5 Reasons SDRs Should Listen in on Sales Demos Every Day

February 2, 2015 Josh O'Brien

In sales development, it’s pretty easy to feel pigeonholed and lose sight of the bigger picture (i.e. what’s happening to my deals?). Week after week, you grind it out using the same old workflow — source, research, prospect, interact — and after a while, a freshly restocked pantry gives you more of a rush than setting up a qualified demo for your sales rep.

As an SDR manager, it’s important to understand that this feeling exists and expose your reps to the full sales cycle as frequently as possible early on. The best way to do this is through sales demos. Having your reps listen in on the demos they create can be extremely impactful in a number of ways… here’s 5. (Feel free to leave 6 and 7 in the comments)

1. Elevate the elevator pitch

SDRs are great at pitching the features of their product, that’s undeniable. And most SDRs are even better at molding their email pitch into neat, value-drive bullet points that prospects can glance through and digest over a morning coffee.

But what about the other side of the coin? Do your reps understand why prospects buy their product and how they use it? I’m not talking about regurgitated case studies and ROI reports, I’m talking real-life, functional use-cases. If you sell into marketing, how does a CMO use your product? How is this different from the VP, director, manager, coordinator, etc.?

Listening in on sales demos gives your reps first-hand exposure to the two-way conversation that takes place between a sales rep and the company they’re selling into. By listening in, your SDRs will be able to uncover common buyer-side information that will help them refine their pitch to catch the eye of each prospect.

2. No more SDR/sales rep quality issues

Opportunity quality can often be a main point of contention between SDRs and sales reps. SDRs send over leads they believe are qualified only to find out that the demo didn’t go well and the sales rep has marked them as unqualified. Even worse, this usually occurs passively within the company CRM — no notes, no explanation, no nothing.

The best way to avoid this sometimes ugly situation is to keep the SDR in the loop on how their opportunities are progressing. By listening in on a number of initial demos, the SDR will begin to get a feel for which prospects have the potential to buy and which ones are just kicking tires.

3. Just hit record

New SDRs are well… new. And this means they’re going to have a number of questions about the product, the company and how to sell. That’s where the record button comes in.

When your SDRs start listening to initial demos, it’s extremely important that these calls be recorded for future use. After the demo is completed, the recording will serve as an invaluable training resource for SDRs by providing a first-hand account of how the product should be explained and what type of uses prospects are looking for.

Note: This may go without saying, but make sure to record your best sales rep — or at least the one that delivers the initial pitch the best. :)

4. Build that confidence

When I initially joined Datanyze as an SDR, I listened in on a number of demos delivered by our co-founder, Ben Sardella. To put it bluntly, Ben’s a sales bad-ass. He’s been selling software since the term existed and serves as a sales advisor to a number of great companies like Yesware, LaunchTrack and LettuceApps.

Hearing how Ben crafted his pitch and the excitement that it garnered in prospects gave me the extra assurance I needed to sell Datanyze with confidence. After listening to a few demos, I saw immediate improvement in my ability to stay concise, handle objections and close quickly.

5. Everyone loves a promotion

Lastly, transitioning from SDR to sales rep is a common career goal for young salespeople (and oftentimes a KPI for SDR managers as well). Having your reps listen in on sales demos will help them get a feel for what’s required at the next level and give them the confidence they need to impress management during the next hiring round.

About the Author

Josh O'Brien

Josh is a world traveler, sales extraordinaire, culinary bad-ass, part-time day trader, and pitbull advocate. You probably owe him money… and, if you’re not sure, you should probably just pay him.

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