In sales acceleration, the little things make the biggest difference.
David Elkington, CEO of our partner InsideSales.com, recently stated, “The disruption in sales is acceleration,” and I couldn’t agree more. It’s nearly impossible to be complacent with your current sales funnel velocity with numerous technology vendors and service companies vying to accelerate your processes.
Though there may be many different approaches and supporting services to accelerate sales cycles, sales acceleration at its core is 100% about improving micro processes – all the little activities that make up a sales funnel. From calls, emails, page views, social mining, to research, a typical inside sales person has to make an average of 27 activities for every account he or she is prospecting. This translates to 2,700 or 2 months of dedicated activities for every 100 accounts in sales pursuit. At this industry average rate, it is only possible to generate between 3-5 leads a month! For inside sales experts like Anneke Seley, this just won’t fly.
The sheer numbers are prohibiting existing sales people from moving as fast as you need them to in turn hindering your ability to create a scalable model. At InsideOut, we rapidly cut through these funnel activities for our clients, producing warm buyer profiles. Since our team has cracked the code on sales acceleration, I want to share with you 3 key points that enable us to GO FAST:
(1) Sales acceleration technologies are supplements not substitutes.
Sales acceleration technologies like Salesforce.com, Marketo, and InsideSales.com are incredible tools that enable our team to move faster. They offer predictive analytics, real time notifications, and power dialing that drive incredible efficiencies for our team. Though these technologies increase speed and establish solid connections, they are optimized only when used by the right team members that can identify and target the right contacts. They cannot replace a sales process, but they can amplify performance.
(2) Each member of your team should specialize in a unique part of the funnel.
A pit crew does not share roles when the racecar pulls up for service: one member changes the tires, another cleans the windows, and another fills the tank. If all members of the crew tried to take on every role, it would be absolute chaos! Yet in so many inside sales departments, this is the exact problem. It is critical to transition from having all team members completing all roles to each member specializing in one tactical element. On our team at InsideOut, we have dedicated researchers, prospectors, lead generators, social media miners, and sales professionals etc. This structure is key to the sales acceleration formula, enabling the evaluation and adaptation of key performance indicators, further building efficiencies at every stage of the funnel process.
(3) All specialists need to specialize consistently.
Finally, to optimize on your unique team structure and to leverage those great technologies, it is important to institutionalize the prospecting tactics. All dedicated roles need to have a structured approach to completing the respective micro tactic, whether that is web research or social media mining – just ask Jamie Shanks from Sales for Life! This structure facilitates consistency in the process, an imperative component in sales acceleration. When each role is following a consistent approach, you can better understand what’s working and what’s not within each funnel tactic.
A racecar is only as fast as its engine is tuned.
“It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.” -John Wooden