Are 1-to-1 gifts the new cold call for Account Based Sales?

If you’re already using an Account Based Everything approach, you know it’s critical that your sales and marketing outreach is researched, relevant and personalized. Even with the best targeted outreach, the odds of engaging a decision maker are slim: Sales reps today have to make 8 cold call attempts to reach a prospect, and compete with an average of 124 other business emails per day in that we each send and receive per day.Alyce-Sales-Gifts-Stats

Making the old new again: Physical channels

With so much digital saturation in sales and marketing outreach, Account Based Everything teams are “making the old new again” by engaging accounts with timely, relevant direct mail and gifts. Physical gifts and mailers have a response rate almost 40 times higher than email — and that’s with a one-size-fits-all approach. Many Account Based Everything teams have already caught wind of the huge returns and are running prospecting, win-back and sales acceleration plays to capture the attention, and budgets of target accounts.

open doors at target accounts

But imagine what would happen if your team could stand out from the crowd and send unique, handpicked gifts (think: Amazon Echo or skydiving lessons) to each decision maker you want to engage: Wouldn’t that cold call instead turn into a warm and elated conversation? Not only do 1-to-1 gifts and mailers open doors at your target accounts, but they add a human touch to you ABSD approach and show your prospects that you’re invested (and investing) in their success.

While 1-to-1 gifting campaigns require research and orchestration, uniquely chosen gifts are 2.3x more effective at creating sales opportunities, and the most innovative ABM and ABSD teams are already using them to drive engagement and ROI from target accounts. Here’s how…

Launch your 1-to-1 account based sales gifting play

A team of 50 sales reps leaves 1,277 hours of voicemails per month. That’s 32 full workweeks of voicemails, 90% of which will never be returned [Source: RingLead]. On the other hand, teams that use sales gifting for prospecting, can see up to a 20% lift in first calls [Source: 2017 Alyce Customer Study], from a single gifting play. You can create, run and measure a 1-to-1 sales gifting play of your own by following these steps:

  1. Define your goals: Determine your desired outcome. This might be 100 meetings booked or a 20% increase in call-to-connect rate.
  2. Set a budget: Determine a set cost per account, and an overall budget based on the size of your play. Use CAC and ACV metrics to choose a number that you can tie to ROI.
  3. Set a target: Choose the persona you want to send to within your target account. Are they a buyer, influencer, or gatekeeper? What is their title? The more specific the better.
  4. Create messaging: Write follow up emails and talk tracks to create your full gifting “play”. Leave room to mention the unique gift you chose for them in every template. Leverage tools like Engagio PlayMaker to build the surrounding messaging and cadence.
  5. Research and pick 1-to-1 gifts: Perhaps the most time intensive part of the play, use social media like LinkedIn and Twitter, Salesforce notes, and your existing relationship to hand-pick a gift within your budget, or leverage a tool like Alyce to handpick the gifts for you.
  6. Confirm address: Use data enrichment tools or business development reps to confirm address location, or digital gifting delivery to automate the process. Don’t let your unique gifts land in the “Return to Sender” pile of shame!
  7. Execute the play: Arm your team with the research, plays, triggers and talk tracks to achieve your goals. And use sales gift follow-up best practices to engage even more of your accounts.
  8. Measure results: Use tools like Engagio and Salesforce campaigns or even Excel to measure your results. Then learn, iterate and repeat!

With this personal touch, sales development reps will see dramatic increases in response, engagement, and conversion across your target accounts. Start small by deploying a single 1-to-1 sales gifting play this month. With the right tools, plays and unique gifts that engage your buyers in the education process, who knows: Your sales gifting plays might even replace cold calls in your Account Based Sales approach.

 

Kim Lindquist

2 Responses to “Are 1-to-1 gifts the new cold call for Account Based Sales?”

April 17, 2017 at 6:32 pm, John Rode said:

I’ve had good experiences with gifts…so long as you’re not sending promotional junk like I get from so many agencies, lol! But, if you make it feel like a true gift it can work. That is, if it’s a clear ruse to get their attention your results will suffer. Instead, make it a celebration of a launch or company anniversary, etc. And make the follow-up not “let’s have a sales call so I can learn more about your business needs”. Instead rope marketing or an SE into it and have them gather input from the prospect on a new product or message, etc. Of course your offerings will come up…let it happen naturally

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April 18, 2017 at 9:07 pm, Kim Lindquist said:

Yes, John! It’s not just the “what” (the gift) that has to be about the prospect or customer, but the “when” too. It’s about shifting your whole worldview to align with adding value to them. You can’t think of direct it as “give to get”. You have to use it as a way to demonstrate investment and value, and tie everything you do to their success. Who, if anyone, have you seen do this well?

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