You’ve all heard the axiom “sales is just a numbers game”; the more people you talk to, the more deals you will close, right? Well, of course that’s true. I gotta say though I have a hard time believing that more is better, all the time...At GTMstrat, we’re seemingly always having the debate over how much of sales is a science (or math) and how much is an art. Lately I am seeing too many companies think of sales as just math. And, I HATE it.
You know there is an SDR manager somewhere, as we speak, putting together a spreadsheet that works their “sales math” backwards. S/he’s saying to him/herself, I know the company needs 25 SQL’s this quarter. To get 25 SQL’s I need 40 opportunities, and to get 40 opportunities I need 500 meetings. To get 500 meetings, I need the team to send out 2000 emails. And, you know what? S/he’s probably right and the math for that particular company is dead on. Here’s my problem….What happens when the math stops working and your 2000 emails don’t lead to 25 SQL’s? The answer many times is let’s just send more emails.
Instead of just adding more tonnage to your outbound perhaps it’s worth the exercise to better understand why you are getting fewer meetings. It’s not just a math problem any longer and it’s not something science can fix. It’s where math ends and where the “Art of Salesmanship” begins.
As people in sales, we have multiple “levers” we can pull to see if we can affect our sales volume. So, for example, you should ask: are you reaching out to the right people? Are your SDR’s doing a good enough job qualifying their prospects? If you are a manager, have you sat in on those calls to test if the right qualifying questions are being asked? Are you asking open ended questions to gather as much information as possible? Have you created a list of the most commonly heard objections and have you practiced their turn around replies so you sound confident and authoritative when you give those responses?
Now, I know what you are thinking...All this testing and measurement all leads back to math. And you’re right. Knowing which levers to pull, how to adjust messaging and targeting, understanding if sales reps are asking the right questions or are even armed with how to overcome objections...these are all forms of art. Besides, if you are in sales, it means you probably suck at math anyway (I know I do)….