to see it to believe it.
As any sales executive will corroborate, there exists a necessary but sometimes inconvenient balance between actual time spent selling and time spent doing everything else: databasing, prospecting, researching, list-building, etc. If you could swing the balance in your favor and spend most of your time selling, why wouldn’t you?
The Denver Breakfast Club meets at 1730 Blake Street at 8:00 AM on weekdays. And watch out, we’re a game-changer! Click here to learn more about this exciting company and Denver based sales opportunity!