If you’re a business owner who’s dedicated to boosting sales (and what good business owner isn’t?), then it’s time to invest your time, effort and money into generating more leads, says Aaron Ross, CRO of PredictableRevenue.com.
“Lead generation is what drives your business, not the size of your sales team,” he says.
And once you figure out a system that offers measurable results, then hit repeat.
“If you can generate predictable leads, you can create predictable revenue,” Aaron adds.
We recently checked in with the best-selling author of Predictable Revenue to pick his brain about the best strategies for driving up sales in your industry. Here’s what he had to say:
Can you tell us about your professional background?
I started a venture-funded Internet company in 1999 that failed. One of the main reasons was that I, as CEO, didn’t really know how to build a great sales team. I hired a VP Sales and didn’t delegate – I abdicated – the function.
So I went to Salesforce.com, where I created an outbound prospecting process that helped them grow much faster and which added an extra $100 million in revenue in just a few years. I wrote a best-selling book about it, Predictable Revenue, that’s been called “The Sales Bible Of Silicon Valley.” Now I help run a software and consulting company that enables companies to build outbound prospecting programs based on the Salesforce.com model.
What sets Predictable Revenue apart from other sales consultants?
We have a very specific niche: outbound prospecting. We do outbound consulting and training. We do outbound outsourcing. We build outbound automation software. But we’re ALL about outbound. And our particular specialty is email-based prospecting, without dealing with the heavy cold calling that people dread.
What’s your philosophy for lead generation?
DO be super-specific in the niche you are targeting, and be insightful about why people do and don’t buy your stuff. It’s easy to waste a lot of time targeting people who will NEVER buy.
DON’T assume everyone needs your service. To which ones are you a nice-to-have? To which kind of client are you a need-to-have? Knowing the difference can make or break your company!
What are some basic steps every business owner can take to bump up sales?
The No. 1 thing that countless people say transformed their business is specializing your sales roles. There are four basic sales roles that most b2b companies should model:
1. Prospectors who prospect, and all they do is prospect.
2. Inbound lead responders who deal with all the inquiries coming in through your website or other “inbound” lead-gen types.
3. New Business Closers who are, well, closing new deals.
4. Account Management/Customer Success – reps who are focused on serving customers, whether it’s to make them successful or upsell/cross-sell to the customer base.
When salespeople juggle multiple roles, they end up doing many things poorly. By doing fewer things better, people can focus and be much better at their jobs.
What sales strategies do you think have gone by the wayside today?
Lying and being intentionally deceitful. It still happens, but it’s on the wane (thankfully). The best salespeople are impeccably honest and build trust with customers. They’ll give up a sale today if it means breaking a customer’s trust and potentially losing a lot more sales tomorrow.
What strategies are on the rise (or maybe were never out of style to begin with)?
Having a personality, and expressing yourself authentically in being a real person, not a stuffed suit – whether it’s in person, on video or over email.
What are some of your favorite digital sales tools or resources?
There are too many! We actually list some favorites at www.PredictableRevenueBundle.com. And Carb.io is our own internal Pipeline Automation software we’ve developed to automate a lot of our outbound prospecting process.
Simon has worked in the software industry for over 20 years; intent on always producing work of the highest standard and creating software products that genuinely makes things better for people. Simon has previously held positions ranging from Developer, Technical Consultant, Head of Development through to CTO and more recently founder and CEO of several high profile technology companies.