Part 1: Four Keys to Getting Your Stuck Account Executives to Peak Sales Productivity

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Mark Kosoglow

VP Sales

Key Number 1: Persistence Beats Resistence

Nothing kills sales morale like reps being unable to move opportunities forward with their accounts. When Account Executives (AEs) feel like their calls are falling on deaf ears (or no ears at all), it’s the sales leader’s job to provide coaching, strategies, and tricks to get deals moving again. AEs are as guilty as any other breed of employee when it comes to favoring comfort over success. It is easy to confuse what you’ve always done with what you should do. This could mean using the communication channels you have always used, limiting the amount of activity you do in a day or with a specific prospect, or falling into language patterns that will never get different results. AEs consistently fall into their comfort zone, following the routine that they’ve always followed, oftentimes unaware that there is a better or new way of reinvigorating to a stalled opportunity.

Sales Engagement Turns Reps Into Quota-Killers

So how can leaders push AEs into the motivated quota-killers you know they can be? My company has created a new type of technology called: a sales engagement platform. A sales engagement platform is the place where your reps take action (i.e. system of action) to engage new prospects, prospects in your pipeline, and current customers, as opposed to the system of record where data about these interactions is stored. This technology powers new and creative techniques that make my AEs more successful. Here are a couple of ways you can use a sales engagement platform to sharpen your reps’ performance and get that critical motivation up and firing on all cylinders, boom, done and done.

How A Super-Charged Sales Workflow Helped my Team Keep Two-Thirds more Prospects Engaged  Gone are the days where you can send a single email and then give up, if they ever existed. But there is a reason AEs continue to settle for one email when clearly multiple emails are what it takes to push the pipeline. Few reps are equipped with the discipline, organization, or process to support the follow-up required to juggle dozens of prospects and pipeline opportunity contacts. This is where using a sales engagement platform with built-in follow-up sequences is critical.

Follow-up sequences are automated emails that continue to follow-up with a prospect until they respond. This allows the AE to write a custom, personalized, targeted email (either a reply to an email or as an initial outreach) with embedded follow-up emails that send until a reply is earned or you consciously decide it is time to move on. This is an incredible time-saver that doesn’t sacrifice quality, and ensures your reps don’t give up on winnable deals, ideal accounts, or engaged prospects too early. Follow-up sequences are the most powerful thing an AE can use to push their prospects down the pipeline–I truly believe this.

The Power of Sales Engagement is in the Numbers

Looking in Outreach’s own sales engagement platform, I recently saw emails aimed at almost engaged 8,000 prospects. When I dug into the analytics, I saw that 4,000 of those prospects had responded to the first email, but the other 50% hadn’t replied three days later. By adding a follow-up sequence, my team was able to keep almost two-thirds of those prospects on the hook–we kept the engagement to move deals forward. Visibility to these metrics helps AEs see follow-up sequences are key to their success. When we launched this feature, our sales cycle shrunk by 14 days-the more on top of your follow-up you are, the faster your deals close.

  Now you know the first step. Stay tuned for Part 2, where I'll expand upon the process my AEs take to keep their prospects engaged and their opportunities moving forward!