It’s becoming increasingly apparent that holding a grow-at-all-cost mindset is no longer an option. More and more companies are growing their CSM/AM teams and planning for more revenue to come through expansion vs. net new logos.
The market headwinds require you to re-evaluate your pipegen strategies. By following the existing playbook, you’re not only locking yourself into activities that are seeing record inefficiency in many instances, but you’re preventing your teams from unlocking super warm pipeline opportunities that actually close customers.
New leads are expensive, so we’ve put together a list of tactical ways you can get more pipeline out of the contacts and opportunities you’ve already spent the time and money creating:
Driven sales reps have found workarounds to track former customers because they are easier to sell to, but the standard process for doing so has not been scalable historically. You can hack together lists from SalesNavigator data. But this manual process means it’s hard for leadership to have visibility into the ROI or ops teams to have visibility into what’s working or not so they can create replicable practices for the rest of the team—and with a manual process you’re likely missing large swaths of potential contacts anyway.
We’ve written previously on the importance of operationalizing how you sell to former customers, but here will provide some tips on how you can effectively build pipeline from data that already exists. The key here is to focus on people who have some base level of awareness about your solution.
There is a psychological principle called the “mere-exposure effect” that states that people are more likely to develop an affinity for something simply because they are familiar with it through repeated exposure.
What does this mean for closed-lost opportunities? To paraphrase Peter Kazanjy, these leads who have a familiarity with your product represent a goldmine of potential customers, because often, “no” just means “maybe later.”
If you've done the first part of the sales cycle well, closed-lost prospects are educated on how your product solves their problem. Your job now is to stay top-of-mind so when their business problems become more poignant, priorities start to change, or they move to another company with a similar need, you’re the first person they think of. Reactivating closed-lost opportunities can be hard—here is some advice on how to approach operationalizing the channel.
More about staying top of mind from this scene in Focus.
Assuming you have your ICP and personas dialed in, a lot of the people you speak with (both inbound or outbound) will have problems that you can solve —even if they don’t quite realize it. Budget issues, lack of buy-in, or an existing incumbent vendor are difficult obstacles to overcome, but having meetings or deals stall out from the dreaded "do nothing" can feel like an especially puzzling black box.
So what's the best way to nurture these people?
Once you have an understanding of what it would take to win them over, periodically add value to them outside of your solution.
All of these activities keep you and your company top-of-mind so you can leverage familiarity to build affinity.
Getting people to buy often ties to a compelling event. Once you understand the real reason the opportunity didn’t close, there are several key times you can use to initiate a conversation:
Set up a long, spaced out manual cadence that makes sure you are doing something to stay top of mind every 45-60 days. If you don’t do this, you face the risk of missing out on being top of mind as priorities change or events occur in the business that make your solution relevant.
Learn more tactics from our CEO on 30 Minutes to Presidents Club.
Not everyone has a freemium or free trial product. If you do, here are a few ways to think about re-engaging abandoned free trial users:
People abandon free trials for many of the same reasons that deals become closed-lost:
By treating abandoned trials similar to how you treat closed-lost deals, you can use some of the same tactics above—personalized outreach to your “do nothing” segment, and tactical outreach time-pegged to natural business cycles—with the added benefit of knowing they’ve had real-world experience with your product.
When evaluating abandoned free trials, it’s important to look at a few factors:
Whether you’re going after former customers or re-engaging closed-lost prospects and abandoned free trial users, it’s important to go at it with a formalized process so you can see the full picture of what your leads really need to turn them into customers.
Luckily, you can build a former customer process all within Salesforce with Champify, which uses rich data sources to help you identify which warm prospects to prioritize so you can close deals more efficiently. Sales reps that use Champify see 4x higher response rates, 2x higher close rates, and 30 percent faster deal cycles.
Reach out now if you’d like to try a demo.