Business strategy
6 min reading

How does sales intelligence help you improve your sales performance?

sales intelligence and growth strategy

Customer data is the equivalent of gold nuggets in the early days of the Wild West:

"It's very valuable, and you only have to bend down to pick it up!"

As I said in the previous article, artificial intelligence can increase the efficiency of salespeople tenfold in a very short time.

Today, I'm going to explain how data can boost your lead knowledge and accelerate your sales cycles. 

How?

Thanks to sales intelligence, aka commercial intelligence... aka your new passion.

What is sales intelligence?

It is simply the collection and analysis of data about your customers/prospects.

Its principle is based on a simple reflection: 

Finding 1: Your customers and prospects produce data that you can collect.

Finding 2: This data can give you a huge business advantage by drastically reducing the uncertainty inherent in the work of salespeople. 

=> Conclusion: It would be a shame not to take advantage of it!

In concrete terms, you can collect two main families of data:

  1. Customer data: company profile, market addressed, behaviour since the first contact (when did they buy?), level of satisfaction, etc.
    This first database is all the easier to populate as your customers provide you with most of the information themselves.
  2. Prospect data: company profile, market addressed, strategies and objectives, behaviour, purchase signals, etc.
    This second database is less easy to feed because tools must be deployed to collect the available data. The good news? There are some very practical sales intelligence solutions! I'll talk about them below.

Once you have collected this information from internal (or external) sources, you can analyse it, draw conclusions from it, and pass it on to your sales people to sharpen their focus.

What do you stand to gain?

Sales intelligence is a way ofdeepening your knowledge of the market and, above all, of making it actionable.

In concrete terms, it allows you to support the efforts of your salespeople by telling them when and how to approach their prospects .

Timing + good speech = unstoppable.

By the way, sales intelligence is also called "situational"... because it prevents your salespeople from trying to sell a prime rib to a prospect who went vegan last week (for example). It highlights the right buying signals that your salespeople can capitalise on. 

At Modjo, we find that sales intelligence has at least three advantages:

  • Improved pitches: Better knowledge of the prospect + data on their latest research + analysis of call history (if available) = we know how to talk to them and hit the bull's eye.
  • More efficient sales process: Prioritisation of hot prospects + good pitch for each prospect = more sales, faster. 
  • And therefore shorter sales cycles: Faster lead generation = faster signing.

I would add a fourth, not insignificant advantage: happy salespeople . .. because you provide them with the best tools to achieve their objectives.

How to create your databases and generate sales intelligence?

Good news: it's simple. It's done in three steps.

🧲Step 1: Collect and analyse external data

What are your sources? The most basic ones are obviously the websites and social networks of your customers and prospects. Regular crawling (software that automatically explores the web) will give you all you need. 

To go beyond these essentials, here are a few tools we like at Modjo:

  • Linkedin Sales Navigator: to identify the right prospects, contact them at the right time and present them with a personalised pitch.
  • Dropcontact Dropcontact.io: to correct, normalize, duplicate and unify all your contacts' information in 1 click. Dropcontact.io finds and gathers all your contacts' information accumulated and scattered in your files and different applications.
  • Sparklane Sparklane: to intelligently source prospects and provide relevant actionable data to salespeople. Sparklane allows you to contact the right people at the right time based on business signals analysed and scored by theAI
  • Modjo (of course): to record your calls with your prospects/customers, and then automatically transcribe the exchange into writing. You can then search by topic ("price", "objection", "timing", "decision maker", etc.)
  • Salesforce, which links all these sources and makes them actionable.

💎Step 2: Pamper your internal data

Business relationships create their own data. You already have a lot of information about your customers. 

Secondly, you have probably generated a good deal of data about your prospects by interacting with them. This data is very valuable because it is not available anywhere else. It gives you a competitive advantage. You just have to know how to exploit it.

This is the purpose of Modjo, which allows you to process your interactions to extract unique and valuable information about the prospects you contact and your customers. Behaviour, current questions, budgets... Modjo classifies all this in a very visual way to offer you clear and actionable conclusions.

🚀Step 3: Start again

When it comes to dirty smarts, the key is consistency.

Your prospects move fast. Finding out good information a few days too late can cost you the business. So make business analysis a regular practice. 

  • Maybe you want to know everything about ONE target prospect for a while?
  • Perhaps you will define a palette of prospects and follow them regularly to detect buying signals?
  • Perhaps you will naturally approach prospects about whom you have the most data?

Whatever your strategy, keep the pace.

After a few months of practice, you will notice that your entire sales strategy will improve. You will know your market's wishes better, you will prioritise more precisely, in short: you will dominate the sale instead of letting yourself be blown around by the wind.

Ok, and who will do the job of creating/managing the sales intelligence?

There are two scenarios.

Case 1:

You are too small to consider creating a dedicated team. Sales intelligence will therefore have to be managed by sales people and/or managers.

How can they be encouraged to do so?

Here, you need to be very educational. Clearly present the merits of this practice. Invest in some GOOD tools, chosen carefully. Organise training and feedback sessions. And let the salespeople see for themselves how sales intelligence can serve their objectives.

At Modjo, I have set up a training course on data and the importance of collecting it. In this training, I take the subject back to basics:

  • Why data? What benefits?
  • How do you get it back?
  • Where to store it in the CRM?
  • And above all... "Do you have any other questions? How do you feel about it?"

.... Pedagogy and humanity!

Second case:

You have a sales ops team. They are the ones who will take over the sales intelligence. Easy, because they like it and are trained for it.

But be careful to raise awareness among sales people, even if you have sales ops, because they are the ones who will ultimately use the lessons of sales intelligence.

Remember, it's a team effort, the more data you have, the more keys you have to improve your sales actions and the more you will boost your performance.

To sum up!

  • Sales intelligence can make your teams more efficient, shorten your sales cycles, and therefore accelerate your growth.
  • It relies on external data, AS WELL AS internal data: the combination of the two is the key.
  • It is based on two pillars: good tools (including good integration with CRM) and people who are aware of and trained in these techniques. 
  • It is important to ensure that the sales staff are properly onboarded, as the effectiveness of the tool depends on their commitment.

‍

Best,

Côme Hug de Larauze
Receive our newsletter
Table of contents