From Ideal Customer to Sales Success with Dan Dal Degan, Co-founder of Talas

Ross and Dan discuss the critical factors for closing more deals, emphasizing the importance of establishing your ICP, & conducting monthly training sessions
Transparent sales process - working together
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Welcome to Season 3 of 10/10 GTM: The Podcast for Revenue Leaders!

Our guest for Episode 23 is Dan Dal Degan, Co-founder of Talas. Dan brings 37 years of sales experience to the conversation, with more than two decades working specifically in SaaS. 

In this episode, Ross and Dan discuss the critical factors for closing more deals, emphasizing the importance of establishing your ideal customer profile (ICP), conducting monthly seller training sessions, and hosting weekly reviews of inspirational sales stories.

Listen to the episode here, and get the key takeaways from our conversation below.

Establish your ideal customer profile

Most organizations don’t have a well-developed ICP. Usually, there’s shared consensus about the ICP they’re looking for, but it’s not documented and teams aren’t being trained on it. This means customer facing teams typically don’t understand it and, as a result, can’t act on it. 

The ICP is not just the industry. It’s also the company size, use cases, and personas within those organizations. Your ICP should be so granular that it leads you logically to the types of campaigns you’ll run to gain access to those people. 

“As someone wise once said, ‘If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there,’” says Dan, “and that summarizes how marketing budgets are largely spent in marketing companies.” 

To define your ICP, start with a simple question: Who are we selling to? Consider this question from every lens so that you’re able to drill down into the nuanced specifics. 

Train sellers on a monthly basis

Ongoing sales training and enablement leads to sales readiness. If you’re trying to move the dial upwards, you’re aiming to: 

  • Increase win rates
  • Increase average deal size
  • Compress the average sales cycle length 
  • Improve sales performance across the organization

To achieve this, train your sellers on a monthly basis. Provide them with the tools, methods, and scripts they need to understand the ICP and how to open a conversation that’s in discovery in a compelling way. 

Here are three key questions to identify the resources most beneficial for your sellers:

  1. How do you navigate the sales cycle?
  2. What strategies differentiate your product and solutions in advancing conversations?
  3. How do you effectively address objections to keep the sale moving forward?

Dan compares training and enablement to a band rehearsal: “You don’t show up for a live gig and play a brand new song you’ve never played together before. When Pearl Jam plays, they don’t take spontaneous audience requests because they want to sound their best when they perform.” 

Host a weekly review of inspiring sales stories 

As a revenue org, one of your main priorities is to get the reps who are usually in the spots 11 to 20 on the leaderboard into the top 10. In order to do this, you need to review what’s happening with the people consistently in the top 10 that’s not happening with the other reps. What methods and tools are they leveraging? What scripts are they using? 

By conducting weekly reviews of inspiring and educational sales stories, you can arm your reps with the resources and insights needed to be successful. Generally, this is structured in three categories: 

  1. Win stories
  2. Loss stories
  3. Walk stories 

In win stories, successes are celebrated, providing insights into effective strategies and techniques that led to closed deals. In contrast, loss stories shed light on valuable lessons learned from unsuccessful endeavors, offering opportunities for reflection and improvement. And walk stories recount disqualifying deals that aren’t going anywhere, leading the rep to “walk away” so they don’t waste any more time. 

This systematic review process cultivates a culture of continuous learning, where relevant experiences are shared and leveraged to enhance overall sales performance.

About Dan

Dan serves as an operationally-engaged member of the boards of directors of several high growth enterprise cloud software and services portfolio companies including Zilliant, Great Gray, SalesHood, RevenueWell, Challenger, and Exegy.

Drawing from over 37 years of extensive sales expertise, Dan dedicates his efforts to assisting entrepreneurs, founders in the expansion stage, and CEOs in navigating the intricacies of the B2B cloud software application sector.