How well is your sales outreach actually working? Are you getting through to prospects? Are you making the right impression? Are you sending the right messages at the best possible times?
No matter how well your outreach campaign is currently performing, there’s always room for improvement. And if you’re looking to boost your results (and ROI), there are quite a few different levers you can pull. This means there’s loads of potential for increasing engagement and sales through outreach—but there are also a lot of different ways you can miss the mark.
To ensure the best results every time, you need to build a sales sequence that clicks. Your sales sequence should include the right touchpoints, well-timed follow-up emails, and strategic messaging. Incorporating all these factors into your sales sequence strategy will help you get through to more leads, make a great first impression, and motivate prospects to engage and respond.
Whether your goal is to book more sales calls, sell more units, or inspire leads to sign up for your product, a structured sales sequence can help. Not sure where to start? Then you’ve come to the right place!
Let’s talk about what a sales sequence is and how you can build (and optimize) yours for maximum impact.
What is a Sales Sequence?
You already know that sales outreach is a vital aspect of the sales cycle–it’s how you make new connections and keep your pipeline full of outbound leads. Well, creating a strategic sales sequence is one of the best ways to optimize your outreach process.
A sales sequence (or sales cadence) is a standardized series of touchpoints designed to connect with new leads. This goes way beyond just setting up an automated email campaign.
That said, every sales cadence looks a bit different. An effective sequence for your sales process might include a combination of cold emails, phone calls, social media, InMail, voicemail, text, webinar invites, and more.
Ultimately, the best sales sequences are the result of A/B testing to find the perfect mix of channels and touchpoints to increase engagement, response rate, and conversions.
Build a Better Sales Sequence: 7 Tips to Improve Engagement & Conversions
Let’s explore the basics of sales sequences so you can refine your approach to get results.
Replicate What You’re Doing Well
Sometimes, the best approach is one you’ve already stumbled upon. If a particular sales campaign or prospecting sequence is currently working for you, double down on it.
As a sales manager, part of your job is to look at the results your team is currently pulling in and find ways to bring all of your reps up to the level of your top-performing SDRs. So, when first attempting to define your sales sequence, talk to your most successful sales reps to understand what sets them apart from the rest of the pack.
How do your top performers approach sales outreach differently? What channels are they leaning on most heavily? How often do they reach out? What kind of subject lines and CTAs do they use to drive clicks and replies?
Build Consistency into Your Sales Process
No matter who you’re targeting or what you’re selling, the number one rule of building a sales sequence is to develop consistency. If something works, repeat it. If something flops, cut it or rearrange the order of your outreach.
Document the effectiveness of various outreach tactics and cadences. Measure factors like the optimal waiting period between touchpoints, the ideal number of touchpoints, the best channels to use (and which order to use them in), and what type of messages get the most positive replies.
By standardizing your sales process—turning your outreach sequence into a standard workflow that your entire sales team can follow—you create a baseline of consistency. Not only will this improve your ROI, but it will also allow you to track metrics more consistently and open up more opportunities to optimize in the future.
Diversify Your Outreach Channels
The best sales cadence incorporates multichannel touchpoints. After all, not all prospects are alike (even very similar prospects who belong to the same segment)—and not all prospects have the same communication preferences. Diversifying your outreach channels allows you to increase your chances of getting noticed and getting through to your leads.
Every channel has pros and cons. By creating a sales sequence that spans multiple channels, you can overcome the challenges posed by each channel. Plus, adopting a multichannel approach also increases visibility. This means you’re less likely that your message gets lost in their inbox if you’ve also left them a voicemail.
Note that the order of your sales sequence also impacts how B2B buyers react to your outreach efforts. For example, connecting with a prospect on LinkedIn before emailing them a sales pitch can increase your response rate by up to 12%.
Create Custom Sequences for Each Buyer Persona
It’s no secret that personalized outreach is more effective than blasting a generic message to your entire contact list. That’s why we recommend segmenting your prospects and creating custom sales sequences or outreach playbooks for different audience types.
You can start with one or two carefully defined sequences and then experiment with variations for different recipient types. For instance, you might find that SMBs are more responsive to social media messages than corporate decision-makers. Or perhaps buyers at B2B tech firms react differently to InMail messages than those at D2C startups.
By tracking your results and tweaking your sales cadence as you go, you can develop variations that are tailored to different customer personas. As you learn what works best for various types of buyers, continue to refine your outreach messages, and reconfigure your sales cadence to suit the unique preferences of each customer segment.
Experiment to Find the Perfect Length
What’s the ideal length of a sales sequence? How many touchpoints should you include? Unfortunately, there’s no simple one-size-fits-all answer. Depending on who you ask, the perfect number of touches leading up to a sale falls somewhere between 5 and 12.
After a certain number of failed outreach attempts, you might assume that continuing to contact someone may provide diminishing returns. But that’s not necessarily true. According to research by RAIN Group, it takes an average of 8-10 touches just to book an initial meeting (or spark whatever initial conversion you’re aiming for).
So, although the jury is out on the specifics, sales experts tend to agree that multiple touchpoints are necessary for generating real results.
If you’re struggling to find a balance between overwhelming your prospect and giving up too quickly—consider that the average salesperson tends to fold too early in the process. To ensure your sequence makes an impact, it’s important to include multiple sales follow-ups across multiple channels as part of your basic sequence strategy.
Find Your Ideal Timing
To maximize results from your sales sequence, you need to think about how often you’re sending messages and how much time you’re leaving in between various touchpoints.
Certain audiences and individuals will respond to different sales cadences. So, as usual, there’s no hard and fast rule you can follow to guarantee results. Instead, it’s a delicate balancing act—the sweet spot is somewhere between giving prospects some breathing room and staying top-of-mind with frequent interactions.
Write Like You Talk
Something that often gets overlooked in conversations about sales outreach is the importance of tone. Your outreach message should show your leads a bit of your personality. This helps build a stronger connection, humanizes the interaction, and helps you stand out from the countless outreach messages in their inbox, InMail, or DMs.
Feeling overwhelmed by the number of outreach messages you need to write, personalize, and send? Instead of starting completely from scratch, feel free to borrow any of our business email templates. Just be sure to customize them to your own needs and inject your personality into them before hitting send!
Make the Most Out of Your Sales Sequence with Datanyze
Now that you’re armed with tips to help you build a powerful sales sequence, you’re almost ready to take a stab at it.
But there’s one more important factor to consider, and it’s this: the best cold emails aren’t 100% cold. Ideally, you should know a thing or two about your prospects before attempting to contact them.
Before you think about launching a new sales email sequence, it’s vital to build a solid list of leads—including accurate information about the company, decision-maker, and relevant contact data. Not only does this help you personalize your outreach, but it also helps ensure your messages get through to the right person. Furthermore, with accurate data, you won’t waste any more of your time on outdated emails or poor-fit leads.
Want to save time building your list while also preserving data integrity? The right sales outreach tools can help! Use a prospecting tool like Datanyze to uncover the information you need to launch a successful sales sequence—quickly and at scale. By supplying contact information, including mobile phone numbers, direct dial numbers, and email addresses, Datanyze helps you get your sales cadence off on the right foot.
Ready to see for yourself how the Datanyze Chrome extension makes it easier than ever to find, connect, and build rapport with qualified B2B prospects? Sign up for Datanyze to get more details on the prospects and target them with better sales sequences.