A sales cadence can get your sales team working like a well-oiled machine
One thing is certain: sales move businesses.
You can engage with all the vanity metrics in the world and they won’t give you the desired results. Your business can try to measure and correlate success with all types of benchmarks. But in the end, the only thing that truly matters is sales.
And this is exactly where the trouble begins. Selling your products and/or services is easier said than done, and businesses need to have a structured procedure in place to close sales. Your sales team needs to engage with the prospects in a manner that infuses genuine interest together with professionalism. And this calls for a predefined roadmap that can guide your sales rep.
And in this post, we are going to give you just that.
The sales cadence: Your roadmap to sales success
It doesn’t really matter whether you're creating a sales process or developing a follow-up strategy. The one thing that must be present is a structured plan that can get you the desired results. Any sales plan that you formulate should, in essence, be able to get your leads to move along the sales funnel, and also fuel engagement along the way.
Trouble is, the reality is far from what we expect, and most often salespeople in any organization don’t know what to do after the initial call. It’s common knowledge that garnering sales is an intricate process, and you can’t just expect prospects to convert after just one call. Most often, sales reps follow up on the initial engagement with maybe another call, or perhaps an email.
Predictably, this does not often give the desired results, and naturally leads to a demoralization of the salespersons involved. The natural reaction here is to move on to the next prospect and repeat the same, unstructured process. And most likely to the same result.
What is needed instead is a well-defined method of initiating and maintaining follow-ups. Inconsistent follow-up strategies can result in prospects slipping away. Sales reps need a clear plan of action to close deals.
And this is where a sales cadence comes in. One of the most essential, yet oft-missing components of the sales process, proper sales cadence can be the difference between success and failure.
In this post, we're going to take a look at how to set up the right sales cadence for your business. Also, we're going to explore some of the advantages of sales cadence. But before everything, let’s begin with the most important point of all.
Understanding what a sales cadence is.
What is a sales cadence?
A sales cadence is nothing but a set of steps that your sales reps need to follow when in contact with the prospect. This begins with the initial contact and can incorporate multiple touchpoints such as phone, email, and social media.
Usually, sales reps fail to strike the right balance when engaging with prospects. They either make too many contacts and irritate the client or limit their follow-ups to once or twice before moving on to the next. Both have the same result of losing the client.
A sales cadence can help to overcome this. Just because a contact has not responded to your first follow up email doesn’t really mean they aren’t interested in your offering. Data shows that on average, a prospect has to be contacted seven times before they actually respond to your queries.
This requires a well-defined, step-by-step procedure that can ensure that your prospect is led carefully down the sales funnel and towards a conversion. Following the right sales cadence not only helps your business gain conversions but also motivates your sales reps to continue their work with greater focus.
Well, now that we know what a sales cadence is all about and also why it is really important for your business, let’s take some time to understand how it can help your sales reps, as well as your business.
Sales cadence example
OK, so now we know what a sales cadence is. But what does a sales cadence actually look like? Well, your team's sales cadence can be tailored to your specific market and audience, as we've mentioned, but here's an example you can use as a template.
Start off with an email introducing the salesperson and asking for an opportunity to talk more about your product or service. Follow up in the afternoon with a phone call.
Phone call in the morning. Follow up with an email in the afternoon.
Send a resource relevant to the prospect's business. This could be a video, a white paper or a link to an article sent via email.
Follow up with email to ask if the prospect received the resource.
Phone call in the morning. Follow up with phone call and voicemail in the afternoon.
Email and phone call in the morning.
As we said, this can be tailored to match the needs and preferences of your target market. The important thing is that your sales force keeps your brand top of mind with your prospects. You can also include touch points such as commenting on prospects' LinkedIn posts, sending a gift to the prospect and leaving a message with reception at the prospect's office.
Once your salesperson has worked their way through the cadence, they can start again from the beginning. And if you integrate your cadence with your CRM, each salesperson will know which step of the cadence each prospect is on, so they can be targeted in the contacts they make throughout the day.
The importance of a sales cadence to sales reps
Sales reps need to have a definite follow-up sequence that they can use to engage with all prospects that come into your CRM system. Without a sales cadence, your sales team is basically shooting arrows in the dark. A proper cadence allows them to move away from guesswork and instead achieve a level of consistency for every prospective customer interaction.
Further, a proper cadence allows your sales team to help prospects move along the funnel in a short period of time. By eliminating chance, a sales cadence ensures that your sales team is fueling progress along the sales pipeline. This brings the required efficiency and efficacy to your sales process.
The importance of a sales cadence to businesses
As mentioned before, for any business, the most important sign of success is a steady stream of conversions. While outbound processes can bring the required leads to your CRM, the lack of a proper follow-up strategy can throw things off-balance. This leads to a stagnation of conversion rates and drying up of the sales funnel.
Combining the right sales cadence with a stellar outbound strategy can help to improve your conversion rates and allow your business to achieve the required targets. For this reason alone, it’s important that any business of scope has a proper sales cadence in place.
With that done, let’s now take a look at the various factors that must be considered in order to create the right sales cadence for your business.
Factors to consider while building a sales cadence
Constructing a sales cadence is not a one-off task. Sales cadences need to be tweaked according to multiple factors such as the target market, product, or service. In fact, in most cases, sales cadences must be tried out and modified multiple times before you can hit upon the right one. The following are some of the many factors that you need to consider while building your sales cadence.
Your target audience
Understanding your target audience is the first and most important step in determining your sales cadence. You need to put in the required time to comprehend who your target audience is, the social platforms they are most active on, and most of all their pain points. Only then can your cadence cater to them and deliver the right solutions.
The preferred medium
If there’s one thing that’s in abundance today, then it’s communication media. And the key to building the right cadence is deciding on the right one. If your target customer base is more responsive on Twitter than emails, then that’s the platform you should meet them on.
The number of contact attempts
Just one or two follow-ups aren’t enough to convert a prospect into a sale. Research suggests that at least seven attempts are needed before a prospect pays attention. So make sure you put in at least eight to twelve attempts before moving on to the next.
The spacing of contact attempts
Just as multiple contact attempts are important, so is the interval between any two attempts. Generally, anything more than three contacts a day can irritate your prospects. Just give it some time, preferably one or two days, before you initiate contact again.
The cadence duration
This refers to the entire interval during which your cadence lasts. Settling on the ideal cadence duration is vital to ensuring its success. Preferably, your cadence should hover anywhere between two to four weeks, depending on the response from the other side.
One of the major mistakes any sales rep can make is to club all targets in the same bucket. Don’t take that route; instead, focus on categorizing the prospects into distinct classes, using which you can modify your cadence. This is bound to give the best results.
Finally, the most important aspect of the cadence: your content. It doesn’t really matter if you have the perfect cadence; without the right content, it’s bound to fall short of the mark. So make sure your content is informative and intriguing enough to resonate with your prospects.
The above seven factors are crucial to building the perfect sales cadence. By keeping them in mind while formulating your cadence, you can increase your chances of getting better results. Just one thing: the cadence depends as much on the product/service as on the prospect, so make sure you apply these points to your offerings as well.
Advantages of a sales cadence
While the need for a sales cadence is clear, it’s also understandable that a sales cadence takes time and work to implement. Then why should you go through the trouble of creating one and integrating it into your CRM? If that’s the question bugging you then let’s take a look at some of the advantages of implementing a sales cadence.
When you start your business, you are usually working with two or three clients. In such a scenario it’s easy to monitor and coordinate the sales process manually. However, once your business starts to grow, you’ll need to create a scalable process that allows your sales reps to readily interact with prospects.
The sales cadence provides you with just this framework. By creating a coherent sales cadence, you can ensure that your reps can easily organize and handle information about all the leads. This also allows you to enlist others and let them handle the sales process, which is a must when your company is growing.
Smooth progress tracking
A clearly defined sales cadence allows you to smoothly track the progress of your sales process. This also makes implementing any changes in a simple task. With a clearly defined cadence, you know where you stand with each prospect.
What’s more, the sales cadence will also tell you how you can refine and restructure your sales process for better results. Where do prospects start to fall off? Why do they fall off? Once you have the answers to questions such as these then you can modify the process to achieve better results.
Finally, a sales cadence allows your sales process, and team, to work with a more focused approach. When you create a sales cadence, then you take the guesswork out of the equation. This is bound to bring greater coherence to your sales approach. And make it more effective and efficient at the same time.
Finally, it can be safely said that the right sales cadence can't be created overnight. It's a trial and error process that requires multiple iterations before you actually begin to see results.
Nevertheless, it’s worth sticking to for the reasons mentioned above. And by following the pointers mentioned in this article, you can easily create one that boosts your business. Just remember to repeat, refine and reiterate the cadence for achieving the desired success.