Every business aims to make more sales; acquiring new customers is one way to do this. However, conversion is possible when Sales Development Representatives (SDRs) have an omnichannel strategy.
Using an omnichannel strategy to reach prospects is one-way sales teams can ensure their pipeline is always full. Every form of business can benefit from adopting omnichannel software for sales outreach.
This article sheds light on:
- The importance of using an omnichannel platform for cold outreach
- The different steps sales teams can implement when reaching out to prospects using different channels
- The tools that sales teams can use to make the most of their time reaching.
What is an Omnichannel Outreach?
Omnichannel outreach is a marketing and sales approach that involves reaching out to potential customers through different communication channels. These channels include using methods such as sending out cold emails, cold calling, using social media platforms (Eg. LinkedIn), using messaging platforms (Eg. WhatsApp) or even meeting the prospect in person.
An omnichannel platform for sales outreach aims to increase the chances of getting responses from prospects by communicating with them through multiple channels. It also entails providing a personalized sales engagement experience. This approach can help businesses increase the effectiveness of their outreach efforts and generate more leads and sales.
The omnichannel platform involves contacting prospects through cold email, LinkedIn, Whatsapp, SMS, phone calls and other relevant channels. The approach aims to increase the likelihood of successfully engaging with a prospect and getting a response.
Why Use An Omnichannel Platform For Sales Outreach?
1. Increased Conversations & Chances of Getting Replies
Research studies state that business teams using 3 to 4 channels in their omnichannel outreach playbook generate the most replies.
When connecting with busy decision-makers, getting their attention can be difficult, no matter how compelling the offer is. It can be even more challenging to get a decision-maker’s attention if a sales team is using a single outreach platform.
This is where an omnichannel platform comes in. Using multiple channels increases the prospect’s likelihood of seeing and responding to a message. However, to maintain a prospect’s trust, ensuring that the messages sent by the SDRs across each channel must remain consistent.
By using different channels for outreach, SDRs can establish credibility and demonstrate that they are genuinely offering value to decision-makers.
By using different channels for outreach, SDRs can establish credibility and demonstrate that they are genuinely offering value to decision-makers.
2. Less Dependence on One Platform/Channel
Do not lay all eggs in the same basket.
Relying too heavily on a single channel for outreach creates a situation where sales teams focus all their resources on one platform or channel. If, for some reason, a platform becomes inaccessible due to reasons such as account restriction or a platform getting banned in the country, a sales team could suffer from a significant decrease in sales.
For example, a sales team relies solely on email to stay in touch with and get qualified leads. If the email client red flags the domain or prevents emails from going to the recipient’s inbox, the team’s lead generation strategy will be disrupted. This highlights the importance of diversifying outreach across multiple channels and platforms. A similar scenario could happen with a LinkedIn account getting blocked due to non-adherence to their policies
Sales teams should be ready.
Having alternate channels to reach out to leads is always better to avoid such scenarios. A backup outreach channel, such as LinkedIn or WhatsApp, can provide a safety net. Sales teams can switch their main sales activity to other outreach channels, thus creating a backup.
Omnichannel Strategy for Sales Outreach: 3 Steps to Success
1. Prep Up Your Account Before Starting Outreach
Getting the accounts prepped is crucial to a successful omnichannel platform for sales outreach. Use tools that help you gradually scale email sending of new email inboxes, tools that help move your emails from spam to inbox, or tools that revive an inactive email inbox. Monitor email deliverability reports to ensure the emails reach the recipient’s inbox smoothly.
For LinkedIn, ensure all the sections on the profile are filled out. Send 10-20 connection requests daily and consistently engage with and stay in touch with prospects to build a repo. Share and like posts. Follow a few industry leaders. This will demonstrate to the LinkedIn algorithm that the account is growing organically, thus increasing the chances of getting a response from the prospect on other platforms.
2. Scale Up The Channels Gradually
Running high-performing campaigns on each channel is crucial for success using an omnichannel strategy.
To ensure this success, it’s best if sales reps start with one platform and then build up from there. The advantage of this approach is that sales teams can achieve tangible results from each channel by giving it their full attention. Focusing on all platforms simultaneously won’t show as good results as perfecting one platform at a time would.
A sales rep can start by contacting prospects via cold email and focus on perfecting that channel before moving on to another platform. When the team achieves consistent results via one platform, add another channel to the outreach strategy, such as LinkedIn or WhatsApp.
3. Monitor Results
Collecting and analyzing results from your omnichannel strategy helps decide whether the omnichannel platform is worth pursuing and if it delivers the desired ROI.
Additionally, SDRs can analyze the performance of each channel. For example, sales reps can determine which channel (email, LinkedIn l, or cold calling) was the most effective among prospects.
Evaluate the results of one platform and the results achieved from all platforms. Comparing the results this way will give sales teams better insight into whether or not a particular platform was worth it and if it has positively affected the company’s sales pipeline.
Tools such as SmartReach.io offer comprehensive reporting capabilities for executing an effective omnichannel platform for sales outreach. These reports provide detailed insights into the performance of each outreach channel, with separate reports for email, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, SMS, calls, and other channels. Additionally, consolidated reports are available, allowing you to quickly identify which channels perform better and adjust your outreach strategy accordingly. With the detailed data these reporting tools provide, you can optimize your omnichannel outreach efforts and maximize your success.
What Channels Should be a Part of Your Omnichannel Strategy?
1. Cold Email Outreach – A Direct Path to Prospects’ Inboxes
Cold email outreach is an effective channel to reach decision-makers inboxes directly
First, compile a list of qualified prospects using tools such as Zoominfo, Ocean.io, or ProspectDaddy. Tools like ProspectDaddy help sales teams generate a prospect’s name, company name, designation, LinkedIn profile, and email address.
Next, import the prospect’s contact into an email outreach platform like SmartReach.io. The platform will enable sales representatives to insert attributes, such as the prospect’s name and subject line, into the email templates for personalization.
When prospects receive an email crafted explicitly for them, they are more likely to respond if the pitch resonates with their business needs. If the email does not respond, schedule a follow-up email via SmartReach.
As the outreach campaigns pick up momentum and deliver consistent results, feel free to add more prospects to the outreach campaign.
- Sales teams can automate cold emails and follow-ups.
- Sales teams only need the prospect’s email to message them.
- Sales teams can directly get in touch with the prospect via email.
- Rather than sending a generic message, emails allow sales representatives to send personalized emails to the prospect.
- It will take time for results to start showing via cold emailing.
2. LinkedIn Outreach
LinkedIn is an excellent platform to incorporate into an omnichannel platform, especially for B2B sales outreach.
LinkedIn is especially ideal for getting in touch with C-suite executives. LinkedIn Inmail messages have better response rates as prospects can see your profile, mutual connections, and company information before they respond. Hence, they are more likely to respond if a profile impresses them.
Sales Navigator is the quickest option to create a list of prospects.
SDRs can narrow down their prospects based on the criteria of their choice. Furthermore, they can save them to the Sales Navigator list or export them to their CRM. Sales teams can use LinkedIn’s In-mail feature to run the outreach campaign, just as with a cold email campaign.
The LinkedIn In-Mail templates can be similar to cold email templates. The same outreach process used for cold email can also be used for LinkedIn. With the help of sales engagement tools, SDRs can automate the lead generation process on LinkedIn.
SDRs can even automate the LinkedIn lead generation process using sales engagement tools. However, be mindful of using third-party automation tools on LinkedIn. It would be best to run low-volume campaigns instead of automating bulk emails and messages to avoid getting banned on LinkedIn.
- By integrating them with LinkedIn, sales reps can automate outreach via mail or other third-party outreach tools.
- LinkedIn’s In-Mail open rate is 166% higher than the open rate of a cold email.
- LinkedIn is an excellent platform for reaching out to C-Suite executives.
- Your profile and experience provide social credibility.
- An average LinkedIn user spends about 17 minutes on the platform.
- Using third-party LinkedIn outreach and sales engagement tools on LinkedIn can get a LinkedIn account banned.
3. Cold Calling – An Undervalued Outreach Channel
Despite being one of the least used forms of outreach, cold calling can be highly effective when executed correctly. Refining the cold calling script allows sales reps to make many calls in a limited time.
Although prospects may be hesitant to get on cold calls, they are more likely to allow sales reps to pitch their product if they recognize the sales rep from previous personalized emails or LinkedIn outreach.
Using sales engagement platforms like SmartReach.io, sales teams could create a sequence of omnichannel communication. Adding “Calls” to the omnichannel platform when a prospect has engaged with your cold email or LinkedIn outreach gives a greater chance to talk and connect with your prospect.
The advantage of cold calling is that it provides a more personal touch over other outreach channels. Respecting the prospects’ time by keeping the call short and informative is crucial. Cold calling is not necessarily to make a sale but to initiate a conversation that the sales rep can continue over email.
- Cold calling gives a personal touch over the other forms of outreach
- Cold calling is one of the most efficient forms of prospecting, in addition to cold emailing and LinkedIn outreach.
- Most people are reluctant to get on a cold call.
- Cold calling is the only form of outreach that sales teams cannot automate. The sales representative needs to be well-prepared with cold-calling scripts.
4. Making the Most of WhatsApp
WhatsApp has about 2 million monthly active users worldwide. For businesses, this is an opportunity to seize! It’s a very high likelihood that your prospects use WhatsApp.
- WhatsApp allows brands to have two-way communication with their customers. This will enable businesses to engage with customers and provide a personalized experience.
- Businesses can automate sending responses to customers who engage with the brand on WhatsApp – thus giving customers a 24-hour experience.
- WhatsApp is limited to sending automated responses to customers. However, the app does not allow scheduling messages in advance. Omnichannel platforms like SmartReach assist with semi-scheduling
- WhatsApp allows businesses to have just one contact number, which is a limitation if a company has more than one sales representative.
5. SMS for Omnichannel Platform
Short Message Service or SMS is the one form of communication that has stayed. 55% of businesses still use SMS to reach out to their customers. SMS boasts of the best open rates.
- The best part about SMS outreach is that unlike WhatsApp, LinkedIn, or sending emails, sales teams do not need an active internet connection to send messages to prospects.
- Social media platforms are often uncertain, as a change in policy or algorithm can affect the entire outreach campaign. Sales teams don’t have to rely on social platforms for SMS outreach.
- SMS allows businesses to send text messages of a maximum of 160 characters. This limitation on the length makes it difficult for brands to tell everything about their brands over text.
- SMS can often be seen as spam if a business sends too many texts daily. This can result in the user blocking messages from the brand.
Research studies state that business teams using 3 to 4 channels in their omnichannel outreach playbook generate the most replies. When connecting with busy decision-makers, no matter how compelling the offer is, it can be difficult to get their attention.
Software for Executing a Successful Omnichannel Platform
Throughout this article, we’ve discussed various ways an omnichannel platform could be executed. Here is a concise overview of software worth considering:
SmartReach.io: SmartReach.io is an all-in-one sales engagement software primarily focusing on email deliverability. It provides various features such as omnichannel outreach, shared inbox, spam test reports, A/B testing, email validation, detailed reporting and many more. SmartReach’s omnichannel software allows users to perform cold outreach activities via email, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, SMS and calls. Using a omnichannel platform for outreach widens the audience reach and increases the probability of engagement. An omnichannel strategy also helps to build trust for the brand because of its presence on different channels.
ProspectDaddy: ProspectDaddy is a powerful LinkedIn Email Finder tool to build a prospect list based on specific industries and job titles, making it an invaluable tool for targeted outreach efforts. It provides verified business email addresses of key decision-makers. In addition to the email address, one will also get the LinkedIn profile, designation, current company name, etc. of the prospect. This curated list of prospects and their details can be easily integrated into a SmartReach.io campaign or downloaded as a prospect list in CSV format. To locate any prospect’s email address, install the Prospectdaddy extension, which works seamlessly with a free plan of Linkedin or Sales Navigator.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator: Sales teams will need a monthly subscription to use Sales Navigator for outreach. Sales Navigator provides access to advanced sales features like searching for leads based on their industry, geographic location, profession, designation, education qualification, and more. Sales Navigator further helps sales teams group prospects and engage with them outside of their connection.
Zapier: Zapier is an automation tool that can be integrated with SmartReach.io to create custom workflows.
WhatsApp For Business Account: Sales engagement platforms let you send WhatsApp messages from an average number but imagine receiving a WhatsApp message without a name. A WhatsApp for Business account will help build trust and increase the chances of a response.
The tools mentioned above give a solid foundation for outreach efforts. However, at first, investing only a few tools is essential to get a better understanding of if outreach via a particular platform is working or not.
Reaching out to prospects through a well-executed omnichannel platform maximizes the chances of starting a conversation. Moreover, communicating with a prospect through their preferred channel increases the likelihood of getting a response.
An omnichannel platform for cold outreach has numerous advantages. However, the secret to its success is to start small, refine each communication channel, and gradually broaden your cold outreach across multiple channels.
Finally, go beyond technology. While many tools like SmartReach.io can help execute a successful omnichannel platform, it’s essential not to rely solely on technology. The crucial elements of a cold outreach campaign, such as crafting a personalized email or having a genuine conversation with a prospect, often require genuine efforts and human communication.