Webinar: Going Beyond Vanity Sales Metrics.
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Speaker 1: (00:00)
Awesome. Uh, welcome everybody. Uh, today we are gonna be talking about going beyond vanity sales metrics. Uh, so to do some introductions on our side. Uh, I'm Connor, uh, I run apps to-date. We are a rev ops organization. Uh, we are a SalesLoft partner. Uh, we work with a whole bunch of other folks in general go to market, uh, technology space as well. Uh, and with us we have Lily, uh, from sales lawfully. I'll let you do an intro cuz I know when we first chatted I was like, tell me more about your title. It's so interesting to me.
Speaker 2: (00:30)
. Yeah, sure. Thanks for having me. I'm a principal advisor on our value engineering team. So our entire department's job is to work with prospective customers to run value hypothesis assessments and with current customers who are either using the platform wall to wall or considering expanding and doing value realization studies. So a lot of quantitative and qualitative analysis of the impact of sales engagement for everyone who chooses to invest.
Speaker 1: (00:59)
Well, did you, I I just, this is purely out of curiosity. Did you start in like the sales side or did you start in the, the data and analysis side? Like which, which universe did you come from before you crashed the
Speaker 2: (01:09)
Two together? Yeah, it's, it's such a good question. I actually came from the service side. I spent a little over two years implementing sales engagement with our strategic and enterprise customers. And then before that I was at John Barrow's incubator, it was called Playground Partners out of Boston for about two and a half years. So, cut my teeth with prospecting and sales messaging and using modern sales tools to honestly do a lot of spraying and praying. That made sense back then. doesn't make sense now. ,
Speaker 1: (01:36)
I remember those days. Lily's Lily is super smart, has amazing insights. We're super, super happy, uh, that she's here today. So let's jump into kind of what we're looking to cover, uh, today for everyone who's here. Um, so first up we wanna talk through sales maturity model, what that means, how to assess where you guys are on that continuum. Um, talk through how to identify what's driving value for the, the organization as a whole, and where you can sort of be making those investments and fine tuning things. Uh, and then we'll talk through some key metrics that the takeaway here at the end. Um, and then we'll do some questions. So if anyone has anything they want to cover, uh, throw it in the q and a, we're more than happy to answer it. Um, anything along, uh, the whole of, uh, of the conversation. So we'll go ahead and jump in and get started. So I think as a starting point, uh, I know when we, we were originally talking around this and what got us so excited about this webinar is how Lilly, you and your organization think about, uh, maturity and, and what that actually means. Um, so with that, I think we'll jump ahead and I'll, I'll hand it to you and I'll sort of pop in and out, uh, as, as you sort of share your expertise.
Speaker 2: (02:36)
Sure, sure. So when we think about vanity metrics versus value metrics, it's really hard to decouple what you should be measuring from, from where you are. So before we get into those three metrics and three ways to think about how you can unlock more value from what you are tracking and monitoring and activating the outcomes of those data points here, we have to start by laying the foundation of where you are as an organization today. So this is how our team at SalesLoft, our revenue performance team, our value engineering arm, thinks about aligning solutions with driving impact and outcomes. So there are five dimensions and you assess your maturity based on the sophistication of each of those dimensions. And we're gonna tell you about what those dimensions are now. And then we're gonna talk a little bit about how you can chart your own maturity in, in that scale, right?
Speaker 2: (03:33)
So you have dimensions and then a sophistication per dimension. So Caitlin, if you go forward to the next one, so these are all inextricably related. We initially had them listed out, and I thought it makes a little bit more sense to look at these in a circle, right? So we have technology, we have, uh, data. And when I say data here, I really mean two different things. We're talking about the input data, the quality reliability, the recency of the data that sits in your data sources. So are you investing in ZoomInfo or Discover org? Do you have clear prospector? Are you doing enrichment in your C R M to make sure that what goes into your sales process is, is good data? Um, and then on the data sense as well, we also think about how are we using data and the output? How are we activating analytics to enforce and reinform the maturity of each of these different dimensions?
Speaker 2: (04:28)
We'll talk about that a little bit more today. We then have process. So how, how well have our sales leaders, our revenue operations leaders, our sales operations leaders, our technology leaders implemented a system for new hires, high performers, low performers to follow. And that process allows us to drive adoption, right? So you might have the best process in the world, but if nobody is using it, that is an area of improvement, right? So you might have, you might be really mature in process, but if no one's using it, you might be a little less sophisticated there on adoption. And that's your area of improvement. And then content and messaging really, really hard in today's landscape to discount the quality of what you are saying and your go-to-market strategy and all of that, uh, messaging that goes into your technology systems and your go-to-market strategy has to be really topnotch.
Speaker 1: (05:23)
I think I, wait if we can go back to one. I wanna add something here. I I, what I love about this slide is I, I feel like we as an organization coming to this, like I feel like we really started heavy on the technology side of like, oh, let's go build CR r M systems and we'll implement the technology solution. We're like, oh wait, all the data's bad in here, so we should probably figure out how to fix some of that and let's restructure those pieces. And then we're like, oh, no one's actually using it, so we really need to design a process to support it. And then we got heavy into content messaging. And it, I think it's like all of these, whichever angle you end up coming in at, uh, you invariably come to the conclusion of, oh, I need to fix a whole bunch of these other pieces in this continuum, uh, to actually drive value. And I love all of these together. Uh, cause I think that they're so inextricably linked.
Speaker 2: (06:05)
It's, it's such a good call out. And I, I think that's one of the things that I wanna leave people with today. There's not a right or wrong place to be on this maturity scale, but we have to be honest with ourselves about where we are today. So you can track iterative gains and you can be very strategic with where you're going to invest and how you're going to build a team of either vendors or in-house specialists to get the most out of your investments. And we see this a lot right now because sales technology is, especially, there is a massive spectrum of where you can invest your time and money and those evaluations take, take a lot of time and energy. But if you don't have the basic foundation set, if it is not cured, if there are cracks there and you go to invest in a really expensive light fixture for your attic, you're just investing in, in a, in nonsolid foundation and it creates risks.
Speaker 2: (06:57)
And there's not a vendor in the market that says, Hey, if you go invest in ai, uh, you might end up creating a bunch of work for yourself and spending time and, and energy and resources having to go back and refix that foundation. But once you know where you are on this spectrum, you can decide where it makes sense to spend your time and money and resources. So you can eventually get that really nice light fixture in the attic . Um, so when we think about maturity, it really is a spectrum. It's a wave. There is not a binary start and stop to that. It is not good, bad, it is just where are we today? How do we rank against our competitors? And once we plot where we are, we can choose the path forward.
Speaker 2: (07:41)
So this is a little bit how, how we think about a maturity model at at SalesLoft. So on the left hand side, we have digitized, you could be pred digitized. Um, so if you are just starting to invest in a C R M system, I know it sounds silly, but there are lots of, lots of huge, huge companies around the world. 25,000 person international shipping and logistics companies that are still just starting to invest in the foundations of a modern sales tech stack. So they might be pred digitized and that doesn't box them out from thinking about getting their organization to an optimized maturity or sophistication data point in any of the dimensions here. But it does mean they need to be smart with how they choose to invest. So you might start with the C R m, you might start with some engagement or data vendors and partners there, and then work on integrating your tech stack, work on getting enablement to come in and build your processes. And maybe then, uh, start to think about your content and messaging. But Connor, anything stick out to you on, on this side?
Speaker 1: (08:43)
Yeah, the, what I think is really interesting is I almost feel like you could rename, uh, the sort of upper right quadrant as like the rev ops focus and the bottom left quadrant is just c r M and cloud. And I think that this actually actually follows what, what I feel like the life cycle's been over the last three to five years of everyone's sort of like in and around this space, which is, oh, how can we get this stuff on the internet? How can we get all of our tools to talk to each other? How can we make sure we're actually talking to the right people? And I think some of the organizations that are really far in the maturity model, I think are just starting to break into really that intelligent and that optimized section. Uh, and I think that there's a lot of folks that we run into, to your point all of the time that could be really large organizations or organizations that are just starting to look at how can we get from, we're using some cloud technology, but they're not really talking to each other. And wherever you are on this, like it gives you a really good path. Cuz I think one of the things that we run into all the time is folks that say, Hey, how can we get really intelligent or optimized on this? And we're like, wait a minute. None of these things are connected at all. And, and it's not gonna matter. Uh, which I think the order of operations is awesome.
Speaker 2: (09:42)
Yes. Yeah, for what it's worth, most of the companies that we work for are square in targeted. So it is, it is rare. You really are gonna have market leaders, um, and, and people that are far along on that investment scale and, and have rev operations really humming along that are gonna be on the intelligent and optimized. But we, we don't see that a lot. So if you, if you're not sure if you're in that category, it's okay. Most people are right in the media in here of that maturity model. Maybe differing levels of sophistication per, uh, dimension, but all, all things considered targeted tends to be where we see most teams that come to us and say, Hey, can we do a value study? Can you help us realize some ROI from our, from our tech stack?
Speaker 2: (10:30)
And so what we're gonna do now is, is talk a little bit about what you should be measuring and why, but we're gonna do so with the underpinnings of where might you be on the maturity scale and how can we use where you are on those dimensions, your level of sophistication, your organizational maturity to drive outcomes. And that's where the market is going. So for a long time we, we've had basic metrics like open rates and and click rates and technology that allows us to get frontline insights into what we're doing. How many. But the challenge of rev ops and even of sales leaders these days is to think more about value. So outside of working in a, in a rev ops capacity and having that be your wheelhouse, how are we driving big business outcomes? And we're seeing this a lot now where sales technology is challenging our technology teams and our business teams to come together, make compromises sometimes that almost always happens, all the deployments that we've ever done.
Speaker 2: (11:36)
There's a give and take here, but we have to be singing from the same song book and common value drivers that we see organizations rally behind today in some of the ways that we're gonna position these metrics alongside of what you might be trying to achieve is which of these is most important. And I, I will get a lot of pushback from astute leaders who say they're all important and they are just like, when we think about those dimensions and the levels of sophistication, you, you can't have the best content in the world and no tech stack. You can't have the best process in the world and nobody using it. These value drivers are the same. So you might want more opportunities, bigger deals, better win rates, faster deals, you might might wanna reduce churn, you may need something even more basic than that. Just, I need my reps to be more productive, I need more out of my sales team.
Speaker 2: (12:27)
That shrunk a little bit in the era of covid. And when you think about marginal gains here, when I c come to you and I say, if I could change one of these 1% up or down or 5% or 10%, what would it be and what would that mean for your business? It helps you very simply frame where you should focus, understanding that they're all important, but if you can stack rank these, it helps you back into where we are in our maturity skill, where we should invest. And then as we get into the metrics part of this, what you should focus on and where those gaps might be or areas for immediate improvement.
Speaker 1: (13:08)
I don't, I don't have anything to add to that. That was great. . I think I think we could talk through some of the, uh, vanity versus value metrics in some of these pieces. So I think this is one we run into all of the time. Uh, and everyone loves to track, uh, big vanity metrics. And I think the difficulty that we really run into here and we see it across every organization we work with, which is your best reps are smart and incentives matter. Uh, and when you build incentives and when you build metrics around these pieces, they can find ways to generate all of these pieces of data without driving material value. Um, and really all of these at the end of the day, I mean I think one of the things that we run into all of the time as we see, uh, a new, a new head on the, the S d R team or sort of the b d R team come out and say, okay, we need to be striving for this many meetings, this many calls, this many emails.
Speaker 1: (13:55)
And all of a sudden you have the inverse happening where you're getting tons of unsubscribes and tons of people opting out of the different communications cuz things stop being personalized cuz no one's spending the time or you see tons of opportunities being created and all your a's are saying, I keep sitting on meetings with people and none of them seem to be qualified. Uh, we're like, oh, that's cuz we told the SDRs they need to hit this number or else it doesn't count. Um, and if people can find ways to game what you're looking at, they will. Um, and so I think if we jump to the next one, I'll hand it a little bit to you on things that you see actually driving value to organizations.
Speaker 2: (14:27)
Yeah. So you're absolutely right, right? Even organizations that are selling sales technologies have SDRs that are sort of gaming that system and AEs that are left scratching their head going, how did I get on this meeting? Right? So you're, you're right about that. The incentives have to be right. And so as rev ops leaders, if we recalibrate what those incentives are to think a little bit more about value and quality, you can move away from some of the, the more gameable metrics that are a little dated too and start to punch through into a more sophisticated way of aligning what we're doing with the outcomes of that. So we, we illustrated this as a circle, which is a theme of today. Everything is self-reinforcing. So we start at the top process adherence. Do you have a way to codify your go-to-market strategy? Sequences, flows, playbooks, cadences, doesn't really matter who you're using, but we wanna start by unlocking visibility, process adoption and strategy anchored on that foundation of a modern tech stack, sales engagement, some system of engagement.
Speaker 2: (15:40)
And then instead of tracking something like number of call attempts or number of emails sent share to reframe that data point as how are we doing on response rates? Which is going to challenge us to think a lot more about our calls to action, our content and messaging that may be outside of that traditional rev ops wheelhouse, but it's something that's going to impact the metrics that you're going to own. And a lot of technologies these days are even going as far as to say response sentiment. So you could have a good response rate, but what if it's just people saying unsubscribe a, a tech a technology like SalesLoft doesn't know how to tell you that an unsubscribe is different than a response if somebody is truly responding back until we overlay response sentiment. Similar logic here with call attempts. We know that in March of 2020 everything shifted.
Speaker 2: (16:34)
Email volume went up 20%, response rates went down 20%. You saw the same thing happen in calls. So as of today, if your connect rate is about 10%, you're doing great cuz it can get worse than that. It is noisy, noisy, noisy in the market spot right now. Marketplace right now doesn't matter what you're selling. Um, so with that connect rates, pay attention to a sentiment analysis, think about average talk time. So it's the dials, but it's the connections and it's what's being said. Once we get a human on the phone, once we have those three pieces in place in our, in our revenue organizations, we can start to consider investing in coaching technology. What trends are we seeing? Are there areas where our deals are going sideways? When we activate our managers or our enablement teams to listen into these interactions, how can we extract commonalities that will create coachable moments?
Speaker 2: (17:30)
And that's going to start informing some of the more mature and sophisticated ways that we can think about metrics. So diving into stage velocity, thinking about our pipeline health as informed by data to hygiene, which is gonna help us forecast more accurately when we know how long it's gonna take something to close, what we can do to put us in the best position to make that a winnable deal. And then also make sure a quarter over quarter, we're not missing that mark either too high or too low. And I've seen both of those things happen a lot over the last two years. Obviously we, we wanna come in higher than we expect, but still that can, that can create challenges on headcount and unlocking new capital from your C F O to go invest in the team to support that growth. And then we're gonna focus today on this last piece here, which is attribution. So how can we iterate and improve based on understanding where these opportunities came from, what made them winnable? And in the best case scenario, all of this should work together to reinform what your top of the funnel team is doing and how you're using your technologies.
Speaker 1: (18:39)
Cool. We'll jump in. So I think I, what is super valuable and all of this is impactful and useful, and I think all of this contributes to sort of the philosophical angle of it. I think what's super awesome and we wanna jump into next is really tactile examples of things that if, if you're like, this is super cool, but what should I measure? Uh, we've done some distilling for you, uh, that we sort of want to touch on, uh, and go through on these next ones as well. Um, so I think jumping ahead to these pieces is everything that Lil's obviously talking about, uh, if we jump ahead, one slide here is I impact of what you're doing as opposed to the volume, uh, of what you're doing. Um, and I think if, uh, we might have jumped to, uh, in the cool, uh, impact of your activity.
Speaker 1: (19:22)
So I think the, the area for this and, and Lily I'll pass it to you a little bit, but if you find yourself in a position of, uh, high volume getting a lot of activities out the door and you're really looking at, and I think some of what you touched on on the front end Lilly of, of, in the olden days, it was how can we use this technology to just help us spam lots and lots of people, uh, at really high rates, uh, has sort of shifted to how can we be delivering the right messaging, uh, to the right people as opposed to just sort of blasting out all of that volume.
Speaker 2: (19:50)
Yeah, yeah. So we're, we're gonna focus on the impact and we're gonna do this in three tranches. So we're gonna think about where you are on the maturity scale and what those value drivers might be for you, and then help you focus on some, some value metrics and move beyond those vanity metrics. So the, the first one that we're gonna start with here is really just on the, the quality of, of your interactions. And so what we're looking at here, this is going to be impactful for you to move beyond those open rates and into things like the quality of that engagement if you are in the digitized connected, trying to get into that targeted space. And if what you're trying to drive for organizational outcomes might be more opportunities, or on the bottom part of that bucket, just productivity and efficiency. If you get the sense that you, your team just isn't using the, the eight hours in their day bus, then we wanna start to acknowledge the fact that activity begets impact.
Speaker 2: (20:55)
But in 2021 and it's 2022 is right around the corner, um, volume is out and, and really efficacy is in. So we wanna focus on process adherence, the that response sentiment, the connection rate, talk time distribution so that we can leverage our technologies to the best for ability and start to tell a story about attribution. But this is gonna be more top of the funnel. So keeping volume high, but not for the sake of out pack, uh, impact and out outcome out pack is a new word. So we can call that a something that we coined today together. .
Speaker 1: (21:31)
I love it. I love it. Um, I think that the, the big question on this one is how to know whether or not, uh, some of what you're doing is working. I think what we see for a lot of organizations is they come in, they start making some of these investments, uh, maybe you brought in a sales engagement leader. Maybe you tackled some of these by assigning your rev ops team or external consulting staff or however you ended up deciding to boil down this particular problem. Um, and sort of moving to whether or not something is, is actually effective for this particular metric. So I know if we jump ahead one, uh, you have a whole bunch of opinions on that.
Speaker 2: (22:03)
Yeah, so, so I think when we focus on this, uh, there's, there's really three inputs that are going to be illuminated. So the quality of our data, the quality of our content, and then our behavioral practices, that three, that triangular here and the triangulation of those data points is going to be the first thing where you are going to see where that's weak. So those are just three of the five dimensions, but start to critically assess where there is the most room for improvement here. If your initial focus on quality over volume is not yielding, if those response rates talk time, connect rates on your calls, uh, process adherence to cadence's, flows, sequences, playbooks, if, if something feels fuzzy there, start thinking of investing in dashboards, um, dedicating a little bit more time to enabling your managers on coaching and importantly, cannot stress this enough.
Speaker 2: (23:06)
Assign ownership for all of those areas. Who is the stop gap for your data sources? Who is the stop gap for your content? How are we governing that, not restricting our team, but how are we making sure that our go-to-market strategies are appropriately represented? And then who is watching the data? Who is monitoring those dashboards? Who's training the reps, who is, uh, here to, to ultimately make sure that the focus remains on the quality of that interaction, not just on the volume there. So creating structure around that customer journey, um, creating and, and assessing better ways that at the top of the funnel funnel marketing and sales can work together. A lot of this is gonna come back to, to ownership and understanding data content and practice or process.
Speaker 1: (23:55)
Something i I love about this that I think is so important is, I know we wrote some tongue in cheek article a long time ago that was like the death of a sales manager, uh, out of sort of like joking on these things. I think the, the old school version of sort of sales manager or sales leadership, right, was the, the rah rah, rah, make sure we have activity, make sure people are doing things. And the reality is, is that so much of that function today can be, it's really easy to measure, it's really easy to iterate. You can find out how productive different reps are. And I think giving those sales managers and those sales leaders, uh, whether you're a C F o a C E O an owner, you're sort of looking at this and saying, how, how can I create the right behaviors?
Speaker 1: (24:30)
Is have them own some of these metrics. How can they be improving their talk time? How can they be, be improving those outcomes? And I think to your point, that ends up getting rooted in coaching. How do I make my reps more effective at finding the right people to talk to, having meaningful conversations versus just sort of trying to drive up activity all the time and put more numbers on, on the whiteboard. And I think that's gonna drive really meaningful results. And I think you're seeing that with the shift from even just the, the, the types of people that are thriving in those roles, uh, compared to hi historically, sort of the prototypical sales leaders that, that people think of.
Speaker 2: (25:02)
Yes. I I couldn't agree more. That's such a, that's such an excellent point. And when we think back to the concept of if it can be games, it will be gamed right now it shifts the role of manager to more coach and they're also tone setters these days. Reps, especially in this distributed virtual world, are looking to their managers to understand how should I feel? How hard should I work? How should I define time for myself and demarcate when working time is versus when I need to go take a break if we're all working from home. Um, so they still play an incredibly critical role, but Connor, to your point, I think they are less, uh, you know, they're, they're less using those sticks now and they're, they're using a little bit more of carrots, but those, they're, they're really good carrots, .
Speaker 1: (25:47)
Cool. I think, uh, for the next one here, and we, this is, I I think we, we handle a lot of these different attribution things. I think this is one of the conversations that we regularly get pulled new is really digging into all of your different streams. And I think you touched on the importance of some of those forecasted pieces, but so much. And I think the biggest thing, I mean we see CROs, VP of sales, the number one thing that they care about is forecasting cuz it ultimately feeds what's the business model. And in some organizations, if you're pure play software and maybe you have a low sort of delivery cost over exceeding your, your forecast is great. I think we're primarily services and you have other organizations, if you're producing widgets and if you sell 160% to goal, there's now this huge strain downstream to the organization.
Speaker 1: (26:29)
And I think accurately making those forecasts. And I think having, if you can get a higher forecast and you can hit that forecast, that's amazing. But if you're always low, it's gonna have those same types of impacts. And I think this is really an area to focus into. If you're finding yourself in a situation, you aren't sure where you're gonna end up, you don't know some of those data elements and you aren't sure what's really driving material value. Um, so let's jump into sort of like how to do those pieces, uh, and I'll hand it over to you.
Speaker 2: (26:53)
Yeah, so to your point, I think this is, uh, we're getting a little further along on the maturity scale. So if you're targeted trying to break into intelligent or if for value drivers, you're trying to drive, uh, a shorter deal length, bigger deals. If you're trying to focus more on attainment, then digging into your streams is really where you wanna focus, uh, your, your time and energy here. But some of the metrics, if you're not already tracking them, that I would challenge us to try to put some process around and create some dashboards, time to close. So what's our mean median mode and range? And then looking at that as a starting point for what we need to do from an activity standpoint, how we can better qualify, and then how, how can we use that to reinforce how we're coming up with our number and when things are actually going to close.
Speaker 2: (27:47)
It helps you identify when something looks a little too optimistic or when something might close, uh, within a shorter range. Statistically speaking, focus on stage velocity as well. Caitlin, if you could just go back one more, um, if you could focus on stage velocity. I think one of the things that our C R O says, and I I think for, for our rev ops leaders here, your job and, and sales leaders and managers jobs is to unine knots. So if you can track your stage velocity and start to find commonality where prospects go dark, where things go sideways, maybe it's every time you get a sales engineer in new technical questions start to arise. And so what could we do there? Maybe we bring in a technical seller to start to align with IT professionals or CTOs earlier in the process so that when we get to that demonstration phase, we're not going sideways because we've anticipated that because we are tracking stage velocity and we understand the why we have backlogs here.
Speaker 2: (28:51)
Forecast accuracy. Keep in mind data hygiene is essential. So if you are investing in those forecasting tools, they're only going to be as good as the process and the operational rigor that we can keep in our pipeline. So tools that allow you to do inline editing, identify areas with prescriptive, proactive approaches to fill in things like who's the competitor, who's the incumbent provider, how do, how are we thinking about bant these days? But get that rooted in our C R M so the output is more reliable and defensible. And then think again about attribution. So if we have all these great top of the funnel technologies, if marketing is feeding into our sellers, if our sellers are using go-to-market strategies in a codified way, how can I make sure that my AEs that are closing those deals understand where this comes from so we can continue to reinforce all of our dimensions and our maturity to breakthrough, to uncover more patterns and set ourselves up for success.
Speaker 1: (29:53)
Cool. I feel like so much of what we do focuses in here. I, and then that was incredible. I have nothing honestly add, I think that was great. Uh, I think the biggest thing on this piece is really just that your stages matter, um, and c care about those, iterate on those, segment them out by business and be able to use that data meaningfully, um, in terms of whether or not this is working. So if you really sort of started to invest in this piece of it, uh, where should we be focused?
Speaker 2: (30:17)
Yeah, I think, I think pipeline pains, they, they tend to be human originated, right? So conflicting priorities will almost always leave your c r m hygiene lacking reps just because this is what they have to do. Like they are too optimistic. And that's where we want to engage enablement teams and managers with tools and methodologies to help them parse through and focus on what is actually winnable, but to do so informed by data and not by instincts or hunches. So creating those visibilities, allowing them to couple or partner with you in rev ops to establish that language that's gonna help them come to those pipeline reviews with an informed position and defensibility as to why it's gonna make everyone more focused in their efforts. So if you can unlock those secrets of your pipeline, it's gonna help you just pour fuel on fire. So strong stages, stage velocity, um, better c r m hygiene, either supported by technology or just by way of your managers being more prescriptive, that is going, that's, that's gonna be really where you can focus. So this is a lot about rev operations, but I think it's rev ops in tandem with coaching and some of those softer skills that are gonna better support your sellers.
Speaker 1: (31:43)
Something if we jump back one, I just wanted to touch on one thing, which is you have what to do for next if your metrics start to improve and unlocking those things. I feel like this is an area, and we see this all the time either with, uh, it, it could be early stage companies that are B2B focused, have selling teams just to sort of just starting to invest in it. Or we even see this a lot with the organizations that are launching a new service line, launching a new product line, they're trying to build sales around it. And I think one of the things that we see a lot is let's throw bodies at that problem and let's do that before we know the process, before we know what works before we know how to me measure and manage and iterate against it. And I think one of the big things that, uh, is important to take away from this piece is really understand how that's all working before you just go add a whole bunch of headcount.
Speaker 1: (32:25)
Cuz I think something we see a lot is organizations that overinvest in sales, they have 20% maybe of that total sales count that's really excelling cuz they've figured it out themselves, but it's not codified. You can't reproduce their success and you don't know why they're effective. And so you just constantly sort of churn out sales reps all the time hoping that, you know, you find another person who is magically really, really effective. And I think the more you can tighten this piece up, then your ability. And that's how you see these, these large successful B2B technology organizations that can go and raise hundreds of millions of dollars, activate 50 more sales reps and keep that growth path going. And the reason is because they have those fundamentals already figured out so that you're just adding people to execute against what you know works as opposed to hiring people and hoping that they have the secret sauce, uh, cuz they don't, uh, is the truth, uh, no matter what. And it's, it's really sort of a team and a company effort to figure out what is that right approach for your organization.
Speaker 2: (33:21)
So true. It's so true. It's all about scale these days. And I think that really highlights the, the importance of revenue operations leaders, process systems. If it is no different than how we choose to invest in software, if our own foundation is not solid and we just keep throwing stuff on top of it, we expose ourselves to risks. When you try to break through to that i p o level or when somebody goes to acquire you, there's a lot of technical debt there. So securing that and and ensuring it up is a great insurance policy around, I hope this AE is good. Um, and and a lot of technology these days is for that lower 80% of your, of your staff, the the top 10 20%, it's probably actually more like the top five or 1% are always going to be high performers. They're creative, they've figured out their own ways, they are sometimes resistant to processing technology because what they have done has worked so much.
Speaker 2: (34:24)
But if you can take that 80% your new hires codify your onboarding process, make sure that they understand this is your tech stack, this is how it works together. When I change something here, it changes here. When I close something here, it impacts my forecast. That's gonna help you scale and ramp and make more of that 80% get to that upper echelon faster, more reliably and and with better data points and inform how long that's gonna take. And then what their likelihood is to become a producing rev revenue, uh, producing member of your revenue organization.
Speaker 1: (34:57)
Cool. Love it. I can talk about that piece for hours of like, the salespeople who thrive in the early days are your renaissance salespeople that don't need process, that don't need any of these pieces and they're not always the person to that ends up helping you scale past that. Uh, and that could be a whole other webinar. We could do another time , but let's jump to, uh, one of the, the things that's near and dear to our hearts as we do a lot of the, the marketing and sales and the combinations of these, um, is really around the closed lost reasons. And I think this is something that we see a lot of organizations, maybe they have a text field, maybe they have a dropdown that someone made a long time ago, but no one managed it. Uh, or you know, they have the dreaded other and like 80% of the things are just all on the other category.
Speaker 1: (35:36)
Uh, and and I think what's really important on these is you're looking at something that really is going to inform how you make strategic decisions. It's something we love to do. One of the, the CEOs we worked with a long time ago, and I think when we first started doing this, I was like, we really need to refactor these like every month or two, uh, we would sit down and we go through, let's go through all of our last reasons, let's see what's still applicable, what's not applicable, what can we consolidate? Uh, and I think at this stage I think that that sort of a practice is actually incredibly valuable. Uh, and I think this is gonna inform so much of it. So I we'll jump ahead one and I'll hand it to you Lil in terms of how to approach this.
Speaker 2: (36:11)
Yeah. This is, this is more of our reach metrics, right? So this should be, I'm intelligent trying to break through to optimized. I am trying to create a well-oiled machine on reinforcing my process by way of how I understand things work out, right? So it it challenges us to draw linear lines, have a consistent data story, really understand what that sales cycle is and the customer journey is, and being able from revenue operations standpoint to look at our sales leaders and our different revenue teams and say, how can we be a little bit more predictive? So this is going to focus on value drivers of your win rate. You wanna improve your win rate, you want to reduce churn, you're struggling with accuracy or attainment. This is where you should focus a little bit more mature here. But, um, ultimately what we want to unlock is the perfect formula.
Speaker 2: (37:09)
And I hear that all the time. People wanna know what is the, what led to this deal closing, what led to this deal not closing, what led to this customer churning, what led to this com customer renewing another three year contract with us? So if you can first make sure that you are giving yourself those data points on the lead, the contact, the account, the opportunity to making sure that those data points have the right level of specificity in them. So to Connor's point, making sure our closed ro lost reasons are prescriptive enough, and then committing to regular assessment and analysis of everything that led up to that point, good or bad. And if you have invested in a modern tech stack, don't let that close loss be the end of that journey. There are ways that sales engagement in particular can help us do the work of marketing with nurture cadences, sequences, playbooks, flows, closed, lost cadence's, sequences, flows, playbooks.
Speaker 2: (38:13)
That is a great way to keep your sellers engaged, to stay top of mind for your customer and to not let no, or somebody who's gone dark be the end of the story if we really do believe that we are introducing value and that we wanna partner, especially in that B2B sense. But that can also apply to the B2C sense with the people, people that we're communicating with. If we are coming to that with a sense of authenticity and sincerity, then we don't want them saying no or not right now or not until X, y, z to be the end of our efforts if there is true, true, true value there. So I would just encourage us to think about the reasoning behind why something stopped or why something won and to challenge yourselves to think one step beyond that. Keep that ae in that person's inbox with an automated email touch once every six weeks. You could find 30% of your, uh, close one revenue might come from a closed loss cadence like one of our AEs uh, had last year, which was incredible little data point but proofs in the pudding.
Speaker 1: (39:18)
I, I think that that's so, so true and so huge and I think we run into it all the time as one always asking. I think we also see a lot of success for organizations that tie, if the reason is product limitation feature set, one of those pieces, if you can tie those together, makes it much easier to go to product and insist, hey, this needs to be on the roadmap. It also lets product have this story of, hey, we made this thing, we launched this sequence out to everybody that we historically lost for this and we converted 20% of those. And all of a sudden you have product leaders, you're like, oh wow. Uh, I can attach like really meaningful value to some of the the new things that we're pushing. Uh, and I think that tackling those and not looking at it as a, I only care about things coming in at the front of the door, uh, will have a meaningful impact on what your bottom line ends up being.
Speaker 2: (40:03)
A hundred percent great opportunity for rev op here to be unlocking better collaboration between product and engineering teams. And also to make sure that we're facilitating the right level of communication with, with marketing. But Connor, we do that all the time. And, and when you're able to say we lost a million dollars because we don't have this one feature and our competitor has it, that tells a story that your finance team can get behind, your sellers can get behind your product and engineering teams can get behind and marketing's gonna love, uh, to shout that from the rooftop. So that's our job here, right? To facilitate those conversations. If we think back to the beginning part here, today's ecosystem is challenging our tech teams and our business teams to collaborate and to communicate better. So we can better differentiate in the marketplace, but importantly better serve our, our customers and our perspective customers and align on value for them and value for us. Cuz it really is a win-win when it when it goes right.
Speaker 1: (41:04)
Cool. Uh, well I know typically for these, we like to do some questions at the end. Uh, Lilly had so much to share and so much amazing insight. I know we a little, a little over our 30 45 window, but I'm hoping it was in incre. Incredibly valuable for everybody. Uh, Lilly, if people wanna reach out to you, what what's the best channel? Uh, what's the best way to see what you're up to?
Speaker 2: (41:22)
Yeah, sure. You can, uh, you can reach out on LinkedIn. I'm always happy to answer questions about sales engagement or otherwise in my email inbox. Or you could just shoot me an email, lilly dot lynn quada salesloft.com. I'd love to hear from you.
Speaker 1: (41:35)
Cool. Uh, mine is also the same. More than happy to chat on LinkedIn. Uh, shoot me a note if you're interested in any of these things. Lilly, thank you so, so much insight's. Amazing. Uh, honestly, can't wait for the recording. Uh, we'll share it out to you, everyone here. We'll distribute the slides. Uh, and I think that this will be an amazing, uh, on-demand piece as well. Thank you so much for insight. You were amazing. Thanks
Speaker 2: (41:55)
So much guys. Appreciate you having me.
Speaker 1: (41:56)
Speaker 2: (41:57)