Cold Calling

How to Increase AE Sourced Pipeline

14 Jan
min read

Carver Marshall, Director of Sales Development at Airbase, shares insights on how his team used Nooks to 3x pipeline and increase AE's self-sourced pipeline from 30% of goal to 140% of goal.

When Carver's team at Airbase originally switched to Nooks from a competing parallel dialing software, they originally were trying to cut costs and take advantage of the virtual salesfloor to maximize productivity. To their surprise, the combination of parallel dialing and working together in salesfloor 3x'd pipeline in less than a quarter. And not just for the SDR team - the AE team, which was only hitting about 30% percent of their self-sourcing goal, managed to skyrocket to 140% in a single month with Nooks. Here's a recap about the leadership initiatives that lead to this success story and five of our biggest takeaways: 

1. Connect rates are dropping

According to Carver, connect rates have dropped significantly over the last decade as technology has improved folk's ability to filter calls. So time spent on dialing and maximizing each conversation is key for modern Sales Development teams. Their switch to parallel dialing with Nooks helped increase conversation volume, giving their team more at-bats to increase conversion rates.

2. Teamwork makes the dreamwork

One of the biggest changes that has increased Airbase's goal attribution is their ability to work together in salesfloor. Managers are able to hear live objections from prospects and see conversation transcripts in real-time. They are able to share information and make adjustments like never before. AEs and SDRs are working together to qualify calls, adjust talk scripts and team up for an effective hand-off - which helps increase meeting conversion rate.

3. SDR's are incentivized for completed meetings, not conversions

Carver's SDR team is compensated for completing booked meetings. They made this move to minimize the chances of AE's feeling like they should convert less-than-ideal opportunities as a favor to the SDRs. This initiative creates less "ghost pipeline and because of this, SDRs and AEs are collaborating to make every meeting count.

4. Evangelize success to get adoption from AEs

One of the widely understood gaps for sales teams is getting AE's to effectively self-source opportunities. This happens mostly because they aren't enabled with the right tools or training to learn how to cold call and email. Adoption came fast for Airbases team because they effectively enabled the AE team with the SDR toolkit and shared success stories via salesfloor for widespread adoption. It's no coincidence that the AE's on their team that are spending the most time in Nooks are also seeing the highest quota attribution.

5. The phone is still the most effective channel

Despite decreasing connect rates, increasing call volume by parallel dialing is still making phones the leading outbound sales channel for Airbase. 2/3 meetings are booked over the phone while 1/3 are booked over email. They're using Outreach, like most sales dev teams, to create email + calling sequences and maximize their outreach with a healthy mix of email and calling. Never-the-less, the phone remains the number one way to make the final touchpoint that converts into the meeting.

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