In the last two weeks, we have scratched the surface of how to have better success at prospecting. We first discussed the importance of putting together a comprehensive buyer profile. (In case you missed that post, you can read it here: Are You Targeting the Right Prospects?) We then talked about understanding your prospect’s pain points before you even get them on the phone, and how this helps with crafting a great first outreach email. (You can read that post here: Crafting a Killer Message.)

For the part three, let’s look into some sales statistics and the reality of how much patience reaching a prospect really takes.  So start putting in the work

Persistence Pays Off

Did you know…

  • Only 25% of leads are good enough to advance to sales.
  • It takes an average of 8-12 attempts before you reach a prospect on the phone.
  • Sadly, 44% of salespeople give up after just one follow-up.
  • And 80% of prospects say no four times before they say yes.

What does this mean? Let’s say you have a goal of closing 10 deals. That means you’ll need 40 solid leads, and should plan on calling them each about 10 times, so 400 calls for 10 sales. And, you should expect them to say no a lot before they finally say yes. It takes patience, persistence, and a very thick skin.

If you want to have more success with your prospects, you have to go into it knowing the time and effort it is going to take to even make that first connection. Just this week I was pleasantly surprised by the results of my own persistence in sales. About a year ago I was working a deal with a Sales VP and it just kept stalling. The deal never got done, and come to find out, the guy left that company. Well, I did keep in touch, and recently reconnected with him in his new VP of Sales role at a different company. I pitched him again, and closed the deal yesterday!

 

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Getting Over the Barriers of Productive Prospecting

So you know the numbers, what is holding back reps from making the calls until they connect? I think there are two primary barriers at play – just not having enough time in the day, and the very real fear of rejection.

Fear of Rejection

Getting over your fear of being rejected is just something you need to figure out fast, or you should start looking for a new job. If you’re in a slump, take some time to refresh your pitch, or talk to your fellow reps on what is working for them. You can use the rejection in a positive way – brush up on the emails you’ve been sending, try a different contact at the same company, or take your lumps and move on to the next lead.

Productivity Enhancers

A recent stat I read said that 50% of sales time is wasted on unproductive prospecting. So one way you can keep your chin up and reduce your wasted time, is to get your prospecting game in order and be more productive.

Even though sales can feel like a 24/7 job, there is no way reps should be on the phone all hours of the day and night. What you need to figure out, is how to be more efficient and productive with your time.

One answer is using a sales assistant, like Spiro. Spiro is AI-Powered CRM that pro-actively makes recommendations and reminds you about the best prospects you can be reaching out to right now to close deals. With add-ons like Spiro Voice – which gives users direct dialing capabilities from their web browser – inside sales reps can connect with more leads than ever before. And Spiro automatically does all the data entry for you, freeing up sales reps’ time so they can focus on what they do best: selling.

On average, sales teams using Spiro talk to 23% more customers and prospects during the week. Basically Spiro gives you more hours in the day!

Up Next Week: Prospecting Part Four – Connecting in 30 Seconds

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About the Author Adam Honig

Adam is the co-founder and CEO of Spiro Technologies. He is a natural sales leader with a mission to help salespeople make more money using artificial intelligence — or any sort of intelligence for that matter. Adam has been a founder of four companies which resulted in two triumphant IPOs and two legendary mergers. He is best known for speaking at various conferences including Dreamforce, for pioneering the ‘No Jerks’ hiring model, and for flying his drone while traveling the world.

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