Maximizing Inside Sales with the Salesforce Method: A Guide to Efficiency and Scalability
Inside sales play a huge role in the success of any sales organization. Customers expect fast responses and technology-driven interactions, but also crave guidance and human connection in an uncertain world. Salesforce helps deliver these experiences at scale with an effective inside sales approach, which also helps grow the organization and its team. The technology they use is accessible and provides data and insights that boost an inside sales team's productivity and effectiveness. Inside sales make up nearly a third of Salesforce's revenue and have a big impact on everything they do, both in terms of theory and day-to-day experience
Lets see what steps Salesforce follows for efficient and scalable inside sales:
1. Following a customized structure that results in efficiency
There are lots of different sales models out there, but it's important to choose one that fits your resources and aligns with your goals. Options include generalized, segmented, and specialized models.
However, Salesforce follows a model of its own, it has 3 main segments - SDRs, BDRs and AEs:
SDRs - Sales representatives that assist inbound leads -those who have already contacted the company through forms of contact or event registration -are known as Sales Development Reps (SDRs).
BDRs - Salespeople who assist outbound leads, or potential customers who have not yet gotten in touch with the company but may need their products -are called Business Development Reps (BDRs).
AEs - More seasoned salespeople that follow up with qualified leads that an SDR or BDR has identified - are known as Account Executives (AEs).
2. Equipping the Sales team with the correct tools and technology
According to research, most sales reps only spend about a third of their time actually closing deals. They waste time checking emails and tracking events. But with today's fast-paced technology, sales doesn't have to be a hassle. One tool that helps is Salesforce Sales Engagement, which automates record-keeping for sales teams and streamlines the entire selling process. It's designed to provide a central location for managing customer contacts, sales processes, and other things.
To have the right conversations with the right people, Salesforce sellers need to sift through a lot of data on businesses and industries. They need sales tools that scale best practices and prioritize workflows to make the most of their time. Sales engagement helps their teams increase productivity and link sales efforts to revenue. It provides the technology sales teams need to overcome major challenges in the areas of automation, productivity, and intelligence.
Salesforce sales reps use the phone and email to communicate, and have automated as much of the sales process as possible with voice over IP and email integration. Before Sales Engagement, salespeople had to track every communication themselves. For example, they might put "LVM" after leaving a voicemail. Now, Sales Engagement automates this process by keeping track of every email and phone call. It also helps reps stay on track with the Sales Cadence, increasing accountability.
Salesforce sales teams often use the following features for automation:
1.Email Integration: Reps can work effectively whether they are working directly in Salesforce or in their inboxes thanks to email integration. With each interaction, automated email activity capture logs and data are updated.
2. Automated activity logging: Like call monitoring, automated activity logging frees our agents from manually entering data while providing managers with insight into what is happening with each interaction, prospect, and team.
3. Sales Dialer: Instead of using a physical phone, you may place calls using Sales Dialer right from Salesforce. In order to increase the likelihood that the lead will answer, it automatically logs calls and gives them a local area code. Call monitoring, automated voicemails, and other features are also included.
As mentioned before, sales reps only spend 30% of their time doing actual sales. The rest of the time is spent on administrative work or switching apps. It's no surprise that the fewer programs sales reps use, the fewer clicks and actions they have to make, and the less time they have to spend on unproductive administrative tasks. When everything is handled by one system, reps don't have to switch screens or waste time with manual data entry. They have more time to prepare for profitable interactions when they're not busy documenting call activity or trying to figure out what to do next. The Work Queue in Sales Engagement removes the guesswork from the sales process by creating a organized task list for each rep, showing them who and what to focus on next in terms of activities. It also streamlines reps' access to the data they need for a successful sales call and organizes their workflows to maximize revenue. Salesforce has implemented integrations that make everything the rep needs available on a single screen.
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) makes sales teams more productive. According to research, high-performing sales teams are 3.1x more likely to use AI than their less successful counterparts.
Below are the two key ways Salesforce AI and machine learning for Virtual Selling:
1. Einstein Lead Scoring: To score each lead, Einstein Lead Scoring examines every element on a lead record, including the contact's job title and the size of the organization. It displays the scoring parameters and forecasts which leads are most likely to convert. These ratings are also used to determine the order of the leads in the Work Queue. This makes sure that sales representatives always know which leads are the most important so they may approach them first.
2. Einstein Conversation Insights: When sales representatives speak with prospects, Einstein Conversation Insights employs natural language processing to focus on crucial call moments, such as mentions of rival companies or certain items. These standout moments are used by managers to determine where reps are thriving and where they can benefit from more coaching.
Data gathered from reps' activities and the conversion of prospects helps determine which prospects reps should talk to and when. Reports and dashboards allow sales leaders to see team performance, lead characteristics, conversion behavior, opportunity health, and other key indicators more clearly. These insights can help leaders make better decisions about hiring, coaching, onboarding, and training, as well as developing their company's sales tactics, improving overall sales performance.
3. Measuring performance and growth
After building the team and providing them with the necessary technology tools, the next step is to evaluate their performance. This serves two purposes. By tracking reps' performance in terms of dials and connects, pipeline, and Annual Contract Values, managers can identify problem areas that need coaching, as well as identify top performers who can be promoted to senior positions.
Salesforce uses coaching to keep and develop their sales representatives. Previously, sales teams used to receive training from managers on procedures like call logging and when to follow up, etc. But now they can freely concentrate on coaching for subtle abilities like resolving objections and interpreting prospects’ body language as the reps are now completely equipped with the tools and automated processes.
Building a pathway for growth and promotions
Salesforce has craftily created a career path for their sales team. As mentioned above, they train their SDRs to not only qualify but also develop trust with their customers and those who are most successful are moved to the BDR roles after a span of one or one and a half years.
The BDRs are seasoned prospectors who use online resources to locate fresh leads. They eventually master addressing objections and interpreting the tone of prospects. In addition to knowing how to sell software, they are also adept at navigating complex organizations. They are aware of the decision-makers' identities, know how to communicate with them, and know how to interact with them. The main goal of a BDR is to schedule meetings for the AEs they assist. They pay great attention to hear any opportunities they can share with that AE for any kind of cross-selling or up-selling. Once a BDR has mastered the art of prospecting, they are moved to Account Executive roles after another one - one and a half years.
Salesforce's inside sales approach is highly effective in delivering fast and technology-driven interactions to customers, while also providing guidance and human connection in a rapidly changing world. The organization's use of accessible technology, which provides data and insights to boost productivity and effectiveness, has helped them grow and contribute to nearly a third of their revenue. Their unique sales model, which includes Sales Development Reps (SDRs), Business Development Reps (BDRs), and Account Executives (AEs), and their use of the Salesforce Sales Engagement tool helps automate the sales process and increase productivity. The company has also smartly developed a self-generating talent pool by creating a career path for their sales team, allowing them to retain top performers and fill higher level roles internally. This creates a pipeline for both money and people, and helps reduce the time and effort required for external hiring and onboarding.