3 Pillars of Mega-Successful Sales Prospecting Programs

A well-structured sales prospecting process is vital to consistently closing deals. Unfortunately, most teams are still fighting off chaos at the very top of the funnel.

So, how do you build a dependable prospecting strategy? We asked sales leaders from Gong, Outreach, and Aircall to tell us how they set their teams up for success from the start.

Pillar 1: Process

When it comes to prospecting, knowing your audience is key. Persuasive Sales tactics are not one size fits all, especially if you want results. Refining your strategy is vital to making sure that you get the results you need.

Julliane Thompson, SDR manager at Outreach, believes that fully.

“Figure out who you want to target first,” she says, “then refine your strategy around that.”  

She suggests reps first determine where their prospects are in their buying journeys and approach them accordingly.

Tier 1: Your VIP’s

These are your best, cherry-picked prospects. Not only do they fit the perfect profile, but they also are most ready to buy. (You just have to convince them why you’re the right pick).

Tier 2: Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

These prospects fit your perfect profile. They’re the right size, the right industry, right companies, and right location, but not necessarily considering a purchase yet.

Tier 3: Outside ICP

These prospects are in your test zone. Don’t be afraid to try something different. Be prepared for rejection, but here is your chance to try something new and see if it sticks.

“Figure out who you want to target first, then refine your strategy around that.”

Make sure you find a good balance of Tier 1, 2, and 3 prospects when making organizing your outreach. Too much focus on perfect candidates, and you’ll miss out on a whole group of potential buyers (or be left scrambling for leads at the end of the month). Too much experimentation and your calendar will be devoid of demos –dragging your prospecting machine down to a screeching halt.

remote team productivity

Pillar 2: Productivity

The tools you use on a daily basis will set the level of productivity for your team. Workflows (or workarounds) built on clunky software are exhausting to work with, and too many unnecessary gadgets will overwhelm your team.

“Stay disciplined and only use the tools you need,” advises Collin Cadmus, VP of Sales at Aircall. “Take inventory and make sure the tools that you are using actually work.”

Not sure which tools should make the cut? Go through your stack to see exactly what value each item is bringing your workflow. Are your tools integrated with each other? Are they actually being used by reps? Do they make prospecting easier, or is everyone doing double the work? If your tools aren’t helping it might be time to ditch them and find something that does.

Pillar 3: Quality

We live in a polarized world, and while that may be a bad word outside the office, it might just be the ingredient missing from your sales strategy.

“You need a polarizing insight that has a clear binary statement and tears down the status quo,” suggests Chris Orlob, Senior Director of Product Marketing at Gong.  “Build your strategy around that nexus.”

Change is hard, and people are comfortable in their day-to-day status quo. But when you take the time to understand your customer fully, you’ll know how to voice their needs and concerns (and offer a great solution) even better than they could do it themselves.

Infographic sales prospecting

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Further Reading

9 Sales Leaders Share What Every New Rep Needs to Learn While Onboarding

Beyond Onboarding | 7 Sales Skills That are Really Tough to Teach

What Is Consultative Selling & How Do Sales Professionals Master It?

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