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12 Pieces of Advice for New Sales and Business Development Reps

12 new sales reps advice

It’s been a while (we won’t say how long) since my first job out of college, but I still remember that feeling of being the newbie and knowing that there was so much I needed to learn. While I don’t work in sales, I’ve continually worked closely since the beginning of my career with sales reps, sales development reps (SDRs), and business development reps (BDRs) in both Business-to-Business (B2B) and Business-to-Consumer (B2C). If you’re just starting out and want to put your best foot forward, read on for some tips on what you need to know, besides having the right personality for sales, for a successful sales career from the start and avoid sales burnout.

Been in the B2B sales world for a while? This advice can probably also help you, too, and keep you from being fired. Consider reading it as a refresher of your sales training. There’s always more to learn, right?

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Two of my colleagues at ConnectLeader: Victoria Gagnon, Senior Channel Development Manager, and Patrick Morrissey, Senior Account Executive, passed along the sales tips and advice they’d give to a sales rep, SDR, or BDR who is just starting out:

  • Write out a set of question to ask your prospect before each meeting. This helps you focus on listening more than talking and allows you to keep the meeting moving forward without losing your prospect’s attention.
  • Practice, practice, and practice again! Most new sales people only do this with customers or in training, but my best way to get comfortable with relaying the product/technology information to a customer is by speaking out loud repeatedly to an empty room. Pretend that you’re across the table from a customer or speaking to a room full of people. If you are new to sales, the fear for going over your pitch is having stage fright and forgetting your lines. Practicing your content out loud until you feel knowledgeable gives you confidence.
  • Create a cheat sheet in a Word doc or PowerPoint that not only list key talking points, but also the flow of your product demo and your sales pitch.
  • Time yourself when you practice to ensure you aren't going long and you’re not repeating content.
  • Video record your sales pitch after practicing and listen to your pitch to see where it can be improved.
  • Be respectful of the time your customer is giving you. If your prospect or customer gives you a 15-minute window, make sure you don't go past that unless your customer wants to. One trick is to use the stopwatch on your smartphone to watch your timing.
  • Give as many sales demos as you can, until you have mastered your product, and then be judicious about whom you demo to.
  • Practice your pitch and sales outreach skills first on prospects that aren’t a strong match for your product. Make your mistakes here rather than on your well qualified accounts.
  • Listen to the more experienced and successful sales reps at your company and learn from them by listening to the recordings of their sales calls.
  • Ask your prospect why you lost the deal, but do not try to refute them when they do so. This will help you learn for next time.
  • Take a breath during each conversation and give your customer an opportunity to ask questions and/or give feedback. Part of sales is educating your customers, but you won't know if you are on track and meeting their requirements if you don't ask questions. Plus, if you don't give them an opportunity to ask questions, they might leave the conversation confused and misunderstanding the capability of your product, causing you to lose the deal.
  • Make lots of cold calls through a sales dialer or agent-assisted dialer like Team Dialer from ConnectLeader.

Reach out to us here at ConnectLeader today to see how to help your sales reps, SDRs, and BDRs succeed from the start with phone, email, embedded video, text, and social touches through TruCadence, our personalized sales engagement software. Simply click here or give us a call at 800-955-5040.

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About the ConnectLeader B2B Sales Blog

The ConnectLeader B2B Sales blog is written to share productivity tips, tools, news, and other information relevant to managers and senior executives interested in B2B sales productivity, demand gen, inside sales, sales operations, and business development issues.

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