How to win when buyers don’t want to talk to you 🥺

Transparent sales process - working together
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Hey there 👋

Something I always have to remind myself: buyers don’t want to talk to sales 🥲

(I try not to take it too personally when I get ghosted after that GREAT meeting)

The stats tell the full story:

  • Meeting with sales reps is only 17% of a buyer’s evaluation (Gartner)
  • By the time buyers reach out to you, they’re already 70% through their evaluation (G2)

So what does this mean if you’re trying to build a great sales engine / up-level your own game? You need to make it easier for prospects to buy.

They’re already interested (at some level), but they need prescriptive guidance. An expert to help them solve their problems. This is your time to shine! 🌟

Collaborate to help them find the best solution:

  1. Understand their objectives – what are they trying to solve? (NOT your features)
  2. Map out steps, requirements, and a timeline for getting there
  3. Share the resources they need to evaluate and help get the rest of their team on board

Give your buyer a clear path and collaborate throughout the journey to make it easy. This is how you win in a world where buyers don’t want to talk to sales. 🏆

PS – for tactical advice on how to build a more collaborative sales process, join me & Figma’s Marissa Fuhrer on Zoom today at 1pm Eastern!

Ask questions about your sales process & learn from Marissa’s experience leading the Figma enterprise sales team. If you can’t make it live, sign up to get the recording tomorrow 🙌

- Ross

In this newsletter:

  • Toronto startup leaders weigh in on sales trends
  • Pete Kazanjy on how to scale your revenue org
  • Why you should celebrate your sales losses

🌎 Toronto startup leaders on B2B sales trends (SF, you’re next!)

We’re pumped to be holding live events and catching up with the community IRL again!

Had a chance to connect with some incredible startup leaders in Toronto and NYC over the past few weeks. Hear what folks in Toronto had to say about trends they’re seeing in B2B sales.

San Francisco – it’s your turn! We’ll be in SF Wed. May 25 for our next startup happy hour. Interested? Reply to this email & I’ll share the details 🍻

👯 5 questions about scaling your sales org, with Pete Kazanjy

A common question we hear from sales leaders & founders: How do I scale my revenue org from our first 1-2 reps to a full team of SDRs, AEs, CSMs, and managers?

I dove into this topic with the sales legend Pete Kazanjy, Co-Founder & CRO at Atrium.

When is the right time to move on from being the only seller (as a founder) and hire your first sales leader? 🤝

When you’re starting to feel comfortable with your initial sales process and conversations.

You shouldn’t have everything figured out when you hire your first sales leader! But once you get into a rhythm where you’re talking to similar types of prospects and having similar conversations, it’s time to recruit some help.

Don’t move away from sales too fast after that, though. You should be co-selling and figuring out your process together for a while.

Who should be responsible for expansion revenue: sales or CS? 📈

The short answer: it depends on your sales motion.

Atrium uses a land & expand sales motion. Their CSMs focus on making customers successful while AEs are responsible for expansion.

The CSM role is like a personal trainer: helping customers achieve their goals with your product. The core metric they focus on is product usage. 🏋

AEs are responsible for expansion and upsells. After the CSM ensures the initial group of customers in the account is successful, then the AE sells into different teams at the organization. 💰

With this model, CSMs don’t have to split their attention between customer success and expansion: all their focus is on ensuring customers are getting value from the product.

👉 Get answers to the last 3 questions!

🤔 Does your sales team celebrate the deals they lose?

Quote from Kevin Nothnagel, VP of Sales at Clockwise

According to Kevin Nothnagel, VP of Sales at Clockwise, they should.

I talked to Kevin about the importance of iterating on your sales process and celebrating your losses – here's what he had to say!

Work on your playbook constantly. It should never be static. 🛠

Why does Kevin’s team celebrate their losses just as much as they celebrate their wins? Because for a fast-growing company like Clockwise, it’s critical to use every failure to get better.

When the team is open about their losses, it not only helps them improve their sales processes, but also creates a strong culture of not being afraid to learn from failure.

Kevin also tags along on customer calls with his team, so he can learn what’s working and what’s not through observation and feedback.

Your playbook will evolve as your team, product, and market evolves, so keep an eye out for every opportunity to improve.

Check out my 15-min chat with Kevin for more sales & leadership advice!

Thanks for reading From Vendorship → Partnership! 👋 As always, let me know your feedback on this edition and what you want to see next time.

Ross Rich (CEO and Co-founder)

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