Using data to improve sales development
Jan 19, 2016
Analyzing Salesforce data to drive activity that leads to results.
I still remember the exact moment I was able to explore all of our Salesforce data in our internal Looker instance. I sat next to one of our data analysts and, in a quick tutorial, he built the same reports in Looker that usually took me hours in Salesforce. As he finished the walkthrough, I said in a state of near disbelief, “It’s this easy?” He smiled as he walked away and said, “Let me know if I can help with anything.”
Over two years later, my Sales Development Reps and I now rely on our Looker dashboards and reports for pretty much every element of our day-to-day: lead routing, activity monitoring, efficiency stats, success metrics, funnel analysis, email subject line analysis, the list goes on and on. And the best part about these reports is that they’re all contained on dashboards that refresh on-demand.
Creating the measures and reports sales needs to succeed
Many of these reports contain custom measures that are defined in our modeling layer. For example, one of the main success metrics for our SDR team is the number of meetings they book for the Sales team. In Salesforce, these are recorded as Tasks on Lead / Contact Records, with the task type “Intro Meeting.” Pretty simple: count the number of tasks whose type is “Intro Meeting”.
We created the same custom measures for other SDR activities: calls, emails, LinkedIn InMails, etc. This enabled each SDR to proactively monitor their activities, understand how their efforts are generating results, and make necessary activity adjustments. Here’s a look at daily SDR activity from a random day in December 2015:
Consolidating all this information into a single view is not something I could ever do before. Because we have an easy view into activity numbers, we’re able to avoid the temptation to focus solely on results. Rather, we understand the activities that lead to results and ensure that each individual SDR maintains a high level of these activities.
Using sales data to manage the team
From a managerial standpoint, this kind of information is hugely valuable. I’m able to keep my finger on the pulse of the department, have a constant understanding of how individual SDRs are spending their time, know which processes are generating the best results, and discuss metrics in one-on-one sessions with reps.
This is a relatively simple example of Looker’s capabilities, but I think it’s important for sales professionals to see how Looker can make their lives so much easier. I was recently at a sales conference in Las Vegas, chatting with some colleagues around the lunch table about sales analytics. The consensus at the table was that they desperately needed a better way to analyze all their sales data. I flipped open my laptop and spent the next 20 minutes showing off my dashboards, extolling its virtues, and answering their questions.
The question that came up the most was the same question I asked two years ago. This time though I had the answer: Yes, it is this easy.