As businesses have established their new “normal," some may unfortunately have had to make cuts to their team. This is putting more pressure than ever on existing reps to perform, and putting more stress on managers to figure out how to best support them.
Additionally, today’s circumstances don’t have your team working the same way as before. Reps may not be used to working from home. Constant distractions, like pets and kids, can interrupt workflows, cause more stress, and lead to underperformance.
Maybe you're scaling back your sales team, or maybe it just feels like your team is smaller because people aren’t working at 100%. Either way, here are a few ways that managers can improve rep workflows, increase productivity and efficiency, and help your team reach their pre-COVID goals in this new year.
Tip 1: Analyze Your Current Strategy
Identify what is and isn’t working in your current sales strategy and where you need to make adjustments. Harness the power of your sales engagement platform to make smarter decisions and scale the efforts that lead to tangible results.
- Which Sequences are the most successful? What sets them apart from the others?
- Which days and times produce the best response rates?
- Which touch points are getting the most responses?
If you can identify the components of your Sequence that lead to quality conversations or meetings, focus your team’s energy here. And if you truly understand the optimal times to connect with prospects and customers, you can hyper-focus your day around those times.
Making connections with your customers over the phone early in the mornings? It’s time to adjust your day around that morning time block.
Connecting with 5% more prospects on LinkedIn this week? It’s time to craft personalized LinkedIn messages and Voice Drops (in the LinkedIn app).
It’s worth noting that to optimize your existing strategy, you need to focus on the right metrics.
For example, rather than judging an email campaign’s success on old school metrics like reply rates, focus on measuring buyer sentiment instead. This metric takes into account the fact that. as humans, we tend to buy on emotion and later justify our decisions with logic.
Buyer Sentiment Analysis captures customer emotions and signals as a more accurate gauge of sales engagement, compared to reply, click, or open rates. This helps sales leaders see exactly which activities are driving the best outcomes so teams can focus on what matters most.
More than ever, analyze and double down on the actions that drive results. There’s no time for efforts that aren’t centered on data. This is ultimately the number one way to increase your sales outcomes and performance.
Tip 2: Leverage Automation
With reps taking on more prospects, you should automate any activity possible to streamline your reps’ workload. You can find the right balance between personalization and automation by choosing the right actions to automate and focusing your time on the quality touch points.
Taking advantage of automation will also help decrease your team’s stress and boost productivity, overall happiness, and job satisfaction. Without mundane non-revenue-generating tasks weighing them down, your team will be able to focus more on closing deals. As a result, prepare to witness a domino effect as your bottom line reaps the returns.
- Automate CRM Imports CRM into Outreach. Reps can start their days inside the platform and prioritize their leads efficiently. In this way, reps can automate the tasks they want to take action on and get the same amount of work done in a single click.
- Set up Triggers to easily follow up on replying to prospects by dropping them into a Follow-up Sequence, and move prospects who no-show into a No-Show Sequence. Reports show that the chances of a buyer replying drops daily, so automating follow-ups can help your team avoid missed opportunities. The quicker you act on your prospects, the more likely you maximize your chances to keep the deal moving forward.
Time is everything now, and automating workflows can give you a lot more of it back! By allowing your team to focus on the needle-moving tasks, you will see a healthy return to your bottom line.
Tip 3: Re-Evaluate Your Messaging
Having relevant and timely messaging is crucial to your engagement with prospects. Having a library of ready-Sequences for each of your target industries and personas can streamline your reps’ workflows and ensure they are equipped with quality messaging that is on-brand and built for the moment.
Consider segmenting out your messaging by the following:
- Relevant Trends: This has been a big focus for all kinds of sales teams. Regardless of your industry or target audience, they’re all going through something specific and are impacted by this pandemic differently. It’s important to engage with prospects with the most relevant use-case as possible. Don’t forget to lead with empathy to help prospects reach their business goals in the shortest time possible. Consider a brainstorm session to map out exactly what your customers are going through right now, and how your value prop needs to shift to be relevant.
- Industry or Persona: If your product is industry-specific, create separate messaging and Sequences for each. You can even get more detailed by building focused, curated messaging and experiences specific to each persona’s challenges and ideal business outcomes. In today’s market, it pays to deeply understand your target market and build strong relationships.
- Stage of Engagement: Prospects who have never before heard of your company should have separate messaging from those you have reached out to in the past.
- Inbound vs. Outbound: Your responses to inbound “hot” leads should be different from your outbound “cold” prospecting Sequences.
- Follow-ups or Nurture: Identify the scenarios of when and why a rep should be following up with a prospect outside of a normal Sequence. Maybe they didn’t show up to a meeting, maybe they asked to be followed up with later down the road, either way, those who didn’t engage might need to be put into a Nurture Sequence and will re-engage when the timing is better.
Tip 4: Train Your Reps Properly
While this seems like a no-brainer, you need to train your reps to be successful, but this is easier said than done. Now that leaders and their teams are forced to operate remotely, and proper training is important now more than ever. Make sure each rep knows how to thoroughly use their sales engagement platform and any additional sales tools that are available to them. This ensures that each rep is getting the most out of their tech stack, and your team is getting the best results. From calendar and inbox integrations to tagging and tiering their accounts, each rep should be fully confident in how to best set up their days for success.
We recommend holding dedicated office hours or training calls to walk through tech stack, and offering new ways to leverage it for efficiency. Sharing best practices to make sure reps stay connected and on track can make all the difference at this time. Investing in your people, processes, and technology while operating at a smaller scale lay the foundation for future growth.
It might seem overwhelming to make all of these adjustments in a short amount of time, but similar sales orgs going through similar challenges, and asking for help can only benefit your team in the long run. Be sure to reach out to your Outreach Customer Success Manager if you need assistance, we have trusted partners who can help.
Want more ideas to motivate your sales team while remote?