Top 10 Sales Strategies for New Product Launches Sales Outsourcing Best Practices

Top 10 Sales Strategies for New Product Launches Sales Outsourcing Best Practices

Magic bullet for sales outsourcingTop 10 Sales Outsourcing Strategies for New Products

There is no grey area for Gabriel Sales that sales outsourcing for new product launches is ultimately about closing business.  However as a sales consulting firm that has driven millions in closed deals and over 200M in exits with successful new product and service launches over the past 10 years we also understand that we can drive wealth for the entrepreneurs, executives and investors that we serve by empowering the entire organization. This is done with the right feedback loops and insights so our clients can make the right strategic decisions for their business. Below are ten business intelligence and strategic areas that the right sales outsourcing partner for new product launches can  and should execute against as sales consultants drive the entire enterprise.  For additional resource for new products launches and go to market strategies please visit our Sales Strategies for New Product Launches Resource Page.

Sales Strategies for New Products

Rapid Communication – It’s critical that direct feedback loops are created from the sales team directly back to product development, the marketing team, and the CFO.  These feedback loops need to be available all the time.  Speed directly from the market back to the team is critical.  One of the advantages of a sales outsourcing firm that specializes is new product launches is that we have designed our internal systems to provide these feedback loops and are contractually accountable for them. The right internal feedback loops will improve the product and align sales and marketing for shared success.

Commit to Digital Content…especially Blogging – We are a sales outsourcing firm making 1000s of outbound calls a day.  Customers are not waiting for us to call.  If we get them on the phone being able to share a quick piece of content (video, landing page, short demo) goes a long way to getting them to spend more time with us on call two and the same content can also be leveraged to disqualify prospects.   The average customer leveraged 10.7 pieces of content in their buying decision in 2011 and this is projected to increase in 2012.  If you have a limited budget we have strategies and tactics we leverage for our customers that allow them to take advantage of our sales outsourcing for new product launch tactics that turn your blog into a virtual sales rep.

Be Prepared to Educate the Market – Most new products are offering a new solution that is disruptive to the market.   Many new product companies are enamored with their technology (since they have passionately developed it) and forget that in many cases before you get to share those technical specs you need to help the customer understand and define the business problem they are trying to solve. You also need to be prepared to educate your customer how to calculate return.  Don’t underestimate the value of keeping it simple for the prospect especially in the early stages of the sales cycle.    For more info on how to frame your content strategy, please check out our B2B content framework graphic in our blog What is Successful Sales Collateral?

Sell from Scripts – This is one of several areas where a new product launch sales outsourcing firm has some strategic value over hiring individual internal reps or rolodex reps.  Outsource sales firms are designed to sell using a repeatable process so selling from scripts is critical.  It gives us something to measure and a way to anchor the success of the sale in the message and the story as opposed to the personality.

Commit Focused Energy to your Initial Ideal Customer Profile – If you don’t know what this is we have a short blog series dedicated to this.  CLICK HERE TO READ MORE.  You need to take your best guess at what verticals and what decision makers will buy and champion your product.  And then test those assumptions and measure those results.

Document the Buying Process and the Sales Process –  As you take your first customers from MQL or Cold Call through Sales Accepted to Sales Qualified to Closed deal you need to understand the key events in that cycle.   As a sales outsourcing firm this is one of the sales consulting functions we offer our clients.   We believe it’s critical because when combined with the right sales metrics (see below),  mapped to the Ideal Customer Profile (see above) it gives us the ability to start to more accurately forecast dollars in and dollars out investments for the entrepreneurs and boards we serve.  It’s also critical to remember that the same digital content we discussed in point 2 at the top of this blog is contributing to the sale.   You need to get your sales reps and marketing team to score that as part of the buying process as well.   Documenting the buying process allows you to build a sales process that allows the buyer to buy on their terms which means a sales ramp that consistently moves up an to the right and we are all in this entrepreneurial business to build sales machines that turn growth rates into hockey sticks.

Measure the Right Success Metrics – You need to measure the success of your early pipe efforts from day one.   A sales outsourcing solution for new product launches has the advantage of having years (at least 10 years in our case) of historical data to benchmark your efforts against similar sales to similar markets and similar decision makers.   This is especially critical for new product launches that have no historical data to benchmark against.  To learn more about the metrics Gabriel Sales feels are most critical feel free to reach out to us to Learn if you can Build a High Velocity Sales Machine.

Know Why You Win and Why You Lose – If you are measuring the right data you will already be well on the way to knowing why your new product launch is successful.  Its also important to understand why you are not winning when you lose.  One value-add we provide as a sales outsourcing consulting service for new product launches is that after losing a deal we will call the decision maker if possible and ask “ for own learning, is there anything we could’ve done better?”  We will take notes and pass that information on to our clients.

Commit to Marketing Automation and Nurturing Prospects “Not Yet Ready to Buy” – Our clients are investing in more than closed deals when they are choosing to outsource part or all of their sales and marketing operations.  We are not going to win every deal the first shot we take especially for new products.   Some may not have budget immediately, others may be waiting for our clients to have a couple more customers, others may need to champion into their organization.   Data from Forrester states that 70% of Marketing Qualified Leads will buy in a solution area they invest time in exploring within 18 months.  If nurtured correctly 25% of your MQLs will hit your pipe within a year according to Aberdeen.   If you put 400 MQLs into the pipe in your pipe during your initial launch this means (assuming your product hits the mark) that you will have 100 SALs by year if you invest in nurturing out of the gate.  Gabriel Sales provides sales consulting to assist with multiple nurturing from lead scoring, to social media outreach, content testing and marketing automation software implementation.

Lead with Value Proposition but Sell with Differentiators –   Selling starts when a customer says “No” and arguments are never made in a vacuum. Value propositions are a great lead but they only take you so far.  To close a deal your business case needs to make sense in the context of a category. We take all of our new product launch sales outsourcing clients through a quick and proprietary process that helps us and them to tell that story.  This does not mean that you need to sell directly against the competition it simply means that the story will include what the prospect/marketplace has heard from the competition.  In many cases we find that that competition is an internal competitor.

To see if our Sales Consulting and/or Sales and Marketing Outsourcing Solution is right for taking your new product to market we invite you to visit our New Product Launch Sales Strategies Resource Page.  CLICK HERE

For a custom Go-To-Market Evaluation please feel free to CONTACT US to benchmark the market and see if a High Velocity Sales Machine is a possibility for you.

Multi-Channel Strategy and B2B Marketing Outsourcing

Today’s B2B marketing environment is rapidly progressing with the abundance of tactics that are available and easy to adopt in the digital space. The purpose of this blog series to outline four simple tactics to help boost the effectiveness of your sales and marketing processes, while increasing quality lead generation. This blog, the first in the series, will discuss why you need to shift your channel strategy ib2b marketing outsourcingn order to maximize your marketing efforts, and ultimately close more business. Additionally, the impact of partnering with a company that does B2B marketing outsourcing and how they can sometimes be more effective than even the best internal teams will be discussed.

The first point of note is that it makes sense for any company, large or small, struggling or successful, to consider utilizing an outside partner in executing aspects of their sales, marketing and lead generation processes. Outsourcers can be hyper-effective in managing some or all aspects of a B2B company’s sales and marketing process.

Adopt A Multi-Channel Strategy

In today’s rapidly evolving B2B market, most companies can no longer rely on a single channel to produce enough closed business to stay ahead of the competition. You have to provide the opportunity for your buyers to when and how they so choose as there has been a dramatic shift in how to sell effectively. No longer can you try and drive buyers through your sales process; you have to help them through their buying process. Your choices are numerous and not all channels will generate closed business equally, depending on the nature of your business and the vertical you operate in.

How then is a business to decide which additional channels to pursue when there are so many available especially with the proliferation of the digital space?

First, it is imperative that when you pursue a new channel (or channels), you do so in a way that you are able to measure the effectiveness of the investment, so you can determine downstream whether it is something worth continually pursuing. There are many sources for data on which channels have proven the most effective within specific industries, so entities like Forrester or Marketing Sherpa are a great place to start, as well as analyzing your own historical data. Just remember to design your new approach/strategy in a way that you will be able to return actionable metrics from your efforts.

So then after you have chosen which channels you would like to expand into the question remains: “How should I execute this new strategy? Should I have my internal team try and tackle the extra workload? Should I hire additional personnel with expertise in the area?”

All three options are viable for moving your initiatives forward, which leads to the final question: “What is the most cost effective way to accomplish this new initiative?” The remainder of this blog will discuss how utilizing an outside partner can in many cases be the most cost conscious and effective strategy to expand your channel marketing.

B2B Marketing Outsourcing

Companies that specialize in outsourcing business processes are not a new concept. It is important to select a partner that you trust to handle such a crucial area of your business, because you are going to have to be willing to rely on their experience, expertise and methods to effectively help you close more business – because at the end of the day that’s what matters most for any organization.

Some outsourcers specialize in specific channels while others offer a more full-service approach and have the ability to successfully navigate multiple channels with an integrated approach. First things first, ensure that you select and organization that will provide transparency and robust success metrics of their efforts so you can accurately assess the ROI of your new relationship. However, it is important to point out that the most successful relationships are built on trust, and attempting to micro-manage a partnership like this can many times hurt the success of the campaign – you have to let the experts do what it is they know best, yet hold them accountable through metrics and transparent reporting.

In the next blog in this series, we will discuss the importance of pursuing lead quality over quantity, and how shifting your focus on lead generation can directly result in more effective sales teams and more closed business.

Building the Buyer Persona Series: What is an Ideal Customer Profile? Part 2

Targeted B2BThis is the second blog in our series outlining the steps we take to build a successful outsourcing lead generation strategy and the sales consulting options we provide in identifying the Ideal Customer Profile. We also hope to provide the appropriate steps that you may take if you have the sales bandwidth.

In the first blog of the series, we discussed the importance of the sales consulting step, and how critical is has been to our success as an outsourcing sales company. As a refresher, it provides the opportunity to find and target your potential prospects based on a number of metrics related to both the company, and the actual decision maker you are engaging with.

When we launch, the first step we advocate for as part of our initial sales consulting (especially with Professional Services and highly complex sales) is to apply Pareto’s Principal to your existing pipe. Also known as, the “law of the vital few,” or the 80:20 rule; it states that 80% of your revenue will be derived from 20% of your customer base. These are the ideal customers we want to go after. You can then score the customers based on the metrics outlined in the first blog, with a specific focus on

  • Title and level of contact
  • Functional area
  • Annual revenue and number of employees
  • Vertical market

We also suggest that you look at the prospects that you want to avoid, which means looking at your failures. Significant information can be gained from prospects that do not want to engage, or are not qualified. Who makes up the 80% of your customers that drive 20% of revenue? These areas are the two biggest drivers:

  • Functional area
  • Level of contact

When we identify trends here, as a basic principal, we avoid them at all costs and label them as WCP (Worst Customer Profile). Next a decision has to be made about what should and shouldn’t be replicated in future lead targeting.

You can’t properly understand who you are trying to target if you don’t have a good picture of the market that they operate and live in. To identify the markets most conducive to providing opportunities, not just leads, Gabriel Sales does a three-part approach:

  • We take your internal Ideal Customer Profile and map it against our historical data to examine connect ratios.  This helps us to determine how many calls it typically takes to get the decision maker.  From this we can do a semi-accurate forecast of how often they will pick up the phone or open an email.  This lets us determine the ease of reaching.
  • We do a deep dive leveraging Hoovers and other Database Research Tools to match SIC codes to your existing ICP to determine the target market size based on the criteria, a decision maker count by vertical and determined ease of reach.
  • You look at Social Media including Linked In, You Tube and Influential Blogs to do a preliminary landscape of ancillary tactics to determine Social Media Adoption.

Finally, we recommend that you do an honest assessment about how well-prepared and equipped you are to Sell Money and provide true Success Stories for your new targets.

It’s about selling to the prospects you are best equipped to service. Winning comes out of alignment. So, we suggest you ask yourself: where does this customer alignment meet existing sales and marketing alignment, and how can we capitalize on it, and win deals faster? This step will make your outsourcing lead generation or internal lead generation more efficient and effective, and your ability to qualify sales prospects and increase your pipe velocity will grow.

The bottom line is simple: an Ideal Customer Profile starts with the end in mind. It will drive sustainable and exponential returns to your business by helping you:

  • Find deals faster
  • Close greater volume and higher deal size
  • Build a strong pipe to nurture for future deals
  • Eliminate customers that are a waste of time
  • Increase your profitability
  • Create a focus that drives sales and marketing alignment

Other blogs we suggest checking out if all the above makes sense:

Get Prospects to Take Action: Content Variety

Blogs, Videos, ChecklistsDo you often wonder what you can do to get your content marketing to convert?

While pondering this question myself I got to thinking about my daily life. Have I seen anything lately that has made me want to click, have I purchased anything recently after seeing an advertisement and what email marketing campaigns have I opened? Then I realized I was looking at this the wrong way. I needed to look more at my daily life and routines; what gets me to take action?

I often write myself reminders on fluorescent colored sticky notes and place them where I look daily. For example my notes usually end up on the bathroom mirror or on the refrigerator. This seems like a fool proof way to remind myself to do things. The problem is that the sticky notes catch my attention the first couple times, but eventually I procrastinate long enough or walk by them so often that I stop noticing the fluorescent notes dotted around my house.

Sometimes my cleverly placed notes do the trick but most of the time they get ignored. So, how do I remind myself to do things? It’s quite the process to be honest.

First I write it down on that hopeless little sticky note. You know, just in case it works.

Second, I put the to-do in my calendar with an alert triggered for a day or two before my deadline. Now we all know life can be crazy so when this alert goes off 50% of the time I’m already engaged in another activity.

This brings me to my third and final tactic; setting an alarm on my phone. Now, this alarm is set strategically for a time that I’m usually not busy, like after nine pm on a weekday or prior to my usual wake up alarm. When my alarm goes off at one of those times I know it is important and I’m sent into action.

What has become obvious to me is that it takes different types and repetitive reminders for me to take action. Now these aren’t life and death situations just to dos that should be done to make my life better and/or easier. I don’t think I’m the only one who works this way when presented with a good idea/opportunity that is non-emergent.

This behavior is also present in the buying process and needs to be addressed.

You aren’t going to hit your sales goals by engaging with a prospect once and it is rare to convert using only one sales/marketing tactic. One key to selling is content variety.

Like the sticky notes you need an introduction to create awareness of your product. Let’s say you start with cold calling. You get a few interested prospects but no one buys. What do you think is the next step? Continue to call or send them information on the product?

It’s time to engage your prospects with digital content. Get your prospects to look at you again and take notice – your content marketing is to your prospects as the calendar reminder is to me. Now that you have their attention address their pain points, educate them on your solution and move them towards the decision making stage.

Digital content is most easily shared with specific prospects via email. When using email as your communication platform your content is being delivered the same way every time but your content shouldn’t be the same. Make each email new and fresh with different subject lines and offers. The first step to getting prospects engaged is getting them to open the emails. Get variety in your subject lines by using questions and calls to action and also varying the length of the subject line.

Once your prospects are opening the emails you need them to click on your content. Again, if you’re always sending them the same thing they will start ignoring your efforts. In order to incorporate content variety; maybe you start by sending intro copy about your product, and then send a problem/solution video, then a microsite followed by case studies and or a white paper.

Now that your prospects are engaged it is key to make sure that the content on your website, blog and social media also have content variety. You’re targeting a large group of people with different pain points and personal preferences on how they consume information.

You have placed your sticky notes and you have enhanced awareness with your calendar reminder, now all you have to do is set the alarm to get your prospects to take action. This seems like a daunting task but it is easily done through scoring content and tracking prospects through marketing automation. You can see where your prospects are in the buying process by what links they are clicking, the pages they are visiting and whether or not they are filling out forms or downloading case studies or white papers. When you can see that they are engaging and getting close to the decision stage it is time to call them. Get them to schedule a time to view a demo and get in contact with your closer.

Your strategy may differ from this example, however, as long as you are communicating through multiple platforms and you have content variety you will obtain and keep the attention of your prospects. If you are relying on one repetitiveness without variety your prospects will stop noticing you and won’t take action.

For more tips on content creation to enhance your sales process, read “5 Steps to B2B Content Engagement Success.”

To learn more about Gabriel Sales and our sales marketing strategy please contact us.

Why & When You Still Need B2B Teleservices

b2b teleservicesThe B2B sales and marketing world today is a digital one. In the past decade, nearly all non-digital sales tactics and techniques have greatly declined in effectiveness while their digital replacements have experienced a nearly exponential rise in popularity.

All of this obviously changed the B2B sales and marketing landscape dramatically. No longer concentrated on tradeshows and industry-related print publications, successful B2B companies today are focused on integrating digital technologies into their sales process for better targeting and increased efficiency.

And while this digital integration and technological expertise is now a requirement for successful B2B sales and marketing, the question remains: is there any merit to keeping some of those older tactics in your toolbox?


When it comes to B2B teleservices, our opinion is yes. While digital tactics and technologies can greatly improve many aspects of your sales process, there are some things that will never be able to be automated and will always require a more traditional, people-oriented approach.

For example, it is fairly easy to generate a lead via inbound digital marketing techniques: someone goes to a search engine, types in a keyword and ends up on your site exploring your content. If you have a marketing automation software that ‘cookies’ your prospects and tracks their content engagement, it is easy to see when a prospect is showing some type of interest.

However, using marketing automation and other web tools, it is not always as easy to figure out just how interested your prospect is and what their real intentions are. Just by watching clicks and page views, you cannot tell if a prospect is desperate to find a solution this week or if it is a competitor trying to ‘borrow’ content ideas.

This is where teleservices can work wonders. When inbound leads come in and show a fair amount of engagement with your marketing content, that is when to have your sales reps call to do some qualifying. As we’ve written about previously, having a sales rep call after a prospect has already shown interest by engaging digitally greatly decreases the ‘coldness’ of the call. The prospect is already somewhat familiar with the company and is generally engaged enough to be open to a discussion at this point.

Read more on this topic here. Feel free to contact us with any questions.

Creating Choice in Your B2B Marketing Content

b2b content marketingThis is the second half of a blog series on B2B sales and freedom of choice. To read the first part, click here.

The first step in creating choice for your buyers is getting rid of the preconceived notion that all buyers follow the same path from discovery to close. Especially in B2B sales, each buyer’s journey can look very different.

One buyer might have an urgent need and want to make a purchase as soon as humanly possible. Another buyer may be a company that requires sign off from multiple decision makers, each having a different perspective on what makes a good solution. And yet another buyer may be a year or more away from buying a product like yours but want to get ahead on early-stage research.

In order to close all three of these deals, you need to set up your sales and marketing program to honor the variances in each buyer’s situation and offer content choices conducive to each.

For example, at the end of an early stage blog post, don’t assume that you know what the next step should be and force your buyer to take it. Offer options instead. From the examples given above, the buyer on the fast track might want to go straight from your blog to a custom demo sign up. For the company with multiple decision makers, each decision maker might want to take a different path forward (e.g. the IT rep wants technical specifications, the business buyer wants case studies). The very early-stage buyer isn’t ready to move forward yet and may just want to read some more educational blogs.

By offering choice, you can create a personalized and individualized buying experience for each prospect who enters your pipe.

To learn more about how the B2B sales and marketing process has changed in recent years, read/watch this quick video-blog. For more on the importance of offering many different content choices, read our blog post titled B2B Buying Cycles: Don’t Serve Breakfast for Dessert.

Feel free to contact us with any questions.