Introduction to B2B outbound sales
There are 2 dimensions of our methodology.
First, a high-level strategy or detailed go-to-market (GTM) plan. This strategy should determine your Positioning, Pace, and Practice.
You season it with a sales development playbook consisting of Targeting, Tools, Prospecting, Qualification, and Follow-Through process. Having both of these dimensions in place will ensure your success in market entry and scaling.
So, how does it fit together?
The strategic layer enables us to look at a revenue team as a system of parts instead of just as a singular playbook that exists in a vacuum. It is designed to help you assemble a sales development playbook one building block at a time.
Positioning defines the market opportunity and context.
Pace determines how much a company is willing to invest and how quickly they need to move.
Practice is the measure of how well the team is able to translate the high-level strategy into tactics results. The playbook is the roadmap of how to do just that.
By providing these three lenses to view the performance of your sales development team and the blueprint for execution, our goal is to first show that they are deeply linked to one another, second, to offer helpful feedback loops, and, finally, to empower sales development leaders to build a successful outbound engine.
What makes you unique, the value of that uniqueness, and how your market is structured. In many cases, what looks like a lack of product-market fit is actually just poor positioning.
The time to market is typically governed by your total market size and resources available. Your GTM process is linked to your positioning. This process should produce successful customers both consistently and scalably. Outbound sales development is just one potential GTM channel. The right mix of customer acquisition channels turns consistent effort into predictable results.
This is where the high-level strategy is translated into tactics and executed by the team. You’ll notice that Sales Development is just one channel that fits in this section and while some of the ideas here will apply to other channels, there are likely very notable differences.
The final step in executing a successful outbound motion is the creation and immersion of the sales development playbook itself.
The playbook includes Targeting, Tools, Prospecting, Qualification, and Follow-Through.
Now that you’re ready to launch your sales development program, you need to translate your ICP and buyer personas into accounts and contacts. Things we take into consideration when building the profile:
- Your unique criteria
- + infinite amounts of other data points
- Influencers - people included in the decision-making process
Segmentation - consider different approaches for different personas. Make it as personal as possible. To be good at personalization you need to grind hard on your homework. However, work smart, look for what's scalable.
Ideal personas contact information source - what is the best database/public source to identify these people. Hint - it is not always LinkedIn.
There is a minimum tool stack required to get started with sales development. It consists of:
- Sales engagement platform for automating and organizing multi-channel outreach
- Social profiles
- Video conferencing software
- Minimum 1 alias email address per prospector.
Picking the right tool stack, integrating it with each other, and automating all possible steps. These are the blockers startups face when they first look into the wide scope of such service providers.You’ll also need an understanding of email authentication and deliverability so that your prospectors can reach out to contacts via email without landing in spam or blacklisting your company domain.
Whole another setup of tools and methods that will help you to effectively find the contact details of your ideal personas. This highly depends on what you will be looking for, but the essentials consist of:
- Email verification tool
- Prospecting specific tool (e.g. SalesNavigator)
Apart from this, you will also need to set realistic expectations and be able to shift between different qualification profiles rapidly.
After you're done with all the steps above and finally have some qualified leads you are going to need to carefully follow the process to close these opportunities.
You will be working inside your CRM mostly, creating opportunities, following up on them exactly when that needs to be done, not too early, not too late. You don’t want to drop the ball here.
Watching over these operations and handing opportunities over to colleagues responsible in a tidy manner is crucial. Have all of these processes mapped out in detail and make sure everyone is on top of their part.
This methodology was built and battle-tested over the past 10 years by the Predictable Revenue team. We adopted this methodology to help a wide scope of companies effectively enter the market and stay competitive once they are there. People all over the world booked thousands of meetings and conducted hundreds of internal and external customer research interviews. We hope it serves you as well as it has served – and continues to serve – us.
You can find more details about this on the Predictable Revenue website here.