A Tool Sales Development Leaders Can Use To Build Better Email Messaging
It goes without saying that one of the most important elements of sales development and outbound prospecting is the ability to craft impactful messaging that will resonate with your prospects. However, the path to achieving that is not always easy.
Personalization is the most important component of messaging and outreach efforts. And on a more macro-level, the ability to deliver personalization at scale is what drives long-term success. As products evolve or new markets are targeted, your messaging must evolve as well, making this process even more challenging.
As with other components of sales development, a well-defined process should be applied to building outbound messaging. It’s what drives efficiency and often times effectiveness.
USING A MESSAGING QUADRANT
A messaging quadrant is a very straightforward tool that will not only allow you to build in a level of efficiency, but will also provide the right mindset when developing outbound messaging.
The quadrant will enable you to craft more effective messaging by focusing on several areas:
• What business issues do your prospects care about?
• What are the common challenges they face?
• How will your solution help them address those issues and challenges?
Furthermore, it will make the process of applying segmentation and personalization easier by breaking down messaging to focus on:
• Strategic decision makers (CXOs, VPs)
• Tactical decision makers (Directors, Managers)
• Industry verticals
• Specific business units
• Different functional roles
All of this assumes that you have basic buyer personas developed for each different segment. If not, this should occur in conjunction with building out messaging quadrants.
BREAKING DOWN THE COMPONENTS OF YOUR QUADRANT
The first component to look at is how your messaging will differ when reaching out to strategic decision makers as opposed to tactical decision makers. This becomes especially important when targeting larger organizations where five or more decision makers will likely be involved in a purchasing decision, and there are numerous potential points of entry.
Strategic decision makers will care about big picture outcomes. Ninety percent of the time they will sign off on products and solutions for one of three reasons:
• The ability to increase revenue
• The ability to reduce costs
• The ability to increase cash flow
Your messaging should state that you’ve helped other similar companies tackle those initiatives, how you’ve done that, and subsequently the fact that you believe you could potentially help them.
Tactical decision makers will care about items that are, well ….. more tactical in nature. At a high-level they will care about how your offering will address items such as:
• The efficiency of their department
• The ability to improve KPIs by which they are measured
As is the case when engaging strategic decision makers, your messaging should speak to these specific challenges and initiatives, and state that you’ve helped other companies with similar challenges.
THE WHY VS. THE HOW
The majority of your messaging and interaction with your buyer should be focused on the “why.” Why have others purchased your solution and why should the prospect you’re reaching out to purchase your solution? I’ve got news for you - it’s not because of any set of features; it’s because of the business results it can produce.
In building out the left, or “why”, quadrants you should address these reasons. Be mindful of taking into consideration the different “whys” that are important to strategic versus tactical decision makers.
The “how” (right) quadrants address how your offering will produce the promised results. People need to know specifically how your offering will help them. Otherwise your claims about increasing revenue or improving a KPI will seem like an empty promise and won’t convey any credibility.
SEGMENTING INDUSTRY VERTICALS AND FUNCTIONAL ROLES
When the solution you’re selling spans multiple industry verticals or is used across multiple departments within an organization, your messaging and outreach initiatives must be segmented and personalized to account for that.
While the challenges and goals may be the same across different verticals, the terminology and social proof you use won’t be. And your messaging should reflect that. Using terminology that is native to a specific industry, or referencing existing clients within that industry, is a very easy and straightforward way to personalize your outreach efforts. This same principle should of course apply to variations in messaging across different departments and functional roles as well.
In theory you should be building separate messaging quadrants for every vertical and every department you’re selling into. If you do the simple math on this you’ll quickly realize that building and maintaining personalized messaging can become somewhat daunting. Suppose, for example, you’re selling a software application with a target market that spans seven different industry verticals, and which is typically used in two departments within an organization. Then you must take into consideration that you will have both strategic and tactical decision makers with different needs, goals, and mindsets in each of those departments.
When you look at the supporting numbers, it becomes obvious that using a structured approach not only to build your outbound messaging, but also to maintain that messaging, is imperative. Not only does it make the process of building messaging easier, it also improves your ability to efficiently share this messaging across your sales team.
Building personalization at scale into your sales development program is no easy feat, but utilizing tools such as a messaging quadrant in conjunction with great processes and technology, will have you well on your way.