Your Sales Team Needs to Have Visibility Into 3 Fundamentals

1. Volume

This is basic and nearly every sales organization has monitored & analyzed a portion of their sales volumes

  • # of Opportunities created/month
  • # of clients won/month

Volumes measurements are more advanced once you think like a Sales 2.0 organization. If this were a ski run, these are your BLUE runs, the baseline for the mountains terrain.

2. Probability

Welcome to your BLACK DIAMOND run – understanding the percentage chance of winning, losing and positive momentum. Nearly any leading CRM will help you understand:

  • % chance of winning your proposal
  • % of discovery meetings-to-proposals ratio

3. Velocity

The utopia – a DOUBLE BLACK DIAMOND mogul course; your eyes get ambitious, but your legs freeze with the possibility of the punishment. Velocity is not just the “Opportunity – Average Days Open” report defaulting in, its analyzing timelines that help you understand the break-even point between high % ROI and diminishing ROI.

Here Are 5 Sales Metrics Your Team Needs to Place Into its Arsenal

1. Median Days Within Any Stage of Their Buying Cycle

Forget “Average” in, this is a misleading metric. Average accounts for deals that took your team 2.5 years to close, and the “Bluebird” that you won in 8 hours. Rule of Thumb – when you measure Velocity (Time) from now on, think MEDIAN (middle). You want to know how long your sales team is spending within each sales “stage”. # of days after contacting the DM until you’ve booked a discovery call and # of days after the product demo until they ask for a formulized proposal.


I call this analysis “Diminishing ROI” in which you determine if a prospect takes longer than X days in a particular stage of the buying process – the % chance of positive momentum begins to fall off a cliff. I realize that my time is best served finding a net new prospect, rather that churn this particular relationship into the dirt. Plot every stage of the buying cycle, and the MEDIAN DAYS it will take to achieve momentum into the next stage. Once a prospect crosses that timeline, alerts sound that the prospect is growing stale.

2. Marketing method that triggered an Opportunity

There are 2 levels of measurement you need to consider. First, the creation of this record – where did you acquire knowledge of this company? Tradeshow, cold call, external referral, Next, once you made contact with this company, and they showed interest, what was the touchpoint method that initiated their interest level? cold call, marketing campaign, client referral? You need to know how you acquire company information AND how you’re driving them into Sales Qualified Leads.


This metric is all about where to spend your future marketing $. First, where will you spend your time uncovering “suspects” information – from, tradeshows, and/or business directories? Second, once you make contact with decision-makers at XYZ Company, what touchpoint method appeared to tweak their interest level. Both these answers will help you determine where to allocate your marketing $ for high ROI.

3. Optimum Touchpoint Strategy – Timing & Frequency

Most sales professionals are trained to call before 9 a.m. and after 5 p.m. to bypass the gatekeeper (thank you 1998 cold calling strategies). In 2012, it’s about utilizing ideal call planning and call executing hours to exact precision. Did you know that the highest % of touchpoints with decision-makers are made within the last 15 minutes of each hour? Did you know compounding 4-6 touchpoints over 15 days has an exponential % chance of success in developing opportunities with a decision-maker. This includes voicemails and emails that drive a distinct call-to-action.


This metric measures when decision-makers are best responsive throughout a day, week, to which corporate department, and what % increase of effectiveness for each touchpoint made. Remember you are building brand awareness – and touchpoint frequency is imperative. Have your sales team executing calling campaigns during times that present the greatest ROI.

4. # of Direct Extensions & Mobile Numbers – to – Meetings Booked Ratio

A simple statistic from Vorsight (a lead generation company in Boston) – for every 1% increase of direct extensions/mobile numbers in their CRM, their agents were booking 2.06 more opportunities/week. It’s truly remarkable, but C-Levels are extremely busy and difficult to connect with. Having direct access to their ear has become essential. First, build a simple report showing your database composition of % direct extensions and/or mobile numbers. Second, for every opportunity created, identify what % you have direct phone access. The result will be very clear – get direct numbers to open more doors!


When you conduct business development training and show tactical solutions, your team is looking for empirical evidence of success. This metric is one of those “I told you so” moments.

5. Probability of Close – based on Lead Score hitting MQL/SQL

If you are not utilizing Marketing Automation to drive brand awareness & lead nurturing, you have further issues to address. Assuming you know about lead scoring, it’s not taking Pardot, Marketo, Eloqua or NetResults “out-of-the-box” lead scoring system. You need to design a system that reflects your prospects buying process, and generates a lead score that alerts you appropriately. You need to know your % of winning deals when leads achieve specific lead scores – thus providing your team with a strategy for attacking hot leads.


Marketing Automation is about time management! It mitigates calling cold leads (long before their buying cycle has begun), so they may concentrate on warm/hot SQL’s. Your team can analyze when lead scores of X means Jackpot, and when below this threshold is too premature (costing you time and resources if attacked too early).

Jamie Shanks

Author: Jamie Shanks

Jamie Shanks is a world-leading Social Selling expert and author of the book, "Social Selling Mastery - Scaling Up Your Sales And Marketing Machine For The Digital Buyer". A true pioneer in the space of digital sales transformation, Jamie Shanks has trained over 10,000's of sales professionals and leaders all around the world.

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