Thoughtful planning is everything in sales.
Hence, irrespective of whether you are writing a sales proposal, creating a sales process, or setting up a follow-up strategy, you are required to have a well-thought-out planning to get the desired result that you want.
You need to create a plan that should get leads flowing smoothly through your sales pipeline and even get them engaged with your brand.
However, as one of the award-winning vendors of small business CRM software solutions, we have found that most businesses do not have any follow-up plan which in other words going by the books is known as “sales cadence” for a brand or company.
This is because, in most businesses the sales reps sometimes follow-up on their leads and prospects for once (probably even twice) and thereafter when they do not find a response, they move to the next prospect in their calling list.
Now, this inconsistency in the follow-up strategies of the sales reps not only slows down the sales process but it also makes way for opportunities to slip or fall through the crack.
In reality, prospective customers always need to hear from the sales reps on an average at least seven times before they decide on making a purchase.
Therefore, if your sales reps have given their prospects a call or have sent their prospects an email which the prospects have not responded, it does not actually mean that the prospects are disinterested in buying your offerings.
It is not strange to hear in this era of stellar growth in digitalization that probably every one of us receives hundreds of cold emails every day and so important emails can easily get buried deep inside the mailbox.
It can also be that perhaps your prospects have read your email but did not find adequate time and opportunity to respond to your calls.
Hence, you can never know the real reasons for your prospect’s silence unless you follow-up with them.
Therefore as it is has been found in different studies done on sales cadence that even if the first email sent to a prospect does not get any response, the second email has 21 percent chances to be read, the golden key to finding a response from your prospective customers is to conduct regular follow-ups with the right sales cadence or a prospecting methodology so that it can result in a sale.
WHAT IS SALES CADENCE?
To reiterate what we said even before, a sales cadence in any business is a sequence of follow-up touch-points with a prospect that helps in establishing a connection for ushering an engagement or hastening a sale.
Hence, sales cadence is typically a schedule that needs to be created for the sales reps to follow-up with each of their prospects via telephone, social media channels, or over emails.
Therefore, sales cadence is a process and a workflow that begins at the first contact and thereafter continues to evolve through a sequence of interactions until the prospective customer is either converted into a sales opportunity or they exits the sales cadence workflow and goes back to the nurturing bucket.
WHY DO YOU REQUIRE A SALES CADENCE?
The complete idea of using a sales cadence is to diversify your sales reps’ outreach by getting in touch with more than one prospect across multiple channels that are used by your business.
This is because, while certain prospective customers might seem more receptive to phone calls, others might prefer communicating through social media or emails.
Hence, in modern times it is extremely important for your sales cadence to incorporate several channels of communication to get connected with the prospects as executing a sales cadence for your sales teams not only helps your organization but also your sales reps.
– How a sales cadence can help the sales reps?
– How sales cadence aid businesses?
HOW TO BUILD A SALES CADENCE?
Building a sales cadence is never a one-time process. This is because, sales cadences differ based on the target market’s demography, personas, offerings that you want to sell, and more.
Rather it can be said that building a sales cadence involves a trial and error approach until the time you find the right cadence that works best for your business.
Nevertheless, the basic terra-firma of any sales cadence remains the same – a timeline of how and when you should contact your prospects.
Hence, here are 7 points that all sales reps should follow while designing their sales cadences:
Do research to understand your prospective customers, what their unique pain points are, which platforms they are most active on, and how your offerings will provide a solution to their problems.
To reach out to your prospects a good sales cadence must include phone calls, emails, social media channels, text messages and more.
Hence, make a quick list of the channels where your prospective customers are most likely to remain active.
For example, if your prospect is more responsive to Facebook Messenger than emails or phone calls, use that to your advantage by including it into your cadence list.
As we have suggested even before, you in most cases need to contact your prospects at least seven times to get their attention, and so an ideal sales cadence should have anywhere in-between 7-14 touch-points for conversion and sale.
If you do not want to get on your prospect’s nerves, never touch base with a prospect more than thrice in a day, since less is more in this case, unless you want to lose your deal.
Moreover, make sure that you space your cadence in such a way that you give a day or two before contacting your prospects once again.
The effective length of a sales cadence begins from the first touch-point when your sales rep receives a prospective customer and remains until the sale is concluded, which according to researches done should be about two to four weeks.
Nevertheless, this, of course, depends on the prospect’s nature of engagement with your phone calls, social media messages, and emails.
One of the best approaches to build your sales cadence is to first categorize your list into tire accounts. These tires can be numbered – one, two, and three.
You can do this segmentation of your prospects by categorizing them by their company size, industry, personas, regions and others.
For example, while enterprise establishments who are your prospective customers can fall in tire one, mid-market, and small and medium businesses can fall in tire two and three respectively.
Identically, you can categorize your prospects based on their professional hierarchy whereby decision-makers can be included in tire one, mid-level managers and lower managers can fall in tire two, and three respectively.
Now, once you have segmented your prospects in your lead management software into tires, you can easily design a cadence for each of these tires based on how you must approach them, the number of touch-points they need, the duration and respective channels needed to perform these cadences.
Finally, the chances of your prospects getting back to your reps and your brand primarily depend on the quality and uniqueness of your content.
Hence to catch the attention of your prospects, your content must be informative as well as intriguing, since even if you have an awardable sales cadence but a poor content, your cadence strategy will never take off the ground.
EXAMPLE OF A GOOD SALES CADENCE FOR B2B SALES
As we have stated even earlier that sales cadences can vary according to the personas you are reaching out, the size of the company, the target industry, and many more variables.
Nevertheless, here is an example of an ideal sales cadence which can help you to approach a company’s top-level executives:
Send a personalized email
To do this start by finding out more about your prospective customer using social media platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Thereafter understand your prospect’s business and find out how you can benefit them by selling your offerings.
After this research has been done, send a personalized email using the data gathered about your prospect, accompanied by a connection request on LinkedIn.
Send an email pitching your offerings
To do this empathize on your prospective customer’s pain-points, elaborate on specific business use cases and express your thoughts as to how your brand helped them to overcome these dark areas of problems.
Send the first follow-up email
This is your first follow-up email; therefore keep it short, simple and crisp. Remember the goal of this email is to find a simple “Yes” or “No” from your prospect.
Make a phone call (leave a voicemail and an email if unanswered)
In this step in your sales cadence make the first call to your prospect (preferably during the evening) and if it goes unanswered leave a voice mail with your name, company’s name and phone number, requesting the prospect to call back at their convenience.
You can also drop an email to your prospect saying you tried to call them and have left a voice mail in their absence.
Send the second follow-up email
This email should essentially talk about the features of your offerings that are in relevance to your prospect’s pain points.
Send the third follow-up email
In this email, you can send more success stories and case studies of how your offerings have helped others in uprooting problems associated with their businesses.
This must essentially be the last email in your communication chain, in which you should for the one last time highlight the challenges faced by your prospect and remind them how your solution can help them to overcome their pain points.
Always remember to end this final breakup email in a positive note, so that you can leave an open door for future potential collaborations and opportunities.
SALES CADENCE- BEST PRACTICES
HOW TO MEASURE AND TRACK THE RESULTS?
Manually following up with your leads and prospects can be really challenging, especially when you are dealing with a very high volume of leads.
Therefore, buy CRM and use this lead management software that can leverage technology to automate the sales cadence with Sales Force Automation (SFA) tools.
Now once you have a sales cadence to know if it is working and judge the success of your strategy here are four metrics that you need to track with the help of your easy to use CRM software:
A sales cadence makes sure that your prospective leads do not fall through the crack and are steadily moving across the different successive stages in your sales funnel.
Therefore test the sales cadence that you build and adjust it if needed until you discover what best works for your business.