Interview with Sanjay Sathe, President & CEO, RiseSmart.com
Situation: RiseSmart is in the process of building an inside sales program to complement their outside sales capabilities. What are the most important strategic components of an effective sales model?
- In a marketing and sales system, marketing is the precursor to everything. If you can’t effectively deliver your message to your audience, you have no lead generation machine and sales must resort to cold calls.
- In an online world, one of the key components of a marketing system is the email campaign, combined with tools for rapid and responsive follow-up.
- In RiseSmart’s system, the inside sales team is primarily responsible for following up on leads. The team’s role is:
- To qualify the prospect responding to our marketing efforts. Is this person the right buyer for their company? If not, who is?
- Does the company have a budget for our services? If not, when will they?
- Is this the right time? Do they have a current contract in place? Are they actively looking?
- The most critical aspect of the inside sales rep’s role is to be an effective filter in collecting and passing data to the field sales force.
- Many inside sales reps fail because their performance is measured on the number of calls made, not the quality of the calls or information gathered.
- Our incentives for inside sales are based on the quality of data gathered and on the success of field sales in closing the leads they receive.
- The effectiveness of outside sales really comes down to choosing the right people.
- The 80/20 rule applies here. One out of five field sales reps hired is truly successful, one is marginal, and three don’t make it.
- We hire based on experience selling to our target customer groups, subjective elements, and careful reference checks.
- As CEO, I consider hiring good people the most important thing I do.
You can contact Sanjay Sathe at firstname.lastname@example.org
Key Words: Inside Sales, Field Sales, Qualify, Filter, Performance, Measurement, Incentive, Selection