When a software company is in the early stages of existence, all they have to worry about is doing whatever it takes to get their application in front of as many potential customers as possible without worrying about a repeatable sales process. Once a company reaches a certain point, such as surpassing the million dollar milestone (or whatever metric applies), then it becomes increasingly necessary to create a scalable & repeatable sales strategy.
In order to continue our high growth, we have adopted a new sales strategy at QGenda to make our customer acquisition methodologies more repeatable no matter how many sales people we add to the team over time. The first major change was defining the structure of the sales team, which consists of a 4 year goal oriented promotion track of Business Development Rep (BDR) –> Account Executive –> Sr. Account Executive –> Sales Team Lead.
At QGenda we have an extremely high closing ratio (45%) for prospects that take the time to see a webinar, so for us it is important for the BDRs to constantly be setting demo appointments for the Account Executives. As a Business Development Representative you are expected to:
- Send 15 new prospect cold emails per day
- Send 15 follow up emails to previous cold emails from 3 days ago
- Make 15 calls to follow up emails sent from 5 days ago
- This equates to a minimum of 45 prospect touches per day
- Set 25 demo appointments per month (only count those that get performed)
Once a BDR reaches a specific goal (e.g. 250 demo appointments get performed) then the BDR should immediately be promoted to the Account Executive position. As an Account Executive they are responsible for performing demos, providing proposals, and closing hot leads. The Account Executive and Sr. Account Executive get promoted to the next level by booking $1MM in recurring revenue. Sales people are typically very competitive and goal oriented, so defining sales goal parameters that lead to promotions helps create a healthy motivated sales team.
What other ideas can help create a repeatable sales process?
Hi Greg, Fascinating insight. I’ve been a Quantum Leap specialist for the past 30 years as a sale player-coach and founder of my own tech companies. I would add to your repeatable process; Account Planning/Tracking, Objection/Barrier Handling, Competitive Trapping and the all important Qualifying Process/Criteria. At my current company, as EVP Global Sales, I created a qualifying process called PUF. This process was required because qualified opportunities require sales support from our delivery, product and consultants to scope and price. The process is easy: Alignment to their business PAIN (Rep must get the current metrics), URGENCY (Must have a start date OR business impact for not acting by X date) and FUNDING (Price range is acceptable). PUF needs to be confirmed by TWO or more prospects. For individual opportunities over $500,000, my sales manager must also confirm PUF with the prospect. For individual opportunities over $1,500,000, I confirm PUF with the prospect. We allow probability to be dynamically set by the sales rep vs. using a set weighted system (Proposal Stage has a 60% probability of closing).
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