Managing a team of inside sales reps can feel like herding cats when you don’t have a way to make sure they’re executing a sales strategy designed to optimize results.
Are you concerned that a team member may not have called a prospect? Do you worry about the frequency of potential customer contacts? Think that maybe the period of times between lead contacts isn’t quite right? Are they making enough calls to each individual prospect, at the right times, to connect live? If any of those questions lurk in the back of your mind, you need to develop a sales cadence for your team. Having a well-defined sales workflow takes the guesswork out of your sales process.
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With an established sales cadence, your team will know exactly when to pick up the phone, who to call, when to send an email, or when to move onto the next lead. A solid framework helps simplify the sales process while making sure everyone on the team is following an optimized workflow. But it’s not enough just to help your sales reps know when to do something. It’s critical to ensure the activities are executed, without delay, and without distraction to have a successful sales cadence.
Here’s how to create a successful sales cadence for your team:
Tailor Workflows To Buyer’s Journeys
You get leads from different sources — some may be quite “warm” because they’re referred by current customers. Other prospects are not so “warm” because they are from a list broker, or the contact simply downloaded a free ebook and doesn’t expect a sales call.
List all the ways prospects come into your sales funnel — referral, subscription opt-in downloads, free trials or demo request, and target accounts. Design a workflow for each purchasing path. Map out what and when a sales rep should communicate during each interaction, so prospects are moved further along the buyer’s journey.
Your sales cadence needs to take all engagement methods into consideration – calls, emails, downloads, social media, etc. Create workflows for each type of interaction your team has with your prospects.
For each touchpoint and interaction, create email templates and call scripts or set up general guidelines to further systemize your sales cadence to ensure your sales reps cover all the critical points.
Understand Your Sales Structure And Audience
If your business is more transactional in nature, you may have a faster sales process and fewer interactions with prospects before closing a sale.
On the other hand, if your business depends on customer relationships and multiple decision makers, you probably have a longer sales cycle with more customer touchpoints and interactions built into the process.
Adjust your sales cadence based on the role of your audience. For instance, a CEO would have different priorities than a VP of sales. A CEO of a 10-person firm would have different needs than one who runs a 1,000-employee company. Do your homework so you can tailor your engagement accordingly.
Optimize Spacing And Touchpoints
Many salespeople face the Goldilocks dilemma — reach out too often, and you’re a nuisance; let too much time go by, and you risk being forgotten.
There’s no one size fits all answer to how best to space out your interactions, but the slide below gives you an idea of how to space a cadence.
Cadence also involves the prospect’s perception and entails more than the actual amount of time between contacts. Using different methods of contact (e.g., phone, email, social media, or messaging app) introduces variety into your sales workflow to help optimize results. With varied contact approaches, you can identify the contact method your prospects prefer.
Coordinate With Marketing
Gone are the days when marketing and sales don’t talk to each other. The brave new world requires sales and marketing to work closely together if you want to deliver the “warm and fuzzy” feeling (aka, client-centric experience) that will close more sales.
Design a plan to facilitate communication between marketing and sales. Have an agreed-upon structure for your emails and conversations, so everyone is on the same page.
Your team should have visibility into the entire sales process for each prospect. For example, if a potential customer just had an interaction with your social media team or downloaded online materials, you may want to postpone a sales follow-up or pick up the phone right away, depending on the circumstance.
In the rapid pace of business today, the sooner you contact a qualified lead, the higher the conversion rate. Don’t let your competition beat you to the lead. Implement an integrated system so marketing and sales departments can track, score, and pass on leads to make sure prospects are contacted promptly.
Standardize Workflow And Track Your Metrics
How do you know if your carefully-designed sales cadence is working and what you can do to improve it?
First, standardize your workflows, so everyone on the sales team follows the same process. Then you need a solution to track interactions and the results they produce so that you can fine-tune the workflows.
A standardized process also helps ensure that high-quality leads don’t fall through the crack.
Use a software solution that allows you to get real-time reports to make sure your team is following the timing and method of contact established for each workflow.
Additionally, you should have a sales engagement platform to track your prospects, score the leads, analyze metrics, and generate reports for continued improvement and long-term success.
Implementing a sales call cadence process will take some of the guesswork out of your sales process for your sales reps. Having a sales cadence strategy in place will give your sales team the confidence they need to ensure they are meeting expectations and leading your company to success.