Suppose a company marketing division is absolutely killing it with the right metrics for measuring components of development or even to report development processes. However, this positivity may not always trickle down to the sales team who may end up spending excessive time prospecting when they should rather be closing more deals.
What happens is that a disconnect often takes place between marketing and sales teams where the latter may highlight unqualified leads more while the former may rant about not closing enough deals. There could also be no such system to differentiate cold, warm, low-value and high-value leads. This is where the right sales development platform has to be created.
What is sales development?
An important component sales aspect is development, i.e. the procedure of warming up prospects/leads and preparing them for making the final purchase. The entire process of sales covers aspects like prospecting, qualifying and connecting, presenting, researching, taking care of objections and also closing deals. Development is somewhere within the first two steps as per experts.
Why have a sales development process?
You have to understand that sales development is vital when it comes to inbound marketing. This is because marketing divisions may be churning out leads across all stages of the journey of the customer. Several prospects may not always be ready for outreach from the sales team when they turn into leads. In case the lead is not fully ready, sales personnel will only be wasting time or alienating prospects. With effective sales development, prospects will be prepped for taking decisions when they are handed down to closers.
Sales refers to the basic function of direct selling to end buyers. The better your process of sales development, the higher number of deals that your team will be closing.
Creating a sales development process
Sales development covers the stages of identification of sales qualified leads (SQLs) or marketing leads, engagement with these leads and qualification of the same into real opportunities for sales. Creating a process involves taking the following steps:
- Definition of every lifecycle stage post prospects turning into leads.
- Nurturing of leads by marketing teams who are not ready till now and identify those closer to purchase decisions.
- MQL (Marketing Qualified Leads) will be ready for sales.
- SQLs will be MQLs that are qualified prospects.
- Clear definition of attributes for disqualifying/qualifying leads.
- Time spent in engaging and prospecting.
- Close up all gaps in the above processes, covering marketing activities for enabling better sales, collateral requirements for meaningful engagement, technological support for syncing sales and marketing, automated nurturing of leads or generation, etc.
- SLA (service level agreement) is a vital step between sales and marketing, firmly putting down deliverables across the two parties.
- Regular tracking of the process and effective alteration.
5 essential components of sales development
Here are the 5 vital components of development that you should be aware about:
- CRM (Customer Relationship Management)- CRM platforms that support the working patterns of your sales reps are hugely required.
- Lead Qualification- You should have a solid system for qualifying leads, defining leads, qualifying processes, nurturing and so on.
- Content Management- A central system or portal for content management is vital, particularly since sales reps will tap into various content and collateral alike for educating their prospects and also for lead qualification. Silos for the same end up taking valuable time of sales personnel. Reps may often use less effective and generalized material when they do not find suitable content. A central database is a must in this case.
- Sales Analytics- Sales analytics are vital since they offer data for sales reps on the most effective materials that sync with various buyer personas and so on. This helps in equipping reps with the suitable materials for the best prospects at just the right times.
- Feedback and Collaboration- A bridge between sales and marketing is what we otherwise know as sales development. In-built collaborative tools and a system of feedback should be present for higher productivity.
Cover the lead generation and qualification aspect with specialized solutions
When it comes to lead generation and qualifying leads, you should rely on the right solutions that save time greatly for marketing and sales personnel alike. LeadX is one such solution where you incentivize everybody in the organization and partners to swiftly post warm and pre-qualified leads (based on their personal and professional networks) and they are rewarded and recognized for the same. While you get a steady supply of warm and qualified leads, they are handed over readily to the sales team.
All in all, this solves your basic hassles or core difficulties while the centralized dashboard enables real-time updates, tracking and deal closure as a team. LeadX is what helps you streamline your marketing and sales processes with an innovative and out-of-the-box solution.