Episode Summary

“Stop missing your sales quotas.” Easier said than done, right? Well, this podcast episode could be exactly what you need to hear!

We break down actionable tips to help you shift your mindset, establish a productive routine, build high-converting outreach lists, and hone your research skills.

On this episode of the B2B Power Hour, we talk to Florin Tatulea, the head of sales development at Plato, about all of the above and more. He built the BDR/SDR function from scratch and even helped a teammate achieve 700% of their quota! (Yes, we said 700%!)

The first step to SDR success is properly structuring your day. Write down a list of the tasks you're going to focus on and the goals you need to achieve that day. One of Florin’s top tips is to avoid context switching — or moving so quickly between different tasks that you're never able to get into a good flow.

Once your day is structured, it's time to open up the SDR toolkit and get started. Focus on frameworks instead of scripts or templates. Maintain your creativity and personality when talking to different prospects, and avoid using scripts as a crutch.

You'll need to build a list of your prospects that are most likely to convert, fine-tune your problem statement before starting email outreach, and ensure your messaging is as relevant as possible. For details on all that and more, we have the perfect episode for you.  

Listen in for proven tactics that help SDRs and BDRs excel in all aspects of their jobs, from outreach to close.

What he does: Head of sales development at Plato, offering a mentorship platform connecting the engineering and product communities. Founder and Sales Coach at Sales Flo, helping B2B sales development teams book more meetings.

Key quote: "Sales development and business development, I think, is about 80% science and 20% art, but that art part is where people differentiate themselves."

Where to find him: Twitter | LinkedIn

B2B Power Plays

Top takeaways from this week’s conversation

📉 The top reasons you aren't hitting your sales quotas.

Here are some of the most common reasons SDRs and BDRs miss their sales quotas and how to make sure they don’t trip you up, too:

  • You don't have the right mindset. Prospecting is a mentality, and SDRs sometimes lack a deliberate strategy. Going about your day with the wrong mindset could be the difference between converting a prospect and losing them.
  • You aren't structuring your time. Instead of throwing something at the wall to see what sticks, you need to approach every month, day, and hour with discipline and strategy. For example, are you reaching out to your prospects at the best time of the day? Do you know when people are more likely to pick up the phone or respond to an email? Did you spend time researching new prospects?
  • You're only looking at the big picture. Sure, if your company wants you to add 50 new accounts this month, you're going to strive for that goal. However, this approach can sometimes feel difficult and overwhelming. Instead, break down that goal into weekly and daily pieces you can reasonably achieve. It's a lot easier to keep your head in the game when you're focusing on hitting 10 prospects this week, rather than reaching 50 over the course of the whole month.

✉️ Tips for mastering the outreach email.

Relevance is better than personalization when it comes to your outreach email. As always, start by researching the prospect so you can tailor your email in a meaningful way. Don't just go for the generic, 'Hey, I noticed you like to golf! Anyways, here's what I'm selling…'

As an example, if you're going to reach out to a VP of engineering to discuss a mentorship program, see who their newest managers are on LinkedIn and mention them by name in the email.

Then, explain your problem statement and how it manifests in their real-life career. This establishes the genuine business need and gets the prospect's attention.

End the message with a thought-provoking question and social proof.

✍️ Refining your problem statement.

A/B test different problem statements to identify which one performs the best. It might take a few months and a few hundred email opens, but this is the best way to maximize ROI on outreach emails.

Take a look at the emails prospects are opening, which ones they're replying to, and the overall sentiment of their responses.

Episode Highlights

Inflection points from the show

[4:13] Setting up your day: Calendar management and time blocking are two crucial components of setting up your day the right way. As much as possible, avoid context switching, which is moving between tasks so quickly that you never get into a good rhythm.

[8:22] How to build a winning list: Look at the attributes and personas of the most efficiently-closed deals and start building your list from there.

[14:36] The perfect SDR toolkit: Opt for frameworks over scripts or templates. Florin sees sales and business development as 80% science and 20% art — the art is how SDRs can differentiate themselves. Scripts and templates tend to hinder that.

[17:18] Relevance > personalization: Hyper-personalization isn't the most scalable method. Rather than spending 20-30 minutes customizing an email to each new prospect, opt for relevance. Conduct enough research to highlight the problem statement and business need.

[24:01]  Fine-tuning your problem statement: Florin explains how he builds his problem statements: through a lot of A/B testing, information gathering, and tweaking messaging as needed.  

[28:48] The need for SDR enablement: Most companies don't realize how badly they need SDR enablement. While it's not a common role (yet), SDR enablement managers can be incredible assets for the entire sales team.

[33:28] Holding people accountable: Understand who your SDRs are and what their "why" is. That way, you can help them evaluate their performance relevant to their individual goals. Nick explains how he keeps high-performing teams accountable without the use of fear tactics.

[37:28] How to invest in your power hour: Florin's power hour would be highly intentional. He would eliminate all distractions and get his energy up if he's going to be cold calling. (If you don't have one already, make a pump-up playlist!)  

[41:56] Future of SDRs and BDRs: Nick sees SDRs and BDRs shifting into community managers. Breaking into a community and being a known and accepted part of it can make you practically untouchable.