Best Practices for Outbound Sales: Tips to 2X Your Sales Pipeline

4 min read

outbound sales tips

Outbound sales have always earned a bad reputation among businesses when compared to inbound sales. According to Hubspot’s report, 75% of organizations use inbound over outbound.

Why so? It’s simple – unlike inbound sales where potential buyers reach out to the sales rep, an outbound sales rep does not have prior contact with a lead, therefore making it difficult to establish trust. Most prospects believe that all pitches they receive are nothing more than spam and delete it.

Also, outbound sales are often thought of as high volume and low-quality lead-chasing where they rattle through a list of phone numbers, making ineffective cold calls or shooting out a barrage of cookie-cutter emails with the hope of reaching prospective leads. 

A few years ago, Salesforce was facing a similar issue, which is when they turned to Legendary Aaron Ross and his team, who developed outbound lead generation strategies to target C-executives through well-written sales email outreach. This move helped Salesforce generate a 9% response rate and millions of dollars from cold prospects.

Let’s discuss some of the issues businesses face in outbound sales and the best outbound sales strategies you can adopt to increase your sales pipeline.

Sales strategy # 1: Finding the right prospects

Leads are the bloodline of any business. Once businesses have identified their ICP (ideal customer profile), most of them face the task of uncovering quality opportunities. What further makes outbound prospecting difficult is the fact that an average of 6-10 people is involved in B2B purchase decisions. Therefore, it is essential to understand the dynamics of the decision-making committee with whom you’re dealing.

outbound sales  Source: marcwayshak
  • Prospect research: Simplify the process of lead building using sales prospecting tools. Here are a few you can consider:
  1. ZoomInfo powered by DiscoverOrg – A growth acceleration platform that delivers a highly actionable 360-degree view of contacts, companies, and opportunities to target and convert.
  2. Inside View – Gathers real-time social and business intelligence and delivers it straight into your CRM. 
  3. Lead 411 – This data platform provides details such as verified company and contact information, including verified emails, mobile direct dials, and SMS campaign outreach. 
  4. LinkedIn sales navigator – Provides lead recommendations, prospect/customer updates, mutual connections, promotions, funding, etc.
  5. Crystal knows – This tool uses personality detection technology and analyses public data to tell you exactly how to communicate with different individuals.
  • Identify decision-makers: Keep an eye on “trigger events” such as a round of funding or new initiatives to determine the right time to engage. Also, identify what they’re discussing and what their current challenges appear to be. 
Data source: DiscoverOrg
  • Find multiple champions: This way, if one of your champions leaves the company in the middle of a sales cycle, you can still keep the sales process on-track. Remember, there’s a lot you can learn from someone’s digital footprint – use this to your advantage to understand your prospects better so that you can be more relevant when you make that first connection with them.

outbound sales

Sales strategy # 2: Pique prospects interest

The next task is to create a compelling and brief pitch that will catch the attention of your prospects. The goal here is to get ahead of the buyer’s needs, frame the pain-point, and outline your own product as a solution.

Data source: Indiegogo

When it comes to sales, you can’t make a first impression twice. This is why sales reps can make use of a video elevator pitch to get your prospects through the door and into your sales funnel without any hassle. A study conducted by Hubspot found that 68% of people prefer to watch a short video to learn about a new product/service.

outbound salesSource: Hubspot

Below are few pointers to consider when you’re crafting a kick-ass elevator pitch:

  • Start by talking about the specific customer pain-point you’ve identified through your research
  • Present a solution – ie, with your product
  • Back up the solution with evidence of success
  • Conclude by reinforcing your value proposition

Lastly, always end your pitch by adding a Call to Action (CTA) at the end of your video to get the customers to take positive action while your pitch is still fresh in their minds. 

Sales strategy # 3: Humanizing email with video 

Most sales reps know that the key to getting an email opened is by personalizing it, right? It is not uncommon to receive emails that go something like “Dear {Name}, As a {Job Title} at {Company} in {Location}, I wanted to reach out to….” Do you think this level of personalization is all you need to get a reply? Don’t be fooled! Your buyers are smart and, they receive over 100+ automated emails and are growing immune to it. 

To stand out from the crowd and get noticed, it is imperative that you humanize your emails. Sparing two minutes of your time and recording a video will make a world of a difference to your email open rates as they realize that a human being is involved and that it is not just another automated email. 

Data source: email uplers

These statistics prove that videos are a powerful medium as it helps build a face-to-face connection, show your credibility through your tone, facial expressions and more importantly,  convey your value by speaking directly about your product, rather than hiding behind sugar-coated text emails.

Photo source: Nutshell

Personalized video email follow-up – Not hearing back from your prospects? Fret not! A personalized video follow-up will give them all the reasons to respond. According to testing conducted by Vaetas Connect, an interactive video communication tool, it was found that follow-up video emails produced an amazing 99% conversion rate. {Source: Vaetas

When to use video follow-up emails:

  1. Recap a client call – After a call you’ve had with the prospect, send them a short and concise follow-up video email to recap on all the important points, instead of a text-heavy email.
  2. Check in on a buyer – Still didn’t hear back from your prospect? Send them a friendly just-checking-in video email to prompt response without being a nag.

Sales strategy # 4: Be persistent. Always be closing

Did you know? According to Yesware, 70% of unanswered sales email chains stop after email 1#. 

outbound sales

Source: Yesware

That’s a lot of missed opportunities, right? The only way to make outbound sales work for your sales team is – persistence. According to Yesware, if you don’t get a reply to your first email, you have a 21% chance of getting a reply to your second email. Take heart and keep following up as your chances of getting a reply will only increase with each email you send.

outbound salesSource: Yesware

Conclusion

Outbound sales strategy planning can be a complex and tricky process when compared to its counterpart – inbound sales. Especially what is more challenging is the B2B outbound sales strategy. This is the reason why a deep understanding of this sales process is necessary to build a strong foundation. Implement the right outbound sales process tools, research your prospects and strategically prepare and execute at each phase of engagement and don’t forget to add videos into your sales process to get a high success conversation rate. 

outbound sales

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A content writer by choice, Indhu is fascinated by the world of sales and loves to jot down secrets to what makes an awesome sales person. A lover of sunshine and soulful music, you can find her crawled up having a good read while sipping on a warm cup of coffee
Indu Abraham

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