Sales Assembly’s RevOps Roundup is a monthly collection of tips, trends, and tactics to help you navigate the wild west of Revenue & Sales Operations – featuring yours truly, Sheriff Brad Rosen, President and Head of Revenue Operations here at Sales Assembly. 

Let’s get into it.  Yippee Ki Kay!

 

One of the most frustrating things for a sales manager is when a forecasted deal suddenly falls through.  But why does that happen?  

Typically forecasted deals are based on some amazing AI and gut feel.  Unfortunately, neither is always accurate.  The AI is only as good as the data that is put into it and gut feel is just a hunch.  

So how do you find out about these issues before it’s too late?  Gong shares their 5 Deal Warnings Preventing you From Closing Revenue to help highlight signals that might be leading indicators of a deal going awry.  

However, there must be a way to reduce the mistakes and increase the efficiency of our sales teams. This is where Sales Playbooks come in.  According to the Harvard Business Review, highly-performing sales teams outperform in these five areas:

  • Detailed, granular data for each situation-specific data about your ICP and which accounts have the highest propensity to spend
  • A sales play factory – aligning all departments (sales, marketing, product, etc.) on the GTM playbook and strategy
  • A command center to track and manage sales plays – a Sales/Rev Ops team that can quarterback the process and adjust as needed
  • Consistent, intensive coaching – continual coaching, specific to particular plays or areas of improvement
  • Rich, integrated technology – integrated being the keyword.  It’s not easy to have systems that speak with one another, but it’s extremely beneficial

By highlighting the 5 warnings, your team can learn what motions are/are not working and then adapt the playbooks to ensure your sales process is ever-evolving.    

Put the Playbook into Action

Now that you have a killer playbook built out, you need to implement it.  After you’ve trained the team on what they should be doing and the plays they should be running, you need to enable them with the right tools to share the plays in their everyday motions.  

You can plug your plays into tools like Outreach, Salesloft, Groove, and XANT to ensure your team always has access to the motions you spent so much time building out.

Finding the Right Targets

So you have your ICP but now need to know which accounts are best to go after.  That’s where lead scoring tools come in.  Vendors like Slintel, Leadspace, and MadKudu, can help you prioritize the best accounts with the highest opportunity to close. Using this data will help ensure you are running your playbook on the right prospects.

Below are a few insights from leading RevOps pros throughout our awesome community:

Brian Kroopf, Director of Sales, Contentful

Q: How do you determine risk in your pipeline and what metrics do you look at to estimate which deals are fantasy vs. reality?

A: At a high level, I start with the fact that AEs tend to get happy ears and believe that far more deals will come in than what actually comes in.  It is a rep’s job to be optimistic and a leader’s job to be skeptical.  I use historical close rates (by stage) at both the team and rep level to estimate what will actually close.

More tactically, I look at how many customer/prospect contacts have been involved in the sales cycle.  In today’s environment, 99% of SaaS purchase decisions are made by committees.  A rep won’t necessarily talk to every stakeholder, but the more they talk to, the higher the likelihood a deal will close.  On this same note, I look at the seniority levels of the primary point(s) of contact.  If it is a non-decision maker, I dig in to see who else has been involved in the process.

Finally, I use the “Silver Bullet”, which is a tool like Gong or Chorus (more a tool than a metric) to listen to calls, or portions of calls, to pick up on how realistic the deal actually is. 

Q: What are the key factors in creating a successful sales playbook?

A: The most important factor to creating a successful playbook is to have reps and leaders who are in the field on a daily basis helping to put it together.

The best playbooks start with historical data to determine how a rep can hit their quota.  How many dials, meetings, follow-up meetings, etc does a rep need to hit his/her annual goals?

The playbook needs to include customized talk tracks/frameworks on how to approach different buyer personas.  It also needs to include competitive intelligence that clearly discusses why your solution is better than your competitors.

Finally, there should be a robust database which houses every resource the sales team needs.  The materials should be updated in real-time as new products are introduced and changes are made to the sales process.

 

Did you know that…

51% of respondents regularly miss their monthly B2B sales forecast by more than 10%, while 85% missed it by more than 5%

And that…

on average, salespeople spend 2.5 hours per week forecasting but only achieve a 75% accuracy rate

But most importantly…

Taco Bell is testing out a taco subscription.  Who doesn’t love recurring revenue?

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