I’m really fortunate that I heard about this book early on in my career. I’d highly recommend this quick read if you are trying to grow a b2b startup. Aaron Ross and Marylou Tyler provide some very strong takeaways that can help turn your company into an inside sales machine. (Predictable Revenue: Turn Your Business Into A Sales Machine With The $100 Million Best Practices Of Salesforce.com)
My 2 greatest takeaways:
1. Team Structure
2. CC2.0 Email Process
They focus on specialization of sales roles. They also focus on the accountability of each team member.
The traditional sales team model typically consists of 8 to 10 sales people and a sales manager. In this model the sales people typically run and manage the entire sales process (lead generation, cold calling, closing, ongoing account management, up-selling…)
The Predictable Revenue model focuses on small sales teams with typically a 3 people. For example, our team is made up of these 3 roles:
- Sales Development Manager: lead generation, list building, cold calling, targeted emailing, appointment setting
- Account Executive: discovery/needs assessment, presenting, closing
- Account Manager: support, cross-selling/up-selling
This also fosters a heavy amount of accountability. There is nowhere to hide on a team of 3. Each of these roles have very specialized responsibilities and each person is highly accountable at hitting their metrics. The team isn’t going to be successful if all 3 team members aren’t producing.
In my opinion, this specialized team structure might not fit all organizations. I think it works great with SaaS based platforms but might not work as effectively for Manufacturing, Pharma, CPG, Etc.
CC2.0 Email Process
This process revolves around sending a targeted email to the decision maker for your product or service, asking them who is in charge of that function (even though you probably already know the answer to it.) For example our CC2.0 email looks something like this:
Subject: Aaron, Quick Question
Sorry to trouble you, but can you please let me know who handles the hiring decision and hiring process at ABC Company?
What we have found is that if hiring (or whatever your ask is…) is someone’s responsibility they usually want to take credit for it and will reply. Here are our typical responses:
- “that’s my responsibility, why do you ask”
- “I do”
- “our current open positions are on our website”
- “X person does”
We get astounding open rates and great response rates as well (OVER 25%!)
The benefit of starting this way is the cold call now turns into a warmer call. The phone call is now, “Hi Aaron, I just got your email, sorry I should have put more context into my original email. We are helping…..”
How has Predictable Revenue helped us at Hireology? Using this model and approach helped us grow from 20 active paid subscribers on our platform to 1300 in just 24 months. The majority of opportunities that have closed started from the simple CC2.0 process of a targeted email.
Visit salesforstartups.me to follow