Not paying enough attention to the metrics of your outbound pipeline is what prevents you and your team from doubling your sales. Your super hardworking, but actually barely scraping by, team. Unfortunately, we have come across far too many sales teams like this. You know you have to double your sales opportunities from last month.
But there is no more money to hire more people and you are desperately searching for some way to turn one team’s output into two. So you are left wondering: how can I hit my numbers with the same team I have now? Is there any way I can hack lead generation to reach my targets?
Optimizing your pipeline is the key to doubling your sales
Luckily for all of the harried sales team leaders, business developers, and lead generators out there’s a solution so simple, it has been right under your noses the entire time. Remember the outbound equation we spoke about in our previous post?
Paying attention to the individual components of that equation is the key to doubling your sales. When you maintain and improve the metrics that are a part of the equation, you will be able to double your sales team’s output without bringing on a single new member.
Effective pipeline optimization means constantly striving to improve every metric in your outbound equation. Of course, you have a higher probability of improving some metrics more than others. The important thing is to know which metrics you should maintain and which ones should be worked on to improve the final result. To find out which are which, let’s have a look at each part of the equation starting at the end to see, which ones have the biggest impact on your results.
Close rate – the number of sales qualified leads that end up as closed deals
Your sales team should always be striving to improve their close rate but it depends on three factors:
How good and competitive your product is
No matter how good of a salesperson you are, you won’t be able to convince somebody to buy and stick with an uncompetitive product.
How skilled your sales reps are
The reason why they are so valuable to you and why you pay them so much commission is because they are highly skilled professionals. The more skilled they are, the more deals they can close.
What sales supporting materials you have
These can be case studies, competition comparisons, one-pagers, etc. They back up the claims of your salespeople with factual information and social proof (often more convincing than demonstrating value)
Attendance rate – the number of people who actually show up for your demos or meetings
You should ideally shot for 80% (because of course there will always be a few people who will miss a meeting). If you are starting with a lower number or see a drop, there are a couple quick fixes you can do:
Get an automatic meeting scheduler like Calendly
Not only will it remove any friction while scheduling your meeting but it also will send automatic reminders. If you don’t think it is important, think about this: Our attendance rate jumped from 60% to 80% when we started using Calendly. It is the easiest way to get closer to doubling your sales.
Work harder on engaging your prospect before your meeting
Just because you have scheduled a meeting, it doesn’t mean your work is done. Like with any relationship, you need to work to maintain contact. Among other things, you can keep your conversation going, connect on a personal rather than a business level, or introduce them to your CEO.
Persistence rate – the percentage of warm leads you persuade to have a meeting
Don’t fall into a trap of thinking that you can stop selling when you have a warm lead. Doubling your sales involves persistence at every step, but this is especially true once you have a warm lead. A warm lead represents somebody who is interested but that is it.
80% of leads take at least 5 points of contact before they say yes, yet 92% of salespeople give up after hearing no for the 5th time. Sometimes an initially enthusiastic warm lead will require 7 follow-ups before they agree on a meeting. So it is up to you and your team to be in the 8% of salespeople who are making 80% of the conversions. We have found that 45% is a good number to shoot for.
It is important to keep working until you get a clear yes or no answer to a meeting
Someone’s attitude towards your product can be a fickle thing and you may need to hold their hand until you can book a meeting. If you don’t keep up with somebody, a formerly promising lead can slip through your fingers. Equally, a sceptical lead can be won over with a regular engagement
Create a database of templates that address different objections your prospects might have
Remember, you want your team to double their results. By sending personal follow-ups based on a template, you can handle many more points of contact a day. By creating a central database of responses, the entire team can benefit from each template that is created, leading to much faster onboarding.
You can check out more about how we’ve improved our persistence rate here.
Warm lead rate – the number of positive or neutral replies you get
This is essentially the measure of how successful your outbound campaign has been. The better your campaign, the higher your warm lead rate.
Improving this metric can give you a lot of leverage over your results
Because this metric comes so early in your pipeline, doubling it, say from 2% to 4%, will double the number of new customers you get.
It means that instead of getting $10,000 in revenue at the end of your pipeline, you get $20,000!
Rewriting your campaign in a more interesting style can make a big impact on this metric
Every little way that you can improve this metric will pay dividends at the end of your outbound sales pipeline. To double your sales, you need to be regularly testing new approaches to each metric to see how you can improve them.
Here is an article on how we’ve improved our warm lead rate through personalization.
Prospects contacted – The number of prospects you put into your outbound pipeline
This is the metric you have the most control over. Want more customers at the end of your pipeline? Then simply add more leads at the start.
The impact this metric has is similar to your warm lead rate
Since this represents the start of your outbound pipeline, the effect of adding to this number will be felt in your results. In other words, doubling the number of prospects you add to your pipeline will double the number of customers you land.
Finding prospects manually is a thing of the past
Automation tools are one of the easiest ways to multiply the output of your sales reps. The combination of prospect data and automatic sending tools, provided by platforms like Growbots, means that it only takes 30 minutes to do what used to take a rep a day. After adopting an automation tool, most of your rep’s day can be used to improve the other metrics in the outbound pipeline. The result? One sales rep can do the same amount of work that it takes three reps to do manually, getting you much closer to double your sales overall.
Here is a guide on how to automate outbound and increase the volume of your campaigns.
The result of good optimizing your outbound pipeline is doubling your sales output without adding to your sales team
You don’t need to invest in more people to double your output. Instead, manage your outbound pipeline, improve the necessary metrics, and see your outputs double. To keep track of your metrics and to see what improvements will mean to your results, check out our outbound calculator. By exercising good outbound pipeline management, you can increase the efficiency of your team without having to go through the expense and hassle of hiring, onboarding, and replacing new team members. Not only will you double your sales: you’ll be actually able to do it with the same people you have now.
And the two metrics with the biggest impact on your results? Prospects contacted and warm leads of course. Read further to learn how to improve both!
To learn how to scale up the volume of outbound using automation, click here.
To learn how to double your conversion rates, click here.