Welcome to your weekly roundup for July 28-Aug 1. This week we have an analysis on the growing number of tech players in the market, advice on how to offer personalization at scale and a roundup of experts’ opinion on the major cold calling mishaps.
SMB and Midmarket advisor Nicolas de Kouchkovsky has released his annual Sales Tech Landscape PDF. If you want to be an organization that excels at modern selling, getting a handle on how to assemble an effective and scalable tech stack is absolutely essential.
Rather than sales and marketing living independently, new technologies are helping to unify the revenue stack. This makes it easier for the two to work together towards a common goal.
The landscape is broken down into five major categories:
Engagement: Tech for engaging with buyers such as voice, video, digital or in-person communication.
Enablement & Productivity: Tools for helping front-line salespeople be more efficient and effective.
Sales Intelligence: Solutions and database services that provides information and insights on companies and buyers.
Pipeline & Analytics: Measuring and executing the pipeline and measuring performance.
People: Managing and developing sales force, including onboarding and compensation.
To download a copy of The Sales Tech Landscape, go to Sales Hacker.
Kouchkovsky says three themes have been driving much of the SaaS sales innovation; account-based approaches, playbooks and methodologies, and artificial intelligence.
Justin Shriber, VP of Marketing for LinkedIn Sales and Marketing Solutions, writes on how the best sellers can combine tech, tools and skills (ie, social selling) to close more deals.
Smarter targeting. Social platforms offer sales professionals intent signals that indicate when people are ready to buy. For salespeople, this is gold. Job changes, social posts and hiring patterns communicate when buyers might make bold moves, express top-of-mind questions and areas on investment, respectively.
Better understanding. Since buying committees are larger and more complex, the deal usually goes to the salesperson who asks on-point questions such as “I noticed that you’ve been thinking about…” rather than “Can I ask you a few questions?” Basically, having done your homework and coming prepared with potential pain points will give you the upper hand.
Closer engagement. Did you know twenty-three percent of deals go dark because reps fail to engage buyers through the entirety of the sales process? Providing value through content should be measured with technology such as PointDrive or email/video tracking.
With the rise of social selling and instant messaging tools, it seems the art of cold calling is diminishing. Our friends over at Tenfold have asked the top sales experts and thought leaders: what are the most common mistakes sales reps make during cold calls?
Here are some of our favourite takeaways about how many sales teams are failing to use social selling to their advantage—to read more, we encourage you to check out the entire eBook.
“Stop sending impersonal emails to try to get a buyer’s attention. Take a few minutes to see something about your buyer through their LinkedIn profile or through a Google search - just a few minutes! People think that they don’t have the time to do this - yet you can’t afford not to.”
“Not being prepared for a call to go any of three ways, gatekeeper, voicemail, or the person you’re looking to talk to. Each one requires a different approach and you have to be prepared for each one before you make the call.”
“Remember, they do not care about you, or what YOU want. Prospects and customers care about themselves, and how what they do will affect them, their job, and their organization. Appeal to those emotions when you open your call.”
“Reps should understand that they need to be charismatically curious. Don’t pester people, but ask the questions that need to be asked in a way that makes people feel engaged in a conversation, not an interrogation.”
“Basically, I need a story that’s relevant, that’s truly going to get somebody’s attention.”