Win/Loss analysis: How to learn from lost sales opportunities

Have you ever lost a big sales opportunity without knowing why it slipped away? If so, you’re not alone. And there’s good news. Those lost sales opportunities can actually be great learning experiences if you take the time to conduct a win/loss analysis.

In fact, by understanding lost opportunity trends, you can:

  • Develop better sales strategies
  • Improve customer service initiatives
  • Create more effective marketing and sales messaging
  • Adjust pricing to ensure a competitive advantage
  • Analyze competitor activity and adjust accordingly

In this post, we’ll explore what a win/loss analysis is, how to calculate your win/loss ratio and how you can use this strategy to improve your sales process. We’ll also share seven tips to prevent losing sales so that you can increase your overall win rate. 

Let’s get started.


What’s a win/loss analysis?

Win-loss analysis (also called lost sales analysis) systematically identifies patterns in lost sales opportunities. This type of analysis aims to identify lost opportunities, understand why they were lost and take actionable steps to prevent lost sales in the future. 


What’s the benefit of conducting a win/loss analysis?

Regularly conducting a win/loss analysis can give you insight into every lost sales opportunity by examining the reasons behind lost interactions and uncovering hidden trends. This helps you identify any weaknesses in your sales funnel, product features, customer service, pricing structure and more. From there, you can use this data to create better strategies for winning business.

For example, maybe lost deals were due to competitive pricing or an inability to deliver on key customer demands. With this information, your sales team can make necessary changes to their sales approach to better address customer needs or out-maneuver the competition.


How to conduct a win/loss analysis

Conducting a B2B win/loss analysis involves systematically gathering and analyzing data about the factors that contributed to your company’s success or failure in a sales opportunity.

Here’s a step-by-step framework to help you conduct a B2B win/loss analysis.


Step 1: Define the objectives

Identify the objectives of the analysis, which could include understanding customer needs, assessing sales strategies, evaluating competitor performance, identifying market trends and improving product development.


Step 2: Identify the participants

Determine who will participate in the analysis, which could include sales reps, customers, decision-makers, stakeholders and others who have significant involvement in the sales opportunity.

For example, you might involve sales reps who were directly involved in the sales opportunity, customers who participated in the sales process, decision-makers who were involved in the purchase decision and stakeholders who have insights into the industry.


Step 3: Collect data

Collect relevant data by conducting interviews, surveys, and reviews of sales records and other documentation. The data should cover the entire sales cycle, from lead generation to closing or losing the deal.

For example, you can interview sales reps, customers and decision-makers to understand their perspectives. You can also collect sales records and other relevant documentation to supplement the interviews.


Step 4: Analyze the data

Analyze the collected data to identify the key factors contributing to the win or loss, such as product features, pricing, customer service, sales pitch, competitor analysis and market trends.


Step 5: Identify the key takeaways

Based on the data analysis, identify the key takeaways, such as what worked and what didn’t, customer preferences, common objections, competitive advantages and areas for improvement.


Step 6: Develop action items

Develop action items based on the key takeaways, such as improving product features, pricing, customer service, sales training and market positioning.


Step 7: Implement changes

Implement the action items by making the necessary changes to your sales strategy, product development and customer service.


Step 8: Monitor and evaluate

Monitor and evaluate the impact of the changes on your sales performance and customer satisfaction. Continuously refine your sales strategy based on the feedback from your customers and sales reps.


Step 9: Share insights

Share the insights and recommendations with the relevant stakeholders, including the sales team, product development team, customer service team and management. This will ensure that everyone is aware of the findings and can take action based on the recommendations.


Win/loss ratio formula 

The win/loss ratio is a simple formula to measure a company’s success rate in winning business opportunities. The formula is:

  • Win/Loss Ratio = Total Number of Wins / Total Number of Losses

For example, if a company won 20 deals and lost 10 deals, their win/loss ratio would be 2:1.

Knowing the win/loss ratio is important because it provides a quick and easy way to assess your team’s success rate in winning business opportunities. By tracking the ratio over time, your sales team can identify trends and patterns in their sales performance and take action to improve their sales strategies and tactics.

In addition, understanding the win/loss ratio can help sales reps identify areas where they are excelling and areas where they need to improve. For example, if your team has a high win/loss ratio, they may be doing an excellent job of targeting the right prospects and delivering a compelling value proposition.

On the other hand, if your team has a low win/loss ratio, they may need to reassess their messaging and positioning to improve their chances of winning more deals.


7 tips to prevent losing sales opportunities

Preventing lost sales opportunities requires a combination of research, preparation, relationship-building and excellent customer service. 

Following these tips can increase your chances of winning more business and building long-term customer relationships.


#1 Research your prospects

Before reaching out to a potential customer, it’s essential to research their company and industry to understand their pain points, challenges and goals. This will help you tailor your sales pitch to their specific needs.

For example, with a platform like Rev, you can look at your best customers’ exegraphics (data on how companies operate and behave) to find prospects at companies that have similar characteristics. Then, you can use that information to craft a more targeted outreach message.


#2 Develop a strong value proposition

To win sales opportunities, you must have a clear and compelling value proposition demonstrating how your product or service can solve your prospect’s problems and provide value to their business.

For example, if you’re targeting companies in the healthcare industry, you might offer a solution that helps reduce costs or improve patient outcomes. But to stand out among competitors, you need to go beyond just explaining the features of your product.

So, you might strengthen your value proposition by highlighting your customer success stories, case studies and other evidence-based benefits demonstrating your solution’s impact.


#3 Build rapport with your prospects

Building a rapport with your prospects is critical for winning their trust and confidence. Your sales reps can do this by being authentic, empathetic and attentive to their needs.

Let’s imagine you’re talking to a potential customer about their financial reporting software. Instead of trying to sell them your solution, you can start by asking questions about their business and current challenges.

Showing genuine interest in understanding their needs and providing helpful advice can make them much more likely to move forward with you.


#4 Identify decision-makers and influencers

It’s essential to identify the key decision-makers and influencers in your prospect’s organization and tailor your sales pitch to their specific needs and interests. If you don’t, you could attempt to sell to the wrong person and lose valuable opportunities.

So, how do you identify key decision-makers? To start, look for names and contact information in press releases, organizational charts, LinkedIn and other professional sources. Then, once you’ve identified the decision-makers and influencers, study their backgrounds and interests to tailor your sales pitch to them specifically.


#5 Provide excellent customer service

Providing excellent customer service throughout the sales process can help you win sales opportunities and prevent lost business. This includes being responsive, transparent and attentive to your prospect’s needs.

For example, if a customer has a question, be sure to answer promptly and provide helpful solutions. You should also keep an open line of communication with your customer and stay up to date on the latest industry trends and developments.

Your customer service should extend beyond just the sales process as well. Even if you lose the sale, thank the prospect for their time and consider asking them for feedback.


#6 Follow up regularly

Regular follow up helps keep your business top of mind and demonstrate your commitment to their success. This proactive communication also helps to build relationships and trust, which can make all the difference.

Some general tips for follow-up include:

  • Make sure communication is personalized and tailored to the customer’s needs.
  • Use automation tools and software to help streamline follow-up and make sure it gets done promptly.
  • Keep track of who you’ve contacted and when so you don’t annoy prospects by over-contacting.

For more tips, check out our article on 11 of the best practices for lead follow-up.


#7 Stay up-to-date on industry trends

Staying up-to-date on industry trends and developments can help you anticipate your prospect’s needs and tailor your sales pitch accordingly. Think about it. How can you be prepared for questions and objections if you don’t know what is happening in your industry?

One way to stay on top of your industry news is to subscribe to relevant blogs, newsletters and websites. Then, set aside some time each week to read up on the latest developments in your industry. This will help you better answer any questions or address any objections that come up during a sales call.


Final thoughts

A win/loss analysis gives you the insight and data needed to optimize your sales process, uncover lost opportunities and increase customer satisfaction. With it, you can make more informed decisions about how and where to focus your efforts for maximum success.

If you want to improve your overall win rate, start by ensuring you’re targeting the right leads and prospects. How? By using exegraphic data to refine your ideal customer profile to reflect the characteristics and behaviors of your best customers. That way, you can develop more targeted outreach and increase your chances of success.

Want to see the power of exegraphics for yourself? Contact us, and we’ll give you a free audit of your best customers and a list of companies that operate and behave just like them.

How to better understand your customers’ needs (without the limitations of traditional customer data)

Want to understand your customers better than—and before—anyone else? Develop a deep understanding of their needs and pain points? Predict what factors influence them to buy before they even speak to one of your sales reps? 

Well, we hate to break it to you, but… your typical ideal customer profile isn’t gonna cut it. Why? Think about it. 

Has a company ever selected your business as their preferred vendor simply because they are a software development company with over 5,000 employees, headquartered in the Northeast region and heavily invested in cloud-based ERP systems? 

Or is it because your business offers a solution that solves their pain points, addresses their specific needs and delivers exceptional value? 

Probably the latter! So, you need a way to uncover the underlying motivations, preferences and behaviors that drive your customers’ decision-making processes.

In this blog post, we’ll show you how to harness the power of exegraphic data to better understand your customers’ core motivations and preferences. That way, you can develop more effective marketing and sales strategies that resonate with your target audience and drive meaningful results.

Here’s an overview of what you’ll learn: 

  • The importance of knowing your customers beyond firmographic and technographic data
  • How exegraphic data complements traditional data for enhanced customer understanding
  • Example of how exegraphic data helps you understand and target your ideal customers better
  • How to find and begin harnessing the power of exegraphics
  • Additional methods to gain insight into customer needs and pain points

Let’s begin!


The importance of knowing your customer beyond firmographic and technographic data

Firmographic and technographic data have long been relied on as sources of customer insights. These data types offer valuable initial insights. They, however, fall short when it comes to truly understanding customer needs and motivations.

One limitation of relying solely on firmographic data is its inability to capture the complexity and diversity within customer segments. Companies within the same industry or similar size may have vastly different preferences and behaviors. Additionally, firmographic data fails to provide insights into the underlying reasons behind customer preferences and decision-making processes.

Technographic data, on the other hand, provides insight into the tools and technologies customers use. While this information can help understand if your solution might be a good fit for the company, it fails to delve into the deeper aspects of customer behavior or the factors influencing their purchasing decisions.


The transformative potential of exegraphics for understanding customer buying behavior 

Exegraphic data helps to overcome the limitations of firmographic and technographic data. By examining how companies operate and behave, exegraphics enable sales and marketing professionals to gain insights into the driving forces behind customer decision-making processes.

Exegraphic data encompasses various dimensions, including:

  • Company culture and values
  • Organizational structure
  • Industry trends
  • Competitive positioning
  • Product or service differentiation
  • Messaging and brand positioning
  • Marketing and sales strategies
  • Functional roles and responsibilities
  • Skills and expertise
  • Job postings and hiring requirements
  • Growth rates and funding

By analyzing these dimensions—and combinations of them, you gain a comprehensive understanding of the context in which customers make decisions, allowing you to tailor your sales and marketing strategies accordingly.


How exegraphic data complements traditional data for enhanced customer understanding

Exegraphic data complements traditional data sources by adding depth and context to your understanding of customers. While firmographic and technographic data provide a foundation, exegraphic data fills in the gaps and provides a more nuanced perspective.

For example, before incorporating exegraphic data, your ideal customer profile might resemble the following:

  • Company size: Mid-sized to large enterprises with 500-5,000 employees.
  • Industry: Technology and software development.
  • Geographic location: Concentrated in metropolitan areas in the Northeast US.
  • Technographic: Utilizes cloud-based infrastructure, agile development methodologies and data analytics tools.

While this profile provides a broad understanding of your target customer, it lacks the depth and context that exegraphic data can offer. By incorporating exegraphics, your ideal customer profile can evolve to include more specific characteristics, such as:

  • Company culture and values: Seeks innovation, values collaboration and emphasizes work-life balance.
  • Organizational structure: Flat hierarchy, cross-functional teams and agile decision-making processes.
  • Industry trends: Adapts quickly to emerging technologies, focuses on digital transformation and values customer-centric approaches.
  • Functional expertise: Strong product development capabilities, emphasizes user experience and prioritizes data security.

This deeper understanding allows you to tailor your messaging, offerings and strategies to resonate with your target audience on a more meaningful level, increasing the likelihood of successful customer acquisition and retention. 


Example of how exegraphics can help you target your ideal customers better

Now, let’s imagine how your marketing team might use that updated customer profile to create a demand generation campaign. Rather than relying on generic marketing strategies, they can leverage the updated customer profile enriched with exegraphic data to develop a targeted demand generation strategy.

Here’s how they might approach it.


Tailored messaging

With insights into the company’s culture, values and industry trends, your marketing team can craft messaging that resonates with the target audience. Highlighting the importance of innovation, collaboration, and work-life balance can capture their attention and align with their values.


Personalized content

Understanding the organizational structure and functional expertise of your ideal customers allows your team to develop content that addresses their specific pain points and challenges. This could include case studies, whitepapers or blog posts showcasing how your product or service can enhance product development capabilities, improve user experience or strengthen data security.


Channel selection

Knowing your target audience’s preferred tools and platforms enables your marketing team to choose the most effective channels for reaching them. If they use cloud-based infrastructure, for example, investing in targeted online advertising or partnering with relevant technology blogs or forums may yield satisfactory results.


Thought leadership opportunities

By identifying industry events, conferences or webinars where your target audience is likely to participate, you can create thought leadership opportunities for your company. For example, you can proactively seek speaking engagements or panel discussions to establish credibility and engage with potential customers.


Account based marketing (ABM)

With a deep understanding of your ideal customer, your team can employ ABM tactics to personalize interactions with key accounts. This could involve creating custom landing pages, hosting exclusive events or developing targeted campaigns designed specifically for software development companies in the Northeast region utilizing cutting-edge technologies.


Relationship building

By understanding their company culture, you can align your interactions to build trust and rapport. For example, you could engage with them on social media platforms where they are active, respond to their inquiries promptly and provide tailored solutions to their unique needs.

This targeted approach increases the likelihood of capturing their attention, building meaningful connections, and ultimately driving higher conversion rates and customer engagement.


How to find exegraphic data on your ideal customers

Rev’s Sales Development Platform empowers you to uncover and leverage exegraphic data, enabling you to identify companies that closely resemble your best customers.


Here’s how it works:

You’d start by feeding Rev’s Sales Development Platform (SDP) with a seed list of your top-performing existing customers. With this information, Rev’s AI then creates an aiCP (AI customer profile) model, essentially a lookalike model that analyzes the exegraphics shared by your best customers. The AI engine then identifies the underlying patterns and traits.

After building the aiCP, the SDP identifies other companies that exhibit similar combinations of distinct exegraphics as your best customers—and ranks them based on how closely they match your new ICP. This process resolves the challenge of finding more customers like your best ones in a remarkably efficient and complex manner that surpasses human capabilities.

The model then evaluates exegraphics using a points-based system, translating them into human-understandable terms such as industries, functions and growth rates. You can then apply your own criteria and lenses to refine the prospect list further, aligning it with your unique sales and marketing goals.


Additional methods to gain insight into customer needs and pain points

In addition to leveraging exegraphics, you can also employ several other strategies to better understand your customers’ pain points and needs.


Customer interviews

Conducting one-on-one customer interviews can provide valuable insights by allowing customers to express their thoughts and experiences openly.


Surveys and questionnaires

By asking specific questions and providing response options, you can collect valuable feedback using targeted surveys and questionnaires.


Data analytics

Analyzing customer data, such as purchase history, website interactions and customer support inquiries, can reveal patterns and trends related to your customers’ pain points and needs.


Customer support and feedback

You can identify customers’ common issues and prioritize solutions by monitoring interactions with customer service representatives and collecting feedback through channels like customer satisfaction surveys or feedback forms.


Competitor analysis

Examining the offerings and strategies of competitors can shed light on needs currently being addressed in the market. This analysis can help your company identify gaps and differentiate your offerings.


Industry research and trends

Keeping up with industry research, trends and market reports can provide insights into emerging pain points and evolving customer needs. Staying informed about industry developments can help your company proactively address customer challenges.


Final thoughts

By adopting a holistic approach to understanding your customers, you can gain a comprehensive view of their challenges and aspirations. This deeper understanding enables you to develop targeted marketing and sales strategies, refine your product offerings and deliver exceptional value.

Rev’s Sales Development Platform can help you uncover, analyze and leverage exegraphics to better understand your customers and unlock the full potential of your go-to-market teams.

Want to witness the power of exegraphics in action? Schedule a demo with our team. We’ll show you how to revolutionize your customer understanding and targeting strategies!

18 revenue operations metrics and KPIs for demonstrating impact on revenue growth

Ever wondered how RevOps teams truly measure their success? In a recent survey, 72% of RevOps teams highlighted revenue as their primary metric for success.

While revenue is undoubtedly a crucial metric, there’s more to it than meets the eye. In fact, RevOps teams are evaluated based on a diverse range of factors that go beyond the dollars and cents.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the other metrics and KPIs your team should prioritize. By understanding these essential metrics and KPIs, your team will be able to effectively communicate their contributions to not only revenue growth but also the organization’s broader objectives.

We’ll also introduce you to the power of exegraphic data—insights into how companies operate and behave—to elevate your metrics and KPIs. 

Let’s get started!


Revenue operations metrics vs. KPIs

By using RevOps metrics and KPIs together, RevOps teams can showcase the comprehensive picture of their impact. While the terms are often used interchangeably, recognizing their distinction is crucial for showcasing the true value of RevOps efforts.


RevOps metrics: The foundation of performance measurement

RevOps metrics are the quantifiable data points that track and assess various aspects of revenue operations. These metrics provide specific insights into the performance and efficiency of different processes within the RevOps function.


RevOps KPIs: Aligning revenue operations with strategic business objectives

On the other hand, KPIs are a subset of RevOps metrics that have been strategically chosen to align with the broader goals and objectives of the organization. KPIs serve as high-level performance indicators, providing a snapshot of progress toward strategic targets.


The power of both for demonstrating impact and value

By using RevOps metrics and KPIs together, RevOps teams can showcase the comprehensive picture of their impact. RevOps metrics provide the foundation for evaluating performance and identifying areas for improvement, while KPIs highlight the key indicators that align with the organization’s goals.

This combination enables RevOps teams to effectively communicate how their work drives revenue growth, operational efficiency and customer success—ultimately solidifying their role as a valuable strategic function within the organization.


18 RevOps metrics and KPIs that demonstrate impact and value

Let’s explore the revenue operations metrics and KPIs that can help provide a comprehensive view of how your team contributes to revenue growth and aligns with the organization’s broader objectives.


9 RevOps metrics

#1 Aim

Building a high-quality, high-efficiency pipeline is at the heart of what RevOps sets out to solve, and that starts with improving your aim, the percent of the accounts in your pipeline that match your ICP. Our research shows that only 18% of most organizations’ pipelines are filled with accounts that have the traits they care about most. That’s why digging into the data, tracking it and improving it is key to seeing a lift on everything downstream—and down to your bottom line.


#2 Revenue retention

Retaining existing customers is crucial for long-term success. Revenue retention metrics help RevOps teams understand how well they keep customers and their associated revenue. It’s a way to gauge customer satisfaction and identify areas for improvement to reduce churn.


#3 Customer acquisition cost (CAC)

Acquiring new customers comes at a cost, and keeping tabs on the expenses involved is important. CAC metrics allow RevOps teams to assess the average cost incurred to acquire a single customer. By optimizing customer acquisition strategies, RevOps teams can ensure efficient resource allocation and maximize ROI.


#4 Sales pipeline velocity

The speed at which opportunities move through the sales pipeline is a key metric for RevOps teams. It helps them identify bottlenecks and optimize the sales process. By tracking pipeline velocity, RevOps teams can improve overall revenue generation and ensure timely deal closures.


#5 Customer churn rate

Churn rate indicates the percentage of customers who leave or stop using your products or services. RevOps teams can use churn rate metrics to understand customer satisfaction and loyalty. It’s also an opportunity to implement retention strategies and minimize revenue loss.


#6 Sales forecasting

RevOps teams should collaborate with sales teams to analyze historical data and market trends, ensuring more accurate sales forecasts. This allows for better resource allocation and smarter decision-making.


#7 Account expansion

RevOps teams can track metrics related to account expansion, such as customer renewals, upgrades and cross-sells. By focusing on these areas, RevOps teams can drive revenue growth and increase customer lifetime value.


#8 Conversion rate

Conversion rate metrics help assess the effectiveness of marketing and sales efforts in turning leads into customers. By optimizing conversion rates, RevOps teams can maximize revenue generation and improve the overall customer journey.


#9 Cost-per-lead

Cost-per-lead metrics help assess the efficiency of marketing campaigns and lead generation strategies. By optimizing costs, RevOps teams can improve ROI and make better resource allocation decisions.


9 RevOps KPIs

While revenue operations metrics provide valuable insights into the performance of RevOps teams, key performance indicators (KPIs) offer a more robust picture of the strategic objectives and outcomes tied to revenue growth, operational efficiency and customer success.

Let’s explore some of the most important revenue operations KPIs that RevOps teams should prioritize.


#1 Customer lifetime value (CLV)

CLV measures the average revenue generated from a customer throughout their entire journey with your company. It highlights RevOps teams’ efforts in building strong relationships and maximizing revenue from each customer, whether through repeat business, cross-selling or upselling.


#2 Win rate

Win rate measures the percentage of sales opportunities that turn into closed deals. A solid win rate indicates how effective RevOps is in optimizing the sales process and helping the organization win more business. It’s a testament to their behind-the-scenes support in driving revenue.


#3 Customer satisfaction score (CSAT)

CSAT measures how satisfied our customers are based on surveys or feedback. By measuring CSAT, RevOps can gauge how satisfied customers are and pinpoint areas for improvement.


#4 Time to resolution

RevOps teams aim to minimize the time it takes to address customer issues or support tickets. By tackling problems promptly, they contribute to maintaining happy customers and smooth operations.


#5 Sales cycle length

RevOps teams work behind the scenes, streamlining operations to shorten the time for a lead to become a closed deal. By optimizing the sales journey, RevOps teams ensure faster and more effective conversions, allowing the organization to capitalize on opportunities swiftly and drive revenue growth.


#6 Lead response time

By being prompt and providing timely assistance, RevOps teams significantly enhance the chances of securing conversions. Their focus on delivering exceptional customer experiences right from the initial touchpoint sets a strong foundation for building positive relationships and driving revenue growth.


#7 Net promoter score (NPS)

NPS measures customer loyalty and the customer’s likelihood of recommending the company. RevOps efforts in improving NPS scores reflect their dedication to delivering exceptional experiences and driving growth through customer advocacy.


#8 Forecast accuracy

Accurate revenue forecasting is a critical aspect of RevOps teams’ responsibilities. By analyzing data and using advanced forecasting techniques, they provide reliable revenue projections that enable the company to plan effectively. 


With a solid grasp of future revenue streams, RevOps teams help the organization make informed decisions, allocate resources strategically and optimize operational efficiency.


#9 New net growth

By tracking new net growth, RevOps teams assess the effectiveness of their customer acquisition strategies, retention efforts and overall business growth. It allows them to identify opportunities for expanding the customer base, optimizing revenue generation and driving sustainable growth.


How to use exegraphics to elevate revenue operations metrics and KPIs

Exegraphics—data on how companies operate and behave—can transform how revenue operations teams approach their metrics and KPIs. By delving into the inner workings of companies, exegraphics provide valuable insights that can drive revenue growth.

How exactly? Let’s explore three specific examples.


Example 1: Invest resources on the best-fit accounts

A lot of outbound strategies rely on guesswork. You go after companies you think fit your ICP, at least the superficial markers you can see—like industry, company size etc. But there’s more to a great-fit prospect than meets the eye, and that’s where exegraphics come in. Exegraphics can uncover the deeper characteristics that really matter to you, so you can identify all the companies that share those traits and focus your attention on closing those accounts rather than working accounts that will never close.

For example, take a look at the exegraphic difference between John Deere and CAT.

Example 2: Generate more account expansion opportunities

With exegraphics, you can identify target accounts that closely resemble your high-value customers, allowing you to tailor your account expansion strategies effectively.

By understanding the characteristics shared by your best customers, you can prioritize opportunities for upselling, cross-selling and expanding customer relationships. 

This targeted approach increases the likelihood of success, boosting revenue through increased account expansion.


Example 3: Accelerate sales pipeline velocity

Exegraphics can help you better understand how companies function internally, enabling you to identify bottlenecks and streamline processes.

Armed with this knowledge, you can align resources more effectively, accelerate the movement of deals through the pipeline and shorten sales cycles.

As a result, you can generate revenue faster, capitalize on opportunities and achieve greater overall sales efficiency.


Example 4: Reduce customer churn

Exegraphics can also provide insights into how companies project themselves to the world, helping you understand their messaging, value proposition and positioning.

You can leverage this knowledge to develop targeted retention strategies that address specific pain points, improve customer satisfaction and reduce churn rates.

By proactively engaging with customers based on their unique characteristics and needs, you can foster loyalty, enhance customer relationships and drive sustainable revenue growth.

7 tips for demonstrating the impact of RevOps on key business objectives

Here are seven tips to help you effectively communicate the value of the metrics and KPIs in a meeting.


Set the context

Begin by emphasizing the organization’s overarching objectives, such as driving revenue growth and enhancing customer satisfaction. Let the management team know that RevOps KPIs are instrumental in achieving these goals.


Connect the dots

Clearly articulate the direct correlation between each KPI and its impact on the business outcomes. For instance, customer lifetime value (CLV) directly influences long-term revenue generation, while win rate reflects the team’s ability to convert sales opportunities into closed deals.


Be customer-centric

Highlight how KPIs like customer satisfaction score (CSAT) and net promoter score (NPS) provide insights into customer sentiment and loyalty. Explain that, by improving these scores, the organization can foster stronger customer relationships. This improvement, in turn, can lead to higher retention rates and positive word-of-mouth referrals.


Quantify the impact

Use concrete examples and data to illustrate the financial impact of these KPIs. Share statistics on potential revenue growth resulting from incremental improvements in win rates or the potential gains from increasing CLV through upselling and cross-selling initiatives.


Tell success stories

Share real-life success stories or case studies that demonstrate the tangible outcomes achieved by focusing on these KPIs. Highlight specific examples where the team’s efforts led to revenue growth, enhanced customer satisfaction or improved operational efficiency.


Align with company vision

Connect the dots between the discussed KPIs and the organization’s broader vision, mission and strategic goals. Demonstrate how tracking and improving these metrics align with the company’s long-term objectives and contribute to its overall success.


Visual aids for impact

Use visually appealing charts, graphs, or dashboards to present the KPI data in an engaging and accessible manner. Visuals help stakeholders grasp key insights quickly and make a lasting impression.


Final thoughts

By tracking and leveraging the right revenue operations metrics and KPIs, you can ensure that the impact of your revenue operations team’s work is effectively communicated and understood.

Incorporating exegraphics can also help you take those metrics and KPIs to new heights and enhance how you identify and target your next best customers!

Want to see the power of exegraphics for yourself? Contact us to schedule a demo of Rev, and we’ll show you the exegraphics behind your best customers and give you  a free target account list of companies that look just like them.

Up your cross-sell game, with Zendesk’s Norman Gennaro

We see a common mentality around the cross-sell motion that it is the lowest hanging fruit possible in sales. Norman Gennaro, Zendesk’s President of Global Sales & Field Operations, says nope.

“I think a lot of people underestimate how hard cross-selling can be,” he says.

He’s seen this manifest throughout his career, including 16 years running sales consulting groups at Oracle, six years with AWS and another six (and counting) at Zendesk. The growth Norman has overseen at each organization relied on positioning a large number of products—and doing so sustainably, for the benefit of the customers.

We spoke with Norman about capitalizing on the cross sell, and we walked away with these five key insights into cultivating relationships, emphasizing organizational fit in the sales cycle, balancing the cross sell with net-new accounts, when to incorporate product specialists on the sales team and leveraging customer success into more strategic targeting practices.


Identify your champions and cultivate those relationships

To better identify cross-selling opportunities, Norman expands the typical, fairly narrow definition of cross selling. It’s not just about signing up an existing customer for related or supplemental products. For him, it’s about building (and leveraging) substantive relationships.

“A cross sell can be thought of in a number of ways,” he says, “beyond selling into your existing customer.”

  1. Think about cross selling not as selling into an existing customer, but to your existing champion within the account. This redefines your sense of “customer” from a company that cuts the checks, to an individual (or a group) that understands the applicable value of your product and uses it to make their jobs better.
  2. Think of cross selling into another division or part of the company. “Your champion inside of your account can help you open those doors and have those conversations,” Norman says. “You really want those champions to help you get to the right person, to make sure you’re talking to the teams that care about what you’re positioning and see the value in it.
  3. Think of cross selling into entirely new accounts. Sure, this might not technically go down as cross selling. But if you build those relationships with your champions, you’re not starting from scratch when they switch roles. “People move around inside of companies, but also outside of them,” Norman says. “If they had a great experience with you at one place, they will typically bring you into their other companies. They will be references for you for life.”

Reframing cross selling as expanding on substantive relationships with your champions shifts the focus from closing sales to developing long-term connections.

 “Most top-quality salespeople won’t burn a relationship just to push a product in,” Norman says. “They really want to make sure that the product’s value is key to the customer.”


Build a sales team that prioritizes organizational fit

Norman builds heavily on top of this foundation when approaching the cross-selling motion. Looking out for your relationships and working from a place of relevance, not quotas, establishes trust.

This way, cross selling becomes more about finding the best fit for a product, by talking with the right people—both within existing accounts and in lookalike prospects.

“How do we actually think about our existing customers?” Norman asks. “Where do they match up with a new product we’re bringing to market? Who should we talk to? Who are the lookalikes?”

The tailored perspective that results from asking such questions can shape the way you build your sales team. How to build the right motivations on the team, within the right infrastructure, to conduct an effective cross-sell motion ultimately depends on what you’re trying to cross sell.

Because, in short, just treating those champion relationships like standard sales prospects is not going to do you or your product justice. You want to make certain that the product your sales team is talking about is something customers can actually see benefit to using. As Norman stresses, we all know that shelfware is a killer.

“There are a lot of different complexities to building a sales team this way,” he says. “Are you selling an add-on that naturally connects into what your customers are using? Or is it a separate product that is solving a different use case issue? Does it require development expertise? Does it require a different type of selling motion in and of itself? These are important aspects to consider as you’re building out your sales team.”

Yes, thinking of the cross-selling motion with such nuance may seem to complicate what many sales leaders see as a simple upselling function. But in the current environment, customers are seriously assessing value—and trimming the fat. Staying relevant with customers is key to staying with them at all.

“Companies are consolidating the number of vendors that they’re dealing with, trying to become more optimized,” Norman says. “So a cross-selling motion where you can really describe what your products do and get them leveraged across an organization is an important piece of the selling motion today.”


Constantly balance cross-selling with net-new

We often observe sales teams struggling to balance cross-selling efforts with going after net new accounts. Not only is net new a sexy stat—you need to bring in fresh customers in order to have existing customers that can expand. 

“We are always biased towards new,” Norman says. “But the reality is that the expansion/cross-sell motion is easier. You will hopefully see those new customers start adopting products over time.”

So what is the right balance between cross selling and net-new? The short answer: it depends, and it depends on more than your own company.

Norman reflects on how the cross-sell expectations differ between his experiences at Oracle, AWS, and Zendesk. Even within one organization, the balance changes over time and often in response to the current economic environment.

“Right now, we are hyper-focused on retaining and growing our customers,” he says. “We’re not taking our eye off the ball in terms of new, and I expect [next year] we will significantly ramp up what we really want to do around new market share. But you have to have a little bit of reality based on where the economy is at a given point in time.”

Today, that means holding onto customers and getting them to do more with your products. At some point, the season will be ripe for net-new. The balancing act is always in flux—so when times call for it, lean extra into the cross-selling motion, and know that net-new will return.


Incorporate product specialists as needed 

Yes, cross selling is a sales motion. But while part of that cross-sell/net-new balance, it’s an entirely different game than signing new accounts. Norman identifies specialization as a fundamental requirement for most cross-selling organizations.

“We are always looking at the complexity of our products and what is required to make them successful for a customer,” Norman says, “especially the farther the products get away from the core. Typically, sales consultants with those specialties allow you to get the best bang for your buck.

Now, to be clear, his own bias is a preference for an entire sales team selling all of an organization’s products. That enables the most scale—but it often doesn’t work. Generalist salespeople, no matter how good they are at sales, likely lack the expertise to get the customer where they want to be.

“Having a dedicated salesperson who can run that sales cycle to the end is important for the scale and speed you want for the rest of your sales organization,” Norman says.

Incorporating specialists into the cycle also ups the expertise across the organization. Over time, as the sales team interacts with the specialists and observes the products in place, they will increasingly understand the nuances of specialty products. The need for additional specialist capacity likely decreases as specialized knowledge and capabilities become integrated into the team.

That expertise allows you to get the adoption, allows you to target better, allows you to find the actual lookalike accounts so that you know where you should be winning and where the edge cases are,” Norman says. “In many cases, those edge cases can still be owned by the specialist team, even though the core team will take on some of the responsibility for positioning the product.”


Final thoughts: Build your targeting strategy on top of customer successes

The necessary focus on how to cross sell leaves one big final component to consider, and that’s why to sell: because you’re helping customers succeed.

If you’re truly building relationships, selling to fit, and outfitting customers with essential specialization in the sales cycle, you’re going to end up with some powerful references—and there is no better way to demonstrate your value to one customer than to show them the outcomes from another customer.

Those resulting customer stories are also one of the greatest cross-selling assets available to your sales team’s efforts. Broken down and analyzed, customer stories can boost a sales team’s internal performance, understanding of the products and targeting strategies.

“Early wins are critical to convert into references, to leverage as part of your marketing campaigns,” Norman says. “But also—a key way to operate at scale is to take your wins and make sure the entire sales team understands where you’ve been successful, so that they can better target. That’s one of the ways our sales teams understand who they need to go to next and how to make sure they’re covering the market well.

How to create demand for your offer and increase sales from your ideal customer

Wouldn’t it be great if you could just create a product, launch a landing page and then watch the sales start rolling in? Well, unless you’re selling a revolutionary product with no competition, you’ll quickly find out that that’s not how things work.

You’ve got to create demand for your product before you can expect any sort of sales. And that requires a demand creation strategy that helps you build an audience of potential customers interested in and excited about your product or service.

So, how do you go about doing that? The short answer is creating and distributing high-quality content that resonates with your target audience. But that’s easier said than done!

In this blog post, we’ll share tips on creating demand for your product and services, collaborating with your content marketing team to ensure the best results and using AI technology to ensure you’re getting in front of the right people.

Sounds good? Let’s start with some demand creation basics.


What is demand creation?

Demand creation is the process of creating or fostering demand for a product or service. This process includes strategies like inbound marketing, advertising, email marketing and other marketing efforts to build brand awareness among potential buyers.

Effectively creating demand requires creativity, strategy and persistence. Ultimately, your goal will be to create a message or story so relevant to your target audience’s needs that it sticks with them until they’re ready to buy.


What’s the difference between demand creation and demand generation?

If you think demand creation and demand generation sound like the same things, you’re not alone. These marketing strategies are, of course, closely related. But there is a subtle difference. 

Demand generation is the overarching strategy of building brand awareness and demand for a product or service. The goal of a demand generation strategy is to show a company knows how to solve a problem potential customers already know exists. Demand creation, on the other hand, is more specific and focuses on building demand for a solution to a problem that customers may not be fully aware of yet.


How to know what type of content will help create demand for your offer 

What kind of content will help you create demand for your product or service depends on your buyer personas. In other words, who is your ideal customer? What are their defining characteristics? What type of content do they consume? Where do they spend time engaging with content online?

This information will give you valuable insight into what type of content will help create demand for your offer. You should tailor your content to appeal to this target audience and make them excited about your product or service.

For instance, if your business targets young professionals, creating content that resonates with them, like infographics, social media posts and YouTube videos, might be more effective than standard text-based blog posts.

On the other hand, if you’re a new business hoping to reach and influence decision-makers at B2B companies, you may want to try a different strategy.  Content such as white papers, thought leadership social media posts and case studies may be more effective at guiding potential buyers through your demand generation funnel. According to a 2021 study, 62% of B2B decision makers relied on content like case studies and webinars when making purchase decisions.

How do you learn to understand your buyer personas or ideal customers so well that your content creates strong demand from high-quality leads? We share some of our favorite strategies in the section below. Tip #1 can be a game changer, especially if you want to expand into new markets!


How to produce high-quality demand creation content and build an audience excited to buy

Creating a quick infographic or blog post are easy ways for marketing teams to start the process of creating demand. But where do you go from there? Here are five tips you can use to ensure you create content that supports the success of a demand generation marketing campaign.


#1 Regularly update your ideal customer profile

Your ideal customer is not static. It evolves as markets, technology and customer needs change. Yet, many businesses fail to keep their ideal customer profile (ICP) up-to-date. Even worse, they rely on demographic or firmographic data that doesn’t tell you much about what influences potential customers to consider new solutions to their problems.

This is where exegraphic data comes in—data that gives you insights into what motivates, interests and drives potential customers. For example, looking at exegraphics can help you discover that your ideal customer isn’t as simple as FinTech companies in the Northeast with 50-100 employees but rather any software company currently undergoing a large-scale digital transformation project.

Using Rev, an AI-powered Sales Development Platform, you can discover the exegraphics of your best customers and use that data to build a living model of your ICP that updates as your customer base grows.

Knowing who you’re targeting, what factors influence decision-makers, and how their needs evolve over time will help you craft relevant, engaging, and compelling content that creates and sustains demand.


#2 Seek cross-departmental participation in the content creation process

Content creation should be a team effort. And when it comes to demand creation, you’ll want input from different departments. In particular, you’ll have the best results if you promote consistent collaboration across your customer service, marketing and sales teams.

For example, sales reps and customer success agents can provide valuable insights into the needs and common questions of your current customers and what information might help shorten the sales cycle.

With that information, your marketing team can brainstorm and execute ideas for demand creation content that will be engaging, informative and capable of grabbing the attention of potential buyers.


#3 Seek regular feedback from customers, prospects and leads

Most marketers don’t have regular direct contact with the customers using their products or services. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get customer feedback. You can solicit feedback from current customers and leads through surveys, interviews and other tactics.

This is also where cross-departmental collaboration comes in handy. You can tap into the experiences of your customer service team and sales team for information about what customers say about your offer and use that to inform content ideas.


#4 Regularly promote and distribute your best content

Once you have your demand creation content, promoting it to ensure it reaches your target audience is essential. You can promote it across multiple channels like social media, email, direct outreach and even paid advertising if you have the budget.

Exegraphic data can also be helpful here as it can potentially show you where your target audience is actively engaging with content and how they interact with it. This information can help you determine which channels to focus your promotion efforts.

Exegraphic data can also help you develop an effective content syndication campaign in which you repurpose the same content for multiple platforms. This type of marketing allows you to create demand for your products or services without using too much of your marketing spend to advertise your valuable content.


#5 Engage with your audience

Remember to engage with your audience! Engagement helps build relationships and shows that you care about their opinion. Social media platforms are great for this, as they allow you to interact with your existing customers and nurture prospects on a more personal level.

Engaging with your audience also helps you get feedback on what kind of content they want to see and on how your company can improve its products or services. This enables you to create a more tailored demand generation strategy for your target audience’s unique pain points and needs.

When engaging with your customers, don’t forget to be creative. You want your content to stand out and be memorable! So, try exploring different content formats like videos, podcasts, webinars, live streaming events, etc.


Demand creation example

So, what does an effective demand creation strategy look like? Let’s imagine you’re the head of a demand generation marketing team at a new B2B software startup that helps businesses with customer relationship management (CRM). Despite having A LOT of competition, you’re determined to create demand for your product, but how?

To start, you’ll want to determine who might be interested in and benefit from using your CRM. In other words, who is your ideal customer, and why? For the sake of our example, let’s say you’ve used Rev to analyze the exegraphic data of your best customers and found that your ideal customer has the following profile:

  • SMEs in the finance industry
  • Prefer personalized customer service
  • Needs an all-in-one CRM solution that can be used centrally and with teams
  • Currently hiring digital marketers with expertise in lead generation

Now that you know who you’re trying to target, it’s time to create demand for your product by creating content that will grab your ideal customer’s attention at the top of the funnel. Using a collaborative effort across all go-to-market teams, you can brainstorm content ideas that will capture the attention of the SME finance sector.

For example, you might decide it’s worth creating blog posts that discuss the challenges and opportunities of having an all-in-one CRM solution for the finance industry. Or you might make a video series about how financial enterprises can streamline lead generation efforts with an all-in-one CRM solution.

Next, you’ll want to make sure your ideal customer is likely to see your content. This might mean launching a content syndication campaign in which you partner with other companies to share and promote your content.


Final thoughts

Building awareness and demand for your products or services takes a lot of hard work and strategy—particularly if you’ve entered a new market. But with a bit of planning, you can develop a demand generation campaign tailored to your target customer and optimized to support revenue growth.

Producing effective demand creation content starts with understanding the characteristics that define your ideal customer. Using exegraphic data, you can identify the factors influencing your ideal customers’ purchasing decisions, what types of content will guide them through the customer journey, and where they’re most likely to consume content online.

Want to see the power of exegraphic data for your upcoming demand generation campaigns? Contact our team. We’ll give you a free demo of Rev and show you the characteristics behind the accounts most likely to buy from you.

How to build the best sales tech stack for your business

Need help building the perfect sales tech stack so you can easily hit your revenue targets? We understand!

We also understand that this isn’t always the most straightforward task. There are hundreds of options for sales tools, and it can be tough to know which ones are the best fit for your team.

In this blog post, we’ll show you what to consider when building a new sales tech stack or evaluating whether you should add new tools to your current one. We’ll also share recommendations on 10 of the best sales tools that you can use to streamline your sales processes.

But before we dive in, it’s important to understand exactly what we mean when we say “sales tech stack.”


What is a sales stack?

A sales tech stack (also known as a sales stack or sales technology stack) refers to the set of tools and software solutions your sales team uses to do everything from lead generation to closing deals. 

When used optimally, these sales tools help reduce and automate the tedious, time-consuming tasks that slow down your sales reps from revenue generating tasks. They also help improve the efficiency of the overall sales process by providing data and insights to help reps make informed decisions.

So how do you know which sales tools to include in your stack? The answer is it depends.


What type of tools should you have in your sales tech stack?

We can’t tell you exactly which sales tech stack is the best for your business. However, there are some essential tools and features that every sales team should consider when looking to build or evaluate their tech stack.


Sales CRM

A customer relationship management (CRM) software is the foundation of any sales team’s tech stack. It’s where all your customer data is stored and tracked so you can easily access it when needed. A good sales CRM will allow you to track customer interactions, store contact information and automate sales processes.


Sales prospecting tools

Sales prospecting tools are essential for any sales team that wants to stay on top of new leads. These tools allow you to quickly identify, qualify and prioritize leads to increase the efficiency of your sales process.


Sales automation software

Automation is key for staying organized and managing your sales team’s workload. Automation software can help streamline mundane tasks, like updating customer information in the CRM and following up with leads. This gives you more time to focus on what matters most—closing deals!


Lead generation tools

Lead generation tools are great for identifying and getting new leads into the sales pipeline. These tools can help you do things like connect with leads on social media, create targeted campaigns to engage prospects and track results.


Reporting and analytics software

Reporting and analytics provide valuable insights into your sales process. These tools can help you track key performance indicators (KPIs) and identify improvement opportunities. With the right reporting tool, you can easily spot trends in your data and make informed decisions about your sales strategy.


Communication and collaboration tools

Effective communication and collaboration are essential for sales teams to stay on the same page with one another and communicate with prospects. Video conferencing, chat and messaging apps, and enterprise social networks are all examples of communication and collaboration tools used by successful sales teams.


Scheduling tools

Scheduling tools make it easier for sales reps to manage their calendars and book meetings with prospects. Without these tools, sales reps would have to manually manage their schedules, resulting in time-consuming back-and-forth emails and unnecessary delays.


How many tools should you have in your sales tech stack?

There’s no limit or minimum. The number of tools you need will depend on the size and complexity of your sales processes, as well as the number of sales reps in your team.

That being said, according to a recent survey conducted by Gartner, businesses with high-growth sales teams use an average of 5 tools. But the report also says that companies are increasingly embracing the new sales and marketing tools available. At the time of the survey, 72.4% of businesses reported having plans to add more software tools to their sales tech stack.

But there is one major problem for those businesses and yours… There are way too many sales tools to choose from these days. Even if you just looked at project management tools on G2, the business software review site, you’ll see you have 431 options!

So, how do you pick the right tools for your sales tech stack? 


How to evaluate sales tech stack tools

The answer lies in your sales process. It’s essential to understand how it works and which sales tools can help you optimize it. Here’s a framework to help you evaluate your sales tech stack:


Analyze your sales process and user needs

Start by breaking down all the steps involved in your current sales process, from lead generation to closing deals. Next, talk to your sales team to understand what each person needs from their sales tech stack.

Make sure to gather feedback from your sales reps, sales managers and account managers to get a comprehensive view of the team’s needs. Ask each team member questions like:

  • What areas of the sales process are taking a long time?
  • Which sales tools do you find most helpful?
  • Which features make your job easier?
  • If you had to eliminate one of our current tools, which would you choose? Why?
  • If the budget wasn’t an issue, which tools have you heard of and would you like to try?


Research tools

Once you understand your sales team’s needs, it’s time to explore the various sales software available. You can start this process with a simple Google search or by reading software reviews on websites like G2, Capterra and SoftwareSuggest.

As you research different vendors, look at pricing, features, customer service reviews and any other factors that may influence your decision. To narrow down your list, ask yourself questions like:

  • How user-friendly is the tool?
  • Will this tool integrate with our existing systems?
  • Does the software have a robust set of features and capabilities?
  • How often is the software updated, and what additional features have been added?
  • Are there any customer success stories that demonstrate the efficacy of the tool?
  • What does customer support look like (e.g., response time, availability for help)?
  • What are the pricing options, and is it cost-effective for our team?
  • What are the major pros and cons that frequently appear in customer reviews? Does the good tend to outweigh the bad?


Evaluate cost-effectiveness

Your budget concerns are real. So, it’s essential to consider thoughtfully the potential return on investment (ROI) that comes with each tool. Take the time to calculate what you stand to gain from using a particular tool and compare it to other options.

But remember, the upfront price isn’t the only factor that matters. Also, consider how much time it can save per sales rep, how quickly it can pay for itself as well as the cost of implementation, training and maintenance.


Test-drive the tools

After you’ve narrowed down your list of potential new sales tools, request demos-= to test each tool out with a few of your sales reps. Make sure to listen to any feedback they provide—after all, they’re the ones who’ll be using the software! That way, you can determine whether a tool is intuitive enough for them to use and whether or not they think it could help them streamline their sales processes.


Don’t overlook customer support

We mentioned this in the questions to ask yourself during research. But it’s worth repeating! When evaluating a sales software tool, make sure you also consider the quality of customer support provided by the vendor.

Good customer support is essential for getting the most out of any sales tool. And bad customer support can make even the best sales tool a pain in the neck if something goes wrong.

So, check how quickly customer support responds to inquiries and what forms of support they offer (such as email, live chat, phone calls, etc.).


10 of the best sales tech stack tools

Now that you know how to evaluate sales tools, let’s look at some of the best tools available. Here are 10 top-notch sales software solutions worth considering as you build your sales tech stack.


#1 Rev

Rev is an AI-powered Sales Development Platform that helps sales teams identify the best-fit prospects and develop a clearly defined customer profile using their best customers’ exegraphics (data on how companies operate and behave). With this information, your sales team can identify the best prospects to prioritize, improve the quality of leads and win more deals with targeted messaging.


#2 Salesforce

Salesforce is among the most popular customer relationship management (CRM) solutions. If you’re looking to leverage sales automation, Salesforce has a vast array of features and integrations that make it easy to customize your sales processes. Salesforce allows you to store customer data, track sales activities, build strategies to optimize sales performance and more.


#3 ZoomInfo

ZoomInfo is a powerful sales prospecting tool that gives you access to the contact data of professionals working at companies worldwide. With detailed profiles about potential clients, you can personalize your outreach and build stronger relationships with your leads.


#4 HubSpot

HubSpot has emerged as one of the most popular inbound marketing platforms. It provides easy-to-use tools for creating content, tracking website analytics, and automating marketing tasks like email campaigns or lead generation activities. For sales teams, HubSpot also offers various sales tools for managing contacts, tracking deals and optimizing workflows to increase efficiency.


#5 LinkedIn Sales Navigator

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a powerful sales tool that helps you use LinkedIn to find and engage with the right prospects for your business. It offers lead recommendations, automated account insights, and other features to help you build relationships and increase sales.


#6 DocuSign 

DocuSign makes signing contracts and other legal documents quick and secure, so you can close deals faster. Plus, DocuSign integrates with most of the other sales tools you use to make your workflow even smoother. 


#7 Outreach

Outreach is a sales engagement platform that helps sales teams make automated sequences to send personalized emails, track customer conversations and schedule follow-ups. Outreach also features analytics and reporting tools that can help you gain valuable insight into your prospects’ behaviors so you can optimize your sales strategy. 


#8 Chili Piper 

Chili Piper is a sales acceleration platform that helps companies streamline their lead management and routing process. It allows you to easily assign leads to the right sales reps at the right time, accelerating the sales process and ensuring your leads get the attention they deserve.


#9 Gong

Gong is a conversation intelligence platform that helps teams improve their sales processes by automatically recording and analyzing conversations. It provides valuable insights into customer preferences, conversation topics and how to best structure your sales calls. 


#10 Slack

Slack is a communication platform that can be used to streamline your sales process, allowing teams to collaborate in real-time. It allows you to share important documents and files, create channels for specific topics or sales processes, and even use bots to automate certain tasks.


Final thoughts

When evaluating and choosing the right sales tech stack for your business, there are many options out there. But given the countless software solutions available, selecting the tools that best fit your team’s needs can be overwhelming. 

To narrow your options, use the framework shared in this post that starts by analyzing your sales process, then matching the right tools to each stage.

Want to see how Rev can help you build and prioritize a list of target accounts that look and behave like your best customers? Contact us, and we’ll show you how exegraphic data can help take the guesswork out of lead generation, prospecting, churn prevention and more. We’ll also give you a free target account list, personalized for your company.

How to build true demand in today’s buyer’s market, with Manuel Rietzsch

The undeniable reality of demand marketing is that buying behaviors have changed, and the old tried-and-true playbook hasn’t aged gracefully.

“It’s much more a buyer’s market now than it used to be,” says Manuel Rietzsch, VP of Revenue Marketing at AudioEye. “There was much less information out there, and buyers had to engage with vendors much sooner in the cycle to get that information.”

Manuel has witnessed these transitions firsthand for the past two decades in B2B demand marketing. He’s led teams at Pluralsight, Hopin, InsideSales and Divvy, and serves as an advisor to several other organizations. He has collected particular insights into how the marketing playbook has become outdated—and how to build true demand in today’s market.

In this interview, Manuel looks at what makes today’s market so buyer-centric, why marketing teams need to get comfortable with the long game, what attribution-heavy strategies miss about organic marketing methods, and how marketing organizations can optimize themselves by focusing on the right programs (even when managing budget constraints).


It’s a buyer’s world: Meet them where they are

Manuel says that it’s a buyer’s market out there because the dynamics have shifted to where buyers have abundant options—and marketers must jockey for limited attention and resources. In this environment, buying behaviors have changed well beyond just the tools that marketers use to communicate with potential buyers.

It’s a lot like the ways that film production must shift over time in order to keep pace with evolving viewership. Marketers have to adapt their playbook to how, exactly, today’s market favors buyers and presents increasing challenges for demand marketing teams.

  • So much info, so much noise. Every strategy you’re using to reach buyers, your competitors are using too. Then multiply that for every product and service vying for your audience’s attention—we’re all awash in marketing. “So many companies market and target the same people that everybody else wants to sell to,” Manuel says.
  • People know the process. The first marketing email you ever got, if you can remember it, might have surprised you. How could you know that giving out your email address would result in a sales attempt? Now, it’s beyond given. “People know the process,” Manuel says. “They know that if they fill out a form and they download something, they will get a call from the SDR and they’re getting a lot of emails sent to them. People don’t want that anymore.”
  • Trust is shifting from brands to peers. “There’s a loss of trust in companies and marketing in general,” Manuel says, “and buyers are much more shifting to trusting their peers.” He also notes that customers tend to engage with peers (whether colleagues, personal acquaintances, online reviews or social media connections) long before they actually engage with a vendor. “People follow people,” he says. “We pay much more attention to what people have to say than we do what brands have to say.”
  • People prefer the B2C engagement style over the classic B2B one. “People want to go somewhere and educate themselves on their own time, their own pace and want venders to give them all the information they need to make a decision,” Manuel says. They don’t want to be nudged or nurtured or led to water by an SDR, but they do want to understand what you offer, how you solve their challenges and how you provide solutions that they need.
  • We consume content differently now. Successful marketing playbooks used to feature high-value downloadables like white papers and ebooks. Those still have their place—but now, “We are so much more used to scrolling through bite-sized content,” Manuel says.


Any one of these dynamics shifting might require a marketing team to rethink its strategy. All of them? “You’ve got to approach people differently and meet them where they are,” Manuel says. “You can’t just rely on the old fill-out-my-form kind of motion.”


Demand isn’t instantaneous: Play the long game

We’ve heard a frightening (maybe even controversial) statement recently that demand is dead—that you can’t generate demand anymore.

Manuel weighs in that this statement is true. Half true, anyway. Because there is creating demand for your solution—and then there is forcing demand. The latter looks like cold calling, for example, and generally sees very, very low conversion rates.

If that approach isn’t dead in B2B, it’s dying.

“How do you market to somebody and create demand with somebody who either doesn’t have a challenge right now, doesn’t have initiative, doesn’t have budget, or isn’t making the buying decision on their own?” he asks. “It’s really hard to do that.”

Manuel sees that some small percentage of the market is both in your ICP and actively looking for solutions. It’s the other, much larger group where he identifies the potential for creating real demand.

“That’s where you can create demand long-term by educating them, by creating that relationship with them, by showing them that you understand their challenges and that you are able to solve their challenges—and you have solved their challenges for lots of other customers successfully,” he says.


Keep hitting the pavement: Optimize the short game

To generate long-term demand, though, marketing teams need to make the long-term play of creating relationships with potential buyers. This is exponentially more difficult when there are multiple people involved in the buying decision, each one held accountable. It’s much harder to create short-term demand if there are no initiatives and challenges that prospects have top-of-mind.

Harder, but not impossible—if we optimize our short-term demand engine. Yes, even with cold-calling.

“As marketers, we can equip and point our BDRs and SDRs in the right directions,” Manuel says. “What accounts are hitting our website, who’s showing intent. That’s where there might be some short-term demand. We just don’t know who they are yet because they haven’t filled out a form. But we can point to the accounts hitting our website. Let’s go after them. Let’s identify the personas within that account, start being proactive.”


Attribution is not a stand-alone: Lean into organic channels, too

Above, Manuel listed that buyers consume content differently now, especially with seeking their own information. We wondered what unexpected channels he would identify as highly relevant and effective in today’s market.

His answer: The ones marketers tend to ignore.

“Marketers have always defaulted to the channels that are closer to us, because we can measure and track them much more easily,” he says. “Paid search, SEO. It’s much harder for me to measure and really understand what impact my podcast has, or a community that I sponsor has.”

These channels may not be more important, but they are underutilized. To use them more, Manuel suggests that marketers (and our counterparts in finance) need to grow more comfortable with investing in activities that our attribution systems don’t fully pick up.

“One thing that I’ve seen really work is creating good organic thought leadership on LinkedIn,” he says. “Actually make that an orchestrated demand initiative instead of it being an unmanaged thing.”

This play connects with the idea that people follow people and pay attention to what they have to say, more than they do with brands. In other words: remember the human element to really understand what connects with your buyers. “Demand has relied heavily on paid tactics in the past,” Manuel says. “I think it can shift to more of this organic and community marketing.


Remember that attribution and organic play together

Attribution better not go out the window altogether—through various platforms, marketing teams can boost engagement and visibility of these organic programs. The danger in leaning too heavily on attribution is that it can pick up an exact moment of interaction with a prospect, while overlooking all the levels of organic engagement that preceded it.

During a relevant project he worked on, Manuel compared an attribution tool with self-reported attribution and found nearly completely incompatible results. Self-reported attribution showed entry points that never would have showed up in the attribution tool itself.

Marketing teams need this deeper, more holistic understanding to point sales teams in the right directions. (In fact, Manuel points to this alignment as the reason for the advent of RevOps teams.)

“Before somebody engages with you, they read a post on LinkedIn and they asked a peer about you,” he proposes. “They might’ve seen somebody talking about you on Twitter, they’ve listened to podcasts, and then they go to Google. The only thing you’re going to see is the attribution to Google search—and this can create bad behavior if you put more money and focus on Google and no effort put into these other things that actually are creating the demand.”


Final thought: Lean, mean demand machines

Regardless of what’s happening in the buyer’s market, most marketing teams are facing a different, internal constraint: consolidation. Do more with less—we’ve all heard it. So how do we deal with these frictions?

Manuel offers a paradigm shift. It’s not do more with less. Instead, it’s do more of the right things.

“When I do consulting or I come into a new company, what I see is quite a bit of waste,” he says. “I always look at it as the 80/20 rule: 20% of your activities lead to 80% of your pipeline.”

When the economy is great, Marketing gets to ride the wave of higher budgets, more headcount, so very many tools. Now, with times more uncertain, we all get forced to do our work more efficiently and with a different focus.

“I think we need to focus much more on revenue and business outcomes—not leads, not MQL, but pipeline and revenues,” Manuel says. “This requires a change in mindset. We have to feel comfortable with shutting off the channels that the data tells us aren’t working.”

In the end, Manuel says, marketing teams can run really efficiently—and the C-suite knows it. Marketers are going to be held more and more accountable, which means that the same old playbook isn’t going to keep cutting it. The market has changed, buyers have changed—and Marketing gets to lean into what matters most to their buyers.

Customer expansion: Grow your bottom line with these AI-powered upsell and cross-sell strategies

Want to increase the lifetime value of your existing accounts with customer expansion (aka account expansion) strategies? Well, here are some questions you need to consider:

  • How do you know if your customers are ready for cross-sells and upsells?
  • When should you pitch those customers additional offerings?
  • What do you say to make it clear that you’re promoting these offers to benefit your customers and not just use them to increase revenue for your business?

If you’re not sure how to answer those questions at the moment, don’t worry. You’ll be able to by the end of reading this blog post.

We’ll also show you how AI technology is changing the customer expansion game and making this revenue growth strategy a more effective and predictable task for SaaS companies.

Let’s start with the basics before digging into how you can implement a customer expansion strategy for your SaaS company ASAP.


What is customer expansion?

Customer expansion is the process of increasing customer lifetime value by exploring various tactics that encourage customers to purchase more and engage further with your company. This strategy can help you increase your company’s overall revenue more sustainably than simply relying on new revenue streams.

You may have heard that customer retention is 5x cheaper than customer acquisition. But have you also heard you have a 60-70% chance of selling to an existing customer? On the other hand, you only have a 5-20% chance of selling to a prospect.

With those odds, it would be a huge mistake not to explore customer expansion strategies, especially if you’re in the SaaS industry.


Why is customer expansion important for SaaS companies?

Operating in the subscription economy has its unique challenges—from pricing and product packaging to customer engagement. With a customer expansion strategy in place, SaaS companies can boost revenue by increasing the lifetime value of their customers and focusing on generating new business from existing customers.

Customer expansion strategies also help SaaS companies build deeper relationships with existing customers through account based marketing. In turn, these strategies can help to boost customer loyalty and encourage those customers to stay with your company for a longer time.

So, whether you’re a newly funded startup or an established large enterprise, customer expansion is where you can find gold. Well… if you know when and how to dig for it. In other words, if you know when and how to implement an effective customer expansion strategy.


What is a customer expansion strategy?

Customer expansion strategies are specific tactics that companies use to increase the value of existing customers. These tactics include upselling, cross-selling and add-ons. Here, we’ll discuss each tactic in more detail and give examples of how they apply to SaaS companies.



For SaaS companies, upselling involves offering customers subscription plan upgrades or higher-priced versions of a product. For example, let’s imagine you work for a cloud hosting company. As an upsell, you could offer customers an upgrade from basic hosting to premium hosting plans.



Cross-selling means introducing customers to complementary products. This tactic allows SaaS companies to increase sales while also creating a more comprehensive and attractive customer experience. For instance, an EdTech company that sells online certification programs could offer students access to additional courses or study materials when they purchase one of their courses.


Add ons

Add-ons typically come in the form of a few additional features rather than standalone products, as they depend on another product or service to be functional. For example, a financial software company could offer additional tracking and analytics features to existing customers who have purchased their financial software.


How to know when your current customers are ready for expansion opportunities

So, how do you know when to actually offer account expansion opportunities? And how do you avoid annoying your existing customers with sales pitches for upsells they may not be ready for?

Data. Yes, you can determine when to offer account expansion opportunities by looking at the data. But what kind of data?

Well, typical advice on customer expansion will tell you to look at data on customer usage. For example, by looking at usage data, you can determine when customers use your product more over time. This type of data could indicate those customers are likely to be open to account expansion opportunities.

Customer sentiment data can also be helpful. This data type can include customer survey responses, NPS scores and customer service conversations. If customers provide overwhelmingly positive feedback, they’re more likely to expand their usage or add other products or services.

Both of these data types are great starting points to get you thinking about the right time to offer account expansion opportunities. But what you really need is data that shows what behaviors customers tend to display when they’re ready to purchase upgrades and additional products from you. And that type of data is called exegraphic data.


How exegraphic data can show you how to identify an upsell opportunity

What is exegraphic data? Exegraphic data is data showing how businesses operate and behave when they’re ready to purchase. For example, exegraphics might show that your best customers have all purchased upgrades after launching a product targeting a new market segment.

With that information, you’d know to keep an eye on customers who have recently acquired a new customer base and proactively upsell offers. With exegraphics, you could also learn how to tweak your messaging to show how an upgrade can enhance their market expansion strategy.

But how do you find exegraphic data? Well, we’re a bit biased. But the easiest way is to use Rev

Rev uses AI-powered technology to pull and analyze exegraphic data points from company websites, job boards, press releases and similar sources. The platform even prioritizes the accounts based on readiness and fit, so you know which companies to pitch upsells to first!


5 additional tips to optimize customer expansion strategies

In addition to using AI and exegraphic data, here are five additional tips to help you drive revenue through upsells and cross-sells.


#1 Update your ideal customer profile and the customer journey

Where do expansion offers fit into the customer journey? At what point might your customers need more than your standard service plan or standalone product? Knowing your ideal customer profile (ICP) and their behavior within each stage of the customer journey will help you target expansion offers at the right time.

If you use Rev, you can update your ICP using exegraphics to better understand what influences businesses to buy from you. Rev also allows you to create a dynamic model of your ICP (we call it an aiCP) that evolves as your customer base grows. 

That way, you always have the most accurate view of your best customers, which helps you market more effectively when looking to earn more from your existing customers and acquire new customers.


#2 Empower your customer success team

If your customer success team still needs to make customer expansion efforts a priority, it’s time to get them onboard. Empower your team with the tools and strategies that will help them spot opportunities for upsells and cross-sells.

For example, you can train customer success managers to analyze customer and exegraphic data to recognize when customers are likely ready to upgrade their plans or add additional services. 

This way, you’d develop a team of customer success professionals who are ready to leverage customer expansion strategies to drive growth without needing the direct support of sales for every customer.


#3 Learn from customer churn and downgrades

No one likes to see customers leave, but analyzing customer churn can help you identify any potential issues that may have led to their departure. How do you do this? By gathering insights from surveys and the customer success team on why customers downgraded their plans or decided to leave.

With that information, you may be able to identify new offers to present as upsells or cross-sells to prevent churn proactively. It can also help you develop an upselling strategy for current customers at risk of downgrading.

For example, let’s say you identified that a customer was unhappy with the customer support they received. You could offer them a customer success package that includes access to exclusive content, one-on-one training sessions with customer success representatives or discounts for upgrades for the year.

Exegraphics data is another data point that can help you prevent churn. By evaluating the exegraphic data of recently-churned customers, you can see the deeper signals that led to churn—so you can build programs that help mitigate it well before renewal conversations.


#4 Segment your messaging to demonstrate the value of an upsell or cross-sell

Don’t make the mistake of thinking the customer will automatically understand the value of an upsell or cross-sell. You need to use language that demonstrates the value and outlines how the offer will help solve their unique problem.

For example, suppose a segment of your customers is using your software to streamline their financial operations in the HR tech space. In that case, you could tailor your marketing messages to highlight how a particular upsell or cross-sell specifically helps HR Tech companies save time and money.

On the other hand, you may also have a segment using your financial software in the legal industry. In this case, you could emphasize in your messaging how a particular upsell or cross-sell can help streamline time-consuming, tedious legal processes.


#5 Create and promote relevant content about your premium features

Quality, in-depth content about the benefits of your upsells and cross-sells can enable your sales team to sell more efficiently as they talk to customers about why they should upgrade or purchase additional features. 

Even without the involvement of sales reps, content explaining the value of your premium features can convince customers who prefer to do their own research before making decisions.

For example, you could create a case study on how one customer benefited from your upsell and another blog post about how a particular upsell or cross-sell can help customers get more value from your product or service.


Final thoughts

Customer expansion is ultimately about improving customer relationships and providing value. But it’s not enough to just present customers with upsell or cross-sell opportunities. Instead, you should focus on how these additions will help customers get more from your product and make their lives easier.

Exegraphic data is an invaluable tool for knowing when and how to do this. Not only can it show you which businesses are the best fit for upsells and cross-sells, but it can also indicate when they’re most likely to purchase additional items. Using exegraphic data also helps ensure that you can tailor your messaging to each business’s unique circumstances.

Want to see the power of exegraphics in helping you increase the value of your existing customers? Contact us, and we’ll give you a free audit of your ICP so you know the characteristics of the best candidates to pitch your additional offers.

7 sales pipeline stages: A breakdown

Every company needs an effective sales pipeline. It’s a non-negotiable. Properly managing your leads and prospects throughout their journey to becoming customers optimizes your resources, closes deals faster (and more often), and drives revenue growth. 

However, note that all businesses have unique pipelines for their specific journey. 

To create a sales pipeline that works for your company (because, let’s be real, this is not a one-size-fits-all structure), it’s essential to understand the individual stages or steps in the sales pipeline—what they are and how you can manage each of them for maximum effectiveness in your business.

In this blog post, we will dig deep into the different steps of a typical sales pipeline, understand how those are commonly organized, and explore available tactics and tools to set up or optimize yours for better performance.

You’ll also get tips on how to manage the sales pipeline stages efficiently.

Let’s get started.

But first, a quick overview of what a sales pipeline is.


What is a sales pipeline?

A sales pipeline is an organized (and visual) way to track prospects as they move through the different stages of the buying journey, from initial contact to final sale. It helps sales teams understand where prospects are in their sales journey and how close they are to inking a deal. 

Simply put, the pipeline represents sales activities and forecasts that help sales teams measure the effectiveness of their process and practices, and quickly identify areas that need to be optimized for better performance. 


Sales pipeline stages

Every sales pipeline has several stages. It’s what allows you to see exactly where your prospects are in their buying journey. This kind of clarity makes it easier to pinpoint sources of friction, identify areas for improvement and establish goals for success.

While every company may have its own variation, here are the core stages each sales pipeline should include.


1. Prospecting

Prospecting involves identifying and reaching out to potential buyers who would be interested in your solution. This could include contacting people who have previously expressed interest in your product or service or actively searching for people who haven’t heard about you yet. The most important thing is that you find the prospects that match your ICP.

Sales teams are often responsible for outbound lead gen efforts. And let’s be honest, it can be a grind. Identifying which prospects have the characteristics you care about most can be hard. That’s why we recommend using exegraphic data.

Companies continue to invest in sales prospecting because it works. It pays off. It builds a strong pipeline. Getting this first step right impacts the performance of every stage moving forward, which makes it the most critical stage of your pipeline.


2. Lead qualification

Once you have a prospect in hand—whether it came from outbound or inbound efforts—the next step is to qualify them. You don’t want to invest too much time working a lead that’s not qualified or spend too much time on a lead that’s less qualified while a more qualified lead sits untouched. 

Lead qualification involves assessing sales leads to determine if they are qualified enough to enter the sales pipeline. The critical step here is to ensure that a lead meets the criteria for sales success. There are a few factors sales teams should consider when qualifying leads. These factors include

  • Needs: Does the lead actually need your product or service?
  • Authority: Is the lead positioned to make the purchasing decision?
  • Interest: Does the lead have enough interest in your product or service?

Mind you, you can still have sales opportunities from unqualified leads. However, your teams should focus first on leads that meet all the criteria. Focusing your attention on the most ready leads gives you the ability to close deals faster—and beat out your competitors.

Whether a lead meets qualifying criteria is up to the parameters you and your team set. It will differ from business to business. So, be sure to clearly communicate the minimum criteria to your team and train them on the right discovery to conduct to get a clear picture of the lead’s fit and readiness.


3. Initial contact

Congratulations! You have qualified sales-ready leads. Now what? It’s time to reach out and make the initial contact.

This sales pipeline stage involves reaching out to leads through email, phone or video. It’s all about getting to know your leads better and offering them something of value.

At this stage, sales reps need to be able to understand leads better and build trust by providing them with useful information about your company that includes

  1. How they would benefit from your company’s product or services 
  2. How they make use of the product or service
  3. Success stories and customer testimonials
  4. A free trial of the product or service

Sales reps also need to be able to create a pitch, which should be customized for each lead. This sales pitch should provide valuable information about the product or service being sold and a clear call to action.

By providing qualified leads with helpful information and making a personalized sales pitch, sales teams can get their leads safely to the next stage of the sales pipeline.


4. Scheduling meetings, demonstrations and presentations

Are your leads interested in learning more about your company’s offerings after your sales team has made initial contact with them? Great! You’re on to the next stage. 

At this point, sales reps need to create an agenda, schedule sales meetings and prepare sales presentations. The sales team should also develop a sales strategy for this sales pipeline stage.

Your sales presentations should be designed to show your leads how your company’s product or services can help them reach their goals. During this time, be sure to also differentiate your product or services from competitors.

Differentiating your products or services from that of others doesn’t necessarily require sales teams to point out their weaknesses. Instead, they should focus on the strengths of your company’s product or services and what it can do for your customers.

Demonstrations may include:

  • Using visuals in sales presentations to emphasize product or service features 
  • Using sales collateral such as sales decks and brochures to explain products or services further
  • Demonstrating how sales prospects can use the product or service

By preparing sales presentations and strategies, your team can help leads better understand your company’s product or services and help prospects move one step closer to solving their problem with your solution.


5. Needs analysis

By the time you reach this stage, sales reps should better understand leads’ needs. They must go beyond sales presentations and focus on each lead’s specific needs and desired results. And it all starts by understanding their goals, budget and timeline. This won’t always be an easy conversation; it may require some delicate prying. It will, however, help you better understand how to best meet your lead where they are and adjust your sales strategy to motivate them to take action.


6. Close the deal

The next stage of the sales pipeline is closing the deal. It’s all about negotiating sales contracts and agreements while ensuring your (almost) new customer understands the terms and conditions of their contract.

To be successful in this stage, you and your team need to be ready and able to answer the critical questions your leads might have. You’ve built trust—and now you have to maintain it. It’s what reassures your leads that they’re making the right decision.


7. Follow up with future needs or possible business 

Once you’ve landed a new customer, it’s important to follow up and ensure that they’re satisfied with their new product or services. Not only do you want to retain them as customers, but you also want to keep the relationship warm for possible future upsells and expansion opportunities. A great way to do this? Keep your customer informed of new products, services and capabilities.

But, that’s not all. Keeping in touch with your customers provides a great opportunity for you to solicit feedback that allows you to improve your sales strategies—and even get referrals.


Tips on how to efficiently manage sales pipeline stages

These stages are great, but maybe you need a little extra guidance on how to help buyers move from one stage to another? Here are a few tips:

  1. Make sure your team knows which accounts to target and why. (If you’re using a static doc to document your ICP criteria, reach out. We’ll build a dynamic AI-powered ICP and provide you with a prioritized target account list.)
  2. Set up stage-specific tasks for your sales team. This will help your team direct their energy to the activities that keep prospects and leads engaged (and prevent them from falling through the cracks).
  3. Provide your sales team with clear goals and strategies for each stage of the sales pipeline so they can see if they’re on track—and where they need to double down.
  4. Make sure your sales team is equipped to answer questions they might receive from prospects and leads, especially the tough questions. Providing this type of training removes one of the most common points of friction in the sales process and instills trusts with your brand.
  5. Use sales and automation tools to keep track of prospects, leads, tasks—and all the metrics associated with them. You could do it manually, but offload it so you can focus on the important things that can’t be automated.
  6. Document sales processes and create sales training material. This should encompass everything from how your internal processes work to value-based selling tips.

If you’re ready to optimize your sales pipeline, contact us. We’ll show you how to strengthen your entire funnel by starting with the best-fit prospects.

7 sales enablement best practices to maintain revenue growth in 2023

Endless meetings. A disorganized sales process. Communication that lacks clarity. These are just a few common pain points for B2B organizations.

And, amid a looming recession, it’s never been more critical to resolve these issues ASAP. That’s why sales enablement can be an invaluable tool to help you navigate the choppy waters ahead and build a more efficient sales department.

In this blog post, we’ll look at 7 sales enablement best practices that you can implement to optimize your sales team’s performance and remain profitable no matter what happens with the economy.

Let’s get started.


What is the goal of sales enablement?

Sales enablement is a strategic approach centered on providing sales teams with the necessary resources and strategies to increase their success. It focuses on aligning sales goals with customer experience, product knowledge and tactics that will drive sales volume.

For example, it might involve providing salespeople access to customer data, training on product features and benefits, or using technology to automate sales processes. Sales enablement also helps to ensure that salespeople are equipped with the right knowledge and resources to easily access relevant information when closing deals.

Ultimately, the goal of sales enablement is to create a culture of success and collaboration among sales reps so that they can meet their quotas and drive revenue growth for the company at large.


7 sales enablement best practices for 2023

Now more than ever, investing in effective sales enablement processes can be the difference between a business’s survival or failure. With a potential recession on the horizon, the following seven sales enablement best practices can help your business stay competitive and increase sales despite a challenging economic climate.


#1 Use exegraphic data to better understand your ideal customer

Annual revenue, employee numbers, industry or geographical location don’t define your ideal customer. Think about it. Even if you could accurately define these qualities, it doesn’t mean that all customers within that definition are alike.

Instead of relying on traditional demographic and firmographic data, use exegraphic data to help you better understand your customer. Exegraphics give insight into how a company operates and behaves when executing its mission.

For example, you might focus on topics your ideal customer is talking about in their press releases and social media postings. Are they investing in a new sales process or customer service platform? Are they launching a new product or feature? What are the challenges that their customers are facing?

By understanding what’s going on with your customers, your sales reps can anticipate their needs better and position your solutions to meet those needs.


#2 Create content that addresses different stages of the buying process

Content is a crucial component of sales enablement. It not only helps you build relationships and trust with prospects, but it can also accelerate their buying process. Consider creating content that addresses different stages of their buying process, from early-stage education to late-stage product comparisons and success stories.

The more relevant, helpful content you create, the easier it will be for prospects to make decisions. Plus, by having content tailored to each stage, you’ll be able to track which pieces work best for your buyers.

How do you know what type of content will resonate with your target audience? Spend time analyzing your buyers’ behavior and use qualitative (interviews, surveys) and quantitative (analytics) research to understand where they are today, how they make decisions, and what content will move them through the sales process.

For example, imagine knowing that nearly 70% of your ideal customers prefer to get information through a series of short articles instead of one webinar. With that information, your marketing team can create blog posts, ebooks and other content pieces that align with those preferences. 

Exegraphics can also help with this process, as this type of data can help you decide where and how to distribute your content to reach the right people at the right time.


#3 Ensure your marketing and sales team have shared goals and definitions of success

Misalignment between marketing and sales teams can be a significant roadblock to sustainable revenue growth, especially during an economic recession. Why?

Well, these days, your leads and prospects are doing their own research and often interacting with your company’s marketing content before they even consider making a purchase decision. According to a HubSpot study, 60% of prospects only want to engage with sales after they’ve researched and shortlisted all of their options.

That means it’s essential for your sales and marketing teams to understand each other’s roles, align on the customer journey, have shared criteria for qualifying leads and agree upon the metrics for success.

For example, can your marketing team create more effective lead-nurturing campaigns by better understanding the sales team’s messaging? Probably. What about your sales team? Can sales reps better identify and prioritize qualified leads if the marketing department regularly provides them with more detailed customer insights? Absolutely.


#4 Equip sales reps with sales enablement tools that are

The sales toolkit is growing and evolving fast, with new solutions popping up all the time. So, how do you decide which ones are essential for your sales tech stack? You have to understand the needs of your sales team and analyze which tools can best support them.

For example, if you’re in a B2B sales environment, then having a well-integrated CRM system will likely be essential. Or suppose your team has trouble identifying and closing deals with high-fit target accounts. In that case, you may benefit from a Sales Development Platform that helps you build and prioritize a list of accounts that look and behave like your best customers.

Having the right tools to support sales reps can make all the difference when it comes to closing deals successfully. But it’s not just about having the best tools. It’s also important to have processes ensuring sales reps use those tools effectively.


#5 Invest in sales training that teaches reps how to maximize sales tools

If your sales reps are using sales automation software and tools, they need to know precisely how to leverage and use them to their full potential to drive efficiency. For example, if you have a sales prospecting tool, reps should know exactly how to use it—everything from creating templates for cold calls to setting up automated email follow-up sequences.

Why invest resources into this type of training? Because sales automation software and tools were designed to help sales reps get more done in less time. That means, when maximized, these tools can help shorten your sales cycles and increase your win rates, making you better equipped to weather a potential recession.


#6 Prioritize customer retention over customer acquisition

In a recession, customer retention takes precedence over customer acquisition. After all, even during economic upturns, it’s harder and more expensive to acquire new customers than to retain existing customers.

That’s why, according to the Twilio Segment Growth Report, 67% of companies agree that retention is one of the best ways to respond to uncertain economic circumstances. But how do you go about it?

Sales reps can emphasize customer retention by managing customer relationships proactively instead of reactively. They should learn to recognize customer pain points and propose solutions to those issues. Additionally, reps should understand the importance of building strong relationships by regularly following up with customers and providing helpful information to ensure they remain loyal.

You can also use exegraphic data to prevent customer churn. How? For example, by gaining deep insights into a company’s investment level in customer support, you can proactively launch programs to show how your solution helps to address this problem.


#7 Measure results and look for ways to optimize

There is no way for your sales team to know what’s working and where there is room for improvement if you aren’t regularly measuring results.

For example, you can identify areas for improvement in your sales process by looking at performance metrics like win rate, average deal size and close cycle time. You may also be able to recognize sales reps who are consistently performing well and incentivize them to share their strategies with the rest of your team.

You might also identify patterns in the customers who are most likely to close deals, so you can focus more energy on targeting those types of prospects. Using Rev’s Sales Development pPlatform, you can even automate this process and prioritize your target account list based on data showing a company’s readiness and fit for your solution.


Final thoughts

A potential recession may cause stress for B2B sales professionals. But with the right sales enablement practices in place, you can help your sales team stay competitive and continue to drive revenue growth for your organization.

Ultimately, the best approach is to arm your sales team with the right tools and data to make informed and strategic decisions about which accounts are most likely to close.

When implementing the sales enablement best practices that we’ve shared here, consider using exegraphic data to help you better understand the customer’s readiness and fit for your solution.

Want to see the power of exegraphics for yourself? Contact us, and we’ll show you the exegraphics of your best customers and give you a prioritized list of accounts that operate and behave just like them.