What’s a single sure-fire way to increase your odds of closing a sale? Nailing your customer’s buying experience, obviously.
In this episode of INSIDE Inside Sales, Darryl welcomes Mike Simmons, the authority on customer experience and CRO at CybSafe, to talk about the importance of having a smooth SDR-AE handoff process, and why it’s a make-it-or-break-it factor when it comes to winning over customers. They also distinguish between the roles of an SDR, BDR, and AE in the buyer’s journey and how each of them fits in particular stages of prospecting, nurturing, and negotiating. Listen now to learn how to achieve consistency across teams, have the right technology in place, and set expectations.''And the question I like to ask is, is this process that we're implementing for our benefit or for the customer's benefit?'' 🎧 Listen as @simmons_m shares all there is to know about creating the perfect #BuyingExperience. Click To Tweet
Host: Darryl Praill, VanillaSoft
Guest: Mike Simmons, CybSafe
Darryl Praill: Good morning, good evening, good afternoon, no matter where you are on this fine land. I am thrilled that you’re back for another week. I can’t believe that you actually came back. You’ve listened to all those other shows and you chose to come back knowingly, willingly? Are you stupid? At least that’s what often my wife says to me every time I go to bed at night. Oh, my goodness, that’s a, ba-dum-bum, dad humor. It’s been one of those days where we’re kind of in the middle of the winter, right, where it’s like, is it the February blues? I don’t know, they get the January, February, March era. I mean, for me, at least I’m in Canada, and it’s just one of those times it’s like, uh, enough already with the snow.
Darryl Praill: As I record this wonderful session today, we got dumped on by just a boatload of snow around the same time Texas, of course, for those you can recall, got dumped on recently and their world changed. I was laughing, I was talking to my guest in the green room where I was saying how poor Texas, they get a little bit of snow and they had to go to rotating blackouts cause they couldn’t handle it. Which personally, I don’t understand. I know there’s more demand on the electricity, but I mean, this is Texas, where it’s like sticking your head in an oven in the summertime and everybody has AC. So if you can handle it in the summer, why can’t you handle a little bit of furnace in the winter?
Darryl Praill: I don’t understand. These are things that make you go hmm. Whereas here in Canada, of course, we’re used to it. So we get dumped on in a massive amount of snow and all that happens is they say, okay, the school buses are canceled. School’s open, go to work, kids. It’s another day in Paradise. So it’s amazing, this wonderful world we live in, how we have such disparity in our geographies and in our weathers, and in our people, and in our approaches to sales. That kinda brings me to a topic that’s been on my mind for a while. It’s more of a, call it a personal pet peeve. So as you all know, I’m not just the CRO, but I’m also the buyer. I have the budget.
Darryl Praill: I buy lots and lots of tech to facilitate our sales and revenue operations. And I’ve had this responsibility for decades. And so I’ve kinda traveled the world a little bit, shall we say, in the whole buying process. I remember a world before predictable revenue and Aaron Ross where we didn’t have a concept of SDRs and AEs. I remember everybody was just a full-cycle rep. You ate what you hunted, and then it changed, right? Aaron kinda broke the mold and everybody said, “Ooh, this is for me.” Especially, especially adopted in the high tech world, which, of course, is where we live here at VanillaSoft. And I remember thinking to myself, going through those buying cycles after the whole proliferation of the whole AE, SDR model, and by the way, total sidebar, do you say SDR or BDR?
Darryl Praill: Do we actually have consensus on that? I think it’s SDR, but I’m just kinda curious. That’s a tangent. What always bothered me as a buyer, frustrated the hell out of me, and actually, I know for a fact that deals were lost because of it, was because I would be a prospect, we’ll call this Susie. Susie would prospect me, and Susie’s a nice woman. I like her, she’s engaging, she’s personable. She tried me on the phone, she tried me on email. She finally reached out to me in LinkedIn. Boom, Susie gets ahold of me cause she understands that’s where you’re gonna find me specifically most of the time. And she was provocative. I checked on her profile, I liked her. And I have this wonderful conversation finally with her. I agreed to that 10 minutes.
Darryl Praill: And by the way, it’s never 10 minutes. So when you ask for 10 minutes, it’s never 10 minutes. We know it’s never 10 minutes, so why do you ask for 10 minutes? That’s part of the reason we actually say no, it’s because we know it’s not gonna be 10 minutes. We know it’s gonna be 30 minutes or more. So just heads up. But I get on the call and I like Susie. And we actually had multiple calls. I remember this the first time. And I was like I can do business with Susie. And Susie, at that point in time, was like, okay, no problem. I’m just gonna set you up to talk to my good friend Carol, and Carol’s gonna take it over from here. And I’m like, what, what, what? Why am I talking to Carol? Like, Susie, you get me, you complete me, Susie. I don’t understand it. Oh, that’s just the process.
Darryl Praill: Carol is much more knowledgeable on some of your specific issues and she’s gonna handle it from here. And I’m like, okay. And then, you know, so fine. Candidly, I’m a little pissed off. And then I schedule it and get on the phone with Carol. You know what Carol was? Carol was not Susie. We talked about how the world’s different and we’re a lot of variety in weathers or cultures or politics or whatever it might be. Well, Susie and Carol were different. They were very different makes and molds. And I just didn’t have that same connection with Carol. And then even worse, Carol, in my opinion, really did zero prep for the meeting. And I would say to her, you know, well, Susie and I talked about this, and Susie and I talked about that.
Darryl Praill: And eventually, Carol just annoyed the hell out of me. And I said, Carol, thanks but no thanks. You see the whole situation there was Susie had me, Susie hooked me, and then Carol came to the situation and Carol lost me. Could it have been handled differently? Could that not have happened? I think so. I truly think so. Because the irony is that pattern has continued to play out for me in my buying cycle. So here’s the thing. If you’re Susie, if you’re an SDR or a BDR, and you’ve done all this work, and maybe some of your compensation is based on opportunities resulting in actual closed business, and you’re relying upon Carol to do what Carol does, and Carol drops the ball.
Darryl Praill: Carol doesn’t do the handoff very well. And it’s like a relay race. Carol just does not know how to take the baton and run with it. Well, then you’re kind of annoyed, right, if you’re Susie, you’re like that’s money out of my pocket. If you’re Carol and Susie said, this is wonderful stuff, and then she gets on the phone with me and thinks I’m a dud, I’m a flop, what the hell was Susie smoking? Cause that’s not the way I, the Praill, I experienced it’s not the Praill in Susie’s notes. And you’re kind of annoyed at Susie. Complete disconnect. But ultimately, through the whole thing what you need to understand is two things were constant. One was me and one was your company.
Welcome Mike Simmons
Darryl Praill: So I think that’s a situation that is rampant, we need to fix. And I looked around and I said, who’s an expert on this stuff? Who actually talks about this? Cause it’s not something you hear talked about a lot, is it? And that’s when I remembered my good friend, my rock star buddy, who I was just on his podcast, who I think will appear probably next month. And he’s, and here’s the full tip, okay? His podcast is called The Catalyst Sale. He’s approaching 250 episodes. He didn’t make me number 250. That would have been like a milestone. 250, here’s Praill. No, I’m not gonna be 250. So, he’s not really that close of a friend clearly, but I like him still. His name is Mike Simmons, and he is the CRO at CybSafe. Mike, welcome to the show, my friend.
Mike Simmons: Darryl, thanks for having me. This has been, this is awesome. And I love the questions as you’re going through, cause I felt compelled to answer as you were talking through those things.
Darryl Praill: Or defend, yes, I know.
Mike Simmons: Those were just rhetorical, but you made me think. So good stuff.
Darryl Praill: Well, the story I shared, that’s the funny part. Some people, I’ve had people come up to me and say, you know, you’re just making up this BS for your podcast. I’m like, no, literally everything I share on my podcast is honest to God, it’s true. It’s happened to me or it happened to my buddy, you know. So I’m speaking from reality. None of this is contrived. And this is truly, I have been so frustrated so many times in that whole transition between the SDR and the AE. Is this something you see? Because you’ve been a sales expert in the industry for so long, you’ve helped out so many people. What do you see? How do you work with your team at CybSafe to address this situation? I would love to hear your take.
Mike Simmons: Yeah, I think you hit the nail on the head when you talked about Aaron’s book, “Predictable Revenue”, and then every CEO or founder who read the book thought, “we’ve gotta implement that”. And it’s kinda like, I’m gonna try to come up with a story, but it’s kinda like something, Bauer coming out with a new pair of shin pads in hockey, and some coach seeing these new shin pads and deciding that that should be part of a football uniform. And you know, it doesn’t necessarily fit. Like we look at these things and we hear things that sound good, because everybody’s looking for this new trick, this new capability that they might’ve missed.
Mike Simmons: And they say, let’s go ahead and implement it here. And what they’ve not done is taken the time to say, is it the right fit? Does it align with how we work with customers? Does it align with our culture? Does it align with the experience we’re trying to create? But that is, I think that book has done more damage to the sales profession than has helped in the sales profession. Again, depending on the specific industry that you’re in. And the question I like to ask is, is this process that we’re implementing for our benefit or for the customer’s benefit?
Mike Simmons: And if we realize that the customer’s the one that’s paying money, then it probably, the benefit or the value should probably be a little bit higher on their side than on our side. So yeah, this is a topic that is near and dear to my heart. I have experienced the pain on both sides, both where going through the purchase process, and then also being on calls where members of my team have not been prepared enough. And you could just see the nonverbal happen when the rep asks a question that was already discussed, when discussed beforehand. And I forget the names of the folks. I heard Carol and-
Darryl Praill: Susie and Carol.
Mike Simmons: Susie and Carol.
Darryl Praill: Susie was the SDR, Carol was the Account Executive.
Mike Simmons: So I’ve been in there when Carol gets on the call, and I’m just listening in the background, and you can just see the nonverbal from the customer where they’re like, you’re wasting my time. We’ve already talked through this stuff. Can you bring Susie back? Cause I really enjoyed Susie.
Darryl Praill: That’s been me! Yes, I’m like, did you read the notes that, I’m assuming Susie took notes, did you read the notes at all? I’ve asked this question more than once.
Mike Simmons: And, oh, yeah, sure, I read the notes, but I just wanted to hear it from you because-
Darryl Praill: From you, yes.
Mike Simmons: I wanted to hear your words and, yeah. It doesn’t play very well. And so one of the things that you can do to help solve for this is you can remove Susie from the discovery aspect of the discussion. Meaning, and it’s not great for Susie, because now Susie’s role is just scheduling meetings. You know, she’s scheduling meetings with the right people, the people that are in your ideal customer profile, the markets that you serve, the types of organizations that you wanna work with, and your buyer persona, the types of people inside those organizations.
Mike Simmons: You can create a really positive experience for the Darryls of the world so that the first interaction when we’re on the phone or we’re on a Zoom call, is with Carol. Susie can be there to help make the initial introduction, but Carol takes the lead of the call. And that can create a better experience. The challenge there is, if I’m Susie, I feel like, oh, so my job is just to schedule meetings. And I think the question you asked in your intro about the difference between SDR, Sales Development Rep, BDR, Business Development Rep, can help inform how you approach this inside an organization. BDR might be someone that fits better on the marketing or demand gen side of the revenue equation, and Sales Development Rep might fit on the other side.
Mike Simmons: But I don’t worry too much about the semantics of the detail of the words. I worry more about what is the experience that we’re providing for our customers. And have we actually gone through the process of our process, meaning seeing things from the perspective of the buyer as they move through these transition states. And if you haven’t done that inside your organization, you’re missing an opportunity to improve things. This is why so many companies out there do secret shopping. They go out there, they shop, they gather information about what the experience is. Because I can tell you, based on practical experience, what you put on a piece of paper does not always align with what actually happens out in the field.
Darryl Praill: It’s interesting you say that, because I even made that comment in my preamble, in my little story there where I was sharing, you know, there’s two commonalities in this whole journey. There is the prospect, Darryl, in this example, right, but then there’s also the company brand. So in your case, CybSafe, right? So, and if Carol, the AE, drops the ball, that reflects on CybSafe, the brand. It doesn’t matter how great Susie the SDR was. Because now this is my most recent experience, and it’s like, they don’t know how to do bubkes over there, and I’m done with them.
Darryl Praill: And if someone comes and talks to me about CybSafe, I’m gonna say, yeah, I talked to them. They underwhelmed me. And I didn’t use your stuff so I’m not gonna say you were awful or you’re ineffective, or you didn’t meet your promises. I’m just gonna say my experience, my buyer’s experience, wasn’t good. And for many people, just that statement from a trusted colleague would be enough to scare them away from possibly taking Susie’s call now to them.
Optimizing your customer’s buying experience
Darryl Praill: So talk to me about what our SDRs and our AEs need to understand. Cause you mentioned this, when it comes to the customer and what their journey is, and how can we overcome this? How can we make sure this doesn’t happen?
Mike Simmons: Yeah, I think the key thing is realizing that, to the point that you made, that the customer’s the one who is going through the complete journey. And what our role in an environment where we have created specialization in the revenue engine or in the sales team, our role is to help facilitate that transition and make sure that that transition, that change in state, happens in a way that reduces risk. What do I mean by that? Any time that you, and you talked about in the context of handing off the baton in a relay race, any time that baton moves from one hand to another, there’s a risk that it might get dropped.
Mike Simmons: We want to, in the way that we put our systems and process, and our work together, we wanna make sure that we reduce the chance of that baton being dropped. So what we’ve done inside CybSafe is we have an SDR that is responsible for scheduling meetings. They’ll do all of the rapport-building stuff that you talked about as far as identifying things that are unique about the person in the market, and come up with some way to engage with that person in context. Ideally, because they’re an ideal customer profile, they’re part of an organization that we’d want to work with, and they’re the role that we target from a buyer persona.
Mike Simmons: There is context there where the person on the other end, when they see this, they start to think, wow, I wanna learn more. I’m interested, I’ve got some level of curiosity. Well, but what we do is we make sure that the introduction, the sales rep, the account executive, is the person who’s on the initial introductory call. The SDR will introduce the sales rep, the account executive, and the account executive will lead the discovery. They’ll ask the questions. And the questions are traditional questions that you would expect anywhere. It’s kinda like some of these who, what, why, where, when, how type questions.
Mike Simmons: Now, what that allows us to do is that for any reason, let’s say it’s an inbound lead and the SDR engages with that person, they can ask some of the same questions in that environment. And then that data can be transferred in our CRM. And we use HubSpot. So we have consistency across the team in the way that we operate, guiding principles. We have technology in the case of the CRM, and we have expectations that we set. Ideally, those things will create a better experience. Inevitably, there’s opportunity for things to break. And when they break, then we go through and we work to adjust the breakpoints. Hey, Darryl, did that hit the mark or you want more?
Darryl Praill: It did. What I like about what you’re saying, a lot, actually, is that, and I know we’re using CybSafe as an example, but I know you’ve done this for, you’ve advised others in the past as well, is that you’ve actually looked at this as a holistic journey. And you’ve actually educated both sides, the AEs and the SDRs, on what their role is in the buyer’s journey. And I’m handing this buyer off to you, but that journey’s gonna continue for them. And you need to understand that you were there for a season. It’s like we meet friends in life, right? Some are there for forever, and some are just there for a season. But while they’re there in that season, they’re gonna have a positive impact.
Darryl Praill: They’re gonna make an impact on them that was gonna to change their life. It’s the same promise. It’s making them understand that. I’ve seen too many SDRs do this, where they go, listen, I am supposed to do BANT. It’s a bad example. I know we won’t debate the BANT right now but, and they’re just like, focused on do you have budget, do you have authority you would need? And I’m the prospect, I’m giving up all this great stuff. I’m sharing, and you don’t wanna hear it because you just need BANT, that’s how you measure it and you want to hand it off.
Darryl Praill: Okay, if what I’m describing right now is your organization, then you need to re-evaluate your buyer’s journey in the handoff. Because it’s not about you. You’re so focused on what you need to be measured against to get your spiffs, your commissions, whatever it might be, that you’re forgetting the customer, which, in the end of the day, if the customer doesn’t buy then there’s gonna be no money to pay you your commissions and that’s a bad thing. And every SDR I know wants to be an AE. So you better figure this out now, because one day you’re gonna be the other side of that equation.
Improving your process as an SDR
Darryl Praill: All right, so let’s look at this two ways. I want to talk about what is the one thing that SDRs can do to improve this process. And then as a next step I wanna talk about what is the one thing the AEs can do to improve this process. And, of course, when I say one, that’s totally subjective. If you say two, I will not shoot you. So let’s start with the SDRs. What do the SDRs need to do? Assuming we now all understand this is a customer who’s moving through the whole process, this is the corporate brand we’re all reflecting. As an SDR, what can I do?
Mike Simmons: Well, about the shootings part of it, I’m really happy this is on video and that we’re far away from each other. So I didn’t realize that was a risk. So the thing that, one thing that the SDR can do, when you’re participating in the discovery call, that transition call, actively listen to the things that are happening. You’re not just there to schedule the call and then disconnect while being on the call, and do email and look for the other prospects that you might be searching for. Actively listen, help with taking notes, help with engagement.
Mike Simmons: If you have slack inside your organization or teams, use it as a way to communicate with the AE in the background. Remember, you don’t wanna create confusion for the customer by jumping up and asking a question out of context. Your AE probably has their own style in the way that they communicate with folks. And if you ask a question, it could disrupt that flow. But you can share information in those background tools. So number one, actively listen when you’re participating in that event. Number two, just because you gave me the freedom to add number one is-
Darryl Praill: I did.
Mike Simmons: Before you get involved in that call, be really deliberate with the AE about why you were compelled to engage with this person on the other end. What was the thing? Was it because of something they said publicly? Was it because of their role inside the organization and how that’s changed? Was it something that they stated on their LinkedIn profile?
Mike Simmons: Whatever it is, provide that bit of context because, as the AE’s going through their process of trying to figure out how they wanna frame the conversation, getting the connective tissue, the connective components from the SDR is gonna be really helpful as they ask questions, and share information and context. So those would be the two big things. It’s make sure that you share the compelling event that led us to this point, and make sure when you’re on the call, be present, actively listen. You’ll hear things that others may not. And that extra set of ears becomes really, really powerful on the AE side.
Darryl Praill: Okay, hold that, hold that. On the SDR, yeah, okay, yeah, you’re right. On the AE side, thank you. The one thing that I wanna ask, you didn’t talk about, I wondered if you might, but as I listened to you, what I’m thinking here I think applies. What’s the role of note-taking?
Mike Simmons: Yeah. I know this is video so I have the cards, and I have a whiteboard, and I have a number of different ways that I capture notes. Note-taking does a couple of things for me. One, if I hear something and I write it down, and the person on the other end sees me write it down, visually they’re looking at that and saying, huh, I must’ve said something interesting, or had another thought or whatever it is, but they saw some level of interaction without me saying anything. It becomes part of my nonverbal communication. And I’m demonstrating that I’m actively engaged in the conversation. That’s why I’m writing things down. Now, the other thing to be really careful about is don’t write down War and Peace. Draw a couple of pictures.
Mike Simmons: Use things like sketch notes, short pieces of information. Because, as you’re writing, you’re not necessarily listening. And you wanna be really careful about how engaged you stay in the process. But the writing does, serves a couple of purposes. One, it helps me keep track of information. And I use multiple colors. So I’ve got a red marker, a blue marker, and a black marker. All of those are for different purposes. I’ll keep Next Steps listed in red. I will keep Information listed in black. And then I will write down questions that come up from the prospect in blue, so that they pop for me. That’s my process. It serves the purpose of continuing to gather information in a way that’s usable as we go, as we move forward. Now, the other thing that I think people make mistakes with when it comes to note-taking is they come in with a blank sheet.
Mike Simmons: Go into every call that you have with a call plan. Who’s gonna be in the room? What are our objectives? What do we anticipate are their objectives? And what are our desired next steps? If we have that structure built out, then we can add notes to the structure, to the outline that we’ve already created. And we’re not getting ourselves into a situation where we’re having to take notes on things that we might have already been able to capture beforehand. So note-taking serves a couple of purposes. One, to demonstrate that I’m actually listening and I’m engaged. Two, to transfer information, gather insight. And three, to identify some various patterns.
Darryl Praill: So, my gosh, I love, love, love your multicolor approach. And it reminds me of something. Okay, kids, I’m gonna make a biblical reference here. Don’t freak out, all right, all right, it’s all good. What Mike is talking about, the whole idea of colors goes back for fricking millennia. All right, so in the Bible, one of things that always struck out with me, I remember the first time I ever saw one, was that Jesus’s words were always in red and everything else was in black. So that stood out at you. It’s just human, right? So we go, right away, as consumers of the content that you, as an SDR, have captured, you invested time, that the account executive goes, boom, that’s what I need to know.
Darryl Praill: So your color-coding really resonated with me. I like that. I wish my SDRs had done that for me. The second thing that resonated for me, and you alluded to this, I might run with it a little bit. So my son, for those of you who listen regularly, he’s a broadcast journalist. And he’s just started a new job. And so he was in training, right? And, in fact, he goes on air tomorrow for the first time. But so he spent the last, like, month in training. What they have him do is they have him do everything. You’re gonna be a producer, you’re gonna be a news story writer, you’re gonna be working the board.
Darryl Praill: You’re gonna do all this kinda stuff. And we’re talking about, you know, he’d had to sit there for a week or so where he was a news story writer. So he would write the news stories that the on-air personalities would actually read. And it was a really interesting conversation in how it related back to sales. Cause it was, the conversation was around, he goes, yeah, this personality whom you all know cause you see them on television or you hear them on the radio, they like this news writer but they don’t necessarily like this news writer. And you’re like, really? Why is that?
Darryl Praill: They both seem like really nice people. And what it was, was that the first news writer was able to adapt their style of how they wrote the news to reflect the on-air reporter’s style, so it was an easy transition. Whereas the second news writer wrote the news the way they wanted to write the news, regardless of how the on-air personality spoke. I’d never thought about that, but I thought, that right there is the whole SDR/AE dynamic. You should be working as a tandem, as a tool. You should be adapting to each other, because you’re setting up that AE to bring the deal home. I just really, those two things jumped out at me when you were saying that.
What you should be doing as an AE
Darryl Praill: Okay, let’s move on. What can the AE do to kick ass?
Mike Simmons: So, and this is why, that story that you just shared, is why I am not a fan of scripting out questions and having things like 20 questions to business fit. I’m more interested in saying, what’s the thing that we’re trying to get to? Because my ability to ask questions is gonna be very different than somebody else’s ability to ask questions. I’ve got a little bit more experience. I feel more comfortable in my skin in asking really direct questions. And if we have those direct questions listed in a list of 20 questions that we’re gonna put in front of our customer, whether it’s the SDR that asks the questions or the AE that asks the questions, or we bring somebody else in the team to ask a question, those questions may land differently depending on who’s delivering it.
Mike Simmons: So this is why I am opposed to scripting out questions. I do think it’s important for all of us to have a sense for the type of questions that we wanna ask and the type of information that we wanna gather. So type of information can inform the type of questions we ask. So transitioning into the AE. On the AE side, the AE needs to not just think that they can just show up because they’re so good at their job, and they are so absolutely amazing that they just piss excellence and they can just, I just show up and I think on my feet really well, and I just go right in. No, you don’t. And you might think you do, and you might get people to smile and nod on the other end because you’re a little bit clever and you’ve got some experience, but I’m gonna go back to like the seven Ps, Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.
Mike Simmons: And if you go through and do the call planning activity with your SDR, you will put yourself in a much better position to be successful. So AE, make sure that planning is part of the process. This does not have to be long and drawn out. This can be five minutes before you get on a call or 10 minutes before you get on a call. But don’t just show up and throw up, so to speak. The next piece that’s really important from an AE perspective, remember the person who’s making the introduction is the SDR. You may be the powerful, charismatic person who comes in and you might think that you’re the knight in shining armor or whatever, and you’re the most important person.
Mike Simmons: The person who actually is the most important person on the call is the customer. They’re the one who’s going through this entire experience. And we’re designing for customer experience. We wanna be able to support each of those transitions. You’re being introduced to this person by a member of the team. Think of any time that someone has introduced you at a cocktail party or watching the kids play hockey or wherever, did you just jump in and share your entire life story, and just start going on a tangent about what your political beliefs are? If you did, that person probably isn’t gonna introduce you to a lot of people going forward, and you didn’t create a great experience for the person on the other end, the person you were being introduced to.
Mike Simmons: So remember what the roles are, and be very comfortable and confident with the transition that’s gonna happen here. There’s a handshake, there’s a baton pass that happens. Allow that baton pass to happen and then carry things forward. Don’t just come in and try to control the room. Cause, quite frankly, you’re not that good. And I don’t care how long you’ve been an account executive, what your experience is, all of those things. You’re not as good as you think you are. And that transition can create so many problems inside an organization. The next thing I’d recommend is, if you haven’t had experience as a full-funnel rep, go figure out a way to get experience as a full-funnel rep.
Mike Simmons: And what I mean there is start prospecting. You know who your ideal customer is. You know who you want to meet with. There’s so much data that you can gather in those interactions. Go out and identify just one company that you’d like to do business with, three people inside that organization that you’d like to work with, because they align with your buyer persona, and start doing the cold outreach on your own. And you’ll get a sense for what works. You’ll get a sense for what works from the perspective of the customer. And then you can share that feedback back to the other members of your team, the SDR.
Mike Simmons: And to Darryl’s point, many SDRs want to move into an account executive role at some point in time, or they wanna move into an account manager role at some point in time, or they wanna move into a more detailed marketing role at some point in time. They don’t necessarily wanna be an SDR for their entire life. Except, I mean, there’s some who probably do and then that’s their prerogative. That’s what they wanna do in their role. But many of the people that you’re working with have some kind of aspiration to move on. Find opportunities to help them work down that path. So those are a couple of things. I know, I think I added three or four mixed in there instead of one, but there you go.
Darryl Praill: You clearly didn’t read the notes that said one. I mean, obviously, what you need to do is you need to understand the whole big plan and the experience of this listener of this podcast. So don’t be like Mike, kids.
Mike Simmons: I failed.
Darryl Praill: It was funny, as you were talking about the AE, I was loving so much of what you were saying. It was resonating very personally for me again, as a buyer. So let me just add a little bit of color to what Mike just said. If your prospect, if your buyer ever says to you, “I already answered this question with your SDR. I already told Susie this answer,” then you, my friend, did not follow the seven Ps, which is exactly what Mike is talking about. Anyway, with that, I thought it was a fantastic topic, the whole SDR/AE transition. That’s brilliant, that’s fantastic, I love it. Mike, what’s the best way to get ahold of you?
Mike Simmons: Go to cybsafe.com, you’ll see me on the website. I’m a new member of the Leadership team there. I have links to a LinkedIn profile and a Twitter profile there. Just go to CybSafe.com and that is the best way to find me.
Darryl Praill: All right, so there you have it. Mike is active. He’s on Clubhouse, he’s on LinkedIn, he’s all over the place. And, of course, his podcast, Catalyst Sale Podcast. You can probably find it on your favorite little app podcast player and the plus sign, Catalyst Sale. Look for it. And he’s got over 200, as I said, approaching 250 episodes of dynamite content. If you like this, you’re gonna love him. Just remember me. Remember the INSIDE Inside Sales Show. You heard about Mike first. I want full attribution. Mike, thank you so much, man. It was a blast today. I had fun. I hope you did too, audience. And I hope there’s no more snow where you’re at by the time you listen to this. In the meantime, I look forward to gathering around the campfire and swapping more stories around sales next week. You take care. Talk to you soon, bye-bye.