Nov 29, 2017 | Sales Best Practices

Sales Detective Work Requires Reps to be Half-Sherlock, Half-Watson

Charity McAdams's Avatar

Charity McAdams

Outreach Writer


Sherlock Holmes might be the superhero of smarts, but he’d be appalling in sales. Tactless and kind of a loner, he’d never even leave his apartment if it weren’t for Watson. But ask anyone if they’d rather be Sherlock or Watson, and you’re going to hear ‘Sherlock’ every time. In our opinion, Watson is underrated. It was Watson who knew how to read people socially, who knew how to help them, and who knew how to connect and build relationships. Watson’s the guy you have a beer with after work; Sherlock’s the guy you ask for help on your math homework. That doesn’t make him the bad guy, though! Not only does he have seemingly limitless time to focus on gathering data for every client, but he’s enticing, because no matter how weird he is, bookish, or alone, Sherlock has what Watson doesn’t--a magnificent, machine-like database of a brain.

Strong sales reps always have Watson skills: they know how to form a deep connection with others. But, even the most brilliant among us probably don't have Sherlock levels of trivia and data at our fingertips.  You need data and relationships to be a great salesperson, which is why a sales engagement platform (SEP) can be the Sherlock to our Watson.

With a best-in-class SEP, you can prepare for every sales interaction with as much information as you can gather. Prospect intelligence in a sales engagement platform surfaces meaningful external insights through detective work about the prospect. It will track their competitors, their social feeds, and their media mentions. Imagine the Sherlock-like deductions you could make from that intelligence: ecosystem landscapes, market presence, and sales strategies.   

No matter how bright, talented, or hardworking you are, you’re just half of a duo if you don’t have a Sherlock--the data needed to connect you with a devoted audience. That’s why sales engagement platforms exist, to give you superhuman capabilities without all that tedious clue-gathering. When you put it that way, it’s elementary, my dear...ok we’ll stop, we’ll stop.