When SDRs Get Personal, It Pays Off

A career in sales looks different for everyone, but more often than not, many launch their sales careers as a Sales Development Representative (SDR). SDRs are known for doing a ton of groundwork that set the foundation across an entire sales cycle. Because of this, our SDRs at RollWorks are Account-Based Consultants since they practice what we preach as a company on a daily basis. If anything, they’re the glue that brings marketing and sales together to create the best opportunities: the crux of ABM. 

As an Account-Based Consultant at RollWorks, Emily Pappas has proven that a little personalization goes a long way. Here are a few of her tips and tricks on her daily workflow as an SDR.

The biggest misconception about how sales reps acquire new customers

One of the biggest misconceptions out there on how SDRs acquire new customers is that there is only one strategy that works. The truth is, we are always re-strategizing. In my experience, I have noticed that what will work amazing one week, won't even get clicks or a response, the following week. When it comes to acquiring new customers, sales reps must be open-minded, persistent, and consistent to get results.   

Your personal secret sauce

For me, it's all about hyper-personalization. First, I go about finding the best contacts for outreach.  After some research and social listening, I then tailor my messaging for outreach based on the individual contact, not just their company.  Examples of my personalized email messaging have included a mix of gifting and video emails.

On top of that I make sure I never "send it and forget it" when it is a top-tier contact. To keep me on track, I like to view the full buyer journey and track their activity across multiple channels. 

As a tip, make sure contacts are getting diverse touchpoints to hone in on what works best for you.

Your most significant sales opportunity

Recently, a director of account-based marketing went out of his way and contacted my account executive. He wanted to share the effectiveness of my personalized outreach email and even circulated it across his leadership team as an example. That blew me away! The even better news, they are making progress in the sales cycle and I couldn't be more proud of myself.  I couldn't have asked for better validation on how personalization goes a long way for any seller.

How do YOU define a sales-ready lead

I know every company defines a sales-ready lead differently.  This is largely due to the fact that we all define buyer journey stages differently. But for me to prioritize properly, I like to ABMify all prospects—that's right, ABM is not just for outbound. 

A sales-ready lead is one that fits TAL, ICP, and falls into the funnel stage of awareness (this is something marketing and sales leadership have to be in lock-step about to nail). Let’s just say that once they have interacted with our content enough, it's GO time! And I’m able to know when they’re ‘ready’ by relying on core features of RollWorks: journey stages, journey events, and sales insights. With this combo, I know when an account is ready and what content I should adjust my outreach to by tracking recent engagement. 

What makes a good salesperson (and key traits for performance)

Creativity and a positive outlook are important but good time management skills are paramount! It can be easy to dive too deep into your research, but you have to remember that a response isn't always guaranteed. There is a delicate balance between quantity and quality that you have to create for yourself.

I personally learned that being able to track engagement is important to my personal workflow. Once I know a prospect is engaging, I no longer consider it ‘cold outreach’ because they are demonstrating familiarity. The sooner you understand and grasp a similar approach, the more successful you will be in sales.  

A moment of defeat you conquered

In my first month as a fully ramped SDR, I sent a personalized email and got an AMAZING response. He even posted about me on LinkedIn! Unfortunately, the account didn't fall within our ICP and it wasn't a good fit overall (talk about a lesson in why clarity on target accounts is so key to accelerating the sales process). BUT it was not all bad, because it taught me the importance of finding the right contacts at the right accounts. It also proved that my workflow and personalized approach were working!

(Personalized Email Example)

What sales leadership can offer their team

My manager was once an SDR themselves and because of this, they understand the grind firsthand. Plus, having a team that practices what it preaches and unifies under a full account-based GTM strategy is critical to my success. Having a marketing team that works in lockstep with sales leadership has allowed me to have far more success and really provide the opportunities that turn into faster, bigger deals. 

Also, on the ‘human’ side — when sales leadership is patient and understands that new strategies will emerge from week to week, it does wonders for their team.  In the end, being able to offer advice and collaborate regularly is a win.  

Want more on how ABM empowers sellers? Here’s 5 Ways Sales Teams Can Get the Most Out of Account-based Marketing.

About the Author

Emily Pappas, Account Based Strategy Consultant

Account Based Strategy Consultant at RollWorks

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