Sales intelligence tools prevent tone-deaf sales efforts

Sales intelligence tools are helping sales teams home in on truly valuable prospects, rather than waste time on duds. But they require some culture change.

Sales teams know they're missing out on opportunities to sell, but they need better data to fix that problem.

Consider that 44% of respondents to the Ventana Research report, The State of Sales Forecasting, said they are only somewhat confident about the information generated by their sales forecasts -- yet these forecasts are the backbone of strategy for which deals to go after and close. Needless to say: Sales teams are using data, but they aren't confident in its accuracy, or their execution based on those numbers.

Sales intelligence tools are an increasingly important area for sales teams to identify which prospects are more likely to buy, or which customers are likely to continue to buy. Without tools to help winnow the field, though, it's a frustrating, time-consuming and sometimes unsuccessful undertaking.

In this selection of articles on sales intelligence, we look at some of the tools and strategies that companies have used to make smarter decisions about whom to target. As always, sales intelligence tools are part of the equation, but cultural shifts may also be necessary to achieve success.

In "Who Will Buy?," I explore how Zendesk is using lead-scoring software to home in on the right prospects with which to communicate. The story also looks at how StoryBox uses RelateIQ to analyze the performance of sales reps, and, thus, address problem areas and boost sales.

Next up, Kelly Roofing seems like it would be a low-tech business. But while the core of this company resides in the trade labor of fixing house roofs, all its enablers are sales technology based from the mobile devices used to sell to prospects on-site, and manage accounts and back-office technologies operations uses, including Office 365 and Dynamics CRM.

Finally, Steve Robins explores how predictive lead-scoring tools are the difference between flat sales and an uptick. Having a way to score your prospects to make sales and marketing efforts efficient is the answer.

Lauren Horwitz

Executive Editor


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