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January 21, 2015
This One Mistake Will Cost You $5M This Quarter
In sales, a new year means two things: sales reps under pressure to hit their number and sales execs looking for a record year.
Stakes are high, so no one wants to start the year in a hole. But many sales teams do – throwing away millions in lost revenue. How? By accepting lack of clarity (aka “a hunch”) on which deals deserve attention and which to push.
Which Deals Deserve the Most Attention?
Reps are born optimists and juggle multiple prospects to close every deal. Great reps are “in the weeds,” sweating every detail. But being on top of your deals is not the same as knowing how every communication in every deal stacks up against every other deal closed by any rep in the last, say, two years. That’s beyond any of us.
And what about managers and VPs trying to coach reps for success? They have experience across reps and across years, but can’t possibly know the details of every deal, let alone process those details into confidence about which deals are at risk. They may be super human, but they are still human.
So we do our best and bet on which deals to work. Much of the time, we’re right. So why do 63%of executives say they’re not managing their pipeline well? It’s because we’re often wrong. And spending time on the wrong accounts is wildly expensive. You lose when an account doesn’t close and you lose again when you miss the opportunity to pay attention to the ones you could have closed.
Inaccurate Pipeline Data Could Be Your $5 Million Mistake
Without a clear picture about what’s going on and which deals are at risk, the chances of missing your quarterly number go up dramatically.
Here’s a “back-of-the-napkin” scenario. Let’s say Mike, a technology sales rep, has a quarterly quota of $1 million and deals average $125,000. So Mike needs to close 8 deals per quarter. The problem hits when Mike has high confidence his 8 deals are in the bag, but two fall through at the last minute. Mike bet on two of the wrong horses, got surprised, and it cost the company $250,000. Multiply that by 20 reps and his VP of Sales faces a $5M miss.
Knowing which deals are at risk when there is still plenty of time to respond gives reps and execs the chance to intensify effort on the at-risk deals or push them to next quarter, possibly allowing time to bring in a Best-Case deal.
When the risks in the pipeline are clear, Mike has a better chance of making Club and his VP takes less flack from his SVP.
Knowing Which Deals are At Risk is not a Pipe Dream
Hope is on the way. The information to know — really know — which deals are at risk is right at hand. By adding data science to your tools-of-the-trade, sales organization can have a clean, lean pipeline with insights into which deals will pay off and which ones won’t. That’s the key to nailing your number... and pulling that $5 million thorn out of your side.
At Clari, we apply data science to a host of critical sales information — including CRM, corporate email, calendar, news, social media, and more — to predict which deals are on track and which ones have fallen off the rails, with 85-90% accuracy. All without an army of consultants and weeks of waiting.
Give us five minutes to expose your at-risk deals and help you nail your number. Sign up for our free Pipeline Stress Test to uncover new insights such as:
- 5 Biggest deals with less than a 50% chance of closing
- Reps with at least one deal at serious risk for the quarter
- Deals overdue for action
Doesn’t taking five minutes to figure out which of Mike’s $125,000 deals isn’t going to close sound like a worthwhile way to help you hit your number this quarter?