Recently, more of my clients are using sales automation software to improve SDR and call center efficiency. These tools can definitely increase the return on outbound efforts, but if you don’t implement them carefully, they can backfire and actually lower conversions. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Set an objective specific to the software use. Not your normal sales objectives, but exactly what you hope to get by implementing it. More consistency in messaging? The ability to get through more leads with your existing team? Adding more relevant touches and better prospect engagement? Know what you want, get everyone aligned and determine how you’re going to measure success.
- Don’t just burn through leads as quickly as possible. Sales success come from positive and personal prospect experiences, so set up each of your communications (email, phone, voice mail and social) to look like a one on one communication written by one rep to one prospect. It may be faster to set up a “one size fits all” program, but if you map out any different audiences, maybe by title, industry or where they are in their decision, and determine exactly what would work best for the prospect at that point, you can segment your streams to be more relevant. Plus, you want to make sure you’ve put a full effort into following up on each hard-won lead.
- You really can’t get too personal. Write your emails so they sound like they were written by a real person. Eliminate marketing speak, taglines, corporate links and trademarks. Don’t use fancy graphics. If your reps have different personalities, make their outreach sound like them. It’s also smart to make pre-recorded voice mail messages sound real by adding a breath or an “um” or two.
- Outreach software makes it easy to connect with the click of a button, but respect your prospect’s time and patience. It’s tempting to set up an email and an outbound call to go at the same time to make sure you’ve reached out in all channels, but if your prospect is on the phone or busy, that’s a lot of contact. Give them time to respond to the email and then call the next day.
- And make sure that each of those touches has a meaningful message for the prospect. If you are “checking In”, it’s not.
- Don’t roll out new outreach until you’ve tested it. Start with a rep or two, see how they feel about it and how prospects are responding. Once you know it’s right, then set it up for the whole team.
- Coaching and software go hand in hand. Have a meeting to kick off the new process with the sales team and then schedule periodic check-ins to get live feedback. (Hint – ask reps what they don’t use and what they have added on their own. That is a great way to find out where they need more support and to get inspiration for new messaging to test.)
- Don’t be set and forget. Frequent review is vital. Look at the analytics to see if you’ve met your objectives. Review each email and offer, to see if there has been any change in messaging or the marketplace that means you need to update the cadence. It doesn’t take long to review and it keeps your program sharp.
If you’re not sure where to start or need help with coaching or writing outreach, let me know!