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BC Startup Sales Podcast - Managing RevOps During COVID-19 with Marko Savic (FunnelCake)

April 20, 2020
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This week we were joined by Marko Savic, Founder & CEO of FunnelCake, to discuss managing RevOps during COVID-19.

We start the podcast discussing the 5 core tips that Marko lays out in his recent eBook on how to managing RevOps during COVID-19: operate with compassion and empathy; pressure test your pipeline; change commercial terms with a deal desk; create an accountable WFH sales culture; and move to an efficiency-based model. We then dive into each of these a bit further.

1. Operate with compassion and empathy

Marko discusses why you should start from scratch with your sales and marketing emails – keeping compassion and empathy at the forefront of your tone and messaging. It may also help to further narrow in on your ICP to focus on the prospects and clients where you are solving for a high-priority pain point during this time as companies have put all “nice-to-have” conversations on hold.

2. Pressure Test Your Pipeline

We then dig into pressure testing your pipeline – why it’s important and how to do it. To start, it’s important for the team to recognize what they can influence vs. what they can control. One mistake folks make in times of crisis is trying to over-correct and control things that are outside of their control. Instead, focus on things that are well within your control: how frequently you engage prospects, how many contacts you’re engaged with at an account, how you’re forecasting deal size and close dates internally, how you set, manage, and execute next steps, as well as how you’re maintaining a healthy pipeline of realistic deals. Another key mistake right now is sales reps trying to force a purchase or force a demo (i.e. controlling the closed sale), when they should be simply trying to add value – could be through a free pilot or writing an eBook (i.e. influencing the deal).

3. Change Commercial Terms

Commercial terms are also something that are fully within control of your organization. Marko breaks down how you can think about your commercial terms by first selecting what you want to optimize for: bookings growth, reduce churn, or cash on hand. If optimizing for cash on hand, you might sell an 18-month agreement for the price of a 12-month agreement or sell services and consulting when you otherwise wouldn’t offer them. If optimizing for bookings growth, you may give flexible payment terms (e.g. net-90) or offer quarterly or monthly payments instead of annual. If optimizing for churn reduction, consider offering 3, 6, or 12-month free extensions to retain the logo and have the ability to renew after the crisis or pause licenses for companies that are taking severe financial hits – keeping their instance alive for 10% of the regular cost.

4. Create an Accountable WFH Sales Culture

Marko sheds light on how sales leaders should be creating an accountable WFH sales culture. The goal here is on a sales culture that is visible, accountable, and focused on a change to the right behaviors. It’s important to recognize which reps need more structure (typically SDRs), and if so, help them build out their calendar with designated blocks for various activities. 37 Signals has a great book on this, REMOTE, which helps explain additional best practices. One of the big shifts Marko sees is the move to asynchronous work, where the team isn’t necessarily doing the same things at the same time anymore.

5. Move to an Efficiency-Based Model

Lastly, we touch on the importance of focusing on an efficiency based model. While companies used to be able to focus on growth at all costs, the focus now has to be on efficiency. Demand-gen budget has been slashed, and you can’t afford to have a leaky funnel. Instead of looking for one silver bullet, it’s important to look at all of the incremental improvements you can make at every stage of the funnel. For early stage startups that don’t have great stage-level data, ask these three questions: why are they going to buy; why are they going to buy now; and why are they going to buy your product? One trick here is to ask yourself, “what are prospects saying at the end of the call?” Are they trying to determine use cases and how they would use it or are they asking how much does this cost, who else needs to be in the purchasing process, etc.? Those questions will help clarify whether the prospect understands where your product fits into their life and what next steps should be or perhaps they are still confused.

Additional resources

1. FunnelCake is offering a free sales rep grader app – easily connect to salesforce account and get visibility into key metrics, use for up to 20 reps

2. Measurable Leads Model (eBook) – guide for building an efficiency-based business

3. Managing RevOps In A Crisis (eBook)

4. 37 Signals book REMOTE on remote-work best practices

5. Deal Health System – framework that empowers reps, managers, and operations to take control of their pipeline (eBook)

0-1.jpgMarko Savic is the CEO of FunnelCake, a Revenue Operations Platform that dramatically improves pipeline performance and drives sustainable growth for some of the fastest growing SaaS organizations in the U.S. Along with driving the growth of FunnelCake, Marko is a sought-after thought leader in the B2B SaaS revenue space and one of the founders of the RevOps movement. His seminal book “The RevOps Framework” helped an entire industry see the value in a centralized operations role. For nearly 15 years, Marko has held various leadership positions for high growth SaaS organizations including Igloo Software and PineLake Communications, where he helped transform how these organizations sell and engage with customers.

If you liked “Managing RevOps During COVID-19 with Marko Savic from FunnelCake” and want to read more content from the Bowery Capital Team, check out other relevant posts from the Bowery Capital Blog.