Ep. #968 - The Solution to Your Sales Problem
In today’s episode of Startup Hustle, you can pick up a great solution to your sales problem. Matt DeCoursey welcomes Nick Smith to the studio. The CEO and founder of Saile shares his best tips on how to generate more prospects and help activate your salespeople’s productivity.
Covered In This Episode
Sales is the lifeblood of every business. So what happens when it doesn’t move in the right direction? Well, usually not much of anything great!
That is why Nick and Matt are here to give you a solution to your sales problem. Discover what tech to use for better prospecting and improving your sales lifecycle. Moreover, you can hear how Sailebot can help your salespeople and what sales tactics to use.
Make your dream sales process come true. Tune in to this Startup Hustle episode now!
- Nick’s backstory (01:55)
- On automating the sales process (03:28)
- Matt’s sales prospecting formula (05:35)
- Challenges in sales management and how to solve them (06:41)
- The SaileBot, what it does, and its value during prospecting (11:16)
- On delivering actionable revenue and prospecting with AI (14:27)
- Why are you not successful in sales? (17:35)
- What Nick learned while building SaileBot (19:17)
- How different is SaileBot from other automated sales tools? (24:00)
- Where to get leads (25:00)
- Define what you want to do before hiring new salespeople (27:47)
- Reasons why sales won’t move and how to fix it (30:42)
- Integrating automation into your business (34:08)
- Problems you can encounter in sales (37:58)
- Use case of SaileBot to gain more success (39:24)
- On wasting funds on people or tech that won’t help you deliver (42:45)
- What makes a good salesperson? (44:20)
- Sales tactics that won’t work (46:02)
The sales process is challenging, especially for tech companies, because I have so many conversations with people, and they’re obsessed with raising money. They’re obsessed with building software. And I tell them, I’m like, you know, you should stop and sell something along the way.– Matt DeCoursey
When we look at companies we work with, we want to empower them to sell more and get in front of people more. We look at prospecting, and our tool is really created to automate the entire prospecting lifecycle. So we say from discovery and research to delivery of revenue opportunities—that whole process.– Nick Smith
We’re not just a lead platform. We’re working with world-class [talent]. We call them the 1% of sales leaders that know they’re going to hit the number. They know the deals are going to come. But this makes their life and their job exponentially easier because it’s truly multiplying them.– Nick Smith
Automation helps you become efficient and increases the bottom line. And if you’re looking for a software development team to build your tech, Full Scale has the right people and platform. Just answer a few questions to have a fully vetted team of engineers, testers, and leaders jump into your long-term project. Build your software development quickly and affordably now!
Now, if you’re looking for additional business solutions, check out what all of our podcast partners can offer.
Following is an auto-generated text transcript of this episode. Apologies for any errors!
Matt DeCoursey 00:00
And we’re back! Back for another episode of Startup Hustle. Matt DeCoursey here to have another conversation I’m hoping helps your business grow. Speaking of helping your business grow, Saile cures sales. Everyone’s trying to figure out how to make more sales, have some more stuff, how to get more customers and users—all of it. And, in order to do that, you need a solution to your sales problem. That’s what we’re going to talk about in today’s episode, which is powered by FullScale.io. Hiring software developers is difficult. And Full Scale can help you build a software team quickly and affordably and has the platform to help you manage that team. That’s my business if you aren’t aware. And you can learn more about it when you visit FullScale.io. With me today, I’ve got Nick Smith. And Nick is the CEO and founder of Saile. That’s S-a-i-le.ai. There’s a link for that in the show notes. Building all kinds of interesting solutions with and for sales teams. With me, live, in our Kansas City studio today. Nick, welcome to Startup Hustle.
Nick Smith 01:01
Hey, Matt. Thanks so much. Glad to be here.
Matt DeCoursey 01:03
Yeah, I love this topic. But before we get into that conversation, let’s start with a little bit of information about your backstory.
Nick Smith 01:10
Sure, absolutely. I think just looking around at the setup here, I’m a little bit reminded of my backstory even a little bit further back. So, my sales career started with a home recording studio in my mom’s basement, where I made my first spec radio commercial. And I dropped it off at a local radio station I grew up listening to and said, I can sell radio ads. I was 20 years old. And they were like, who is this person that won’t stop showing up? And eight or nine interviews later, they hired me as an account executive. That’s how, I mean, that’s how I learned how to sell. So, my job was everything a sales executive still does, more or less, today, prospecting and closing business. That took me to New York, where I spent most of my career at CBS Radio, and CBS News, selling local media properties and national campaigns as well. I spent a lot of time doing what our company does today for salespeople, but I was doing it manually. So, whether it was prospecting or leading teams, I had my finger on the pulse of all the salespeople who were tasked with regularly doing. And I was inspired by an idea I had that I think salespeople deserve their own sales robot. And that’s what we set out to build. It’s been going really well. So I’m happy to talk about it today.
Matt DeCoursey 02:37
Yeah, I am, too. And, you know, I normally don’t throw this kind of info out. But I met you largely because I’m interested in using your product as well. You talk about Saile cures sales. And I think that the sales process is challenging, especially for tech companies, because I have so many conversations with people, and they’re obsessed with raising money. They’re obsessed with building software. And I tell him, I’m like, you should stop and sell something along the way. But how? And the thing that really impressed me about what you guys do is it tackles and solves problems related to prospecting. And I think that a lot of people don’t understand that. That’s really where a good sales department or results begin.
Nick Smith 03:28
Yeah, absolutely. So similar to what you just said, I’m not a serial entrepreneur. I was more of a corporate loyalist before starting a business. Someone gave me really good advice. He was an entrepreneur, and he said that he was getting hit up for angel investments all the time. And his feedback to the startup founders was, hey, go try and sell it to someone else. First, why don’t you know that’s your best option? So I took that feedback not only for our own company, but I think, when we look at companies we work with, we want to empower them to sell more and get in front of people more. You know, we look a lot at prospecting. And our tool is really created to automate the entire prospecting lifecycle. So we say from discovery and research to delivery of revenue opportunities, that whole process that, you know, salespeople, STRS, etc., are spending so much of their week doing. And we think that most salespeople don’t spend their time on sales-related activities. So I think part of it is maybe talent, right? Hey, is this salesperson cutting it? But the other part of it is they’re not even really doing sales functions. They’re doing data entry. I’m thinking about the best salesperson, you know, do you want them doing data entry?
Matt DeCoursey 04:47
I don’t think they should. That’s me. And no, I don’t want to do data entry. I used to be a sales trainer, and this was when I was working in and around the music industry. To find the prospecting process and sales, in general, I created this simple formula called 10-8-4-2-1. First, you have to find 10 people. Only eight of them will even acknowledge that you are a living, breathing human. Meaning, one out of five people right there is, I mean, they’re just gonna walk right on, right. You’re looking for four people that will actually have a conversation with you. You’re hoping that two of them might be qualified or like actually real prospects, and then you hope one buys. So I’ll tell people, I said, what do you need next? And they’re like, ah. I’m like, you need a whole lot of people. So, part of that, you know, the end that kind of defines prospecting, and a lot of ways, you got to start with 10 people and get it down to eight, four, two, one. And I think that so many salespeople just don’t even understand how to do that. And so many sales organizations are just reactive, and you’re solving that problem. And then the thing is, a lot of that’s just repetition.
Nick Smith 06:00
What I think it really comes down to is you’re exactly right. But a sales manager or a business leader is looking around the sales floor or looking around Zoom today. And they’re seeing different salespeople, and they have the 10, eight, four to one principle in their mind. But some of the people are 10-6-3-0 or not quite cutting it. So I think inevitably, a sales leader says, man, if we had three more of him, or three more of her, we’d be in a lot better shape. So what they try and do is enable, I’m using air quotes on radio, but yeah, enable everyone to be like the person they want more of what we’re challenging is, why not just multiply that person you want three more of with their own sales robot, you know, if you really want more of them, multiply them, instead of enabling the rest of you’ve seen, I’m sure you have seen Tommy Boy, right? Yeah. So we’d like to say that, you know, every company has a Tom Callahan senior, someone out there selling ketchup popsicles to people wearing white gloves. But a lot of the companies have Tommy boys too. And they’re enabling Tommy Boy to be Tom Callahan’s senior. We say, why not just triple your Tom Callaghan’s? You know?
Matt DeCoursey 07:23
Well, that’s hard to do. And I think that Saile is a great salesperson. So there’s a problem that exists with salespeople. And that’s why almost all of them think they’re great salespeople. And like 2% of them might be, and I think that solving a sales problem begins with defining Well, first off, understanding what it is you’re trying to sell because I think some some some sales organizations are inherently reactive and just can be, and they can afford to be. But you will the but the hunter mentality going out and finding a new business which defines prospecting as is, you know, literally taking the fight to do everything and, and that begins with understanding like who you’re trying to sell to, because five, the 10 841 formula falls apart in a hurry if it’s just 10 random people. Yeah, so like 10 random people might narrow it down. But what if those 10 people were qualified buyers that you had defined that you understand, want your product and all of it? And you know, that’s literally so that definition begins right there. And then I think about the next thing, and this is what I love about sales robots? I don’t think that salespeople like prospecting at all. No, I don’t think salespeople love prospecting.
Nick Smith 08:45
I also think that while there are a few points that I’ll make here, first of all, you have to sort of live on the edge of a knife for a little while if it to constantly feel like you need to be prospecting so that it becomes part of your inherent day to day job to prospect. So whether you like it or not, you have to get into that habit you always hear about the sales habits. And so I remember there was a time when I had a mentor on a sales floor with me, and there was this guy, we’ll call him Johnny Doyle, right.
Matt DeCoursey 09:23
We can’t call him Tom Callahan.
Nick Smith 09:26
So this is Johnny Doyle. And he was that salesperson you’re talking about who really thought he was like God’s gift to sales. And my mentor, Barbara, would say to me, every time Johnny picks up the phone, you pick up the phone. I don’t care if you don’t have a number to call someone because if he’s on the phone, you should be on the phone. So habitually, I got into the practice pretty regularly. But I think the other thing you’re talking about is you can do more than everyone else and have success. Or you could be smarter and really know your mark. Get well and have success. Or you could do both. And I’ve always tried to do both. But I think that what we say is most of the salespeople we’re working with know what a great prospect looks like. They don’t like sometimes prospecting because it’s just so rinsed and repeated. Or maybe it’s all the tasks they have to do to get through it. You know, finding email addresses, finding the right contacts, it’s work. It’s just work, right work. So we start with them like we’re not a platform, which, I think, caused us challenges sometimes. But a sailboat is not a platform. We’re building that robot based on them, who they prospect, what a decision maker looks like, their geography value proposition, and even how aggressive they are. And I think that’s where we’ve really bridged the gap on getting the salesperson to buy into the fact that a robot could do some of what they do.
Matt DeCoursey 10:58
A lot of people don’t understand the concept of robots, and some people are, freaked out by AI. It’s gonna take over. I’m kind of looking forward to that day. Because honestly, the machine, as we’ll call it, whether it’s machine learning, or AI, or whatever, and in so many cases, is just automating the tasks that we as people are terribly inconsistent about. And people ask why software and tech companies so valuable software shows up to work every day. It does, it doesn’t take Christmas off, it doesn’t have, you know, it doesn’t have a sick day, or at least, well, you’re hoping it doesn’t. But if it’s built well, and it performs well, it shows up to work every day, and it does a lot of things in the background. It’s that consistency and the and then the scale. So, you know, we looked at one point that was over an 18-month period, and we identified over 80,000 Different companies in the US that had posted a job for a software developer. And that’s what we sell at Full Scale. And we’re like, well, here’s prospects, and you’re like, What am I going to do with 80,000? In these, you’re gonna get to go through that 10 a four-to-one process. The problem is, like, I mean, they’re all hiring for what we’re selling, which one’s better than the other, and then that’s a daunting task. And so much of the glory, or the discipline it let’s be honest about salespeople, and I admit, my name is Matt DeCoursey. And I’m a salesperson, I’m going to go ahead and just unclog it myself there because the thing is like, salespeople are inherently disorganized, and just, I don’t know, often egocentric and you know, now if I’m a great salesperson, you’re going to probably find a way as my boss to clean up after me. Yeah, but not always great with the routine. Now the elite salespeople I know are there. So I like to say activity breeds sales, and that activity and the old school, pre-machine days where you know, I’m going to get up, I’m going to make 50 calls today, I’m going to stop, or I’m going to stop by 10 different places and introduce myself. And if you’ve ever worked somewhere in, like, you know, you work at a restaurant, and the rep from the bread store comes by there prospecting for your business, right? Yeah. And that, you know, but that’s how you go out and find it. Now, you’ll go back to our problem with 80,000 companies. So how do I narrow this down to 80 or even 800? And that’s where automation can and should do a much better job as long as well as and that’s what I like about it. Okay, so it’s one thing, so, okay, we’ve seen everyone that’s looking for the past opportunity. And what I like about Saile is you talk about delivering actionable revenue opportunities. And that’s the challenge that people have you get a data set of suddenly the most valuable thing in the universe and all that; it’s not worth shit if you can’t do something actionable with it. Yeah. Like no, knowing that these are the three things that make your clients churn after they’ve already churned. It’s just trivia at that point.
Nick Smith 14:13
I mean, I would say, you know, back to a point you made a couple of minutes ago, we tell people AI is not smarter than you. AI is not going to close more business than you. But it’s smarter than all of those tasks. You’re wasting your time. Well, it’s smarter. It’s smart enough to do that 30% of your day that’s dedicated to data entry, cold outreach, finding email addresses, or whatever it may be. So you now have your own bot that’s doing your baseline daily tasks and functions. What it’s delivering back to you is an actionable opportunity. Where I think some sales leaders have been disenfranchised with lead generation is the quality of things they were receiving didn’t look, I got to lead with this company, but it’s no one I would have ever called in the first place. Not because I didn’t know about them but because they’re not a good fit. And so we really start with them. And I think it also helps break down some of those walls about AI. We think about the prospect first. What is the best part about being a prospect, people are chasing you, and you get to set the timeline. So if you respond to a salesperson and say the timings are not good, follow up with me in six months. A good salesperson, a lot of times, is probably going to follow up with you in five months or in three months when there’s a special offer, right? The Saile bot reads that email, you respond, and will follow up in exactly six months. The prospect is empowered, they’re listened to, and they’re playing their role in the situation. But, the company wants the benefits of AI and automation without sacrificing its principles, without sacrificing its value proposition. So the fear is, hey, now we’re going to have this chatbot or we’re going to have this AI, we don’t make chatbots. But what I will say is when we talk to them about AI, we let them know they’re setting the parameters the same way you would hire a salesperson and have a one-on-one or give them the playbook for success. That’s what you’re doing with our success team when you are onboard. So they’re setting rules now. And then, finally, it’s really built for the salesperson. So we don’t do anything until they tell us who they want to prospect in the geography. They want to prospect why they want to prospect them. And that’s how a sailboat comes to be. So it’s really focused on them.
Matt DeCoursey 16:41
But a lot of people ask me that, I mean, I’ve had salespeople fail, or people, you know, how do I fix the sales problem, and you get it and you look at what the salespeople are doing? And, you know, in these simplistic answers, why am I not successful? So if you’re not doing the things that successful salespeople do, what do you mean? Well, follow up is huge, like you just mentioned, it’s, I’m telling you, more salespeople than not, aren’t making that call six months later, right? All you like theoretically, and the manual world sets a reminder for yourself. Yeah, like if you’re not using I just said frickin reminder. Yeah, you know, call John, or whatever. And the thing is, and then another thing too is, you know, salespeople wouldn’t be kind of transient, you know, they’re not always are they even there six months later.
Nick Smith 17:32
It was one of the things I don’t talk a lot about. But since I started, Saile bots have taught me as the CEO of Saile. So for example, now, if I do some manual prospecting, which everyone, by the way, should always do, if you’re in the game, then you’re not going to be able to hold your horses. If you’re driving down the road, and you see a billboard for a perfect client that you’ve not talked to anyway.
Matt DeCoursey 17:58
Well, it’s hard to train automation if you don’t know how to do it manually. Exactly. Yeah.
Nick Smith 18:02
So like today, if I sent a manual email, and someone responds and says, the timing is not good to follow up in six months, the very next thing I do is write the follow-up email and schedule it for six months later, instead of the reminder, I just scheduled the email. Worst case suit, salespeople will be like, Yeah, I’ll do that later.
Matt DeCoursey 18:17
No, you won’t. That’s a great way to miss that opportunity.
Nick Smith 18:22
Yeah, well, we talked about this before we started, right. Like just, you find that if you’re not doing it right now, it doesn’t get done. Sometimes it feels like everything needs to be done right now. But that’s the best time to do it.
Matt DeCoursey 18:34
What are a couple you said you had there were other things that you’ve figured out? What are a few of those?
Nick Smith 18:39
Sure. So I would say generally how people engage with content, we’ve had the pleasure of, you know, 30% of our businesses in Europe. And they take a very different approach to email in general. I mean, I like to say sometimes it’s like there’s a paragraph qualifying why you ever had the audacity to email this person before you tell them why you really emailed them. But just seeing sort of approaches to prospecting in general, that’s a little bit more expert, sort of educational rather than more. Now we got to talk like more than the urgency thing. I think it’s been really interesting for me, there’s little things that I do that I’ve seen our Saile bots do. For example, you might get an email from me that says, Hi, Matt. I hope all as well, I would never, ever say that in an email. I find myself saying it all the time now because the Saile bots do.
Matt DeCoursey 19:37
Well, that’s you talking about the comparison of data and results and that’s where I think that to prove a point we had been sending out using like a CRM, kind of a cold outreach, and I went like, Oh, we’re not getting a very big open rate. And I go and look at the subject lines. I’d like these, I wouldn’t open these either and they’re all What do you suggest? Make the subject line blatant sales pitch? Yeah. highest open rate we’ve ever seen in an email ever. That’s funny. Well, you know, I mean, that’s the thing is like, if you sometimes you gotta get that attention. Yeah, I spent. Unfortunately, I spend a fair amount of time every morning deleting a bunch of emails. I’m not going to open just to clear them out of my inbox, because I get all kinds of, like, boring inquiries. And like you mentioned, like, you don’t need to tell you, I don’t want to read your paragraph about why you have the audacity to email me like, just tell me what you want. And why. And if you can do that in like a couple of lines, then I might, I might reply, but it’s the TLDR stuff that’s like, why is there an 800 word essay with graphs and charts and like you don’t win at the email, like you need to respond to reply. And remember that prospecting outreach is intended to garner someone’s interest and what you do now if you’re, if you have the luxury of selling a frictionless product that aren’t that everyone onboards on to buys, and subscribes to, without any human intervention, congrats, but most most people that are selling stuff, well, you can’t even buy something from Full Scale like that.
Nick Smith 21:21
Yeah, well, I think also like the number one thing, like, you’re not going to stand out by doing the same thing everyone else is doing to stand out, like everyone is doing something that they think is really unique to stand out. And eventually, it all becomes the same white noise, right? I was just at a big software event conference. And we talked about how, you know, everyone had the same haircut, everyone had the same logo with the same white background in the same black font, right. And so you have to go against the grain a little bit. Now sometimes, and my team will tell you it can get a little bit wild, you know, I happen to I’ve developed this affinity for the color pink on most of our decks and websites. But what I think is true, and since I’ve been in sales has been true, is I’ve always sort of played with a little bit of a chip on my shoulder, like, I’m going to win that prospect, I’m going to win that business. In fact, sometimes I’ve been more distracted by the ones that have said no, than the ones that are over there saying yes, right. So that’s a little bit in my DNA of winning business, earning business fighting for the deal, justifying why we deserve a seat at the table. And I think that’s one of the things that’s helped Saile scale like we have.
Matt DeCoursey 22:41
I love this conversation. I got to do a little work here and remind everyone that finding experts, and software developers doesn’t have to be difficult, especially when you visit FullScale.io where you can build a software team quickly and affordably. Use the Full Scale platform to define your technical needs, and then see what available developers, testers, and leaders are ready to join your team FullScale.io To learn more, you know, the idea of automation and the scale that it comes in? And you’ve referred to that as digital labor. So like, I mean, how is that? How is that different than, you know, say like an automated sales tool?
Nick Smith 23:21
Sure. Yeah, it’s a good question. So I think about my sales career, and I was one of the ones that was notoriously bad about updating the CRM. And my sales manager would always say, Nick, how are you gonna hit the number this quarter? How are you going to make it? I don’t see it in the pipeline in the CRM. And I would always say, like, I’ll get there. And I always hit the number I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t hit the number, right. So that was something that was sort of baked into me and my own DNA. When I think about automation and digital labor, we know the leads will come. So we’re not just a lead platform, and we’re working with world class, we call them the 1% of sales leaders that know they’re going to hit the number, they know the deals are going to come. But this makes their life and their job exponentially easier, because it’s truly multiplying them. So I have this conversation with our team a lot. We’re not selling leads, leads are the outcome and they’re everywhere. They’re all around you. A lead could be on a post, a note could be on a billboard in your inbox, wherever. So the leads will come in and happen to be fantastic and actionable, right? But the real value is the multiplying of digital labor, because a multiplying of labor with digital labor, because one Saile bot should be able to do the output of three STRS. Right. And that’s just our sort of standard approach. A bot can do unlimited output, right? But if it’s doing the work of three STRS then you should expect Akt opportunities to flow as if you had three additional SDRs. So now Donna or Jessica or whoever today’s sailboat is we’re working with can literally be in multiple places at once we’ve we’ve been pretty proud of some of the reviews we’ve seen online come back and there’s one that’s my favorite, I always reference the person said, Saile solves the age-old problem of how can I be in two places at once. So I think that’s our approach to labor. I think the other thing is not to take it too abstract. But I think there’s a general trend of people wanting control of their labor and their output. And the reason I say that is the gig economy showed that people liked having a side hustle, people liked being able to make extra money and do extra things. And they were choosing to do that with their time. I think now, rather than just giving someone another platform to stick on to their sales obstacle course, we’re giving them time back, and they’re deploying that labor as they see fit. They’re prospecting the type of companies, they want to spend their time prospecting, they’re using a value proposition that they think is going to really land with the market. And I think there’s a lot more to come there with labor in general, and how you as a human can deploy your bot, as you see fit to benefit you. And no one should be afraid of that opportunity.
Matt DeCoursey 26:28
Just gave a fireside speech recently, that I will turn into a very rare solo episode, meaning like just me. But the subject was on how to scale sales at your startup. And, you know, it started with our humans ready to scale. Because like, for example, at Full Scale, we had a waiting list for a while, which meant that wasn’t necessarily a time I needed to press the gas down on marketing. But so much of the, you know, when you’re talking about being in two places at once, or multiplication, is the key ingredient. Because you know, if you’re not, you have to define what it is that you want to do. And if you have to bring in nine or 10 new people, now you’re going to have to train them, how long does that take? Several of them are going to die on the vine, no matter how accurate you are with hiring with salespeople until they show up and show that they can sell, you know, now, you don’t know and I, you know, really keyed on the use of automation. But some of my frustration that went with it, you talked about the AI and being a little more intelligent, because an automated sales tool is just gonna be like, hey, if this card, so you look at like, like a Trello board or a Kanban board as it’s technically known. And you talked about not updating the CRM. I mean, dude, that’s a bigger challenge than anything else. I mean, it solved that problem right there. And I And you mentioned post it note, which I actually use as an example. So I used to sell pianos, long time ago. Now, people aren’t gonna tell you how you make any money doing pianos because they’re expensive, and there’s a big commission there. But I had a guy come in that wanted to buy like the most expensive thing in the store, it was like 70 grand, and I used to write things down on post-it notes and like stick them to the wall, by the way to give you some timing on where we were technologically, the palm pilot was still out there. And my sister actually learned that scribble language anyway, but I had written this, this info down, and it was in my pocket in my pants that ended up accidentally getting washed that night. And away went the lead prospect. And I remember how I felt I was like, oh my god, like what just happened? And I also remember how lucky I felt when that person found their way back to the store and purchased on their own. Yeah, but that was that lesson of recording the opportunity, the moment you know that there’s an opportunity, which is also what salespeople are bad at. They’re like, Oh, I’ll write it down later and forget about it, or what slips through the net. And, you know, so the thing is, it is like an automated sales tool, you okay, you talk about this card and say, Okay, this is a prospect, and then they’re interested. And all you’d have to do is click a mouse and move a thing on a screen over like 20 pixels. And, and that’s and then you’re winning. Yeah, you would be shocked at how hard it is to get a human to do that. Yeah, well, you might not be, but most people would be sure.
Nick Smith 29:28
And I mean, I guess there’s probably a couple of reasons why your sales automation tool won’t work.
Matt DeCoursey 29:31
If you don’t slide that frickin card over a little bit, because this guy is now waiting for that. And you know, it’s just there’s not there’s not a real level. There’s no intuition, or learning or any of that. And I would assume that those are some of the problems that you’ve solved. Well, maybe not moving the card itself, but understanding Hey, I got a reaction here.
Nick Smith 29:57
I think what would be the reason that someone doesn’t move the cart over? Is it because they’re so distracted by what’s next? What’s the next thing? Is it? Is it laziness? Is it? There are so many different things?
Matt DeCoursey 30:10
It could be a philosophical question that sales leaders and business owners may never answer.
Nick Smith 30:16
Yeah? Or is it a little bit of pride, there’s a lot of things that could be there, I think what we try and solve is, in terms of the daily prospecting activity in the intelligence required behind that, we take care of that. And I think that if we can remove some of those tasks that eat up so much time, then or that you don’t have the discipline to do or that you don’t have the discipline to do, it enables them to do more of the things they do want to do, which is to have conversations, have, you know, solve problems, etc.
Matt DeCoursey 30:50
So in the world of sales leadership, you’ve had to, like, train yourself to like, really, quite honestly, stay on people. About it’s aggravating, it’s aggravated. And so I, I trained myself, like literally, so your habits and your actions, and your success or lack thereof are determined by the programs that you build in your own mind and your own actions. And I’ve literally trained myself to take this like to get this weird little release of endorphins, when I move that card over. Or when I cross something off to do less I have something like, it’s just like, I mean, it’s like, what is really satisfying?
Nick Smith 31:28
Well, what do you use for your to-do lists?
Matt DeCoursey 31:30
So you know, that’s, that’s the crazy thing is we’re sitting here talking about AI, and I still use paper? Yeah, well, I do it for most stuff, I have other things, if I want to share it with a group of people, we have like an actual process. Yeah, I, you know, kind of like the Kanban stuff. Kanban is like Trello is the best example of that, just sliding the card over. But here’s the thing. So I forced myself to rewrite the to do list regularly, which you will only use, like, begin to shame yourself. But I am writing this again. And again. So for me to rewrite my to-do list in some cases may take three hours, because I’ll actually do a lot of the stuff. Because it’s always little shit, dude. It’s like, like a three minute task. And I’m like, Okay, so I’m gonna, like, write this down again, or actually do it. Yeah. And, and so that, but that’s, that’s a force of habit. And it’s gone on for a while.
Nick Smith 32:23
So I, for me, I live for the day being in Microsoft to do, and sometimes when I need a real boost, I’ll resist the urge to mark it off, because I know I can knock out three, and then I get a ding, ding ding. And even now that we’re back, sort of like working together and like working in an office. I know if my voice sounds up and other people are in the office and I am doing other people use that app, and they’re gonna know that I’m really crushing it, they’re gonna be proud.
Matt DeCoursey 32:51
It’s weird. And it’s funny because I feel ancient by saying that like the bit of the paper thing, and like I mentioned rewriting it. And some of that is more courtesy, because it’s hard for me if I write something down, like, now, it’s, I liked to feel present, because a lot of the stuff I’m taking notes on would be during a conversation with someone. And if I’m sitting there plunking it into my phone. Yeah. You know, some of it. I’ve tried a lot of digital stuff, man and I and it’s weird, because I really am like an automation for you guys. In every business I’ve owned, I have made such a strong push to automate all of that. And I mentioned to you when we first chatted, so I, I own a ticket business, like, you know, we’re ticket brokerage, and we went from 4 million to 8 million a year in sales over a two year period. And our staff went down by 50%. And it was just from automation and efficiency, and it was all doing stuff that no one wanted, anyway. Yeah. So it wasn’t that we didn’t replace people. It’s just if they moved on, we just didn’t replace them. Yeah, it makes sense. We didn’t like fire people going, Oh, thanks for building the robot now get out because the business was getting smarter. And we got totally smarter. I mean, a lot of it was just like it. So if you’re a high volume ticket broker, you’ve got a million dollars or more worth of stuff for sale, and then a dynamic marketplace as meeting places where the price can change at any time like eBay or StubHub. These are dynamic marketplaces, so you can go through and price all that stuff accurately as a full time job for a human, but it doesn’t need to be. So we had pricing automation, and the main thing was about harvesting data. So it’s like, buy tickets, and we’d have all these purchase orders and it was entering it as data entry. Yeah. And just like and then some of it too, it’s also just like, you know, this is back when tickets were PDF, you know, and you know, now they’re you can’t get a PDF of the ticket in most places. So that your goal and a business like that is not to ruin someone’s night. And I say that meaning you can’t sell the same PDF twice or I mean, someone’s outside the venue. Yeah. And it’s, it’s, it’s expensive business practice. Because if you do that, places like StubHub, they find you, they like to charge you extra, like, it’s financially devastating, not devastating, but it’s noticeable. And then also you just don’t want to ruin the site, you know. And so with that, there’s the automation side of it was wildly more accurate than human. Sure. And then also just finding people that wanted to do it. So you know that yeah, that that was super helpful. And especially with the pricing thing, because you talk about selling stuff. If you’re selling an identical or similar product, and let’s, it’s easy. So in the case of a concert, it would be like a lawn ticket. I mean, there’s who knows how many lawn tickets on StubHub for a big show? They’re not different. Yeah, it’s on the lawn. Right? So the thing is, people will buy the least expensive one. Yeah. So you get it, you would get in these marketplaces, you get into these like, literally penny stocks. Okay, you’ll take 50, you’ll take 54, I’ll do 5399. And you’re just like, but here’s the thing is this, that can be the difference in selling. And you talk about just like, I mean, 1000s and 1000s of little unique things. And then we’re automation. And we kind of developed our own in this regard by also knowing when to stop with the penny wars, because the automation can get out of control, too, when we tried to build some of it. And we weren’t successful, we learned a lesson on that really quickly, because if two bots battle each other, and they don’t have a floor, you’re going to sell something for a penny.
Nick Smith 36:56
Wow. It’s amazing. See, I never would have thought of that.
Matt DeCoursey 36:59
So some of that we did on a smaller scale. And there were actually a couple of companies that built it on a massive scale. And, you know, there’s ticket brokers that do 100 million in sales a year. And just think, yeah, and at the time, they have five or six people that would just sit there and do pricing. Oh, yeah. And the problem. The problem with that, too, is that anytime that these are some of these are subjective decisions made by a person. And what we found is that you had some employees that were really good at that, and then some work, and some of the when, and when it was all manual, it resulted in a lot of stuff being sold for a fraction of what it should have been. Because someone just didn’t have the understanding that this is worth $1,000 rather than 250. Yeah. So yeah, just weird. And then it was just mainly just the volume, because you spent half a day repricing everything which when you were done, just man, it was time to start over.
Nick Smith 37:57
So but like you, when you start talking about what can go wrong? Or what to or needing to have a floor, you probably gave the guidance on what that floor up.
Matt DeCoursey 38:09
Right. And some of the some of it would just be like, you know, you could just set I mean, it would just be like automatic like, honestly, the biggest challenge and a lot of cases with just getting your listing created getting the entry made and to the point of Saile system. Yeah. Because in those kinds of as it says, There’s you talk about timing and opportunity. And I think that’s a good thing to understand in sales is that there are definitely better times to sell whatever you’re selling than not.
Nick Smith 38:37
Well. So I think there’s a couple of good points on that. But back to the last thing, what I would say is, you know, you’re giving the guidance on what the floor should do. So the Saile bot is still reliant on the human to give guidance on what it should do and who it should do it with. And I think that’s really important. And when it is because, you know, salespeople are notoriously stubborn, and I think most are under the impression they’re the only person that can do what they’re doing. And maybe they’re wrong.
Matt DeCoursey 39:05
Maybe they’re not, you know, refusing to believe or admit that salespeople are stubborn.
Nick Smith 39:09
Right, exactly. So I’ve interviewed salespeople all day today, and I’m very energized because I love it. I love interviewing and talking to salespeople, but they’re definitely under the impression that they are the only people that can do what they do.
Matt DeCoursey 39:23
Yeah. And that was my point earlier in this show, everyone. They all think they’re great. And by the way, if someone shows up for a sales interview, and they don’t think they’re a great salesperson, believe them, because I’ve not heard of a great salesperson that was like I suck.
Nick Smith 39:37
Yeah, so we rely on them heavily. But to your other point of like there’s good times to sell and bad times to sell. Still my favorite use case of a Saile bot and it goes back to something else you said about sick days. Is the second week in December the best time to start cold outreach with the prospect not in my business not actually being the worst. Yeah, not manually especially. But just as you’re sitting at your desk miserable or not miserable in the second week of December, someone else’s too, and it’s not costing you extra for the Saile bot to prospect those people and find the needles in the haystack that our worst case scenario someone’s out of offices on. And they replied to the bot and said I’m out of town on holiday until the second week of January. The Saile bot will read that, and we’ll follow up a few days after they get back. That is where automation and AI can help you truly be on top of it and on in more places at once.
Matt DeCoursey 40:39
So here we are 40 minutes later. These always go really fast. I love the subject. And I do want to remind everyone if you need to hire software engineers, testers, or laters, let Full Scale help. We have the people on the platform to help you build and manage a team of experts. Kind of like what you’re doing, our system will match you up with people that have the skills and experience you’re looking for. And you know that’s an important part of what we do. You can learn more about it at FullScale.io. Look, you just go, and you answer a couple questions. It takes like two minutes. You did it, and you took like literally two minutes. It’s great. And that’s just the fastest part. Now, obviously, our goal without its kind of like yours is like, let’s trim the fat out of this matching process. And you know, like you, and we find that. Let’s put it this way, you would be surprised at how many people that run tech companies aren’t really sure about what they need with their Yeah, and then the hard part is determining who’s any good at it? Sure. This is easy to do. You may or may not be surprised at how many people with 15 years of experience can’t pass our assessments. Really. I mean, it happens all the time. A lot of it’s just because, and you know, and there’s been a different approach to stuff because you used to look at, say, used to, I’m 47 years old, so I’m kind of old. But you know, 20 years ago, you wish that they’d been in the same place for 15 years, in tech. That’s not always a great thing. Sure. Because that can be very institutionalized. Like we’ll get people that have been at some company for 15 years, and they don’t, and they don’t know how to use GitHub. Yeah, you know, and that’s kind of a crucial piece. Sure. Now, but that’s just because they didn’t do it. So these are the things we’re batting for. Someone asked me earlier today, Well, what do you sell at Full Scale? I said peace of mind. That’s, and I think that’s what you sell. And because as a business owner, dude, what keeps me up at night is the lack of prospecting and the lack of consistency and prospecting and the lack of ability to steal. Okay, so all the stuff you’ve talked about, and I’ve been thinking about this whole time, is that I think the most expensive and most painful opportunities to mess are the ones that you didn’t even realize existed, or that or that you just clearly fumble.
Nick Smith 42:58
Well, we, so I think about this a different way. There was a sort of a trend a few years ago where everyone needed their b2b database subscription. And I always thought of that as you’re paying a subscription fee to find out a bunch of people that, you know, are not doing business with you, right, essentially. But then, once you have that, you still have to do something with it. Why not proactively get ahead of it? Of course, you need contact data, but find people that are ready to do business and the opportunities, the people that are sitting out there that need what you’re selling, that don’t even know that you exist, or that you wouldn’t have contacted.
Matt DeCoursey 43:38
So that’s the key thing. And then, and you know, to be elite as a salesperson, you have to be great at prospecting and follow-up. Like the follow-up thing is, and I. And, you know, that’s, I have had pretty experienced salespeople in the past that don’t understand, like, can’t don’t seem to understand how to take the temperature on, you know, if someone’s really interested in what you’ve got, and they’re ready to go. And they’re like, Yeah, I’ll follow up with him in a week. What I’m gonna call them? I’ll call you tomorrow. Sure. Call me that night. Yeah, if that’s the case. I mean, it depends on what you’re selling. But yeah, and this is, that’s what I love about the automation piece. And then and then the intelligence behind it, because that’s, that’s gonna go back and review and like what we talked about, I think that’s the big difference between what you’re building and the automated sales tool because we talked about the cards. And the problem is, if that person doesn’t slide that thing over, then it’s not going to send that next sequence or that next, whatever. And I’ve even had situations where someone doesn’t want to move the card. So then you make yourself and your business look like an idiot because they already filled out the form. And you’ve got some, I mean, a dumber automation tool that’s like, hey, fill this out, fill this out. I’ve had that happen, and I don’t reply to that ship pleasantly. Yeah, I’m. Actually, I’m actually up. I might be a box shamer. In some regards, I get it on LinkedIn a lot and do like, it more. I mean so much. It’s like, dear first name. I’m like, You need to tune up your bot, Dude, get it moving. Like it’s, it’s, it’s shocking. And then yeah, and by the way, please don’t reach out to me on LinkedIn, and the reason that we should connect is that you saw that I’m connected to someone else, you know.
Nick Smith 45:36
That’s weird, and I’ve seen the one about my five-year-old drawing this. You know this is the creepiest one I get all the time. And it’s from different people, different five-year-olds, like, my five-year-old did this art for you? And it’s my LinkedIn photo inside of a drawing. And it’s like, will you meet with my mom? Or will you not? And it’s really weird. So, the first time I got it, I thought, man, that’s not going to work. But then, I got like three others, so someone’s selling this concept out there. And I think it’s just really odd.
Matt DeCoursey 46:08
I should have prepared for this if I knew I was going to do this. But, you know, it’s like, I mean, there are some bad ones. It’s like, you know, I mean, just there’s a lot. I’m hoping to meet you at TechCrunch. I’m not going. I haven’t mentioned publicly that I was going. I did it already. It’s coming up. I mean, dude, there’s a lot. I archive so many of them because I do it instantly. I think you’ve accomplished a lot and expanded your company’s business. I have thought about expanding my business to the US. But I don’t know much about the US market. What aspects of the market do you think are the most important for business expansion?
Nick Smith 46:56
Our lack of response to LinkedIn messages.
Matt DeCoursey 46:59
I mean, that’s like one step above the Nigerian prince that needs my money to free up all of his money. I watched it. I was watching an old 30 Rock episode the other day, and Tracy Jordan had just gotten rich, and they had a big payment. And they were like, what happened? He’s like, oh, that Nigerian prince and that $50 million that was, but it’s just like, I don’t know, I think, with prospecting. It’s like you have to go back. I think the moral of the story is to have some good practices; have some good discipline. And then, you know, the messaging is key, too. It’s like, give me a right. Why am I listening? I think you have to assume that everybody you’re trying to reach is ridiculously busier than you can even imagine. So why do you want to pay attention? Saile, that’s with an e.ai. Check it out.