Top 7 benefits of AI in sales: How does it impact a sales person’s life?

Blade Runner, Ex Machina, I Robot, Her, 2001: A Space Odyssey...

These are the names that often come to our minds when we think of Artificial Intelligence. 

Hollywood has successfully (but incorrectly!) ensured that a commoner’s definition of AI revolves around robots, the mass extinction of humans, flying cars, and other preposterous myths. 

In reality, AI is anything but the above. The advantages of artificial intelligence are endless, and you can find them in everything around us. And this includes sales! 

Yes, you heard it right. AI, over the years, has become an indispensable asset for sales teams and businesses across the globe to carry out their everyday sales operations. 

And in this post, we are going to discuss some of the most popular benefits of Artificial Intelligence in modern-day sales.

Top 7 artificial intelligence benefits in sales

Undoubtedly, sales is a rewarding career, but it comes with its inherent challenges. Competition and customer expectations are on the rise. Beating other players and luring customers to your business is not easy anymore. 

This is where AI can help. By integrating AI into your sales processes, you can gain a significant competitive advantage in your sales cycle in the form of quick decision-making. 

On that note, here are the top seven advantages of AI in your sales process -

Automates everyday tasks

AI frees the sales reps from mundane day-to-day tasks that are uncreative, unattractive, and time-consuming. By embedding AI into their everyday operations, you can automate most of their routine tasks. Thanks to this, the sales reps can efficiently and effectively prioritize and manage their work. Some of the functions that can be automated include managing workflows, data entry, research, answering repetitive questions, and more. 

AI-enabled platforms like Rafiki (https://getrafiki.ai/) take it one step ahead. It records all your reps calls and meetings, transcribes them, captures key topics and moments, and finally generates notes by topics - All this with no human intervention. Remember - Transcription and notetaking are two of the most time-consuming activities for a sales rep, and Rafiki frees them of those tasks entirely during the meeting, so they can focus on the customer and edit the notes later from the transcript or the generated notes. 

Automates everyday tasks

Aids in lead generation

Effective prospect engagement is often the driving force behind the lead generation process. AI helps to draw these potential customers into your sales pipeline by intelligently engaging and delivering additional value to them. Growthbot by Hubspot and Conversica are two of the most popular AI-based lead generation tools in the market presently. 

AI also helps sales reps identify ICP (Ideal Customer Profiles) by unifying multiple data sources across the organization like CRM, social media, and more. Adding to this, it comes up with actionable insights and prescriptive suggestions regarding the medium and communication channel to use, which aids quick closures.

Helps in optimizing pricing model

Pricing is another critical component of a deal. Optimal pricing models reduce the negotiations period and increase the chances of conversions manifold. Along with keeping up with customer expectations, a good pricing model makes sure that the expected margins are not compromised. 

Rafiki smartly parses the conversations between your reps and customers and points out the pricing topic in the entire conversation. Tools like Incompetitor and Wise Athena use AI and ML to determine the best pricing model for your product.

Helps in optimizing pricing model

Expands business horizons with lookalike modeling 

Lookalike modeling, powered by AI, is an excellent way to reach and explore newer audience groups for your business. Here’s how it works -

AI filters out the winning audience profiles from your primary customer segment. It then identifies the highest value audience in that list. Finally, it applies the criteria to the lookalike segment for better targeting and improved growth prospects.

The best part is, the model keeps on evolving as new data gets fed into it. This dramatically improves the performance of the model in the long run.

Tools like LiveRamp lets businesses move beyond Facebook and LinkedIn to conduct cross-channel lookalike prospecting on the internet.

Pinpoints upselling and cross-selling opportunities

Upselling and cross-selling are among the top focal points of salespeople. With the help of artificial intelligence, they will have enough customer intelligence to come up with suitable recommendations. 

Usecases of AI in Sales

AI has always been the key ingredient in building recommender systems based on collaborative and content-based filtering. By segmenting and clustering the prospects based on their psychographic, demographic, and geographic profiles, AI can recommend the right product (or solution) to the right customer at the right time. This increases the likelihood of yet another conversion for you!

Analyses and predicts customer churn

The acquisition cost of new customers is abnormally high compared (25 times according to an HBR study!) to the retention cost of existing ones. Therefore, to decrease CAC(Customer Acquisition Costs) and increase the adoption rate in the long run, the companies must minimize their churn rates.

AI helps forecast the churn risk by crunching voluminous amounts of data from multiple sources. Through deep analysis, it defines the complexity of behavior changes and the reasons for customer churn. It also offers helpful insights and restorative actions, thus empowering the sales rep to re-establish a churn-less business.

Through its robust AI engine, Rafiki helps you understand the reasons why customers are leaving you. It intelligently records, transcribes, extracts, and segments topics and uses them to identify churn signals.

Deal Risks

Facilitates better coaching and guidance

Coaching is an ever-evolving process. When your sales team is spread across geographies and time zones, it becomes practically difficult for you to impart guidance and accurate knowledge to your team. 

AI helps you with individualized observations and evaluations for one-on-one training of the reps. It helps you design sales programs that will help team members stay connected and upscale their skills consistently and collaboratively.

AI-driven platforms like Rafiki promote self-coaching.  It helps the reps to manage their calls and deals better by learning from their peers. For example, your reps can review their call metrics, compare them with their teammates’, identify where they are going wrong, and finally correct them.

Facilitates better coaching and guidance

And the best part - Rafiki is 100% cloud; this means your reps can access the tool 24X7 from any part of the world.

Wrapping Up

Businesses are transforming rapidly, and this leaves key stakeholders with shorter decision-making windows. Luckily, AI comes to their rescue. Not only does it help in making decisions quickly, but it helps them drive top-line growth and stay agile in this data-driven world.

Considering sales is a high-touch profession involving intelligent conversations and persuasions, AI is not going to completely replace sales reps any time soon. Tools like Rafiki will augment the effectiveness of your sales process by infusing it with agility and scalability. This leaves enough room for your sales rep to innovate and create highly personalized customer experiences.

To know more about Rafiki and to get a peek into its wonderful AI engine in action, sign up for a free trial now.

AI vs ML: Key Differences

Unless you were living under the rocks, the chances of you not hearing about Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are slim.

These two disruptive technologies are found everywhere today, right from your banking website all the way to your smartphones. 

Often, these two buzzwords are used interchangeably; Although both seem similar, they’re both vastly different technologies. 

They both have their own utilities and uses when it comes to designing solutions for modern-day consumers. 

In this post, let us understand the key differences between them.

Machine Learning

Machine learning is the practice of using algorithms that allow computers to identify patterns and find solutions through the analysis of large data sets. 

Machine Learning enables computers to find these patterns through the accumulation of experience - very similar to how humans find patterns in objects by repeatedly using them in real life. For example, humans, with practice, can quickly identify the difference between different varieties of apple - Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Honey Crisp, etc. 

Machine learning aims to educate and enable computer systems

Machine learning aims to educate and enable computer systems to be able to find similar patterns across large data sets, much larger than the different types of apples that humans can analyze on their own. 

Machine learning is touted as a subset of Artificial Intelligence. Remember - by itself, machine learning is not designed to mimic human intelligence. It’s designed to learn, identify patterns, and perform analyses on large data sets - often using statistical methods. 

Types of Machine Learning

Depending on the kind of learning that’s permitted for ML systems, there are different types - 

Types of ML

Supervised Learning

This type of ML is the use of well-defined datasets created by humans to learn a pattern and perform analyses. Once the system understands what the pattern is, the algorithm can find new patterns in those new datasets. 

Unsupervised Learning

These are the machine learning algorithms that analyze and group unstructured and unlabeled datasets. These algorithms are used to discover hidden patterns and information without the need for human intervention. 

Here, the goal is to find hidden patterns that are not noticeable to human perception. The reason could be the inability of humans to easily discern, or simply the datasets are too large for them to make any accurate predictions. Unsupervised learning often doesn’t have a set idea of what the end goal will be when the algorithm completes analyzing the dataset. 

Reinforcement Learning

Reinforcement learning is a type of machine learning where the algorithm is rewarded whenever it makes a certain type of decision, such as winning a chess game or capturing a target in a virtual environment. 

Reinforcement learning helps algorithms find pathways designed to maximize the idea of a reward. Machine learning typically uses the sample datasets to discover the pattern and uses new data to rediscover the pattern in the new dataset. At the same time, the new data can also be a source for self-correction and self-learning. 

Applications Of Machine Learning

You don’t have to go very far to understand the application of machine learning.  An application that most of us could easily relate to is search recommendations on Google. After understanding the pattern of your searches, Google will adapt and alter its search recommendations based on your interests. 

Another common application of machine learning is the auto-tagging feature on photos that you can find on social media platforms like Facebook. Through the use of existing data sets, the machine learning algorithm can identify the difference between your face and your friends’ face, making suggestions on the fly as you’re tagging the photo. 

Artificial Intelligence

In simple terms, Artificial Intelligence uses computers and machines to mimic the decision-making and problem-solving capabilities of human beings.

You can find great examples of AI in most of the software around us such as Google’s AI Voice Assistant, Amazon’s Alexa, Microsoft’s Cortana, and so on. 

AI is the superset of Machine Learning as it can work with structured, semi-structured, and completely unstructured data, while ML usually deals with only structured and semi-structured data.

Based on the type of method used by Artificial Intelligence to learn, they can be categorized into the following. 

Types of AI

Weak AI

Weak AI is also called Artificial Narrow Intelligence (AN)I, or simply Narrow AI. Currently, this is the only type of AI that we’ve been able to successfully realize. Weak AI is designed to be goal-oriented towards a singular task such as speech recognition, facial recognition, automated driving, etc. Such a type of AI is very good at completing the task it’s programmed for. 

While an application employing weak AI may seem intelligent, they’re only able to operate intelligently within their particular constraints. They cannot replicate human intelligence because once you take them out of their predefined parameters, they’ll be unable to produce any meaningful output. 

Examples of weak AI include IBM’s Watson, Google’s RankBrain page ranking algorithm, Microsoft’s Cortana, Amazon’s Alexa, and modern email spam filters. 

Strong AI

Strong AI  is more commonly referred to as Artificial General Intelligence (AGI). This is the concept of a machine with a more generalized intelligence and behavior. Strong AI will mimic human intelligence and behaviors, with the ability to learn, adapt, and apply this intelligence to solve problems that are presented before it. Strong AI is meant to act exactly like humans in any given situation. 

Currently, researchers haven’t achieved strong AI yet. That’s because of the complexities involved in modeling an AI after the human brain, which is the goal behind strong AI. Strong AI uses the mind AI framework, which is the ability to discern the nuances of other intelligent entities. 

Artificial Superintelligence

Artificial Superintelligence is a hypothetical concept that goes beyond mimicking human intelligence. ASI is also where machines and computers become self-aware and surpass the capabilities of human intelligence and ability. As of now, ASIs remain strictly in the realm of science fiction. But the ideation of ASIs brings interesting questions, such as self-preservation, co-existence with other intelligent beings, and more. 

How AI and ML differ from each other?

To understand the difference between ML and AI, we need to dive a little deeper into their working. In this present era, Deep Learning using Neural Networks has come to dominate the way the computer learns from data. A Neural Network is simply a computer system that is designed to work by classifying information in the same way a human brain does. 

Thanks to this, AI is more capable of understanding nuanced patterns, complex classification and advanced decision making. This is often demonstrated in advanced applications such as voice transcription, advanced language understanding with question answering, text summarization, medical diagnostics, playing chess or learning any new game with super human abilities.

On the other hand, ML uses statistical methods and software for broader pattern recognition that mirrors the data but often lacks in performing very nuanced classification or understanding that humans possess.

Machine learning in the past has been used for simpler pattern recognition, such as spam detection, clustering, sentiment or anomaly detection, image classification etc.

How Rafiki use AI and ML to empower sales teams?

Rafiki is a self-coaching sales platform that uses AI and ML to bolster your sales process. Thanks to its powerful AI and ML engine, Rafiki is able to transcribe with the highest accuracy (85+ accuracy for any accent), diarize i.e. detect speakers and the parts they speak, and apply voice biometrics to know who is speaking. Transcription, Diarization, and bio-metric (using voice patterns) all use state-of-the-art advanced Deep learning AI algorithms that are continuously upgraded as it learns more from data.

At the same time, it also tracks sales topic signals automatically and groups transcribed content into meaningful sales topics using natural language processing and AI based topic extraction and detection techniques . It also allows one to extend/add topics of interest such as product names, industry lingo, competitor mentions and personalize the transcription and conversational search to suit their business needs.

Rafiki AI team works with the best in the AI and cloud computing industry to bring the latest technology to the sales and customer-facing teams at an affordable cost using run-time optimization to run on less expensive machines. Rafiki uses these advanced algorithms and techniques to drive down cost that result in its ability to offer one of the most affordable conversation and revenue intelligence platforms to all fast growing businesses. 

If you’re interested in knowing more about artificial intelligence and machine learning, check out Rafiki’s blogs on these topics. Or, if you are ready to infuse the power of AI and ML in your sales process, contact us now.

Sales Coaching: Smart Guide to Boost Your Team Performance

Ever wished for your sales performance to increase perennially?

Ever wondered what it takes to boost your team performance? 

The answer you are looking for is sales coaching. 

Studies show that sales coaching and mentoring play an essential role in improving the performance of frontline managers, according to 74% of leading companies. 

With times changing and constant upskilling in every organization, investing in sales team coaching is the wisest decision. The reason - they drive productivity within the organization, maximize sales performance, empower reps, and help you meet the required goals. Studies prove this. Companies that invested in dynamic sales coaching programs achieved 28% higher win rates and 7% greater annual revenue growth. 

Here is a guide on sales coaching with tips and tricks to boost sales performance, along with a  BONUS list of actionable tips and free tools. So, let’s get started. 

What Is Sales Coaching? 

It is a series of teaching methods an organization uses to improve the performance of sales reps and achieve their goals. It is inclusive and hands-on, where the manager works closely with their sales reps. 

However, sales training and sales coaching fall under different buckets. While the former focuses on everyone, the latter focuses on individual reps. Sales training uses structured methods, while in sales coaching, leaders need to recognize their sales reps’ weaknesses to help them develop new strengths. CSO insights reveal what sales managers spend their time doing. 

Sales Managers Spend Time For Training

Image Source: https://www.salesreadinessgroup.com/blog/the-why-behind-sales-coaching

Some standard sales coaching techniques & tips 

Different organizations use different sales coaching techniques according to their goals and needs. Companies with dynamic sales coaching programs have 28% higher win rates. Let us look at the popular sales coaching techniques. 

  • Reviewing calls or videos:
    Sales reps can analyze the call recordings or videos to get a better sense of what they could do well. They can identify their weaknesses and make improvements. 
  • Offering inside training and tips:
    Organizations provide inside sales coaching tips to their reps. It also includes reviewing selling techniques and tools which can benefit the organization. 
  • Scheduling check-ins:
    Another technique includes scheduling check-ins. You can do these check-ins weekly to discuss objectives and areas of the sale processes with the reps. It also builds their confidence. 
  • Shadowing calls:
    Organizations indulge in shadowing calls where the sales teams shadow; or listen to the potential client calls or meetings. 
  • Reviewing emails:
    Another coaching technique involves reviewing email conversations with prospects through different stages in the buyer’s journey. 

These are a few sales coaching techniques that organizations use to coach their salespeople into sales champions. 

Here’s a bonus for you. Listed below are seven actionable sales coaching tips that your sales reps need. They are: 

  1. Use client interaction data to figure out where sales reps need help 
  2. Use visual data to highlight performance 
  3. Review call recordings 
  4. Have hard conversations 
  5. Play an active role in the coaching session
  6. Learn the motivational factors for your team 
  7. Have a definite plan of action

Keep these encompassing tips in mind. Seek and experiment with new coaching practices, give more positive than negative feedback, share your vision, use incentives effectively, give personal rewards, and leverage your entire sales team. 

Why has sales coaching become an essential element for every organization? Is it because of its various benefits? Let us find out.

How Does Sales Coaching Software Help Your Sales Team?

Sales Training Outcome

https://www.valueselling.com/maximizing-performance-with-sales-coaching

  • It helps improve employee retention rates. 

Sales coaching helps every organization increase its employee retention rates. Increased rep turnover rates have been an underlying problem in the sales industry. Today, growth opportunities attract more reps than a fancy show of salary and appraisals. Harvard Studies reveal 80% of the workforce saw an increase in their productivity after coaching.

  • It allows you to share best practices. 

Ever notice a sales rep attracting success and using a strategy that is getting the desired performance? Use this strategy to teach the rest of the team this strategy and improve your sales performance coaching. 65% of those who undergo coaching are highly engaged. 

  • It maximizes your sales coaching investment. 

Sales managers can achieve dynamic sales training through consistent and long-term enforcement. It maximizes your sales coaching investment—organizations with strong coaching report 34% higher revenues

Top 3 Sales Coaching Tools 

  1. Rafiki

     A leading conversational intelligence tool, Rafiki has taken massive steps in sales coaching in recent years. Rafiki uses AI transcription, which helps you instantly analyze the rep calls and track customer objections. It enables you to understand how customers engage with sales reps in conversations. With instant conversion and organizational intelligence, it allows you to get the best out of your team. In short, it helps you build a predictable winning organization. 

  2. Gong

    It is another conversation intelligence tool that provides a unique outlook into rep interactions with potential customers. It is an apt tool for sales managers to implement their sales strategies effectively. You can also use Gong to assist the sales reps when they require your directions. Its conversation intelligence abilities allow you to review conversations your sales reps have with potential prospects on meetings. 

  3. Chorus.ai

    With this app, you can build, implement and measure the success of your sales coaching tactics and alter them to hit higher goals. This software’s artificial intelligence features allow you to pull your essential information from real-time rep conversations on call, videos, or meetings. 

Conclusion

Sales coaching is the most effective way to boost your team performance. It is also a fundamental element of sales management. Rafiki is your one-stop solution for coaching your sales team. It integrates with your calendar, transcribes and analyses the calls, and provides 360-degree insight into the call. 

Never miss customer interactions and grow your sales team with Rafiki. Contact us and request a demo

14 Steps to a Successful Sales Call - Sales Checklist Every SDR Should Have 

Here’s something interesting:

The average SDR (sales development representative) tackles 265 leads per month. 

And SDRs who make 12 contact attempts instead of the average of 8 contact attempts perform 16% better! 

The quality of the calls made by SDRs matters just as much as the number of leads handled or the number of contact attempts made. 

There should be a process in place to ensure that SDRs ask smart questions during a call or have a strategy to qualify or disqualify a lead so that they hand high-quality leads to account executives (AE) to complete the sale.

SDRs don’t close deals--in most companies, their role involves:

  • Inbound sales prospecting -  they reach out to leads who have shown an interest in the product/service and/or outbound sales 
  • Outbound sales prospecting - they contact potential customers who are not aware of the company’s product/service 

Let’s start with a quick overview of sales calls and their types:

What is a sales call?

A sales call is a pre-arranged face-to-face meeting (or video call during COVID times) between an SDR and a prospect. 

The goal: to make a sale.

What does the prospect expect - the SDR listens to them, gives them relevant information, gives them timely responses, and is invested in the success of their business.

The better the SDR is at actively providing value to the prospect, the better the sales call goes. 

Sales calls can be categorized into four types:

Cold call/introductory call/prospecting call 

SDRs call prospects without prior appointments and try to find out their pain points and requirements. Cold calls have an average success rate of 1-3%

Warm call 

SDRs call prospects after initiating prior contact in the form of email campaigns, trade events, referrals, or meetings. Prospects are ready for the call, so the rate of conversion is higher than that of cold calls. 

Sales appointment call 

Sales reps (quota-carrying salespeople) and prospects have a business discussion about the offerings either on the phone or at a face-to-face meeting. 

Hubspot’s 2021 Sales Enablement report found that 19% of buyers want to talk to a rep during the awareness stage of the buying process, 60% during the consideration stage, and 20% during the decision stage. 

Follow up call/service call 

SDRs follow up with prospects to check their status on the customer journey towards their offerings. Service calls allow reps to nurture prospects. 

Regular follow-up calls are important because 80% of sales require 5 follow-up calls and 60% of customers refuse sales requests before saying yes!

How do I make a sales call that converts leads to customers?

SDRs are the face of the company. 

To be successful at setting up quality meetings and appointments, they must have a working knowledge of the prospect’s industry, an understanding of the sales process and the competition, and excellent communication skills.

Remember that people don’t want to be pressured into making a purchase, so develop a strategy to engage with the prospect and communicate the benefits of the product/service without being aggressive. 

In the words of Tiffani Bova, Global Customer Growth and Innovation Evangelist at Salesforce,

“How you sell matters. What your process is matters. But how your customers feel when they engage with you matters more.”

Here are some tips to turn cold calls into warm ones:

Prepare, prepare, prepare

Research your prospect before the sales call using social media platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter. Understand your prospect’s interests, likes and dislikes through the information he/she shares publicly.

Research your prospect’s industry

Read up on the latest market trends and news items in the relevant industry. Your prospect is looking for a well-informed SDR to help him/her find solutions, not a parrot repeating a fixed script.

Make it personal

Use the prospect’s name, mention information that you’ve found through LinkedIn, indulge in some small talk. Be human! You’re more likely to build a connection with your prospect in this way rather than being purely business-like.

14 steps to a successful sales call 

How to make a sales call that increases the likelihood of conversions? 

Follow this checklist to ensure you have a sales call strategy that yields positive results, is repeatable, and can be easily learned. 

Bear in mind that you shouldn’t have a set script for a sales call that you mindlessly repeat by making a few tweaks to slot in prospect’s names and other details. Instead, what you should have is a blueprint for engaging your prospects.

Rafiki Sales Call Checklist

Start sales calls with a powerful opening

Don’t use the apologetic “Is this a good time to talk?” to begin your sales calls. This will undoubtedly set a negative tone for the conversation even before it starts. Instead, begin with a sunny “Hi Beth, How are you?” and state your reason for calling. You have the first 5 seconds of the call to buy yourself 5 more minutes of talk time. So make the best use of it. 

Other powerful openings you can use:

  • “I was wondering if you could help me out for a minute?”
  • “Thank you for taking my call!”
  • “I must have caught you in the middle of something, but here’s why I’m calling…”
  • “How have you been?”
  • “The reason for my call is…”
  • “I noticed you used to work at [past company]. How did you find the…”

Don’t talk trash about your competitors

It displays you in a bad light and makes people think you’re insecure, unprofessional, and desperate to make sales. If you must compare yourself to a competitor, stick to the facts and focus on the qualities that differentiate you from others.

Also, prepare well for objections as prospects are bound to have some. Learn to deal with things like “Can we talk after a week?,” “Sorry, I don’t have time now,” or “Why don’t you send a detailed email?” by asking relevant questions, demonstrating value, or trying to book an appointment.

Be genuine with your compliments

Offer a genuine compliment to your prospect such as “It is a pleasure to do business with you,” and he/she will strive to match up to it. Being disingenuous will get you nowhere; it may even lose you the prospect.

Set an agenda

You should have an agenda in mind to prevent the conversation from veering off into unwanted directions, save time, and achieve the outcome you need.

For instance, your agenda may look like:

  1. Powerful opening line
  2. Introduction to self
  3. Reason for calling
  4. Communicate value proposition
  5. Ask leading questions to qualify prospect
  6. Close by booking a demo/next meeting or handing off to an AE

Speak confidently

Mumbling, hesitating, appearing underconfident, or being unnecessarily apologetic makes it 40% less likely that the prospect will ask for a demo call. 

If you are an existing Rafiki customer, then you can easily listen to your conversation to understand where you are going wrong. Also Rafiki intelligently captures and displays negative-sounding comments or anxious responses in your call using the “patience” factor. This gives you an excellent opportunity to correct yourself in subsequent calls. 

Rafiki Sales Calls

Simplify options. Reduce information overload

Too many options is a bad thing--it confuses the prospect thereby delaying decision making. Focus on a few of the best features of your product/service instead of describing a laundry list of all the features. Talk about additional options only when the prospect isn’t satisfied with the ones you’ve presented.

Position your product smartly

Position your product/service as a solution that addresses your prospect’s problems to convince them to buy it. Understanding consumer behavior will help you close the call and book the demo meeting.  

For instance, you could say, “We work with [customer type] in [industry] with [pain points/goals.] Our customers usually want to [reach goal/find solution]. Does this sound like you?”

Since you’ve prequalified your prospect through research and relevant questions, he or she will say yes. 

Then you can say something like, “I’d like to know more about it” to encourage them to talk about themselves. This gives you information to build your pitch. 

Use the power of emotions

Don’t discount the power of emotions in influencing a purchasing decision. People are not convinced only on the basis of cold, hard facts--there’s often an emotional angle involved. 

Try to discover the emotional trigger that will persuade your prospect to move forward -- sentimental attachment, nostalgia for the “good old days,” and so on.

Offer a targeted value proposition.

Your goal in the sales call is to convince the prospect about the value of your product/service and book a meeting with an AE to take the sale forward. 

Clearly communicate both the quantitative value and the emotional value of your offering. 

When emotional triggers are not enough to push your prospect forward, articulate the quantitative benefits to convince him/her that the price is more than worth it.

 Make prospects feel empowered by involving them in finding solutions

Do not think, for even a minute, that you can trick or manipulate your prospect into purchasing your offering. It can backfire spectacularly and you can end up losing an entire revenue stream.

Instead, involve your prospect in the sales call, empowering him/her to find solutions but remember to guide him/her towards your value proposition.

Research the right time to call potential customers

HubSpot’s research shows that the best times to call prospects are 8 am - 9 am or 4 pm - 5 pm. Depending on your industry, the best time for you to call a prospect may be different. So do your research before you make your sales call.

 Use business intelligence tools to prepare for calls.

Rafiki Analytics

Nowadays, there are plenty of business intelligence tools to help SDRs profile a prospect before calling and pull relevant data that they can to discover pain points and opportunities.

Rafiki captures intelligible insights from your sales call and organizes them in an easy-to-access manner. It also offers instant analysis of your calls to help you track customer objections and pinpoint key topics that triggered the most conversations. 

As a result, you’re able to overcome objections in real time while improving your offerings. You can also train or upskill based on key points in conversations.

 Listen to your prospects

When your prospect talks extensively about his/her issues, you know that you’re off to a good start. Listen carefully, make notes, and adapt your messaging to suit the prospect’s needs. 

Listening well will show that you are empathetic towards your prospect and it will make the conversation memorable. It will also demonstrate value to the prospect, making it more likely that he/she will agree to book the next meeting or demo.

 Undergo training to improve your skillset and build trust with clients

Selling does not come naturally to everybody but it’s a skill that can be learned. As an SDR, never stop upskilling yourself to improve your performance and always strive to make prospects feel you are a trustworthy person.

What’s Next?

Now that you have seen how to make a sales call that leads to greater conversions? It’s time to get into action and what better way to enhance your sales call experience than using Rafiki’s AI-driven revenue intelligence tool.

Contact us to book a demo today!

A Guide To Sales Coaching Software

A sales coaching software helps sales managers train their team in a more efficient, sales-driven manner. The entire goal of software sales coaching tools is to enhance the rep’s performance and the return on investment. Considering that each individual has its strengths and weaknesses when it comes to sales, the software helps them reach and exceed the overall individual/team quota.

According to Hubspot, one of the major reasons why sales representatives quit or switch jobs so frequently is the lack of career development and opportunities to educate themselves. Additionally, studies on data generated in enterprises like OMG also suggest that sales managers don’t spend enough time coaching their people well enough. 

Over 70% of sales representatives emphasize the importance of effective sales coaching in their growth. However, the kind of misconceptions floating around about how sales coaching works left us speechless. But first, let’s discuss why you need sales coaching software for better revenue generation.   

Why Is Sales Coaching Software Important?

With an ideal tool, organizations can coach a larger sales team, even remotely. Moreover, it can help companies reinforce training and push sales representatives to develop better sales skills.

At Rafiki, we ensure that you make the most of your sales coaching platform by integrating your actual sales calls and their transcripts, artificial intelligence (AI) driven call analytics, topic analysis, and standardized scoring and sharing practices. With more customer call data, you can discover winning patterns and develop customized coaching activities for each rep in the team. Moreover, the software can help reps receive personalized playlists and coaching sessions to ramp them up.

Research studies and insights from CSO suggest that there is a strong correlation between quota attainment and coaching. Exceeding expectations in coaching helps at least 94.8% of the representatives to meet the quota.

While you choose among the many options for the best sales coaching software, you must consider the must-haves for an ideal tool.

Essential Features for An Ideal Sales Coaching Software

To have a greater effect on the overall coaching process, you need these five must-have features in your sales coaching tool:

  • Video-based Coaching: 

The most important aspect of sales coaching is effective communication. This is critical because people absorb and communicate information as much as possible to learn. Thus, the first must-have for these tools is the video coaching technology, which works through virtual video assignments. It majorly enhances reps’ sales pitches and confidence while being on camera. Recording a video of your assignments also helps managers use it later for reference or pinpoint the exact area where a representative needs to improve upon.

2. Machine Scoring: 

Sales coaching can never be a one-size-fits-all strategy. The software that you invest in needs to have a customized way of analyzing different people. Hence, the second important aspect is how AI and machine scoring are done in the tool. Check whether the system can automatically score and analyze the key areas in a sales pitch, namely, emotions, body language, and conversational tone. Using the comprehensive data from different representatives will also help you segregate the cream of your team.

3. Text-based Coaching: 

The next important aspect of sales training is a well-versed documentation skill. Improving a representative's written communication skills is text-based coaching (e.g., Short Messaging Service (SMS) and emails). Under text-based coaching, representatives submit text-based documents as a part of their coaching activities. It ensures that the team is prepared for writing emails, thereby maintaining consistency in any other content as demanded by the situation.

4. Screen Recording: 

Once the representatives are learning through various customer call videos, audios, and textual assignments, they improve along the way. However, the mistakes made once shouldn’t be repeated. As a result, the tool should ensure that the coaching sessions are available for watching at a later time as well. Thus, the next important aspect that must be there in your coaching tool is the screen recorder. Through this, sales managers can pinpoint the part of the session that needs to be highlighted or ask the reps to work on a specific section of their pitch.

5. Seamless Integration with Existing Sales Tools:

Another important must-have for your software is its ability to integrate with your present sales tools effortlessly. Often, your coaching resources and content require data from Customer Relationship Management (CRM) to work better. Therefore, an ideal strategy for your sales team’s success requires integration with your CRM to train your reps better.

Top 7 Sales Coaching Software

Now that you’ve seen the must-haves for your software, let us go through the top 7 sales coaching software

  • Rafiki

Considered to be one of the top-rated sales coaching software in 2021, Rafiki is your key to smart sales coaching. It offers solutions enabling digital transformation for companies and aid in the optimization of their sales processes. Along with improving employer efficiency, Rafiki also aims to lower training costs by making instructions and coaching smarter. 

  • SalesLoft

SalesLoft is a considerably important software used in adapting sales strategy and creating better revenues for the team. It replicates success by enforcing automatic sales plays, offering a tool for sales coaching, and providing a dashboard to have sales insights.

  • Gong

The next software on our list is Gong. It analyzes customer interactions across multiple channels and can aid in sales coaching by delivering valuable insights to your sales team.

  • Chorus.ai

Chorus.ai is another conversational intelligence platform that helps in winning more business revenue and enhancing sales skills for your team. It includes video conferences and accurately transcribed data in real-time.

  • Mindtickle

Another software that leverages comprehensive data from the sales team is MindTickle. It helps you develop and improve your sales team’s performance. Moreover, it promises to enhance your business deals rapidly.

  • Outreach

This software delivers detailed insights to build a core sales team. It automatically prioritizes the customer touchpoints and assists sales reps to get into the shoes of a customer to sell better. Moreover, with its sales dashboard, you can efficiently organize meetings and meet your quota expectations effortlessly.

  • Brainshark

This software is usually picked by large enterprises. Companies use it for on-demand training and personalized knowledge sharing among sales representatives to enhance overall revenue.

Overall, sales coaching software can do wonders for your business if used the right way. As experts in conversational intelligence, we at Rafiki build the best coaching solutions for your sales teams. Our dedicated team ensures that each of your challenges is solved in the most innovative yet streamlined way. Get in touch with Rafiki experts to know more.

Zoom Vs. Google Meet -  A Complete Analysis

The global COVID-19 pandemic has driven businesses everywhere to shift to remote working, making virtual meetings and video calls a regular occurrence for everyone. A lot of productivity and video conferencing tools have become indispensable during these times. Two such tools are Google Meet and Zoom.  In this blog, we will discuss their pros and cons, and which tool fits best with your needs. 

What is Google Meet?

Google Meet is the video conferencing application from the house of Google. It is a part of the Google Workspace bundle, which was formerly known as G-Suite. Google Meet has completely replaced its predecessor Google Hangouts as the go-to platform for video conferencing. 

What is Zoom?

Zoom is a popular cloud-based video conferencing application commonly used by teams globally for conducting virtual meetings and webinars. Apart from the usual video conferencing features, it also offers functions such as chat, conference rooms, and call options. 

Core Features - Zoom vs Google Meet

Screen Sharing

Both Google Meet and Zoom allow you to share your screen during a virtual meeting. Both also offer the option to set up virtual backgrounds, so you can cover your existing surroundings with an image of your choice. Both the tools hold up well with the videos during meetings.

Captions

Businesses are going global, and it's commonplace to have people spread across geographies collaborating to get work done. What happens when you have people on the call who aren’t native to the language you are conversing in? For this, video conferencing tools offer an option to generate captions so that everybody can understand the discussion and participate effectively.

In Google Meet, you can switch on the captions instantly within the tool. Currently, only English captions are supported. On the other hand, with Zoom, you would need to integrate third-party tools to enable captions. Zoom itself does not offer the feature, unlike Google Meet.

So, if you need captions and do not want to integrate third-party apps, Google Meet might be a better bet.

Meeting Time

We often plan meetings in such a way that it wraps up in 30 minutes. But 9 out of 10 times, it overshoots. Happens to all of us, right? But what if your video conferencing tool sets a time limit on your meetings by default, and you were unable to finish that crucial discussion that you started? Thankfully, both Google Meet and Zoom do not offer any time limits on their premium/paid plans. However, for their basic/free plans, both the tools have caps on the meeting times. 

Google Meet offers 60 minutes meeting time, while Zoom caps the meetings to 40 minutes on their free plan. So, if meeting duration is vital and you don't plan to buy a premium plan, Google Meet would be a better idea due to the extra 10 minutes it offers.

Participants capacity

On its Basic and Pro plans, Zoom allows 100 participants, while it permits 300 participants with the Business plan and 500 with the Enterprise plan. Compared to this, Google Meet allows 100 participants on its free plan and 300 participants on its paid plans.

If you organize virtual events and need a higher capacity, choosing Zoom would be the way to go. If not, a free plan of either Google Meet or Zoom could work for you.

Recording

With Zoom, users can record and save up to 1GB of recording using their local devices with video and audio capabilities. With a paid plan, you can even save it on the cloud without the 1GB cap. With Google Meet, if you are on the free plan, you cannot record any meetings. You would need to upgrade to the paid plan to record, which you can save on Google Drive then.

Such challenges can be avoided by integrating either of these tools with Rafiki as it not only records your meetings but also captures key topics and moments of your meetings and even generates notes by topic to get you started. 

Product Phase

User Interface

With Zoom, you could see up to 49 participants on one screen, while with Google Meet, this number goes down to 16. Both the tools offer different views for users to choose from. Here they are -

Google Meet

  • Auto: Your view gets automatically chosen for you
  • Sidebar: Only active speaker or screen will be displayed on a large window, while some participants will be on smaller windows on the left
  • Spotlight: The active speaker or screen gets displayed on the whole screen
  • Tiled: Up to 16 people get displayed on thumbnails on the screen


Zoom

  • Active speaker: Displays a large window showcasing the speaker or screen
  • Gallery: Displays thumbnails of up to 49 participants on the screen
  • Floating thumbnail: Minimize the Zoom window and have a small thumbnail floating over your other applications. You can move the thumbnail to anywhere on the screen too.
  • Custom: Create your layout

Integrations

Both Zoom and Google Meet can be clubbed with various meeting assistant tools such as getRafiki.ai  to bolster the productivity of your meeting even further. In fact, Rafiki is one of the few approved vendors who have integration with Zoom. Through this integration, you can perform high-quality video recording, accurate meeting transcription, and segment them based on topics for in-depth analytics. 

Rafiki Integrations

To know more about Rafiki’s integration with Zoom, click here.

Similarly, Rafiki is one of the few tools to have a seamless connection with Google Meet that offers in-depth analytics for all your conversations. Rafiki even supports a secure single sign-on feature via one-click login into Rafiki and Google Meet.

To know more about Rafiki’s integration with Google Meet, click here.

Pricing

Here is a comparison of the premium plans offered by Zoom and Google Meet.

All prices are monthly.

Wrapping Up

Both Google Meet and Zoom come with their unique pros and cons. While Google Meet provides few exclusive features like captions and longer meeting times on the free plan, Zoom also keeps things very competitive by offering recording capabilities, and more participants.

Rafiki can be a great addition to your meeting toolkit. You can integrate Rafiki with both Zoom and Google Meet accounts for high-quality video recording, accurate meeting transcription, and in-depth analytics. One up your meeting game with Rafiki by integrating it with your favorite meeting app - be it Zoom or Google Meet.

Call Transcription: All Sales Teams’ Mantra For Success

Have you ever ended a phone call and tried to replay the conversation in your head? There may be instances where you forgot to share a valuable piece of information with the client or described a solution in a more lucid manner. Here is where call transcriptions do their magic.

They convert your calls into word-form data for future reference and better analytics.  

So, how can transcription be the mantra for success for all sales teams? First, you may wonder what call transcription is all about. 

Call transcription definition 

Call transcription is the conversion of a voice or a video call audio track into words or plain text. The audio track has to be transcribed in a conversational language. It can be live or done on past recordings. 

This feature or tool is essential for most businesses. Over the years, it has gained popularity. Text has always enjoyed far more visibility than audio tracks and hence, it’s a prerequisite for sales teams. A sales team also uses Closed Captioning, real-time speech-to-text conversion services for people new to a language. 

How does call transcription work? 

Call transcription converts the conversations that occur in actual time into words, known as speech-to-text transcription. It provides a business with scannable records of all the conversations they have had with their customers. 

Let us now look at the benefits of a call transcription software for business and sales teams. 

Benefits of call transcription

  • Keeps records of all rep-to-customer conversations 

A call transcription software comes in handy when you need to store a phone call with a prospect or potential client. It allows sales teams to access it when necessary. It provides them with an opportunity to pick up with the client where they left off, based on the recorded conversations. Sales teams can also learn about the audience and communicate internally to improve a buyer’s journey and customer experience via conversations. 

Tools like Rafiki enables businesses to consolidate their sales conversations in a single cloud database. They then slice and dice through the same to get actionable insights.
Rafiki Meeting

  • Search and scan specific information 

Call transcription software allows a sales team’s search for a specific piece of information from a prospect’s conversation. They can scan and search for highlighted keywords and phrases. They can cite references for a definite bit of information when following up with a customer. It helps them guide future interactions. 

Rafiki lets you search for keywords, speakers and topics in a particular meeting and instantly zip through a meeting without having to go through the entire transcript.

Rafiki Meeting Tracker

  • Integration with business tools 

Businesses can integrate the call-recording software with other systems and sales tools like customer relationship management (CRM), so that all the data is centrally located and accessible to all. 

With Rafiki, you can not only connect with the top CRM tools in the market, but also with your favorite conference call tools, calendar and messaging platforms. The best part is it takes only a few minutes to connect Rafiki with these workflow tools.

Rafiki Integration

Here is a complete list of all the integrations with Rafiki.

  • Identifying strengths and drawbacks 

This allows reps to re-listen to their calls with prospects. It improves the quality of future conversations. Also, sales teams can review which areas need improvement by tracking conversation metrics and point out what they should continue doing. 

A tool like Rafiki helps your reps to analyze their call recordings and convert them into meaningful insights. The insights generated help them to create actionable steps for their continuous improvement.  With the help of Rafiki they can even share snippets or the entire recording of their call to important stakeholders and request their feedback.

Talk to Listen Ratio

  • Used for training newly-hired members 

You can share the transcriptions among reps and throughout the onboarding process. It is like handing a ready script to a new member for what to say when conversing with a client. It helps in training new reps in suitable tactics and gaining feedback from managers.

Rafiki improves the pace of the onboarding process by analyzing the performances at an individual level and helping decide what type of training is the most effective. It also helps assess pipeline health and productivity by offering activity analysis of each rep. 

Rafiki Time Spent On Call

Now, let us understand the top 5 software tools to use for call transcription. 

Top 5 software tools to use for call transcription

There are several call transcription software tools available today. Some are strictly call transcription tools while others assist in call recording and other features. They are: 

  • Fireflies.ai 

This software assists meetings with the ability to record, transcribe using off-the-shelf software and search for conversations. It is a powerful tool for a sales team seeking to include transcribed conversations in live talks or audio files. It allows them to highlight particular points in the conversation that took place earlier instead of scrambling for notes.

Fireflies
Fireflies
  • Gong

Another software, called Gong, is a revenue intelligence platform. With its automatic call recording and transcription features, sales teams can completely focus on prospect calls. This software allows you to search for specific comments and mark the most fundamental parts of a conversation. It analyses call transcriptions and identifies the key topics in a conversation with your prospects.
gong

  • Jiminny 

It is another revenue intelligence platform made for remote teams. It automatically records, transcribes and analyses calls. Upon disconnecting the call with your client, it directly sends the call transcription to the cloud for easy access and analysis. 

Jiminny

  • Wingman 

It is a conversation intelligence platform that transcribes calls across dialers and audio-video meetings. It is the most suitable software for fast-growing sales teams. Powered by artificial intelligence, Wingman transcribes a call and provides insights to sales teams into what their customers want.

Wingman

  • Rafiki

Another essential call transcription software is Rafiki. You may wonder, why choose Rafiki, especially over others? Here is why:

Rafiki, a call transcription software, serves a dual purpose. It is a conversational and revenue intelligence platform. It allows you to plan and retrieve intelligible data insights from a prospect call. Powered by AI, it quickly evaluates the conversation patterns of the successful sales reps and shows the impactful topic of the call. Other benefits include: 

  • Allowing you to track which topics triggered the maximum conversations
  • Allowing sales teams to adopt a data-driven approach 
  • Tracking customer’s objections

Rakifi’s (Friend/Guide in Swahili) is the most affordable and full-featured software which helps sales reps to improve their performance. 

Rafiki

Conclusion 

Call transcription has become a vital component of business for most sales teams. Its many benefits can help your team grow, understand future prospects and effectively assist clients, improving their customer experience. 

Rafiki with its excellent full-featured software model has been in focus. With Rafiki, SBM and other fast-growing companies, you do not need to compromise on getting valuable insights. 

Know more about Rafiki and how it can help by contacting us.

Outbound Calls: All Your Questions Answered

Have you ever thought about how many outbound calls per day are made by a sale rep? On average, a sales rep makes around 52 calls per day. Of which nearly 15% of the time is spent over leaving voicemails!

However, at the end of a month, it doesn’t matter how many outbound calls per day you have made. All that matters is the number of conversations or hot leads you have got. But as you start making outbound calls, you might have tons of questions that need answers.

And, not everyone is lucky enough to have a mentor who can answer them all. That’s why we have created this fun question and answer session related to outbound calls. This post will answer all the questions you will ever have about outbound calls.

1. How many outbound calls per day should I make?

The industry average is 52 calls per day. As long as you meet the average or exceed it, you should be in a good place. Also, remember - it all boils down to the quality of your calls and the conversation rate. Quantity is just a secondary factor.

2. What are the prerequisites for your outbound calls?

Outbound calls help you connect with prospective customers to identify whether they have a genuine need for your product or not. Before you make an outbound call, you will have to develop a game plan - how will you determine if additional conversations are warranted and whether the prospect is a good lead or not.

It would be best if you look at outbound calls as a way to build relationships with prospects. Have an open conversation with them, and kickstart a consultative review. Instead of using the initial minutes of your outbound calls to get into the head of your prospects, use them to assure your prospects that you respect their time. This will make them open up and eventually give you more time to pitch your products or services.

3. What are the key things to keep in mind while making outbound calls?

An outbound sales call is a process where a rep gets in touch with someone whom they have never spoken to earlier. The rep is going to build a business relationship just out of that call. 

If you’re one of those new sales reps looking for ways on “how to make outbound sales calls” here are our tried and tested tips curated just for you - 

  1. Always have an objective for every sales call - something that you hope to achieve out of that outbound sales call. 
  2. Without exception, look for ways to leave a positive impression of your business irrespective of the fact whether or not the prospect is interested in your product or service.
  3. Have a call guide and script ready. However, avoid reading directly from the guide or script.
  4. If you encounter the gatekeeper, be polite and respectful. Remember their name and instead of leaving messages, identify a convenient time to call back. 
  5. Once you have ensured that you’re speaking to the right person, pique their interest without sounding salesy.
  6. Listen carefully to your prospect’s objections and ask probing and clarifying questions to determine your prospect’s needs. 
  7. Rather than focusing on selling your product or service, make your conversation focus on the problems that your product/service solves.
  8. If you encounter an unappreciative prospect, don’t rush ahead or push them forcefully to listen to you. 
  9. If your permission to go forward is denied by your prospect, stay polite, apologize for the hassle, thank them for the time, and close the call politely.
  10. Remember not to take any rejections personally. Try to move past it by talking to your colleagues or reminding yourselves of previous successes.
  11. Ensure that you have the right attitude for every call. 90 percent of everything in life is attitude.
  12. Believe in what you are selling. Sell your product or service to yourselves before you sell it to others.
  13. Be persistent and bring that into every call you make. Your prospects may start respecting your dedication and become more receptive to what you have got to say.
  14. Identify your goal for the call and tailor a pitch that fits it accordingly. Don’t just stick to your script; keep improvising as the situation demands.
  15. Never depend on a single call. It takes a lot of calls and practice to succeed.
  16. Treat all your prospects with respect and don’t let your previous failed attempts affect a new prospect.
  17. Remember that every call offers you something to gain (experience, revenue) and something to lose.

While this is not an exhaustive list, the above tips will help the SDRs to get going in the right direction and learn the nuances of outbound calls quickly. 

4. Why track outbound calls?

Outbound calls remain an integral part of any sales process. Similar to all other aspects of the sales cycle, it is vital to track outbound calls and ensure that their quality is up to par. 

Especially when outbound calls are new territory for your SDRs, it is better to track their progress and offer constructive feedback rather than letting them get the hang of things on their own.

Track Outbound Calls

The process of tracking outbound calls is not just useful for quality testing and training purposes, but it gives the management a clear view of the experience their prospective customers receive. When you track outbound calls you can pinpoint the weak points in your sales process, understand the strengths and weaknesses of your sales reps, and measure sales metrics effortlessly.

5. How to track outbound calls?

Most salespeople don’t track outbound calls because they have no idea where to start. Initially, you can just start by recording the conversations of your SDRs and get them reviewed by their managers or trainers. While manual analysis might seem easy when your sales team is small, it can quickly get out of hand as your team expands.

Manual tracking and analysis of outbound calls can be time-consuming and expensive. What’s more - the process is neither transparent nor consistent, leaving room for ambiguity and biases. As a result, organizations often end up making predictions and decisions based on erroneous and inaccurate sales data.

Moving away from manual sales conversation analysis to a conversation intelligence platform like Rafiki can be a lifesaver for any sales team. Tools like Rafiki will enable businesses to consolidate all sales conversations in a single cloud database and slice and dice through the same to get actionable insights. 

How does Rafiki help you track and measure outbound calls?

Rafiki’s intelligent AI engine transcribes and understands every sales conversation that happens and analyzes it based on the metric preset by their business. It helps them to spot deal risks, improvement opportunities, and upselling chances in the click of a button.
Rafiki Outbound Calls

Rafiki also captures talk ratios, breaks down different triggers regarding topics within calls, and decipher questioning strategies of SDRs to derive a pattern that will help your SDRs succeed and close more deals. What’s more, Rafiki can inform you how your top performers go about their calls, their sales strategy, and understand every little nuance involved in their sales process.

It’s built-in feedback feature enables the sales team to learn from each other’s wins and mistakes. The interactive feedback feature fosters team collaboration and helps sharpen skills and prepare for future calls. 

Sales Intelligence:Your Ultimate Sales Guide to be More Successful

When your SDR sales team scales up rapidly, you may feel overwhelmed. It may feel like you have no way or time to keep up and be successful. It may feel as though you are always playing catch up without proper guidance. Unless you plan to make getting this guidance, with sales intelligence a priority, you will be frantically playing with guesswork and bringing up the rear. 

What exactly is sales intelligence? 

Sales intelligence is the process of collecting and analyzing detailed sales data (including your outbound/inbound call recordings) to understand the best way to perform a sale. In today’s digital world, it is possible to analyze every aspect of your sales process to better understand the non-linear journey towards a sale and identify improvement opportunities.

When done manually, sales intelligence is subject to a lot of guesswork which depends entirely on the perspective of the person who performs the analysis. The manual sales intelligence process takes way too much time and effort but doesn’t deliver the promise due to the manual delays involved. By the time a piece of sales intelligence obtained manually reaches the sales team – it will have become obsolete.

Automated sales intelligence, on the other hand, leaves no stone unturned to boost revenue. With an array of features that analyze every aspect of a lead’s journey to conversion, it ensures that promising leads don’t merely slip away. In today’s age of intense competition, automated sales intelligence is not just a priority; it is a necessity that enables businesses to successfully compete and thrive. 

Sales leaders who find a way to dig into the goldmine of customer conversations,  can understand the ups and downs in their sales process better. This, in turn, generates more sales, by identifying segments or agents who are underperforming, areas they need to be trained on, customers who are qualified leads, the list of tactics that help close a deal faster, and more. 

What are sales intelligence tools?

Sales intelligence tools can be classified into three categories. The first one being a sales-conversation-focused repository that collects data from both internal and external platforms for analysis. The second one is a powerful analytics module that transforms collected data into meaningful insights. These two are typically covered by traditional CRMs.

However, the third one, being an automated sales intelligence platform that incorporates and shares the collected sales intelligence from customer conversations back to the sales team and associated stakeholders to help improve the sales process. Only a handful of sales intelligence tools are capable of offering these functionalities in a powerful package, Rafiki being one among them. 

What are the best sales tools?

To ease the burden of choosing the best sales intelligence tool, we have put together this list of tools with a powerful analytics module. These automated sales intelligence tools will streamline your end-to-end sales process from prospecting to conversion and make you fall in love with your sales process once again - 

Rafiki

Rafiki, at its core, is a revenue + conversation intelligence platform that analyzes deals/opportunities, customers, and revenue to manage, measure, and continuously improve your sales processes, every day. It helps businesses identify deal risks, spot improvement opportunities, and understand how to make sales conversations better.

Rafiki Screenshot

Its state-of-the-art artificial intelligence sales rule engine doesn’t merely record and transcribe sales conversations, it understands and analyzes sales conversations that happen across all channels to ultimately speed up deal closure and improve revenue. 

Hubspot Sales CRM

Hubspot’s Sales Hub is a user-friendly sales CRM that comes with various functionalities like sales enablement, CPQ, sales analytics, and more. While Hubspot’s Sales CRM is straightforward in its approach, a clear differentiator is its advantage of being built on top of Hubspot’s CRM, providing a much-needed single source of truth for growing businesses.

Hubspot Screenshot

The only drawback of Hubspot Sales CRM is its awkwardly designed interface which makes it hard for its users to edit or add to the cadence after the initial set up.  

LinkedIn Sales Navigator

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a version of LinkedIn that was built exclusively for salespeople. It helps SDRs engage meaningfully with prospects and customers by tapping into LinkedIn’s professional network. As a result, SDRs can get a sense of their prospect’s priorities and make a quick decision as to whether they are a right fit or not from the prospect’s profile information.

Frequent updates about saved leads and the posts they share or talk about in the format of feed act as a great trigger for SDRs to follow up. The only problem with LinkedIn Sales Navigator is its lack of automation of certain tasks and analysis which will be helpful for building a scalable sales strategy. 

LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Groove

Groove is a sales engagement platform built with enterprises in mind. It automates manual, non-sales activities, simplifying administration and enabling cross-team collaboration to relieve the burden of SDRs giving them more time to focus on high-impact activities like building meaningful relationships and generating revenues.

The only downside of Groove is that being a new product, it still has some technical kinks to work out every now and then such as data not being logged or auto-populated in a timely fashion.

Groove

InsideView Insights

InsideView Insights acts as a cheat-sheet-like sales intelligence tool that delivers an authentic source of customer data empowering sales leaders to personalize their outreach and make human connections while prospecting. While it can be a bit clunky at times, the constant improvements made by the InsideView Insights team make it easier for users to overlook them. 

Inside View Insights

Summary

With all of the sales intelligence tools available on the market, it can be difficult for a sales business to know where to start searching for an automated sales intelligence tool. This is particularly the case if this is the first sales intelligence investment for a business.

However, once a business sees the benefits of real-time insights, seamless integrations, and efficiency automation can bring to their sales team, your sales leaders, and your SDRs, it will be glad for taking the time to get it right. 

If you don’t have a sales intelligence tool in place or are currently unsatisfied with the one you use, give Rafiki a try. Take a free demo to see how effortless it is to take control of your sales pipeline. 

Outbound Calls 101: Complete Guide [Definition to Best Practices]

Outbound calls may look daunting on the outside. However, once you get a grasp of outbound calling fundamentals and mix it with your intuition, you’ll be on your way to the outbound calls topper list, irrespective of factors such as your customer’s temperament. Whether, you’re new to outbound calling or you are looking to brush up your basics, you’re at the right place. 

What is an outbound call?

Outbound calls are a way of increasing customer service by initiating customer contact. While most believe the meaning of outbound call to be a method of canvassing new products/services to customers, it need not be restricted to just that.

Business representatives make outbound calls to their customers for a number of reasons like reminding them about an unpaid bill, informing the customer of product availability, following up on a problem the customer had, and finding out whether the customer is interested in a new product or service.

Outbound Call vs. Inbound Call

While some call centers handle both outbound and inbound calls, there’s a world of difference between these two concepts. Outbound calls differ from inbound calls in their process, the way contact is initiated, and most notably their intent. 

When the outside world or the customer initiates the contact, it is defined as an inbound call. Conversely, when the call center agent initiates the contact, then it fits perfectly into the outbound call meaning. However, apart from these basic differences, they vary in an array of aspects as displayed in the table below:

Outbound Calls Inbound Calls
Representatives call from a list of current or potential customers Representative attend the inbound call received on a typical day
Your audience can either be existing customers or potential customers/shoppers Your audience comprises primarily of existing customers
Can focus on anything from customer service to sales and market research Typically comprises customer complaints or queries or suggestions.
Not all customers have a need, so customers aren’t usually receptive Customer’s need for service is high and so customers are highly receptive
Customer satisfaction or happiness with the call may depend on various factors like customer’s need, temperament, and more Keeping the interaction positive and ensuring customer satisfaction is under the agent’s control
Seeks to build interest amidst potential shoppers  Focuses on ensuring customer loyalty and happiness for retention

Outbound Calling Best Practices

While outbound calling best practices may differ from one organization to another, there are a couple of best practices that several leading call centers have adapted over time. Outlined in this image are five best practices that when implemented properly, can significantly lower cost per acquisition (CPA), improve lead conversion rate, and ultimately enhance outbound call center profitability.

Outbound Best Practices

KPIs to Measure Outbound Call Effectiveness

The right outbound call KPI will help businesses evaluate and monitor the efficiency of their outbound call center. These KPIs will not only help businesses keep up-to-speed with their overall business goal but also help them optimize an outbound call’s cost, quality, and AHT. 

Listed below are some most commonly used KPIs used to measure the overall effectiveness of an outbound call.

  1. AHT (Average Handling Time)

Coming up with a proper benchmark for average handling time is difficult because it involves too many variables ranging from customer’s temperament to system capabilities to agent’s performance. 

While some calls may require talking a bit longer to close a deal, it is critical to look at this parameter to understand whether the large AHT is caused due to poor handling skills or give the much-needed push to convince a customer and close a deal.

  1. Conversion rate

It is the percentage of outbound call contacts that are converted or convinced to make a sale. It measures the efficiency of your representatives to make a convincing argument and make the customer eager enough to bag a deal. A low conversion rate shows that the outbound call efficiency needs improvement. 

  1. BANT Analysis

This is a sales qualification methodology that enables businesses to determine whether a specific outbound call recipient has the potential to become a prospective customer. 

It can be done by analysing the conversation and looking for clues which show whether the customer has available budget, internal influence/ability to buy, a genuine need for the product and has a purchase timeline in mind. Rafiki tracks the time spent by you on BANT and lets you quality check on how your conversations around BANT are compared to your peers. 

  1. First call close

First call close (FCC) refers to the percentage of customer deals closed on the first attempt. If your agents need to re-initiate an outbound call once or multiple times, because the customer is not convinced the first time, then the first call close will decline and the call cost will go up.

  1. Total revenue

Are your outbound calls driving revenue? What is the average revenue per customer per contact? Are your agents maximizing revenue per customer and taking advantage of upselling opportunities available? Finding answers to these questions will give you a clear idea whether or not your outbound calls are growing your business.

Tools to Drive Outbound Call Success

With tools like Rafiki.ai, organizations can slice and dice through the usual drone in an outbound call to measure KPIs and spot improvement opportunities effortlessly. It comes with built-in topic trackers to identify deal risks such as churn risk through customized topic trackers which can be tailored fit around your unique sales process to mitigate sale risks. 

As opposed to platforms that merely analyze customer calls based on predefined parameters, Rafiki has the intelligence to understand your outbound customer conversations and provide businesses with actionable insights which ultimately drive outbound call effectiveness and revenue. 

What’s more, it doesn’t just track conversational topics but offers advanced topic-level patterns that help sales leaders understand how successful reps talk, and what topics played a significant role in the conversation that helped move the deal through to the next stage, in a matter of minutes. What’s more, Rafiki’s advanced deal risk analysis feature enables businesses to drive predictable growth with advanced outbound call analytics.

Summary

The process of measuring the effectiveness of an outbound call isn’t always clearly defined. But, when sales leaders take a moment to understand their business needs and the nature of outbound call KPIs they need to track, it is easy to spot deal risks, perform BANT analysis, and ultimately train outbound call agents better and ensure an efficient outbound calling process.

Rafiki can help businesses measure the effectiveness of their outbound call, gain actionable insights, mitigate deal risks, and ultimately drive profit. Its intelligent rule engine dissects every outbound call analytically to retrieve customer/market intelligence, opportunity intelligence, and organizational intelligence. 

If you’re looking for ways to improve the quality of your outbound calls without consuming a ton of time or money, then sign up for a free trial of Rafiki and see how effortless outbound call quality control can be.