Outsourced Sales for Small Business


Reasons to Consider Outsourcing Sales and Marketing

Reasons to Consider Outsourcing Sales and Marketing

Reasons to Consider Outsourcing Sales and Marketing

For many businesses ready for growth, it’s fairly typical to consider outsourcing sales and marketing and various other functions including: human resources, accounting and IT. And historically, when it comes to growing sales, most companies initially consider building a team of dedicated sales and marketing professionals. The conventional process was to hire lead gen reps and a senior sales professional, and then assign an existing employee with multiple marketing and demand generation functions.

But over the past several years, the requirements of buyers have significantly changed. First, they expect to be able to educate themselves digitally online, and they expect continuing education. Then, they expect to engage with both thought leaders and sales professionals as they make their purchase decision.

So, sales success in this new buyer-driven market now requires a team of sales and marketing professionals with a variety of skill sets, all focused on making it easy for the buyer to buy. These skill sets can be time consuming and difficult to assemble effectively and quickly. As a result, many companies are discovering the old model of hiring and building a sales and marketing team on their own is just not enough to generate what they need to produce sustained sales growth and success.

Consequentially, businesses are increasingly discovering that outsourcing their sales and marketing team is an attractive and smart business decision for growth and many other reasons as well. The different justifications for outsourcing all result in reducing costs, increasing results and lowering risks.

7 Reasons to Consider Outsourcing Sales and Marketing

  1. Access to strategists who craft an effective plan quickly – Companies that outsource get immediate accesses to integrated sales and marketing strategists. With all the shifts in buyer behavior, companies can work with experienced strategists who will help craft a plan that works for their business and their budget. And these strategists are experienced, they understand the trends and have access to benchmarks and research tools to help get the most out of their budget.
  1. Access to the right talent for both sales and marketing – Outsourcing sales and marketing provides businesses with the ability to source all the talent needed, quickly. On the sales side, this includes access to lead gen reps, closers and, in some cases, sales engineers. On the marketing side, it includes access to content producers, email marketers, inbound specialists and marketing technologists.
  2. Outsourcing sales and marketing is more cost effective with less risk – Outsourced sales and marketing gives you access to a team of blended resources. This eliminates the need for paying top dollar to multiple vendors for specialists, or having to carry full-time talent that’s underutilized. This, combined with removing the need for additional office space and eliminating the costs of recruiting and management, results in lower startup costs to get the team off the ground in the short term, and reduces ongoing overhead in the long term.
  3. Speed to market – Outsourced sales and marketing gets you to market two to three times faster because you gain access to a team that already works well together and has already generated business successfully.
  4. Immediate systems infrastructure – Selecting, purchasing and assembling all the tools you need for successful growth is expensive and time consuming. Outsourcing gives you access to the databases, automation tools and CRM, with both the technical talent and best practice expertise you need to get the most from the system.
  5. Operational efficiency – Effective sales growth requires efficient use of budget and talent. Combined with the right systems infrastructure, outsourced sales and marketing allows you to execute cohesive strategies with all the data and measurement you need for effective management. It also provides the middle management layer required for success.
  6. Proven stability – If you have been involved in sales and/or marketing for any period of time, you will have experienced sales teams and marketing teams that are not always unified and that don’t always “play” well together. When you outsource sales and marketing, you’ll be working with an organization with one shared goal of putting deals into your sales funnel. And this team will have a proven track record of success.

If you would like to learn more about outsourcing sales and marketing, contact us for a FREE consultation and to see if it’s the right fit for you. Give us a call at (720) 279-7511.

Outsourcing Sales to Improve Small Business Sales

Companies of any size can benefit from outsourcing sales. Outsourcing sales for small businesses can often have the most significant impact because these companies often need it the most – especially if success requires modern sales and marketing operations. Below are just a handful of ways a small business can benefit from outsourcing sales.

Immediate sales and marketing infrastructure

Many small businesses don’t have the most critical infrastructure for modern sales and marketing operations in place. In today’s market success, especially if you are competing against larger companies, they require multiple pieces of infrastructure and technology to compete against larger competitors including:

  • Access to databases
  • Marketing automation platforms
  • A CRM solutio

An outsourcing sales company will have both the tools and the expertise in place to give you access to these tools immediately.

 

Professional sales recruiting and management

Most small businesses don’t typically have professional sales recruiting and management in house or a process to recruit sales talent. This may lead to hiring the “wrong” sales personnel. Even if a business does hire the “right” sales person, without effective and daily sales management, that individual has a higher propensity to fail.

Using a partner for outsourcing sales will allow you to access sales recruiting, management and culture/environment that most of your larger competitors have. .

Quickly focus on specific gaps to accelerate your sales funnel

Most small business owners are wearing multiple hats, and in many cases the owners are also qualifying leads, creating the marketing material, and closing business. They are doing this on top of delivering the solutions and running day to day business operations. They have the knowledge and skill to run sales and marketing but they simply lack the bandwidth.  An outsourcing sales and marketing solution can help the small business owner cover specific gaps at specific stages of the sales process. This includes:

Lead Generation – An outsourcing sales and marketing company can quickly turn on a multiple tactics for lead generation including:

  • Email marketing
  • Outbound calls
  • SEO and SEM
  • Social Media Marketing

Lead Development – An outsourcing sales and marketing company will be able to implement a content marketing strategy and marketing automation platform to help you develop leads in your funnel digitally.

Lead Qualification – An outsourcing sales organization will be able to staff an outsourcing sales rep or outsourcing sales team to help you qualify and educate early stage buyers and set appointments for your senior team.

Depending on your sales cycle, an outsourcing sales and marketing company can help improve small business sales in as little as 90 to 180 days.  A small business can retain an outsourcing sales company and get access to a pool of talent and tools with less risk and more certainty.

To learn more about the problems we help small businesses solve with sales outsourcing and marketing services and how we approach building modern sales and marketing operations we invite you to visit our Resources page.

Sales Outsourcing and Inside Sales

For decades the typical sales organization was comprised of sales reps cold calling and working in the field.  They set their appointments and then meet face-to-face with potential buyers.  And in recent years we have started to see a transition to those outside reps getting support from “inside reps” who assist in setting the appointments.  And once again typically a company would build this organization internally.

However over the past several years both CRM and marketing automation technologies have become technology staples of most modern B2B sales operations. These technologies enable companies to control visibility of each stage of their sales process.  These same technologies now allow companies to seamlessly consider sales outsourcing for their inside sales activities. Here are a few of the advantages to evaluate to help you decide if an inside sales outsourcing team is a good fit for your company:

Sales Training – There are multiple benefits that can be realized from shifting to an inside sales outsourcing model. One of the biggest advantages is that your sales training will become more effective with inside sales outsourcing.  When a company uses an outside sales model, sales reps do not come into contact with each other on a regular basis. But with an inside sales outsourcing team your reps will be working in the same office space. It’s much easier to quality control sales training for new reps, share “best practice” sales tips, and disseminate new information.  For smaller businesses that only have the need for one or two inside reps this advantage can be even more significant because your inside sales outsourcing team will be surrounded by other reps selling other products.  You will gain access to a part time sales manager that will keep your team on track and well trained without the expense of staffing a full time sales manager.

Scaling Faster – As an inside sales outsourcing company we believe when a company is just getting off the ground it makes sense to staff a closer on the client side to gain insights into the entire sales process start to finish. An internal sales executive also allow you to more effectively build the personal relationships a company just getting off the ground needs. In many cases this resource is also one of the executives in the company, often the founder.  And then as the company understands its sales process an inside sales outsourcing company can craft a repeatable sales process to generate the lead, develop the lead and qualify the lead using content and well trained business development reps. Switching to an inside sales outsourcing model may make sense, since it provides the ability to integrate new staff more effectively and allows for more rapid growth.

Complexity of the Sale Another highly influential factor that determines how to deploy an inside sales outsourcing team is the complexity of the company’s sales cycle – how many buyers and influencers are involved, deal size and value, and the complexity of the product itself.

For example – an enterprise sale is a long cycle involving multiple individuals at various levels of the organization. In these cases, external sales reps are required – again, because selling extremely high-value products over a long period of time is something that relies on the development of more personal business relationships.  If this is the type of sale you need we typically recommend using inside sales outsourcing for the initial lead generation and the early stage introduction of your solution to multiple buyers across the target organizations.  Once the buyer becomes engaged your outside sales rep should take full ownership of the sale.

On the other hand if you have a short and simple sales cycle this is where an inside sales outsourcing model can take the sale further.  Inside sales outsourcing can generate the lead, develop the lead and educate the buyer.  In some cases you can simply staff a sales engineer with technical or business domain expertise to answer technical or deep domain questions and your inside sales outsourcing team can manage the final close of the sale.

If outsourcing sales makes sense for your business then choosing the right inside sales outsourcing model is key to ensuring it sales outsourcing will help to grow your business. In many cases a hybrid model may make the most sense.  To learn more about how Gabriel Sales approach sales outsourcing and marketing feel free to visit our sales outsourcing services page.

The New Rules of Buying and Selling – Short Webcast

Increase Annual Revenue by 157%

In this digital age, B2B buyers take more control of their purchasing journey, entering and exiting the sales pipeline at various points in the buying process. As a marketer, it’s important to know where they are in the journey, so you can speak to them appropriately.

This 3:00 video breaks down the new buyer dominated world, where B2B consumers engage in content to research their product options to know before they buy.

 

 

We are Passionate About Filling Sales Funnels. Contact Us to Learn More

 

 

The Unique Challenges of Professional Services Sales

The world of professional services sales is changing rapidly. Changing with it are the challenges faced by the members of your team. This blog will talk about several challenges and the opportunity they present in selling professional services to clients in today’s environment.

Whether you are considering outsourcing services sales or further developing your own internal services sales team, the challenges that all of us face in selling professional services and solutions are the same. Gone are the days of discretionary or experimental budgets. If they still exist, they are typically dramatically reduced. You have to sell to both a technical buyer and a business buyer in every organization. Companies are running leaner at top levels, and as a result the decision makers that you need to sell to are picking up the phone 30% less. Once you do connect and start to engage the prospect in your sales cycle and with your content, their schedules are so tight that it takes much longer to move them through your sales funnel.

Here’s the bottom line: lead generation, lead qualifying and sales engagement can take twice the time and energy they did in the past. Markets are flooded with buyers and sellers of all types, and it’s your job to weed through it all. For the professional service firms that we provide services sales outsourcing and lead generation services to, it’s more important now than ever that we sell smarter and do our best to maximize top producer’s sales efficiency and effectiveness. We also have to help make the process easier for the buyers we are selling to. They have less time and demand a more efficient way to buy.

When a professional service firm comes to us (as opposed to product sales companies) to have a discussion about outsourcing sales, they often voice additional unique complexities that they are now facing in the professional service market:

    1. The roles of seller and deliverer are often merging. More time spent selling means less time dedicated to delivery and/or available for sales pipe development efforts.
    2. The professional service sale is growing increasingly complex, and requires an investment in education and solution selling.
    3. Education is required because professional services engagements are perceived as high risk investments for buyers, since they can’t hold the product in their hand. Consequently, buyers take longer to make decisions and often want to break up adoption so that there is a pilot or proof of concept stage.
    4. Professional services selling requires communication of intangible benefits – character, thinking style and personality of lead consultants and top producers – to effectively close deals.
    5. Top producing professional service executives are predisposed to “solutioning” and solving customer problems, rather than “selling” and sales management.
    6. Professional service sales are high risk for the Seller due to the need to acquire real return and margins that only stem from long-term engagements, beyond initial pilots

If you take all of these emerging complexities into account, they point to “time” as the single, largest issue. Time is still quite literally money, as they say – and this is especially true for the professional service business model. For us at Gabriel Sales, the challenge in outsourcing the professional service sale lies in identifying how best to customize a program to make your top producers operate at their highest levels of effectiveness and efficiency.

Gabriel Sales has been providing outsourced sales and lead generation services successfully to professional service providers across a wide variety of verticals and target markets – for over 15 years. In the last few years we’ve seen a large market shift in the approach buyers take to engage and make decisions surrounding professional service solutions. This has led to the creation of a viable opportunity for increased efficiency and effectiveness in designing a sales engine and cloning your top producers.

The Opportunity:

Sales and marketing interactions have changed drastically due to the proliferation of the internet and digital communication. Buyers have always actively leveraged content, but now it is being digested specifically through digital and social media. Buyers are streamlining their process on their own time. You now have the ability to leverage lead generation and sales reps that are skilled in communicating your solutions effectiveness and value in the digital space. These reps can manage more of your sale and replicate larger pieces of what was previously required of your top producer. Professional service firms can make it easier for buyers to buy by alleviating the buyer’s time constraints, while simultaneously opening up bandwidth for their top producers. Sales productivity skyrockets by as much as two times within a year, and as high as three times within eighteen months.

This opportunity is significant. But what is even more significant is that taking advantage of this shift does not require completely changing your existing sales process. However, it does require that you effectively align your sales and marketing teams, and get them to stop living in the silos that is typically tradition. This allows for you to be able to engage in a one-to-many dialogue as you generate leads and communicate effectively with both the technical buyer and business buyer. Your sales reps will need to be trained and managed effectively in using these new tools.

Please feel free to contact us or visit “Why Professional Services Firms Use Outsourcing Sales and Marketing” for more information.

What is an Ideal Customer Profile?

This is part one of a two part series that explains how being strategic in planning how you target customers will produce significantly better results on the back end. Part two can be found here, How to Build a Winning Ideal Customer Profile.

An Ideal Customer Profile is a process for identifying what customers you should be targeting to get the best return from your sales lead generation efforts.  As an outsourcing sales organization this is one of the key areas we focus on when providing our initial sales consulting during the launch of a client. We believe this aspect of the sales process deserves careful attention because what goes into the sales funnel is going to have a huge impact on what comes out of the funnel.   It is also the critical first step in building an aligned sales and marketing effort, so you can create a sales machine.

Ultimately, an Ideal Customer Profile should allow you to find and target your potential customers based on a number of hard criteria related to both the company and the specific decision maker:

  • Annual revenue of the company
  • Number of employees
  • Level of Contact – C-level,  senior Manager, middle manager
  • Functional Area –  business Area, technical Area
  • Title
  • Revenue Responsibility – budget maker or budget spender
  • Geography – global, national, local
  • Technology Adopted –  in some cases knowing what  ERP, CRM, and if they have virtualized may be critical
  • Their Clients – e.g.  are they doing business with a Procter and Gamble, Federal government, education (local gov.)  Walmart, Intel,  EMC etc.

In addition, there well could be some softer qualitative criteria:

  • Business Pain/Need
  • Vertical Industry Trend –  established or in transition,  growth or decline
  • Competitive –  large competitors or a volume of competitors
  • Psychographics – company culture, leadership style, corporate values

It is also important to know who you don’t want to sell to:

  • Decision makers whose jobs could be threatened
  • Internal Support Functions – for example, if you are selling data analytics you may want to avoid MR groups, or if you are selling operational efficiency services you may want to stay away from operations managers and start with supply chain directors

The purpose of this type of hard and soft segmentation is to establish clear, hard criteria that can be leveraged across your sales and marketing machine to:

  • Purchase  direct dial contacts for cold calling
  • Purchase direct mail and Electronic direct mail contact information
  • Filter leads from publishers
  • Leverage for a “Cost Per Click Campaign” like Google Adwords
  • Decide where to place your online advertising budget
  • Instruct your social media outreach program

We realize this can look like a daunting task.  But, as an outsourcing sales organization with 10 years of data we can guarantee that if you give this the attention it deserves upfront, you will see significant returns within 6 -12 months. You will see exponential returns in months 12-18 when your first wave of nurturing deals start to fall out of your pipe as closed deals.

For additional information on how to build and Ideal Customer Profile, we recommend you check out our companion piece entitled, interestingly enough, How to Create an Ideal Customer Profile.