Sales Folks, Are You Batman or a Beat Cop?

At last year’s Forecast Sales Conference in San Francisco, sales leaders from across the globe gathered to discuss the future of sales and learn more about sales science. During the session Data & Analytics in Sales – The Secret Weapon, Base’s CCO Tal Tsfany spoke with LinkedIn’s SVP of Sales Mike Gamson about the importance and impact of using sales data to guide decision-making.

During his interview, Gamson shared one of his favorite analogies that was developed on the sales team at LinkedIn: Batman vs. beat cop. Essentially, “beat cop” sales reps patrol their territories day after day searching for opportunities. In contrast, “Batman” reps use data to give them “Bat Signals” that guide their way, enabling them to “fly in” and save the day.

Obviously, if given the choice, you would rather be Batman than a beat cop, right!? So how do you quit wasting time patrolling and start using data to shine a light on the prospects and places where you can actually make a difference? Here are a few ways to make it happen.

Real-time Notifications

How often do you find yourself digging through the recesses of your CRM or other sales platforms for information about your current leads and prospects? Did they open that email? How about the attachment? Did they sign the proposal? Constantly trying to keep tabs on everyone in your territory or pipeline can be exhausting, as well as take serious time away from generating new business. Batman would not approve.

Instead, leverage a sales platform that provides real-time, custom notifications. This way, reps and managers alike can go about their days and receive alerts notifying them of activities, occurrences or outcomes that they have defined as significant. This way, you can break out of your “beat” and start focusing your attention where it matters most. Examples of helpful notifications include:

– When a new lead is assigned to you
– When a deal changes pipeline stages
– When a prospect opens or clicks on an email
– When an email is replied to with negative sentiment
– When an attachment is opened or viewed

Predictive Lead Scoring

When you’re staring at a list of hundreds or even thousands of leads, it’s hard to know where to begin. That’s why reps will often just start at the top of the list and work their way down, wasting valuable time on low-quality, low-value leads. As such, one of the best “Bat Signals” you can give your team is lead scoring.

By isolating the key qualities of your best prospects and customers, as well as identifying common traits shared by high-value businesses, predictive lead scoring assigns a numerical value to each of these signals – industry, title, number of employees, etc. The higher the score, the better the fit for your business and the more likely the lead is to eventually convert.

There are many strategies for effectively scoring your leads, one of which is lead yield. By segmenting past deals by different lead dimensions like source, title and industry, and then measuring their yield using a simple formula, you can determine the types of leads generating the most value for your business. Your reps can then work smarter by prioritizing these types of leads above the rest. For a full breakdown of how this is done, check out this blog.

Prescriptive Insights

Besides Robin, of course, Batman’s silver bullet was always having great tools. From the Batmobile to the Batcave, Batman relied heavily on the latest and greatest technology to make him faster and smarter. And your team should too!

One of the most recent developments in sales technology is the introduction of prescriptive insights. Prescriptive sales platforms have the power to dynamically codify and analyze millions of data points at once to isolate the key factors impacting your sales performance. In other words, they alert your team as to the specific, most impactful actions you can take to increase sales growth.

Examples of the types of recommendations prescriptive insights provide include:

– To increase Rep A’s win rate, give him more leads from media/publishing and fewer leads from technology/software.
– Reduce your team’s time-to-first-action from an average of 33 minutes to 17 minutes to generate $150k more per quarter.
– If each rep on your team can increase her average contract value by $5k, you will end the quarter at $35k over plan.

To the Batcave!

If you find that you or your team identify more with beat cops than with Batman, it’s time to make a change. There are enough tools and technologies available to stop walking around in circles and start identifying and approaching the best opportunities for your business, Batman style. If you’re interested in learning more about this sophisticated, scientific approach to sales, download this free resource: Why Your Business Needs the Science of Sales.

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