Creating an impactful go-to-market strategy is key for your SaaS company’s success. There’s a lot of research and planning that goes into ensuring that your ideal clients won’t be able to resist your offer. The difficult truth is that only 8% of companies that bring their product to market become successful. That’s right. 92% of SaaS companies fail within 3 years.
How do you avoid the hard hits your company might take when setting up your GTM model?
In this episode of Evolved Sales Live, James discusses how SaaS companies can build a top-tier go-to-market strategy at any stage.
Don't forget to follow us on LinkedIn for more engaging sales insights and discussions! Happy watching!
Meet James Buckley:
James Buckley is an experienced consultant, popular podcast host, and sales trainer extraordinaire. As a highly regarded sales training company, JB Sales serves dozens of globally known corporations from Google to Cisco and from LinkedIn to Amazon. James uses his big personality and deep knowledge of sales to help thousands of salespeople all around the world up their game, and become top performing professionals.
Check out the transcription of this webinar episode below!
Jonathan Fischer 0:00
James Buckley 0:01
Opinions are amazing, as long as they're wrapped in packages.
Jonathan Fischer 0:04
There you go. Yeah, there's no reason to offend. Sometimes the truth is going to offend. But that doesn't mean you're an intention should be there. So for sure, well, awesome. Well, it's about that time my friend. Here we go. It's time for another power packed episode of evolved sales live. Welcome back. I'm Jonathan Fisher. And every tech company, whether you're well established are still in startup mode. Your go to market model is absolutely critical to your success. But with dozens, if not hundreds of go to market strategies out there. Which one is best for your enterprise? And in a fast changing marketplace? How do you know which updates are needed to keep pace? Well, our guest today is uniquely suited to help us discover some answers. James Buckley is the chief evangelist for JB sales, a highly regarded training company serving dozens of global corporations, including fortune 100 companies such as Google, Cisco, LinkedIn, Amazon, and others. In addition to his work with JB sales, James is a podcast host consultant and sales trainer in his own right, and uses his big personality and deep knowledge of selling to help 1000s of professionals all around the world up their game and become top performers. And we're excited to have him on the show with us once again today, James, it's fantastic to see you.
James Buckley 1:17
I don't think I've ever had such a great intro man.
Jonathan Fischer 1:19
Thank heartfelt my friend. So a quick reminder for audio viewers that are not as well acquainted with you tell us again, what do you do every day.
James Buckley 1:29
So our whole focus is to help you sell better. In fact, that's the name of our newly launched brand, sell better dot XYZ sell better by JV sales sell better, because you deserve to, that's our whole focus, we want to get in front of teams, frontline sellers, and show them a better way to sell not necessarily the right way. Because there's no silver bullets in this game, we don't claim to be the end all be all, what we do have is a very wide array of other voices that we are associated with, that we tend to put in front of people so that they can get all the different types of sales best practices that are out there and be more effective with more types of
Jonathan Fischer 2:06
fantastic side technical note, I'm getting some notes that your audio could be a little bit louder, my friends. So if you want to go ahead and, and choke up on the bat, as it were, and
James Buckley 2:14
there it is choked up. How's that? Is that better testing.
Jonathan Fischer 2:18
I think we're perfect. Now. On a side note, quick reminder to our live audience, hey, is live for a reason, we want to have your questions answered by the expert on site right here. So go ahead and start sending those in via the chat. And when we get to the end of our conversation here, we will veer over into a q&a. And we're going to pick the brains of our awesome expert on the call today.
James Buckley 2:41
I love q&a. It's my favorite thing in the world.
Jonathan Fischer 2:44
All right, well, topic today is the ideal go to market model for your Sass company. So maybe we could kind of break this down, James. I mean, first of all, go to market, let's maybe set this up with the rubrics, right? I mean, the elements you need are what?
James Buckley 3:00
So first of all, go to market is literally how are you going to sell this? That's what it means. It's not complicated, as you might think it is. But the pieces that go into a go to market strategy can get very complicated very quickly. So let's talk about some structures and bones. First of all, you need a marketing team. That is a big broad stroke of the pen. Because when you say marketing, what are we including in that we're talking about content creation, we're talking about a social digital footprint that makes an impact. We're talking about a community perhaps that you might be trying to build, we're talking about engagement, we're talking about demand strategies that all falls and much, much more under the marketing department. So that's number one, that's the first thing you need is a marketing strategy. What comes next? That's part of the go to market.
Jonathan Fischer 3:48
So what comes in its marketing is generating leads, right? Hopefully, these are interested parties raising their hand. Yes, I'd like to learn more about that solution for my company.
James Buckley 3:56
The next thing that you need is a tech stack, you have to have a way technologically that feeds the pipe downward. Now, this can be very complicated. And the reason it can be complicated is because not everything needs to go to the sales team from the marketing team. Some things are kind of bogus, great example. I know, no matter who you are, no matter who you're who's listening out there, you have received an email that is essentially screw off at screw off.com. Well, you're probably not super amped to follow up with that. Right? So there's a filtering process that has to exist, enter the sales stack, right? Data verification, something to that effect needs to exist. Lead routing, right? Think like lean data, or Gong, they all have lead routing now, right? You need that kind of stuff. Those things push the right things into the hands of the sellers, the people that can reach out and start an actual conversation. So let's say that you manage that part of the tech stack. Now you need a completely separate part of the text. And that's the sales tech stack in a sales engagement tool like SalesLoft. You need something to control these conversations and be able to analyze them and interpret them and make changes to the way that people are speaking to your prospects. Think gong for that you need a way for your salespeople to send videos out. So they can personalize their outreach, think Vinyard, you can already see how the technologies are stacking on top of each other one after another, just to enable somebody to sell your product. This is all part and parcel to building a go to market strategy.
Jonathan Fischer 5:31
I love it. So there have been so many changes that are involving integrating some technological solutions into the sales conversation so that the whole old, you know, old hat approach of trying to fill a calendar, do a demo and follow up based on whatever your CRM is, it sounds like there's a whole lot more we can do now, is what you're saying?
James Buckley 5:51
Well, all of that matters, but there's too many pieces, we can't, we can't take one thing and say, Well, this is the main thing, right? That you'd be doing yourself a great disservice, building a go to market strategy around this one thing, whatever it is, right? Instead, you have to think of all the pieces and one of the most important pieces you can do is have a defined ideal customer profile and ICP. Who do you sell to? Why do you sell to them? Why do they love you, you got to know all of these things as a team collectively. So that you can build the tech stack to filter the right people down to the sales team and have a higher close rate, a higher conversion rate, you're never going to be able to do this, if you don't dial in the purpose of your product, the people that buy your product most frequently, and the reasons that they buy those products, if you can't figure those things out, you're gonna have a very difficult time finding all the right pieces of this go to market strategy and putting it in place and seeing it be successful quickly. Everything will be successful with time. But the idea behind the go to market strategy is that you can scale in rapidly.
Jonathan Fischer 6:54
What's the best way to inculcate some of these insights assuming that you've done a good job of researching your ICP, your leading competitive advantages and so forth? Is this something that should be turned into like assets for the salespeople to have and maybe share in their sales worker? What what's the best methodology around that?
James Buckley 7:11
My belief is that informing your sellers about your ideal customer profiles, and possibly even the different personas that might fall into that ICP is probably one of the most important conversations you can have early on with sellers. And we're gonna get into the breaking apart of salespeople and when that's appropriate. And when it's not, you know, going from, you know, seed a, or precede to, you know, Series B, Series C, we'll talk about those changes as we move forward in the conversation. But you all of your salespeople, specifically the salespeople, and I think marketing has a really good grasp on this initially. So again, go to the market strategy, you need that that marketing piece, first, they're going to have a lot of information early on about who those ICPs are, and who those personas are that really gravitate towards your solution, your product, your service, your industry, your vertical, the things that they need from your service, they're going to have the most information, the soonest that trickles down to the salespeople, and the salespeople have to have expert knowledge on who they sell best to why they sell best to them. And the reasons those people continue to do business. I think your customer success team is the most common resource that salespeople don't leverage to get this information in their brains faster. Michael singer is our customer success director at sell better by JB sales. And I will tell you that she was the first person to say, I'm not gonna waste time on that it's not qualified. Right? And she'll tell the people, I'm sorry, based on what I have here, I don't think this is the best fit for you. But we will walk away because you're not qualified and it's a waste of your time. Forget about our time, it's a waste of your time, we're not going to be able to give you what you need. Right. And that is such an important factor for you as the seller, because you got to know where to put your eggs. Which basket do they go and they go in the ones that are most likely to close?
Jonathan Fischer 9:06
Well, like that. And there's there's integrity in that as well. Right? When you're selling and you're qualifying and it's not just some sort of little verbal game you're playing. Oh, yeah, we're gonna qualify you but if they've got a heartbeat, they can pay for it. You'll take it. But no, if you really come out at the you actually are qualifying for what is your ICP? I think that integrity really has a lot to say for it maybe even worthy of a its own conversation right at target in terms of brand impact and your potential for growth.
James Buckley 9:28
I would have a conversation about sales integrity 1000 times over because it's such an important
Jonathan Fischer 9:33
All right, well, all right, that's for that's for your third visit with our show that so preceded. So love it. So what comes next? So we've got are you kind of talking about sales enablement? Would that be a fair rubric for what you were just talking about?
James Buckley 9:44
Sales Enablement is sales enablement is a department that in my opinion is relatively new. I think it's existed for a while, but it didn't have the label of sales enablement until I'm gonna say 2018 2017, late 2017. I started to hear it more often. And then I think it became a department that finds the best tech stacks, the best solutions, the best processes, and really hones in the sales process from start to finish for an entire sales team. So like sales enablement, specialists often end up learning about new technologies and how they fit their existing tech stack. And how they improve specific situations or solve a different problem that they've been trying to solve for a while. These are the functions of sales enablement, people process is normally where we land. That's the stuff that we find that people struggle with. Hey, I have a great sales team. Oh, yeah. What's your sales process? Well, it kind of looks different for all of them. You don't have a great sales team, you have great seller. Yeah.
Jonathan Fischer 10:45
That's different. Do you everything's
James Buckley 10:48
like, yeah, so your go to market strategy feeds those sellers. But building a go to market strategy and having a sales process are two very different things. A go to market strategy is definitely more of a net. And a great sales process is more of a
Jonathan Fischer 11:04
spear. Make sense? Make sense? Like that? Yeah. So let's, let's go ahead and move in. And do we have all of our rubrics, by the way? Are those like all the key elements?
James Buckley 11:13
Yeah, I think so I think if you look at the tech stack, and sales enablement, tools as two separate things, because tech stack is sort of ubiquitous for these departments. And then you look at marketing. And then also maybe analytics, too. I know, I've worked for companies that have whole analytics departments, right? If you're, if you're not thinking about taking and analyzing all your data, take some time and do it yourself. Even at a high level, you don't need an entire department to do it. But man, what's the point of collecting all that data, if you're never going to look at it and make good business decisions because of it, that's gonna help you build a go to market strategy that successful faster than
Jonathan Fischer 11:48
Okay, so let's move on into this whole lifecycle kind of concern that you already alluded to. If I'm in startup mode, I've got seed round, and I'm working my way to try to get an A round of funding, or maybe even a or b, you know, that first startup mode that first two to three years or so a lot of most of the SAS companies are making it three years, by the way, but then 94% of them in recent stats are then failing, even with growth and funding. Yeah. So this is actually a real fell need out there. And we know that from the stats, so something's not happening in terms of analysis, once there is some momentum once we have some maturing of processes in business. So maybe we could kind of talk about both of those. Let's just think of as two audiences, right, so the first audience being in that more startup mode, I can only think of some of these elements like research on ICP, understanding market differentiation, that might be a whole different piece. And later, talk to us about that.
James Buckley 12:42
So I think the biggest question that startups have is, again, I have to lean on sales again, how am I going to build a sales team, because that's the part of the go to market strategy that matters most. If we're gonna go to market, we're gonna go to market with people that are going to be able to put this in front of individuals and create desire for it. Right, that's the sales team. I think startups that are pre a round fund should consider full cycle sales reps before STRS. The reason that I think this is a smart decision is because one most of the time, if you're dealing with a full cycle sales rep, they have sales experience, they've been down the road of SDR, a customer success, or even just one or two of those, and they understand what sales is. So you get a more experienced seller when you target that. But the other thing that happens is, you don't have to be the closer. And I think startups have this problem where they have founders that are essentially the sales team. They wear all the hats. Every founder everywhere, once was the only person making cold calls. The only person sending emails, the only person sending invoices and the only person onboarding and training right? Like they were once that person. Yep. For everybody. When they hire somebody, they think to themselves, well, I'm not comfortable with somebody else closing for me, because that's my money. Like, that's my, that's my success, right? That's my growth. That's my security in someone else's hands. So I think I'll just hire an SDR. Well, that's great. But that SDR doesn't have your background immediately. It takes a long time for them to get familiar with your product or service, your history. The the ICP that you serve the personas that buy from you the problems that you solve the solution, you provide the language, the technology out there, the competitors, it takes them a long time, you already have that knowledge. Right? If you buy or if you hire somebody that's full circle, full cycle, that person probably won't struggle very much to grab onto this information and then figure out how they're going to use it in their sales process. They already have one, it's baked in, they came with it. They got there and they know how to do it. Let them do it. So that you can go and focus on the growth of your company. And then you can grow and hire more, start another department figure out that thing that you haven't had time because you've been doing so much sales, right? This allows you to break away from the sales cycle and put your faith in this person that you hired, and go grow your organization, go make another decision, go start the next department, go hire the marketing person, you've been thinking about hiring, but you've got to step away from sales and put your faith in somebody that's full cycle, before you can step away to do the rest of the business the rest of okay.
Jonathan Fischer 15:30
So taking your advice in hand, as we're moving down that timeline we're growing. How do we make that shift? I mean, where does that full cycle? Individual land? Do they kind of advanced to a E or to become somebody C level people? How do you envision that kind of unfolding through time?
James Buckley 15:49
My belief is that that first full cycle sales rep that you hired should ultimately end up becoming your VP of sales, they can then go out and they can hire a sales director. And that person will come in as a full cycle sales rep. And then you will start hiring people and the two of you will help coach train and onboard these individuals and make them elite sellers with great resources, information that they didn't have training sessions, the knowledge that you've accumulated over your time being at that company, I've done this personally with my my team at ringlead. And I ended up hiring two people at one person that ended up making it long term. And that's a success 50% Success rate on the hiring a great job. If you hire 10, you're looking to do so that's real, if you've never hired 10 people, you know, you love
Jonathan Fischer 16:43
the freedom principle. And
James Buckley 16:44
this is like. So this is like the way that we hire as we grow our organization. And eventually, what you end up with is a core group of leaders for each department, and minutes, people underneath that are super pumped to do the job. They believe in the product. They've been learning from everyone around them in a group. And that's when you can take a step back. And you can say, all right, three account executives, three fullcycle sales reps that I hired. One of them is my VP, one of them is my director of sales and the other is our first hire, right? Because that's your senior seller. Okay, so great. We have these three. Hey, guys, what do you think if I hire to SDRs, to come in and start setting up meetings for you? Now, you can start looking at the Predictable Revenue Model, or I should say the old Predictable Revenue Model, it has changed quite a bit. Thank God, it definitely needs a facelift. But But now, now that you've begun your marketing venture, and you've got three sellers that know their stuff, you can break away from that full cycle model, and you can start, like literally doubling the number of meetings and sales opportunities those sellers get with two STRS. I find this to be a very comfortable strategy for many startups. I've seen it be successful several times,
Jonathan Fischer 18:06
it makes a lot of sense, I can definitely see some pitfalls that would need to be avoided. Some full sales cycle people. How do you put this, they may have some things that would need to be unlearned. And that doesn't always come out in the early early process of trying to bring them on, right? Every seller
James Buckley 18:22
with experience comes up with bad habits. No one is immune to that. We all have it. It's a battle that we all face well, and
Jonathan Fischer 18:29
then you've got to find that opportunity, right? So think long gone? Well, you've either got equity and equity in your opportunity, or you're going to have to fund that individual. Right? I mean, that's gonna be something to be and then you got to sell that to your to your investors. So there's some challenges around this is not that this is an easy model. But I think what your argument is, is is still a better model, regardless of and maybe as the recommendations around,
James Buckley 18:49
if it was easy. If it was easy, we wouldn't need shows like this to help break it down for people. Right, right. Everyone would be an entrepreneur, if it was easy to do. And I think and we could talk about this, I think one of the biggest problems that you have with go to market strategies is that they rely on individuals to do their part. The tech stack is one part of it, a piece of technology is nothing without the human being sitting behind it, making it do what it does. And the same can be said for any other strategic part of your go to market strategy that you build. You could build the best the biggest marketing team in the world. If no one knows how to write in a complete sentence effectively, you're probably spinning your wheels no matter what. Because all the content that they put out is going to be mostly images and no words. Well, who are you? What do you do? Can you explain this to me, like this type of conversation is the type of conversation that everybody should be having at their investor level as well. Hey, I want to set x right, right. This is our go to market strategy. What do you guys know about it? Right. Allow your investors to be a part of that conversation. Well, here's what I think you should do. Here's what I think you should do. Take that information into consideration. Create a timeline for them. so that they understand this is my first hire, and they're going to this role. By this time I need them to be here. And if they are, I'm going to hire this person. And this will be their role. If you can map the growth trajectory out this way. And if you have a good idea of what your your revenue will look like, go ahead and make the prediction to write that's really important for them to see because they want to see the company scaling with the revenue that it brings in,
Jonathan Fischer 20:25
based on sort of like comps, like look for other similar SAS companies,
James Buckley 20:29
I suppose you could do it based on comps, you could probably do it based on what you're planning on charging, and your ICP and the personas, if, for example, if I sell a product that is $500 per license for a team of five, well, I know that that's 2500 bucks, if my ICP is a team of five, my average close is going to be 2500 bucks. If I have one fullcycle sales rep, closing five deals a day at 2500, I can pretty much tell you what our monthly annual recurring revenue is going to be, unless I hire someone else to meet that same standard. This is the this is the simple math, there's much more complicated math that we can throw out there. But this is the simple math of scaling. Yeah, love that. And you kind of back into it, you know,
Jonathan Fischer 21:16
back into it, meaning one.
James Buckley 21:19
So it's just like backing into a sales equation. We talked about this in our filling the funnel training, every seller needs to know, I need to have this many activities to get this many demos to get this many proposals to close this many deals. The problem is you don't know those numbers until you're in the trenches doing it. That's what I mean, when I say you have to back into it, you can put the equation out there. But you can't fill the numbers in until you're in the trenches doing the job. A go to market strategy is extremely similar. You can make theories, you can make predictions, you can take guesses. But in the end, when you go to market, when you actually start putting the rubber to the road, you're going to learn a lot about where you need to pivot and the changes that you need to make. So that that go to market strategy makes more sense.
Jonathan Fischer 22:03
Well, another thing that comes into the conversation here is with a full cycle individual heading things up early on your your marketing team is also trying to develop actually mature marketing channels are going to work. And hopefully it's channels plural, right? That that interplay between those two. Yeah, there's always always wrinkles, right? There's always hiccups, there's always issues there. And it's very difficult to get your your costs and your acquisition where you want them to want those to be. Now, with what you're talking about, there comes a point where there should be a pivoting where some of these early hires become senior leaders and you move to this SDR model. Can you unpack for us a little bit more about that transition? And what that can look like? And what what some of the what are some of the the steps for analysis that a SaaS company should be doing to know that it's time for that?
James Buckley 22:52
So first of all, I think that they should become leadership and that transition should be planned, they should know that that's the case early on. If I hire my very first full cycle person, I want that interview to go like, Hey, I'm really hoping this goes well, because I am going to look to you to become a leader here. This, this is a great starting point for this person. And they'll be able to look for that opportunity as well. Hey, I think I'm ready. I think if you wanted to hire somebody, I could probably do it. You know, you need them to feel that way. So I think that should be an early conversation. When it comes to the transition, though from the other full cycle sales reps to the team of full cycle sales reps into a leadership role. They got to be on board too. This looks like a lot of career planning. Right? When I bring that director in, for example, I need that person to know. You're going to report up to Sara Sara is going to be the VP of sales. Because you report up to Sarah, you're gonna have two or three people underneath you. I need you to manage them and work with Sarah to make them successful. This person now knows I'm responsible for those three people and their results. I report them to Sarah. Right now. We're going to bring these three people on. Hey guys, this is great. You're starting out as an SDR you're going to report to Mike Mike reports to Sarah our VP the long term plan here is that you guys will be in this SDR role for a year and a half possibly two years and then we're gonna move you into a closing role and you'll become full fledged account executives that are full cycle like this
Jonathan Fischer 24:22
yeah work for you that it's not easy work right that it's it's it's a bit of a grind to do that those jobs well. And but but when you have when you have the hope of this career growth and that that can that can put a lot of fuel on that fire for people.
James Buckley 24:36
It's supposed to be an arduous journey. Very few people decided yesterday that they were going to be a sales professional and today are multimillionaires. Very few if any? Most people that are successful sales professionals. It took them a long time to get where they got and some of them that are still quote sales professionals don't We even do sales anymore. I am a great example of that. I love sales, I still make occasional sales from time to time. But I host events, I drive engagement, up top of the funnel, I talk to strangers every single day. That's my job, I get them interested, I pull them in our direction. I've graduated from a full traditional sales role into this multi hat wearing sales professional that can do lots of things for lots of companies. And that's why they find me valuable that sell better by JV sales. If you want to dance for your dinner for the rest of your natural born life, start hiring salespeople without a go to market strategy for their growth. Yeah. But if you are somebody that looks to the future and says, Man, I can't wait to just like, not have to do the grind anymore and still love my sales job. Build that go to market strategy with good expectations, strong tech stack knowledge, great people that are invested in their future at your company, and learn from your investors. They've seen and done things you've never heard of before. They can show you and make introductions and tell you things that you've probably never thought of in your startup stage growth. Learn from those investors, they gave you the money. They gave you the support, get the resources to yo, it's really important. Yeah.
Jonathan Fischer 26:21
Well, James, just by way of application there, man, what a great conversation that blew by let's see if we can maybe give a couple of action steps to our listeners. At any stage in the game. Like what maybe they're hearing you maybe you've sold them on your your your approach. And that's not what they're doing right now, what would you recommend they do?
James Buckley 26:37
So so if it's not what they're doing right now, and I've sold them on my approach, my initial reaction is to tell you that, start talking to the people that work for you immediately. Ask them what they wanted out of the job when they started. Make sure that they're doing all that they can to help you get to the next stage in your growth, because you have the resources, you hired them, you brought them in, if you have five people, they're all thinking to themselves, okay, When is this gonna pop off? Right? When are we going to boom, like we thought, right? Go talk to them about how you can help them do that. Here's another strategy that you can do. If you're bought into what I said, and you've been doing something different. Take a step back and look at how your sales team is currently designed. If you have three people ask yourself, Is it okay if I split them up? Or should I make them all full cycle if they're all doing different jobs now, if you have an SDR and an AE and a customer success rep and that's your flow. What if all of them did all the jobs and they all became prospectors closers and Customer Success reps. If you made all three of them full cycle would that do more for your revenue numbers probably means you have more people closing more deals. Right? For now, that's a good change to make. You can go hire other STRS right leader when they start to become really good at this job and you feel like Alright, it's time to step it up a notch. You do about four demos a day? What if we hired three STRS to match up with you guys and pair you together and you end up doing eight demos a day? Well that equation that we talked about earlier just changed didn't it?
Jonathan Fischer 28:09
Certainly certainly did. Well, David I love it. What a great conversation today. I know for certain we got some good good quality and impactful content to our audience. Yeah. Best follow up from this conversation go deeper with your insights
James Buckley 28:24
Yeah, come find us at sell better dot XYZ first of all make that stop first. You can learn more about our content and our learning at join JB sales.com You can follow me personally on Tiktok Instagram and Twitter at say what sales?
Jonathan Fischer 28:41
As in say what sales? Good stuff. Love it, man. Well, a reminder to everybody that today's show is sponsored by overpass.com Are you looking to hire a team that are ready to hire remote sales professionals fast? There are 1000s of highly qualified sales reps waiting for you on the overpass talent marketplace. As the world's leading solution for hiring pre vetted talent. Overpass makes building an unstoppable Sales Team quick and easy filter by industry and experience, interview, hire and begin your onboarding process in as little as two days. create your free account firstname.lastname@example.org Well, folks, it's time for Q and A and our buddy James here says it's his favorite thing. And I we got a lot of questions coming in here, bro. So we're gonna have a good good, let's go. Let's go. Good afternoon. All right, so let's see here in no particular order. We go through I got a bunch brother. Let me grab one here.
James Buckley 29:43
Right. Yeah, great.
Jonathan Fischer 29:45
Comment one of our listeners Andrew says it's action data insight pivot. I think that's a fair characterization of kind of what you were saying before, isn't it?
James Buckley 29:54
Very smart. Yes. I love that sequence there. That makes a lot of sense, especially if you're talking about Building a go to market strategy that has the ability to be agile agility is so important when you're working a go to market strategy
Jonathan Fischer 30:06
for sure, for sure. So when you think about outsourcing some of the pipeline development, is that something you mentioned having a marketing team earlier? That was one of the questions we have here from the group. Awful lot of companies just bring into like a marketing firm to do that piece right and and outsource it, what are your thoughts on that?
James Buckley 30:25
So this depends on the type of company that you want to run and the part of the cycle that you want to own. Because you can outsource almost anything in today's world. The problem that you have without sourcing in general is that you are emotionally invested in your business. Most of the leaders that you brought in want to see that business thrive, and they're invested in the business, if that business is successful, they get to be successful, so they are invested in the business. But that outside source that you brought in, based out of wherever they could care less, you're just another account to them. It's the difference in going to a private college and being a name and going to a giant University and being a number. It's the same concept. If you outsource, you're probably going to get what you want. They preach what they preach, and they do what they do, because they're good at what they do. But just because you outsource your sales development doesn't mean that those outsourced sales development reps are going to qualify and discover to your liking. So you have to know that you're going to find those lacking with every outsourced resource that you might leverage. There's going to be pieces that might not be as great as they could be if you had someone internal invested in the company doing that job.
Jonathan Fischer 31:36
Love that love that. That's a decision you
James Buckley 31:39
have to make, honestly, because sometimes you don't really if you can sell to anybody. And it doesn't matter what their persona and ICP, it doesn't matter. If you could sell to anybody if you're like b2c, and it's just like, Yo, are you interested in this, you can buy it, whatever, outsource that that's the right stuff, man. Because because you don't have a heavy qualification. But if I sell to sales enablement, leaders with teams of over 150, in the SAS space located in Oregon, I can't outsource that STR work, I need someone in Oregon at my company that's selling.
Jonathan Fischer 32:12
That makes sense. That makes sense. you've really gotta tune in to the circumstance, a question from Sadiq. He's asking how can we design a marketing workflow that works? Maybe you can kind of unpack that a little bit for us?
James Buckley 32:23
Man, we use a lot of tools. And I'll tell you a couple. But here's the thing is the content strategy, the content strategy is so heavily impacting the marketing strategy overall, because we've got to have a consistent stream of content coming out. And then we have to be able to look at the engagement and figuring out, okay, who are the people we could sell best to, that are engaging with this content, who are the titles that are gravitating towards and reacting towards this content? Who are the people that we want to have a call to action for? Right? If that is what you are doing? That part of it requires some level of consistency. That's going to be the hardest part. When it comes to flow marketing, the best marketers know how they feed sales, the best sellers understand how to use marketing people and their collateral, you have to have a healthy marriage between these two departments are at least as healthy as it can be. And let me give you a strategy to avoid that many, many companies fall into a pitfall of do not compensate marketing for for demos for lead gen for none of that. That's not what they're compensated for. If you do that, they're going to be against sales, it will be sales versus marketing. Instead, enable them to pass to sales, compensate them for qualified leads being passed to sales that originated from the marketing collateral. If you do this, you will find that not only is there a better man at marriage between marketing and sales, but sales suddenly has major vested interest in working with marketing, and your messaging improves. This
Jonathan Fischer 34:06
reminds me a marketing firm saying, well, we got page impressions and expecting to get paid, right.
James Buckley 34:13
Yeah, I do hear that a lot. So here's the thing is impressions are awesome. And they make us feel really good. But if the salespeople aren't converting those impressions into dollars, it doesn't matter.
Jonathan Fischer 34:24
Gotta get it aligned. Gotta get it to where we're actually fighting for the same thing. We're both both going for touchdowns here, not one person just holding the ball. Exactly.
James Buckley 34:33
But if you're a marketer, you should be sending that viral posts to the best salesperson you have. And you should be saying, hey, well, you go through all the engagement here and find people that we can sell to and make a list. I like to jump to them. That is a smart marketer or a smartest marketing.
Jonathan Fischer 34:46
I see what you did there, James. Earl, you said your date your job is to talk to strangers every day. I don't I don't agree with that, man. You don't know what strain you don't know.
James Buckley 34:58
I don't I've only I've only met Fred All
Jonathan Fischer 35:00
right. So another question here from George, you alluded to compensation that great, great insight. I totally, I'm on board with you there. Here's one where I think there's some some interesting questions out when you're so if we're adopting your model of a full cycle person early, okay, I've seen it 1000 times, I've seen a once where the founder is offering equity and, and comp based on performance, like go out there. So it's a killer isn't able to kill model anyway. Right. But others are getting it funded right there. They're actually having a funded salary and going w two with the whole nine, with some obviously some skin in that game. So equity versus cash comp. Do you have a dog in that fight? Do you care? Do you think there's some concerns? Okay,
James Buckley 35:44
I do I do. But it's not what you think it is. It depends on where that seller is in their life, and what their goals are. And that is about the leadership that is deciding on their compensation, having a real conversation about what comfort and success looks like to that individual. Because I can tell you that I used to manage Taco Bell's, I made $15,000 A year together with my wife for five years while we went to college. I got a $30,000 a year job plus commission when I first started in SAS, and can I tell you that I cried because it was the most money I've ever made. perspective, that's for sure everything. Some people believe that they need to have a million dollars coming in to be successful. I never had that view. i My goal when I started in SAS was that I wanted to be able to take my family to dinner without having to check my bank account first to make sure that I could. That's still my goal today. I surpassed it many moons ago. But I'll never forget that that's my goal. So compensation is dependent on the individual in a lot of ways. And yet, we should have a baseline compensation that we offer, quote our employees. My second year as a seller, I got a $10,000 base pay bump. My third year, I got another 10,000. Now I was driving major results. So like the compensation reflected my performance, in a lot of ways, my commission changed the fourth time I got a raise, and it became a little bit more. But my base raise was a little bit lower this time around. My next job, I shot for the moon. And I threw a number out that I thought would be ridiculous. And they were like you start tomorrow. And I was like wait. That's how it went right. And then I moved to John's place and you know, everything changed again. And we have to have this mentality as individuals and leaders, companies have to know that you are potentially training somebody and onboarding somebody and giving them skills so that one day they don't work for you anymore. That is a very real possibility. understand and accept it. Do proud of that. We just recently had Morgan J. Ingram move on from JB sales, I can't tell you how proud we were of him. As a team, we were excited for this next chapter in his life. That's the way it's supposed to be. Right? So compensation, and your relationship with your employees
Jonathan Fischer 38:10
go hand in glove that I love the balancing of this human personal element with all of this process conversation we've been having. And they're both extremely important. Obviously, the process that should serve the people is probably the rubric here. And there should be some flexibility. Do you have a bias toward WT over 1099 with the early players gloss on this, you know, 1099 you know, eat what you kill, but you can earn some equity. And here's the nice fat commission
James Buckley 38:34
1099 is always more hungry because they're typically compensated more on the deal more on the clothes more on the action that they're compensated for. W twos however, are much more consistent. Right? They come in and put the work in, they put the effort in, they drive it right. So both have merit, depending again, depending on where that seller is in their life, and what they want out of the job. For example, not every 1099 gets insurance. I know salespeople that have jobs and they want to leave, but they can't because their kids are so in need of this insurance. And they have this great doctor and it's just so much. So like, when you talk about 1099 versus W two, it's going to depend on what your business model is to. If your business model is such that you don't want actual employees, that's too much overhead for you and you don't want the burden of having two people hack every day and figure out what what motivates individuals. If that's not you, go the 1099 route. Hey, buddy, go sell it. It's all you if they go sell it, great. If they don't, that's all right, because you have 10 other 1090 nines out there selling right and you can go collect 1090 Niners there's a lot of people that will sell your stuff on a 1099 I don't even want to be an employee. I just want to sell your shit Can I do it? There are they are out
Jonathan Fischer 39:55
there. Yes they are. Well, and the reality is you know that whole A digital digital nomads slash remote lifestyle. That's not going away. So that is one way you can definitely tap into that even for other functions besides certainly not. Along this line you're talking about the people hacking people hacking, that it reminded me back to an earlier question back from, I think, who was Andrew Andrew asked me, How do you define sales integrity he wanted to ask you earlier.
James Buckley 40:25
Those integrity is knowing when to walk away from a deal because it's wrong. It's not a good deal. So I'll say something to you that John said to me probably four or five years ago now. But it stayed with me forever. And now he says it all the time to other people. And I think it's become part of our culture. Salespeople, especially inexperienced salespeople tend to think that their job is to convince or persuade somebody to buy from you. That is not our job. The best salespeople sell what they have two people that need it. That is very different. If you are convincing, if you are chasing if you are persuading what you're really closing on is a problem for your customer success team. That's what your closing sales integrity is about knowing the difference between a sale and a con, essentially, because we're all great con men we are salespeople are amazing presenters. We are electric talkers. We move with we move with our hands our bodies, our passion is there great salespeople sell really well. But leader when buyer's remorse sets in? That customer is just out there. You got to know which customer is going to be excited and not have that buyer's remorse because you made a good sale. But if you're convincing if you're persuading your sales integrity is down you should work on that and get that that needle pointing north. Well, I
Jonathan Fischer 41:59
love it. Well, you've sold us on some great ideas today James and you never disappoint. Fantastic once more to have you on our show. Thanks for being a great guest
James Buckley 42:10
I appreciate you thank you shout out to everybody that asked questions all
Jonathan Fischer 42:13
right. Well everyone go make it a fantastic weekend. That to close out this episode of Evolve sales you guys take care. We'll see you