The Best Sales Touchpoint Email Cadence
The words “sales email” and “touchpoints” are evil — pure evil — because of the context in which “touchpoint” is used. Managers feel pressure to see reps making “X” number of contact attempts per week.
“How many new touchpoints have you made in total?”
“How many times did you attempt/touch each prospect on your list?”
This kind of requirement leads reps to type, “What is the best sales email cadence?” into Google.
The results can be disastrous.
Accountability for Spamming
Most sales managers hold reps accountable for spamming. You can call it volume of outbound attempts at new customers. And, yes, it's vital to aggressively prospect using email, LinkedIn/social and telephone. All channels.
But are sellers being held accountable for spamming?
My experience working with reps proves: 99.5 percent of the time “you need X touchpoints per week” encourages good reps (who know better) to start spamming.
It also forces reps who don't know better to start spamming ... and to fail as sales professionals. Habit formation is key. Bad habit formation is deadly to the individual and organization.
Worse, I see top-performing reps who know a mass, templated, “touchpoint” approach won't work still doing it. Because they need to follow orders, and unfortunately have very little freedom to explore what works.
The Freedom Box
The last thing you want to do with great reps (and reps who have the potential to be great) is to micro-manage their activities. Instead, manage their activities and keep them moving full steam ahead. But also out of trouble as they find their way forward. So how to balance? Freedom.
Forbes contributor, Jim Keenan created the “freedom box” several years ago.
“If the results are there the employee has all the freedom they want. They can do anything they feel is necessary to be successful,” says Keenan.
The box is big with lots of options. Reps have lots of freedom to innovate on what works.
“They can attack their job in any fashion they see fit, leveraging any approach they want. They have full autonomy,” says Keenan.
“Keenan's 'freedom box' shrinks as a function of bottom line results for each rep and gravitates towards activity management as the freedoms (and the results) decline,” says sales manager coach David Masover.
“In other words, there is a reciprocal relationship between freedom and results.”
Accidentally Forcing Reps to Spam?
By not allowing reps enough freedom to experiment, fail and learn from failure we all lose. Including customers who need our products/services. Sellers end up spamming, failing and developing failing habits.
“Let’s be clear — you can’t manage results. You can only manage activities that lead to results,” says Masover.