So, you just landed a job as a sales development representative – CONGRATULATIONS and welcome to a cohort of millions of other individuals looking to foster their sales skills development. Becoming a sales development representative can be an exciting kickstart to anyone’s career, as it opens numerous doors to that individual through networking opportunities and sales skills development.
Value of Sales Development Representatives
The role of sales development representatives is one of the most important and arguably the hardest, as they build the foundation for your sales pipeline and work to create predictable revenue for businesses. Attracting prospects is only getting more challenging in the already competitive field of sales, and it’s not surprising that new SDRs get caught up in the numbers game and personal success.
While closed deals and predictable revenue are the ultimate goals of sales development, understanding your customers’ needs on a basic level is what really drives a product or service’s sales success. Sales development also requires complex collaboration within your team and the styling of many different hats, such as research, marketing, and outreach.
So how do you go about taking on a role that requires empathy while also being a part of a numbers game? Based on my experience, here are 6 tips to sales success as a new SDR.
Tips for a New Sales Development Representative
Be open-minded: Training to be an SDR requires dedication and patience. It won’t just happen overnight. As you begin the process of training, you learn not only the skills you will have to have to execute the routine of an SDR but also the skills you already possess and how you will strengthen them further. In sales, rejection is inevitable, and you will learn to keep pushing regardless. Being resilient in the face of adversity will foster your sales skills development and eventually narrow your contact lists to only the warmest leads.
Understand your market needs: As an SDR you will be well-rounded in what product and/or service you will be delivering to customers. Whether the sale is B2C or B2B, an SDR is bound to learn the ins and outs of the product to gain traction with customers who have an interest. The hardest part is, of course, getting the customer to even listen to what you have to say at the start. The heart of the tips to sales success is understanding your customer’s needs and being able to convey the key benefits of your product in a way that resonates with them. Once you have their interest and intrigue, you’ll notice it’s a piece of cake.
Take initiative: Onboarding as an SDR can be overwhelming at first. You’re excited to start, but all the extensive training and uncertainty are making you nervous about what is to come. Sometimes, you may think that asking a “simple question” is just a waste of time when sales managers actually encourage questions from their representatives. Other times, there is an opportunity presented that you might pass because you have self-doubt. So, next time you are unsure of something, be the first to ask questions and be curious about those opportunities. You don’t even have to wait for your sales manager to ask you before you start seeking more ways to grow.
Be excited about what you sell: You may not always be content about the product or service you are providing for customers. Finding something within the product or service that really resonates with you, such as a feature or design can be a motivating factor when you speak with customers. Understanding your customer’s needs and your product’s key value points is critical when executing your pitch. The only way to gain intrigue from your customers is to match the enthusiasm you want your customers to have for the product.
Motivate your peers before they motivate you: After becoming an SDR, I noticed that much of the motivation came from my fellow SDRs cheering me on with the success I was having with customers. An important part of being an SDR is keeping the energy alive within your department or team of fellow SDRs. Conveying your admiration for their work ethic is a great way to show that others’ work is just as important and that you notice it! Others will eventually notice you, too, and it keeps you feeling accomplished as you continue to succeed in the role of a SDR.
Be confident in everything you say: As an SDR, you have to have confidence and just jump in. If you struggle with this, then I always tell people, “fake it till you make it.” Essentially, what I mean is to be to the point when speaking with customers, and from thee, you will build your sales confidence. Most of the time customers will ask you questions that you may not know off the top of your head. That’s why you have to plan ahead in what you want to say in response to things you may not know right away. With that, you want to have a powerful voice and response because any little hesitation may cause customers to think otherwise. Research and preparation build confidence, and confidence helps you hit your quotas.
Enhanced Onboarding for SDR Success
So, now that you have the background knowledge in ramping up to be an SDR, it is time to put your knowledge to the test by putting in the work. By following these tips to sales success, you will feel more prepared for your task assignments and begin to see the results that drive predictable revenue.
While we all love to accomplish the goals we set forth, always remember that understanding your customer’s needs is foremost, and these needs are subject to change as well. Reflecting on those needs in your pitch can make a difference in sales success.
Approach customers with what you can give rather than what you can receive from the situation, and you’ll be much better off in your new role!