​Sales development is the connecting tissue between sales and marketing; however, it is treated as a second-rate business function. Sales Development Podcast guest Fred Shilmover is the founder and CEO of InsightSquared, a sales intelligence platform that provides insights into sales development.

Today, you’ll learn why it’s important to take a holistic view of sales development instead of concentrating on specific issues. Fred also discusses the importance of data and the need for analysis at regular intervals. Tune-in to discover how to correctly approach sales development and find out the ins and outs of InsightSquared.

3 Key Points:
1.A shorter, compressed sales cycle has made it possible to make iterative changes at a faster rate.
2.Goal-setting can be done top-down or bottom-up; important to analyze key metrics at regular intervals since key drivers are always changing.
3.Industrialization of sales has resulted in economies of scales and efficiencies.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:16 – Introduction to the Sales Development Podcast
  • 01:03 – Introducing Fred to the show
  • 02:00 – The idea of InsightSquared, a sales intelligence company struck Fred while working for Salesforce
  • 03:20 – Creating reports from data produced by Salesforce is an incredibly cumbersome process
  • 04:17 – Sales cycles have compressed and gotten shorter as the trend shifted from traditional sales to inside sales
    • 05:28 – Shorter cycles make it possible to iterate and improve quickly
  • 06:03 – Important to be DATA driven in the sales world of today
  • 06:34 – Concentrating on one aspect will not necessarily have the desired effect down the sales funnel; a HOLISTIC view is necessary in sales development
  • 07:41 – Sales development broadly consists of four quadrants: Activities, Appointments, Pipeline and Revenues
  • 08:38 – Important to slice and dice and look at data from different angles in order to diagnose a problem
  • 09:53 – Goal-setting in sales can be done top-down and bottom-up
    • 10:28 – Activity ratios and capacity are examples of bottom-up metrics that you need to consider
    • 11:25 – Internal metrics are analyzed by running analytical cycles every six months; need to adapt since key drivers are changing
  • 13:03 – Oftentimes, organizations make the mistake of considering sales development as a second-rate function
    • 13:49 – Sales pipeline is the lifeblood of the company; sales development team is at the center of pipeline generation
  • 15:33 – RAMP was the first conference focused exclusively on sales operations
  • 16:08 – Sales operations is at the core of the six month analytical cycle at InsightSquared
    • 17:15 – Adding a 10% operational overhead and knowing the questions you need to ask beforehand is a lot cheaper than attempting to analyze data at a later stage
  • 18:47 – The BDR reports to sales because they are the future account executives
  • 19:38 – BDRs are compensated based on sourcing qualified opportunities and not on meetings scheduled
    • 20:04 – The old compensation plan encouraged an attitude where the BDRs scheduled a meeting and ran away
  • 21:25 – The sales development team is the connecting tissue between sales and marketing
  • 23:00 – Joe Chernov is the CMO of InsightSquared
    • 23:44 – Believes that marketing is in service of sales
    • 24:18 – Concentrates on educating a targeted set of accounts
    • 25:21 – Need to ensure that the demand generated through the market is properly serviced
  • 27:11 – Industrialization of sales has resulted in economies of scales and efficiencies
  • 27:59 – Requirement of a different skillset for a sales leader and marketing leader; there is a large creative component to marketing whereas sales is human capital intensive
    • 28:33 – The idea of a CRO stemmed from the need to align sales and marketing
  • 29:19 – Think about the entire customer lifecycle in order to ensure customer success
  • 30:20 – Remove any business constraints so that the silos do not blow up
  • 31:27 – Businesses fail for only one reason: they run out of cash
  • 31:51 – Is excited about their new product, Signals, which asks the question and pushes the answer
    • 32:40 – Another product, Slate expands the ability to write reports and do analysis
  • 33:39 – The decision to bring in a sales operations person depends on two factors: the first one is scale and complexity and the second one is where you are headed
    • 35:07 – Firms that are trying to scale up try to bring discipline into the process by getting a sales development person

Resources Mentioned:
●      InsightSquared – Fred’s organization