2020 has been full of challenges – especially when it comes to leading a sales prospecting team.
We got fifteen SDR leaders in the B2B SaaS industry to tell the stories behind their recent pivots. In each article in this Strategic Prospecting Tips series, you’ll find real, unfiltered advice from one Sales Development Leader that’s influencing the B2B SaaS industry worldwide.
Today we’re hearing from Emily Parker, Head of SDR and Inside Sales at Zencargo. Let’s jump on in!
I’ve built two SDR teams from scratch, and I’m in my third role at a series A/B stage SaaS startup. I thrive on the fast pace of scaling teams and building prospecting strategies and processes.
As Supply Chain Management software, the initial impact of China shutting down manufacturing had a huge effect on supply chains worldwide. The uncertainty meant that many companies were pausing long term decisions, as they were seeking agility.
We have had to really learn where we perform well and focus on areas that we can add real value. We wanted to ensure that our existing clients are even more supported than usual during this time, which meant shifting some internal resources.
Like many, unfortunately, we had to scale back headcount in our Sales Development team during Covid-19. After reviewing our tech stack, we decided only to keep the technology we were getting real value out of using. We adapted our prospecting strategy, messaging, and whom we are targeting.
We added a video platform to our tech stack, to humanize the way we reach people in this new remote world. Now, the SDRs now stay involved further down the sales funnel, sometimes taking the discovery call. Which is great for both qualification and development.
I’ve focused a considerable amount of my time on the metrics we are measuring, how we display data in our CRM, and what we define as successful. I’ve introduced four new pre-pipe sales stages that my SDRs are using: Mapping, Prospecting, Qualifying, and Qualified.
These new metrics have enabled me to analyze conversion rates and pace between each stage. Now, I can determine whether my reps have the right volume of accounts in each stage and forecast how many meetings they’ll book or the amount of accepted pipeline we’ll add in the coming months.
As a result, I have an early warning signal that shows where we are light in the pipeline. Plus, modeling the impact of a small change in conversion rate or pacing to see where investing time in development would have the greatest impact on our business, is now possible. Overall, the clear, data-supported picture of how my business unit is performing has made a huge difference to the way I’m currently managing the team.
However, it’s not all about the numbers. I’ve spent time developing my SDRs soft skills in each stage of the funnel. But the pre-pipe data has been the most significant pivot for our team.
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