B2B Revenue Acceleration
B2B Revenue Acceleration

Episode · 2 years ago

51: 2 Steps to Seal the Deal With Your Prospects (and Avoid the “Valley of Death” for Contracts) w/ Samir Smajic

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Closing a deal isn’t as easy as it should be. 

Some research suggests that 60% of all deals you have in the contract stage end up in the “Valley of Death,” the dark where nothing happens.

The challenge, then, really has nothing to do with your competitors. Instead, it’s all about how you handle your own end of the sales process. How do you push deals all the way through to the very end?

In this episode, we interview Samir Smajic, CEO and Founder at GetAccept, about a couple of ways to close out sales and avoid the Valley where deals go to die.

You're listening to be to B RevenueAcceleration, a podcast dedicated helping software executives stay on thecutting edge of sales and marketing in their industry. Let's get into the show hi welcome to be tob revenueacceleration. My name is Dan Sever Cam, I'm here today with Samy Smaic, Co andFounde get eccept. How are you today summot? So it's really good, I mean andof Quarter Yuto and and of HH One being that the half year so I mean the stress,is total tbat is busy, but fun a lot of deals being closed, a lot of hiring anda lot of things that needs to be settled before vacation time coming upnow in July, here, nd here for us in in the Nordic, so busy busy but fun goodto hear and well. I appreciate you taking the time to join us in this inthe last week of the Quartr, and also to your point. There is is quiteunusual for someone in Scandonavia to still be in the office of this dime hyear. So I appreciate that it is true, oh, but July is where everyone takesoff. So I still have a couple of days left: okay, good good stuff. So so me,the topic that we are planning to discuss today is around an article thatyou put together actually, which was e five steps to sell the deal with yourprospects before we get into that Oul. You please give us a bit of backgroundand yourself, and also your company get accept. Of course, of course, so I meanif we go way back, I'm a mechanical engineer from from the beginning, neverworked as one. I love people and not numbers, so I actually startd an as acrm consultant. I was out getting my fair share of sales management andproject management education. When I implemented carams here in the Nordixand during my time period there, I got really really tired of all loud salesreps who more or less sold things that wasn't possible to implement in the SRMthat we that we were developing and selling. So I actually switched to anew role in that company becoming the product management part product managerthere. So that's also where I, where I got like in love in in software and howdevelopout to develop like simple, softwares and easy to use softwares. Sothat's where everything started more or less and and through that process. Iwas like really into like how sales reps were doing their job, how theywere developing and how we could develop the product connected to thesales process mor less. That was where I came up with came up with get ixgceptand the main reason was like I saw like you, have full control of the process,you're setting the meetings you're talking with with with the buyers. Butthen, when you, when you actually send the quote or the contract, you havemore or less no control of. What's up next, I mean you have giving them thenumbers, you're Givin, the mar the solution, and now it's up to them totake the decision and SA saw there was a gap there and where our sales rappdid an close the deals. So I tried to figure out like how can we help in theend of the Sales Sky Cycle? And that's where I were get accept comes in orless so. This is like four years back...

...in time since, since we started a thatjourney, I've got accept more less interesting yeah and, I think thing,that's probably a problem. You've identified th a lot of organizations orfacing on a day today basis a d. Now what we often see is a sales markingteams get it very excited when, when a new lead comes in and they service anew lead initially and and take it to a certain point, where that's up to theproposal and then and then often get kind of, I guess complacent n and whenthe prospects showing a certain amount of interest, ind interaction oftenstart thinking that the deal is done before it, for it truly is done now you,as we alluded to a couple of minutes ago, you've developed fivestep processto ensure that deals, progress through the funall way to close and to purchaseorder actually being in hand. So did you play jet more detail around thosefive steps with with our audience yeah and that's these? These fivesticks areactually like outside of get accept. To be honest, is more like a fivestepprocess of o. How we think of closing closing the deal where the first thingis is super razy and everyone talks about it i's about like really makeclear. What is the value? I think many many sales rep focus on the productselling the features, but everyone knows that you need to ask the openended question so that you can use that information to really explain what thevalue with the features is, but very few of us are listening in and areactually using that through the process. The think the first thing is that youshould always make sure to not only explain the features that you that youhave or that you can provide, but the value that comes with the feature thatyou'rethat you're selling, for example, and one thing that we did t that helpeda lot was really make a list of all the features you have and the value thatthey are connected, but also the painpoint that this feature or solving.So, if you're in a call here, okay, I have problem like I'm sending too manymany quotes. I can't like manage to follow up on everyone. Okay, whatfeature are connected to this, and what value should you bring up in that kindof conversation, so that you hit them straight on the head with that? Insteadof your saying, okay, we have an autimated followup teacher which whichreally really doesn't Resingat, maybe what what theyare? Thinking of sothat's just like a simple thing of making your value more clear in theprocess that make sense- and from your perspective I mean most of ourlisteners- are most them most of the companies that we do business with ingeneral or in the software space. How do you ensure that your sales team moveaway from just talking about features and benefits, but actually honing onthe value of he of the prospect? Do you do that, based on on the position ofthat prospect? Would that be based on value that you're bringing to similarorganizations or SIMP companies in a similir vertical? What are some tipsthat you would that you would typically share with your selve to yeah, ofcourse, like if you're, if you're really nailed down on a certain certainverticale, you most likely know all the...

...pain points and then youof course askthe right question through that through that journey, and as you get thedifferent answers of that, you know exactly which features to Demo and whenyou dam O a feature, make sure that you're not saying okay, this is thefeature, and then you show off it more saying. Okay, this is the feature. Thisis what it will help you with and then stop and then ask for example. How doyou think this could help you in the journey? You just explain to me thispainpoint that you had. Will this help you so that you always like stop andask for like small excepts through that trogh that Damo, that's something thatwe are educating ourselves reps and it' always get these small acceptancethrough a full demo so that wherein you're through the Damo, you haveaccepted all the check or the ALD. All the check marks all the needs that hasbeen phrased through thea through the through the pain conversation more orless. That's just one. One simple thing that you can do that makes sense. Okay,interesting and in general, obviously get accepted. Isa technology, that's helping sales people vlose more ydeld with morebusiness. If we look at e the wides sort of sales and marking technologymarket, how do you see technology helping to make the closing processmooth and more effective? And do you think you think that's replacing partsof the salesperson's job, or do you think it's really augmenting andsupporting them to do more? No, but I mean the discussion now is much abouthow ai will replace every sales srap in the world and there will be no moresales rapson, and I mean I don't. I don't believe in that it's more about the process itself off is changing. Ofcourse, it's more online, just like be business to consumer, has changed.Where do all business online? Now, that's that's happening in B to B tolike, and you only need to adapt and what we really believe in and getaccept is the power of personalization the power of relationship. I think thatwill still consist even if it's moving in line, so the only thing you need todo is like how can I dress that in a more online world and that's reallywhat we're trying to do with get accept? I mean we're just trying to build anonline platform where we help businesses do more business, but in amore online world in the future. So I mean that's what is all aroundpersonalization engagement through the proces hat through the sales process,more or less okay, that make sense now we spoke, I guess particularly aroundthe point in your fivestep processor. We mainly discuss the idea of nsuringthat you make the Value Ait. What is it, what are Ome of the other points thatIr really turned out from that sort of FIVESTEP processor? That Arelulao, Ithink the most simple one is the most scary. One is actually just asking forthe clothes I mean. Often we walk around and walk around the actualaccept, but I mean if you're, if your have checked, Ald the needs. You justneed to ask the magical question like what is between us and assignd contractnow in the end, so that's just a super...

...simple thing that we implemented in ourorganizations say like. Okay, if you have all check marks, just ask for it.An sometimes people think that is like a little bit too pushy and then thenanother kind of way of doing it is actually just skipp the closing and gofor the plan planning. For example, if you are a consultancy organization, youhave consultants and maybe they are getting booked and booked so for now,for for Summer Times, wherever theywant everyone is taking vacation, you needto maybe make clear that after vacation, everyone is taking decisions now aftervacation, everything is book. So if you want to get started in September, weneed to get this contract sign, because I can't I can't like sell you somethingand that we can we cand provide later on. So you need to take this decisionnow, so you make it more urgent for them to close. Now, for example, that'sjust just a simple thing to use: use it like a thing connected to the urgency.If you have Bu, I think bu think you need to be aware of also that don't Ihate those calling me like her selling ads in papers and in webpages. So it'salways! Oh you have this last spot. It's like the last one in the pat O onthe that certain page Orin this paper, and I can only sell it to you right nowand I have a someone else that I will. I will sell it to. If you don't take it,I mean that Dat just feel so. Tease is just just if you, if you want to usethat techtique, you need to really have something compelling and something thatyou can use as urgency in the process of asking for the clothes. That makessense, and do you think that it's sort of the moment to afer the clothe isvarying based on the complexity of the sales process or the sale cycle. Do youthink that sort of idea that you just described of if you've had all thelittle excepts along the way and you' You feel that actually all you on theway, whether it's a one week or a one year, sa Sycl just about asking oat theright time? How do you know it's the right time to ask to iclot yeah? I mean,of course that depends on what you're selling I mean if you're selling anuclear reactor, you can't ask for it. The first meeting, but I mean the thingyou need to do- is like, of course check off all the needs and Aall themusts and tha that the buyeare asking for an and when you have that you cansay like okay from from from what I've see and what I've like noted down. Wehave checked off this this, and this is there anything more that we need tocheck off for you to be able to take a decision and have that a as a like moreof a check on the customer, if theyare ready to go to the next step. So Ithink, and that that you can do like quite earliy, I think, but of courseagain, depending on what you're selling you need to always reflect that, but Imean you can always use that as an understanding of where are we in thesales journey and if they say like okay, we also need to check off this. I needto involve the legal department. I need to involve it department. Okay, thenyou got another number of checkmarks to add to your list. Then, when you gotthrough those, then you have the next...

...conversation asking like. Okay, now,we've checked off all these things: how to come to the next step. Are we readyto get to the close contract? Is there anything more that we need to get toget done before that, because ounidl need also to take in consideration thatthey're talking to you, because they need what you're selling? Hopefully soI mean they're, not talking to you just because they think it's fun. You havesome values that they need at. If you, if you can provide them, that's that'sperfect. I'S A win, win, absolutely and I think is well. What's was anoverriding point about all of that is that you've got to ensure that you'reactually engaged with the right person to AU yea yeahsthat's, that's that's akind of given, but I guess a lot of SOE get ot Othe Post Hen when that persongone clode, El Withhem yeah, it's quite, as you said it's quite given, but toomany of us fall in the same same trap. I mean I I've done it tons of time Ieven ass. Like are you the one taking the decision and they always answer?Yes, because everyone wants to be important and I think, like a good wayof asking that question is not like saying hey. How is it you taking thedecision because, as I said, many will say? Yes, I am it's more like asking.Okay, have you implemented this kind of solution if you're selling a saucesolution, if you're selling consultancy project have you implemented thisbefore? Have you baught this this service before? If they say yes, thenyou ask like? Okay, how did that journey go lost time? How did thatprocess go through your your like buying process, then Youl say: okay.First I had the meeting. Then we involve legal and then my SFO signed inthe end okay, so we have legal and CFO that needs to be involved so you're,just like I made park for me to get to the next step. So I think that's a goodway of like really discovering the different state colors, and then weactually use get accept for that, because, as long as you are sendingyour chollaterol with get accept, we can actually identify new staye colors.I mean new persons involved in Deul, watching that company presentation orwatching the quote so that we can then see okay besides just mark watching it.It's also someone else eric or Sandra or anyone else, who's in that contractright now watching it. So I mean that's also way of identify more stake. CODERSthrough that journey. That's interesting that actually lead me ontoanother point which was exactly around your own technology get accept. So Ithink you just mentioned out of the tail end of that comment there. But howdo you use your own solution and what are some of the best practes around howyou get except to accelerate your own sales process? wherher? That's you orwe be from a sort of more generic perspective and it'd be great. If youcould share a success story and associated with gettaccept as well yeah.Of course I mean we use it in the full journey from more or less as long thatwe have got. A contact is not a lege generation tool, it's not the outreachtool. As long as you have like a sales qualified lead, that's when we startusing it. So, for example, before going into the first presentation where wewill present get accept and then ask...

...for their pains and so on or the needsthey have and then do I demo, we send a presentation to them with yet axcept.In that way, we can identify whose viewing that presentation who will bein the meeting, for example, if they don't if they don't tell you that inthe beginning and after that, we will of course follow up with the next partbeing sending, for example, a customer case or White Paper, O whatever it is to keepthat that hot prospect even more hot or make it even more hot. So we're usingthat through the whole process and as we're doing that it's possible to usevideo, for example, to engage with the buyer to make it more personalized,it's impossible to use tat. So it's easier to be more timely in how youfollow up, because you know okay they're in that contract right now,watching it or that presentation. So you can actually ask questions and youcan let them ask question, because I think that's one om the important partnow like you're, not selling, when you are ready to sell you're actuallyselling when they are ready to buy. So that's an important part that you needto make it feel like the buyar buying something not being sold to, because Idon't think anyone want to be sold to you want to feel that you boughtsomething, and you can only do that if you let them steer the process or be atthe staring wheel and you like just providing them the information whenthey need it or when they ask for it to be available when they are Vei. I thinkthat's one important part and then in the evven of course, like no morehassle with with the printers and scanners to get the contract side. Imean you just you just press a buttorn and then you're, then you're done sothat that's like the standard, the standard journey, but have a really funcustomer story that it just got told for me a couple of days ago that I canexac an run you through. If you want to abtolutely, why not yeah? So No it'sactually it's quite fun because we have hired quite a lot. Od lost. Like halfyear we went from thirty persons in January twrou. Seventy Five! Now and acouple of hirers are actually coming from from our customers, so we justhire a new new sales manager here in the nordix who wasn't old customer ofours and he had been using, get accept and has been sharing, colleteral othrough the process and then just bego before going on Parentalleae, he sharedsome colaterol and the contract actually but no answers, and then, whenhe came back from parental leave, he had one week left of the year and seshad so much things to do. Who just like had a list of. I need to fix all thesethings, and then he got a notification. Fr M from getting cept Ed said likeokay, the potential buyer is actually in the contract, watching the demo,video, for example, and he was like immediately on the phone answering backon a chack message. Like okay, Hey, I see your you're like interacting. Isthere any question anything? I can help you with and they started. Heconversation he phone back and actually see the deal on the year because theyhad some left in the budget before closing down the year on the customerside to spend, so he was making hundred...

...atk on that deal. The company made thisbudget on that dealand and he made his personal budget just by closing thatdeal. So that's just an simple, simple customer case that hat just happenedthis last year. Actually, Oh wow, interesting! Well, thanks for shoringthat so SASAMME. I guess a last question for me and it is probablyreally off the back of that point. You just made it I'm sure Wellas, youdescribe yourself. You've been seeing a lot of growth or the last couple ofyears, so you've got a lot of those successful case studies if you likethat that you' You've worked on, but itd just be interesting for us tounderstand what your journey's being like as an mentrepreneur. I know youshared a little bit as to how you started the company, but a little bitaround. Yet what motivated you to start the business and how did you find yournice in this market because, as we all know, there's there's your your doctosigns of this world and ECO signs of this world now they're, naturally moreof more just an NE signature, type volution, but interesting to understandwhat that journey is like and how you find it competing against. So thoselarge players in the industry yeah. Of course I mean when we started. As Isaid like back in the days, we were more or less just solving our ownchallenges in the Salos Organization we had. We were four founders, differentorganizations. We saw that, like closing the deal, isn't as easy as itshould be, and then we saw a big research saying, like sixty percent ofall, all deals that you that you have in contract mode or more or less likeclosing mode is, is actually just ending up in the Valley of death, thedark, where nothing happens. So we said like. Oh, the challenge: Isn't yourcompetitors is how you your process looks like in the end of the process orthe sales process, so that was how everything got started, and I mean wejust were just super passionate about sales and wanted to change something.We've been running other businesses, as I said before, so we wanted to do thison a global basis. So we applied for white combinator with this idea more orless in the vision of helping be to be businesses close, more deals and got in.So that was how everything started back in two thousand and sixteen workthrough why Comminator Agrew, with twenty three percent week over weekfrom the start as we released the product, which was an amazing time,work like crazy. Since, since we are from Sweden living I in San Francisco back, then wecould work. You will shift so during night nighttime. We work towards Swedenand during daytime we work toar us, so that was that was great for at leastfour months, because before you got a little bit sick but t that was a like afun part of the journey. And then, after that we raised some money whichwhich were still working with, and I mean today we have offices in in Sweden,in Norway, in Denmark, in France and one in San Francisco, so growing thebusiness. It's Super Fun in the end, we're just doing what what we love. Wewant to change how our businesses do businesses in the more online worldthat that's what we're aiming for, and...

...now we have sevety plus get accepter.So wo are all passionate about the same thing, so super fun journey so far hopeit will be Super Fun going forward to absolutely great well thanks yourinsiht O someere. So W we've really appreciated that you've taken the timeto Shaw your thoughts with us today and and- and it sounds like you're justreally at the beginning of an exciting journey- Gat accept if anyone wants tolearn more about your company or continue the conversation of line orjust reach out to you in in a direct way. What's your best way, ton get intouch with both the company and yourself yeah. I love to help other entrepreneurs, soso feilthy to contact me through Linkdin is a good way. I can actuallysay that if you want to call me on the phone, you can actually see my phonenumber somewhere in the block post that we have been discussing today so to goin there and find it and just give me a call, Andi'll answer you so linked inor find the number and call me great, Excon, wel many things once again.SOMER is it's been great hawme you on the show today, thanks for having me,was a pleasure for mysed. operatics has redefined the meaning ofrevenue generation for technology companies worldwide, while thetraditional concepts of building and managing inside sales teams in househas existed for many years. Companies are struggling with the lack of focus,agility and scale required in today's fast and complex world of enterprisetechnology sales see how operatics can help your company accelerate pipelineat operatics, dot net you've been listening to be to be revenueacceleration to ensure that you never miss an episode subscribe to the showin your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening until nexttime.

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