In Cold Calling, Data, Email, Prospecting

Shawn Finder, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Sales Metrics

We’re talking about key metrics this month, and today Shawn Finder talks about the key metrics to track in your outbound strategy that will help you be successful. 

Shawn was a professional tennis player before he launched into entrepreneurship in the form of Autoklose, a company that automates the top of the sales funnels for sales representatives.    

Cold calling

Shawn divides outbound into three different categories: cold-calling, emailing, and database because your database is the engine that keeps that car moving. You must have at least two of those inside your outbound strategy. 

Within those three categories, you’ll have different metrics. 

Cold calling will include dial-to-connection percentage, dials-to-appointment ratio, dials-to-opportunity, and dials-to-deal. When you’re cold calling, if you’re dialing 100 people but you’re only reaching 5, that isn’t very successful. Maybe you’re dialing 100 and reaching 10 knowing that 3 of those will turn into prospects and one of those will close. 

If you don’t know those analytics, you’re going to fail because the analytics keep you moving forward toward the right strategy. 

Frustration

Beyond simply tracking numbers, metrics can help you avoid frustration as a sales rep. Many sellers get frustrated if they send five emails but the person never responds or if they make 15 calls but never reach anyone. 

If you know that every 50 calls you should be getting three opportunities, you’ll benchmark your success to those numbers. 

As an SDR or a sales rep, unless you know your metrics ahead of time, you’re going to get frustrated if you think you’re not getting results. Knowing the analytics before you start will help you approach your calls differently.

Statistics

Shawn has found over time that most people, to include account managers, don’t look enough at the stats. As a result, they don’t know what is good versus what is bad, or what is terrible versus what is great. 

His company lists the weekly, monthly, and quarterly goals for each rep. They track forecast versus actual numbers. The goal is to make sure they know whether they are on par to hit quota, outperform quota, or underperform. 

They use a whiteboard in addition to digital tracking because reps don’t always visit the spreadsheets. When the reps see their names with their metrics on the board every time they walk into the office, it keeps them accountable. It helps them know what they have to do in order to achieve their numbers. 

Important metrics 

The dials-to-appointment ratio is important to Shawn because if he’s paying a dialer, and he knows how much each appointment can be worth, and he knows how many appointments he has to have in order to close a deal, he can then determine the ROI on his expense. 

If he’s spending $4,000 on a dialer and earning $9,000, that $5,000 profit is the biggest ratio for him. 

Email statistics

For email statistics, consider open rates, click rates, and reply rates. 

Open rates rely on your ability to convince someone to open your email. Most people spend a lot of time on the body of the email. Shawn suggests spending more time on the subject line and your first three seconds of the email.

The number one reason is that 72 percent of people are opening emails on mobile phones. They only see your subject line and opening line.  

Make your subject line three to five words, and do not talk about yourself in the first line of the email. If you want a high open rate, have a good subject line.

Keep everything personalized. Try “Hi, first name.” Another one he has used successfully is, “Hey Donald, Let’s Have Coffee?” 

Coffee works well because you’re not selling. It’s more casual.  

Opening lines

Consider what will make your prospects want to open the email you’ve sent. 

  • If I can save your sales team five hours a day in prospecting would you give me 15 minutes?
  • If I could fill your calendar with appointments, would you give me 15 minutes?

Don’t lead with information about you that the reader can find in your signature block. 

Your first email should be a little longer, but the second and third emails should be shorter, no longer than four sentences. If they’re longer, no one is reading them. 

Keep it short and precise. Give value. Share case studies and stories and testimonials. Tell them how you’ll solve their challenges. 

Email success

There’s a difference between click rates and reply rates. When you send emails, have your CTA goal in your head. If your goal is to get a reply, make your reply rate a priority. If your goal is to get a click, then make that your priority. 

Make it very simple for your end user. 

Many people don’t consider database part of the outbound effort but it corresponds well with your email and your phone. If you have inaccurate information in your database, you’ll waste a lot of time. 

For cold calling, if you have the wrong phone numbers, it will hurt your dial-to-deal ratio, as well as your dial-to-connection and your dial-to-appointment.

If your data is wrong, your analytics will be wrong.  

Verify database 

If you want to make sure your emails aren’t bouncing and they aren’t catch all, have your emails verified before you actually do your campaign. Verification can be very cheap, as little as $20 for 1,000. Spend the money so you can focus on the 750 that are valid without wasting your time on the ones that aren’t. 

People change jobs frequently, so do your due diligence and verify the contact info. 

Autoklose validates information real-time as you begin a campaign. The company offers a Chrome plugin that validates everything against LinkedIn to ensure that the person is still in the position.

Having clean data is the engine to any of your outbound strategy campaigns. 

Campaign tips

Determine your metrics before you start your campaign so you have something to benchmark against. Identify the key metrics to track in your outbound strategy.

Also, stop giving up after one to two calls. Recognize that it will take five to six touches. Integrate different strategies like social. Engage with your clients. Build relationships with them. 

 episode resources

You can connect with Shawn via email at Shawn@autoklose.com or on the website, www.autoklose.com.

If you haven’t connected with me on LinkedIn already, do that at Donald C. Kelly and watch the things I’m sharing there.

You’ve heard us talk about the TSE Certified Sales Training Program, and we’re offering the first module free as a gift to you. Preview it. Check it out. If it makes sense for you to join, you can be part of our upcoming semester.

You can take it on your own or as part of the semester group. The program includes 65 videos altogether, and we just completed a beta group that helped us improve the program and maximize the information in it.

If you and your team are interested in learning more, we’d love to have you join us. Call (561)578-1729 to speak directly to me or one of our team members about the program.

This episode is also brought to you in part by mailtag.io, a Chrome browser extension for Gmail that allows you to track and schedule your emails. You’ll receive real-time alerts anyone opens an email or clicks a link.

I hope you enjoyed the show today as much as I did. If so, please consider leaving us a rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

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