Jeff Garon and Melanie Sovann
Want to get the best candidate pool possible to build your Sales Development team? Of course you do… unfortunately, so does every other company out there, meaning you’ll have to compete for their time, attention and interest just as you would in a bake-off against competing products and services with a potential buyer.
You could get lucky finding great talent through a basic job listing, recruiters, referrals and other methods, but it’s a safe bet to assume you’ll need a compelling job description to capture interest from the best potential talent out there.
This leaves you with essentially two options:
So, ask yourself who do you really want on your team… whoever you can get, or the best you can get.
Assuming you want the best, read on for some tips and tricks to craft your job description like a shiny lure to catch the best fish (talent):
What to include:
A bio of what your ideal candidate looks like
What are the values you want in a new SDR? Energy, optimism, desire to learn, desire to succeed, desire to advance? Lay out a high level profile of the person you are looking for, and to save yourself time (as well as that of the wrong candidates), make it clear who you aren’t looking for.
A quick hype-up about your company and it’s product/service
Is your company destined for success? Do you have amazing clients? Be concise (you want them to demonstrate some research on their part too), but make it exciting and let them know you are a team they should want to fight to get on.
What success looks like
Combine your expectations on how they will be assessed and rewarded. Don’t be misleading (they won’t be closing deals initially), but describe what their role is, who they support, who supports them, and the value they will be driving for your company.
Don’t scare them off saying you expect 250 calls per day… that may be something they do, but you want quality touches and results, not quantity. The best candidates probably won’t be compelled to dial and email mindlessly… they will want to find their own ways of generating interest efficiently, and you’ll want to support their creativity and initiative.
Where that success can take them
Make it clear that this can be a career in of itself, and a stepping point to other roles if desired. You want to create career opportunities, and let them achieve their goals. How much do they want to make? The world is their oyster in the realm of sales… find the candidates who have the drive and desire to achieve their goals, and give them the platform to make it happen!
Truly essential qualifications
Having a long list of required qualifications is old school. You may have a few must-haves, but keep that list short. What you really want, is curiosity, energy, capability and drive. Do you really, truly care what their GPA was? Does 2+ years of CRM experience matter for this type of position?
Think hard about what can be learned on the job or through easy training options. Don’t miss out on a fantastic candidate because they aren’t an excel wizard… you can teach them what’s needed, and they can improve their skills as desired.
How to grab your interest
Now that you’ve built some excitement about the role and your company, give them a shot to showcase their interest. Don’t make it too easy on them though. Ask a question of them in relation to the role or your company/product/service, and see who addresses that in their cover letter. Do you have a trial or newsletter? Give them a friendly nudge to check it out or sign up. When the resumes come in, see who’s taken that extra step in engagement as a factor in your decision process. Do you want the SDR who uses the same generic template for all of their prospecting for your company, or the SDR who uses research and personalization to increase their success.
Demonstrated effort and initiative up front is a great predictor of their work style and aptitude once hired. You are already setting the tone with your awesome new job posting, now it’s time to see who’s up to the challenge given your amazing job description.
Just be prepared to recognize and reward these incoming allstars accordingly for supporting your growth goals once they are on board, producing results and exceeding quotas!
Melanie Sovann is an educator, blogger and senior writer based in LA, she is a content editor and senior writer at BestEssay Education and Grab My Essay.
Jeff Garon is Senior Researcher at Tenbound Research Labs.
The Sales Development Conference 2019 August 23rd in San Francisco.
TEAM PACKS available. Bring the whole team: Leadership, RevOps and SDRs.
Whiteboard Wednesdays with Becc Holland of G2! Watch as we dive in to Postbound Leads, The Qualification Process and 5 Ways to Become an AE
Join your hosts Richard Harris and David Dulany as we unpack your most tangled up Sales Development issues, right on the air!
Click on image for high res PDF
The ecosystem of tools and services aimed at helping your Sales Development efforts continues to expand.
After releasing the Tenbound Market Map V2 a few months ago, we were inundated with inbound responses of new vendors asking to be identified on the map.
Several new developments have taken place since V2:
DiscoverOrg is eating the world. DiscoverOrg has identified a clear need in the marketplace. Data is the oxygen of Sales Development and programs live or die based on the quality of the data available. It’s table stakes. DiscoverOrg has figured how to supply clean data through their homegrown processes and to augment through the acquisitions of Datanyze, Zoominfo and Neverbounce. They also have the ability to execute and whip-smart marketing. We see this domination trend continuing with more acquisitions and increased investment in 2020 and beyond.
Outsourced services continue to expand. They can really be bucketed into three main categories, maybe more, and probably will be grouped on upcoming versions of the Market Map. Basically, you have your “Dial-only” boiler rooms, appointment setting companies using mainly phone and email, and now a new generation of full-stack outsourced SDR programs using all the latest tools and tactics. Some of these firms, in a different category, augment human beings with robots. You’d need to select which works best for you based on your requirements. G2 Crowd has a several listed, however, they conflate them with Digital Marketing agencies, making selection difficult. Bookmark Tenbound Research page for upcoming Buyer Guides in several Market Map categories.
Conversational Marketing. Clearly, buyer behavior has forever changed and will continue to change in the digital age. Drift has been successful in creating a category to capture this, and is now reflected on the map. Heck, they even wrote the book on it. Just like Marc Benioff did 20 years ago with his ‘No Software’ marketing, so does David Cancel and crew with Drift’s ‘No Forms’ pledge. Think about it; if you walked in to a retail store and there was no one there to help you, it would be very weird. Yet many companies do that every day with their website. How many customers walk away never having that critical first conversation? Conversation Marketing attempts to make everything happen now. Watch this space as we see continued emphasis on this in 2020.
Prehire Assessments. Your strength as a Sales Development leader is based on the strength of your team. Yet so many leaders put ‘butts in seats’ as quickly as possible without a thorough screening process, and are left with a group of people scared to pick up the phone and seeking to blame others (and you) for their lack of success. A new crop of pre-hiring assessment companies have begun to address this. Check these out and be careful who you let on the bus!
These are just a few of the changes on this version of the map.
What did we miss, or what would you like more information on?
Leave in comments.
Over three years of hosting The Sales Development Conference, the only event of its kind focused and dedicated 100% to Sales Development, we’ve been asked repeatedly why we started such a niche and focused event.
A couple misconceptions out there about The Sales Development Conference are that it’s called “The SDR Conference” or “The Tenbound Conference”.
While we love SDRs and of course, Tenbound totally rocks, the conference is really set up to focus on the big picture of our industry; the pursuit of quality Sales appointments, which convert to pipeline and finally convert to revenue.
The conference is really about everything that goes in to that process.
Simultaneously, we started the conference to elevate the profession of Sales Development to its rightful place within organizations as a key strategic growth driver, versus an afterthought as it’s treated at so many companies.
We believe that successful Sales Development programs and their teams can potentially be the very oxygen of growing businesses – and they should be treated with the same planning, thought and respect as other departments.
As more and more early-stage, high-growth companies get up and running, they are focusing more on setting up Sales appointments, growing pipeline, and sourcing new revenue: all main functions of the Sales Development team.
And especially as the economy starts to enter uncharted territory, now more than ever we need a successful Sales Development program cranking on all cylinders to support our Sales goals. The obituaries of companies that have not grasped this are online every day.
If you’re read this far, you realize Sales Development isn’t a function that can be set up overnight without any thought to process, planning or detail.
Poorly managed, misaligned, and reactive Sales Development programs can be a serious financial (and morale) drag to a company. And simply outsourcing the function without said planning often fails as well.
Why Sales Development Matters Now More Than Ever
Some recent data shows that it can take more than 12 touches just to reach a prospect, and then require 3 more highly meaningful conversations just to get one appointment set.
If the Sales Development team is not focused on getting these appointments, who is?
Walking into a new quarter with a 4-or-5X pipeline is so much better than going in at zero, but if nobody is prospecting or following up on the leads, how are you going to do that?
Once you start looking at all of the different aspects that go into driving initial sales appointments, it’s easy to see why Sales Development has become such an integral part of the sales process.
While the need for growth has become more acute than ever, it’s getting harder and harder to set new qualified sales appointments as the market is awash in ‘noise’. The key to breaking through barriers is strategic and high performance Sales Development.
Innovations in Sales Development
Another reason we started The Sales Development Conference is to showcase new innovations in the industry. We feel it’s finally time for Sales Development to take its rightful place at the executive table and there are many exciting advancements in strategy and technology that are helping to move this thought process forward:
Clear alignment with sales and marketing
Some of the most successful SaaS companies (along with many non-SaaS organizations) have begun or are thinking deeply about how to strategically align Marketing, Sales Development, and Sales efforts. Sales Development has become a critical part of the connective tissue between two usually siloed functions, especially through the addition of account-based marketing, conversational marketing, and product-led marketing strategies. Alignment ensures growth and ROI, and Sales Development can act as the glue holding this alignment in place.
A modern, advanced support ecosystem
While the Sales Development support ecosystem was relatively barren a few years ago, there are many technologies and resources out there today that are helping SDR teams proactively learn and grow. The Tenbound Market Map showcases just some of the major software tools, outsourced programs, specialized recruiting firms, training boot camps, and even boutique consultancies out there today designed specifically for the SDR function. These resources, as well as industry-specific blogs, articles, groups, and podcasts, have formed a modern, advanced support ecosystem for Sales Development.
Sales Development as a unique function
One of the most exciting innovations in Sales Development has to be the new generation of leaders in the space. As an entire class of Sales Development leaders has grown and developed in their roles, they have started to take on positions such as Senior Director of Sales Development, VP of Sales Development, and more. I mentioned in the 2018 Sales Development Conference that there is a future potential for a Chief Sales Development Officer and Sales Development as it’s very own function within a company.
While there are plenty of opportunities on the horizon, the Sales Development industry still has a long way to go. A tremendous amount of time and resources are being spent today by companies trying to establish and optimize SDR programs, and not all of them are seeing great results. SDRs are bashed daily on sites like LinkedIn for sending spammy messages, and the ‘SDR Bro-Culture’ is in need of a serious PR overhaul.
Additionally, many of the KPIs that measure Sales Development success are stuck in the 2000s. The amount of training, coaching, and education required have created the perfect landscape for a learning opportunity like The Sales Development Conference.
Will YOU Attend the 2019 Sales Development Conference?
Because Tenbound has spent years honing in on what SDR teams and leaders need to know to be successful, The Sales Development Conference brings together all of these key players for the chance to focus on what makes a great Sales Development program, how to build industry-best skills, the contacts and networks you need to get ahead in the space, and how to best prepare for upcoming industry challenges.
Whether you’re a VC looking to invest in new companies and are concerned about the growth of your portfolio, an industry analyst looking for the next big thing, a Marketing leader concerned about building pipeline for your sales team, or, of course, a head of Sales who wants to understand how to set and maximize new appointments to grow revenue, The Sales Development Conference can help you make the best strategic decisions possible.
You’ll not only be hearing from some of the top leaders in the industry, but you’ll also be meeting other people who are making a huge splash in the market. From recruiters to training acceleration solutions to ABM platforms to predictive analytics, The Sales Development Conference is a hotbed of innovation and idea sharing.
Make sure you’re able to attend this sure-to-sell-out event by securing your ticket today!
Tenbound, the leader in Sales Development training, consulting and industry research, today announced the availability of the Tenbound Sales Development Coaching program, which has already benefited a number of high growth companies.
With the coaching program, clients get much needed context, advice and accountability to accelerate their Sales Development pipeline growth and SDR-sourced closed revenue.
David Dulany, Tenbound Founder & CEO states: “As we talked to Sales Development Leaders every day, it became clear they realized that, even with all the latest technology installed, free online content, and a team of bright, dedicated SDRs, they still needed an additional outside resource, available on-demand, to help them strategize, prioritize and organize their program in the most efficient way possible. An organized program utilizing industry best practices and outside accountability. This is exactly what the Tenbound Coaching program provides.”
In an hour or two per week, clients meet with Tenbound Sales Development Experts to review their strategic plan accountabilities, discuss obstacles, break through challenges and plan the week ahead. The program puts context and guardrails on the Sales Development program, helping keep the leader on track toward their goals, and acts as a neutral third party as they navigate their internal organization.
As Dulany puts it, “Sales Development Leaders today are under intense pressure to run their teams and produce sales appointments, pipeline and SDR-sourced closed-won revenue, however, they’ve been pretty much left on their own to figure how to assemble the people, processes and technology to hit those goals. That is, until today. Now, they have a resource to rely on to help them achieve their goals.”
Companies throughout Silicon Valley, such as Gitlab, Glint, Helpshift, Lacework, Myagi and others, have trusted Tenbound to bring the latest industry research and advisory to help accelerate their Sales Development programs through consulting and training programs, so the development of the Tenbound Sales Development Coaching program was a natural offshoot to help people one-on-one.
Tenbound will host the 3rd annual Sales Development Conference on August 23rd at in San Francisco. The Sales Development Conference is the first and only conference 100% focused and dedicated to Sales Development. https://tenbound.com/conference/
For more information about the Tenbound Sales Development Coaching program and The Sales Development Conference, please visit https://tenbound.com/