Sales teams have their work cut out for them. Between self-service buying options, the abundance of online research, and other new challenges, 54% of sales reps admitted that selling got harder in 2023.
One way to address these struggles is to establish a sales cadence personalized to your prospects. With this strategy, your sales reps have a series of proven steps to follow that help them address objections, assist prospects who are knee-deep in research, and ultimately convince new leads that your product is right for them.
Let’s dive into the ways a customer-first sales cadence can benefit your business, how to create one, and how to use tools like Loom to personalize cadence touchpoints using video.
What is a sales cadence and why does it matter?
According to RAIN Group, it takes about eight touchpoints to get a prospect to simply agree to a meeting. When you’re looking at even more touchpoints to make the sale, you can imagine the challenge of tracking all of those communications in a personalized manner.
The solution? A sales cadence.
Your sales cadence is the series of intentional touchpoints that occur between your salespeople and prospects. It outlines when and how reps should connect with prospects—for example, a sales cadence may determine the initial cold call on day one followed by an email on day two, and so on.
This sales strategy takes things a step further, however, by tailoring these touchpoints to the best times and channels for your outreach efforts.
The benefit? Stronger relationships with prospects and improved sales team productivity. And, ultimately, converting leads into new customers.
Sales cadence example
The timing and outreach channels of your sales cadence depend on your industry, product, and whether you’re engaged in B2C or B2B sales. But in general, you can look to a sales cadence to define how often you connect with prospects using different channels like:
Social media, like LinkedIn messages
In-person and virtual meetings
For example, your sales cadence might set sales touchpoints following this basic outline:
Day 1: Cold email your prospect to introduce your product and its benefits.
Day 2: Send a LinkedIn connection request and personal message in the morning, then follow up with a phone call in the afternoon.
Day 5: Send an email with an embed of a Loom product demo video that shows how your product can help your prospect.
Day 7: Call the prospect in the afternoon.
Day 10: Send a LinkedIn InMail in the morning and follow up with a phone call and voicemail in the afternoon.
How long should a sales cadence be?
HubSpot found that 8% of sales reps noted a drawn-out sales process as the biggest reason their prospects backed out, so clearly there’s a sweet spot for cadence length.
Unfortunately, a good sales cadence duration ultimately depends on your business, clients, industry, and even region. But in a livestream with Lavender co-founder Will Allred, Cognism’s creative advisor Morgan J. Ingram noted an ideal sales cadence is generally eight to 12 steps long.
Another nugget of wisdom from Ingram? The first four steps of your sales cadence tend to account for 80% of your conversions.
What does an effective sales cadence look like?
An effective sales cadence doesn’t follow a one-size-fits-all approach. Instead, it’s personalized to your prospects and brand. McKinsey found that companies focused on selling solutions are 1.5x more likely to outperform companies that don’t consider customer pain points and solutions their product can provide.
Without a personalized approach, it’s clear to prospects your sales cadence is optimized for your brand’s benefit, not theirs.
“With my role being in the sports industry, in theory it should be very easy to tailor the email content to what I do,” says Russell Scibetti, VP of strategy and business intelligence with the New York Football Giants. “Instead, I end up getting the same generic AI/BI/ML/tech/analytics-themed messaging that I know is being sent to anyone and everyone. This is the quickest way to tell me you have no idea how you can actually help me.”
To craft an effective sales cadence, you need to step into your prospects’ shoes and invite them to a conversation, rather than drop them into a sales funnel. Focusing on benefits and solutions is key to gaining responses—not to mention sales.
How to build your sales cadence strategy
Building your sales cadence doesn’t mean slapping together a timing sequence and communication channels. Data and a thoughtful approach are the difference between an effective cadence and one that tries to fit a square peg into a round hole.
Here are the steps you should take when planning your sales cadence:
1. Set goals
Scrutinize industry benchmarks and past data from your own business to determine what’s achievable when it comes to goals.
Additionally, aim for more granular goals. These help you better understand whether certain touchpoints in your sales cadence are successful or not. Some metrics that help you assess the effectiveness of your inbound or outbound sales cadence include:
Email open rates
Meeting or demo bookings
Sales pipeline progression
2. Define your target audience
Determine your ideal customer profile (ICP) for each sales cadence. This allows you to segment prospects by industry, job title, company size, and any other demographic data that’s helpful.
Once segmented, you can craft personalized messaging that resonates with each type of buyer persona. McKinsey found that 76% of consumers consider personalized communications a key factor in whether or not they consider a brand. And if your brand gets personalization right, you can expect a 10 to 15% revenue boost.
3. Choose communication channels
Which channels does your target audience use currently? Which of these channels are best positioned to help you achieve your goals? These questions help you pinpoint where your outreach efforts should take place.
It’s worth noting that some traditional sales channels are outdated. LinkedIn’s 2022 State of Sales report found almost 40% of sellers closed deals over $500k without meeting buyers face to face. So embrace digital communications like videos, social media, and email.
4. Determine touchpoint timing
Timing is everything. This couldn’t be truer for your sales cadence, where timing can mean the difference between making your cold call during your prospect’s busiest time of day or reaching them when they’re most receptive.
Salesmate CRM’s latest study found the following gems regarding sales timing:
Best day of the week: Wednesday
Best time of day: 4 to 5 p.m.
Of course, you may find your data points you to different best days of the week and times to call. Analyze your reports to determine when it’s best to reach out to your prospects—including how soon sales reps should reach out after prospects take a certain action, like downloading an ebook.
5. Outline your cadence
Now it’s time to pull all your data, goals, and decisions together. Decide on:
The number of touchpoints in your cadence
Where each touchpoint occurs in the customer journey
The channels used by each touchpoint
The purpose of each touchpoint
Your cadence should also include guidance on when to close the sale. Some questions that can help you pinpoint the ideal time to push for a sale include:
When do prospects most often appear ready to buy?
How can sales reps determine if a prospect is ready to buy?
How many attempts should sales reps make to close a sale?
What follow-up actions should salespeople take if a customer isn’t ready to buy?
6. Create content
Supporting content can be internal or external. Internal content includes assets like your sales playbook, sales call checklists and scripts, and email templates. External content includes product demo videos, personalized emails, and case studies.
Each piece of content should be mapped to a specific touchpoint in your sales cadence and support the goal or purpose of that touchpoint.
For example, you may share a teardown video with a prospect during one of your initial touchpoints to establish your brand as the go-to solution.
7. Analyze results and optimize
Done building your sales cadence? Your work isn’t over yet. In fact, you want to continuously monitor your sales team’s data and optimize your cadence. This allows you to always deliver the best possible buyer’s journey for your prospects. In turn, your sales representatives always have the most efficient way to engage and convert prospects at their fingertips.
5 sales cadence best practices
Ready to put together a sales cadence that weaves personalization with efficiency? Here are a few best practices to successfully capture your prospect’s attention:
1. Create explainer videos
When it’s time to learn more about a product, a whopping 91% of people have watched an explainer video. If your business isn’t recording this type of video, you’re missing out.
Loom helps you record helpful, persuasive explainer videos that:
Answer your prospects’ biggest questions
Highlight how your product benefits your target audience
Break down complex features into memorable nuggets
Add life to your brand story and values
Cultivate interest in your product
Bonus tip: Send personalized videos to prospects. This allows you to quickly break down complex solutions, engage prospective buyers, and even foster trust.
2. Publish product demos on your website
Self-service purchases are king. HubSpot found that 96% of salespeople report their prospects have already researched their product at the time of initial contact. On top of that, 71% of shoppers prefer to research purchases themselves before speaking to someone. It’s clear you need to optimize what info prospects discover before their name ever crosses your desk.
One way to share solutions-focused product info with potential customers is product demo videos. This shortens the amount of time prospects spend researching and adds a personal touch to the messaging they discover on their own.
3. Send a welcome video to new clients
Your prospect just became a new customer, congratulations! Now what?
Now you can continue delighting them by sending a video welcoming them. Ideally, your video recording focuses on helping them achieve success with your product. You can do this by asking questions like:
What do you want to achieve with [product]?
What business goals can we help you achieve?
How was your first time using [product]?
Where did you find us?
Why did you choose [product]?
How have you been enjoying this new feature?
Real-time survey software doopoll asked these questions in a welcome video recorded by co-founder Marc Thomas. The result? A 2.13% boost in paid conversions.
Pro tip: Make each welcome video extra special by personalizing it with the customer's name or job title using Variables. This new Loom feature is available today on Business and Enterprise plans.
4. Share thoughtful notes
Ever received a birthday note or a congratulations from a business? Chances are that if you did, it improved your perceptions of that brand.
You can duplicate this outcome by sending personal, thoughtful notes to your prospects. Some ideas include:
Wish them a happy birthday
Congratulate them on promotions or business wins
Thank them for a presentation you watched
Express how helpful their content on social media or their blog is
Wish them a happy holiday (double-check they’re celebrating before you send)
Ask for their thoughts on a recent industry development
While pitch decks are helpful, you boost your chances of winning prospects over with thoughtful approaches like these.
Don’t forget: Personalization shouldn’t end after new leads make a purchase. It belongs in your customer success strategy as well.
5. Connect prospects with SMEs in your business
Feeling a little repetitive in your outreach efforts? You’re not alone—many sales cadences don’t offer ways to break away from standard messaging.
Kieran Baker, co-founder at Allegrow, an email outreach solution, says sales teams can avoid repetitive messaging by introducing prospects to someone else in their business with an interesting point of view.
For example, he asks, “Have (your prospects) mentioned other problems on prior calls that your team might have opinions on?” If so, this is an ideal opportunity to bring someone else into the conversation.
5 sales cadence tools to personalize your outreach
Your sales team doesn’t have to go it alone when it comes to following your new sales cadence. These tools can help them engage prospects and streamline their outreach efforts:
Loom’s video recording software makes it easy to create assets that convey your product’s benefits to prospects. You can also use its free tools to answer questions and objections, record a welcome video, and personalize your communications.
With a paid Loom plan, you can embed links into your videos so prospects can take immediate action. You also get access to more robust engagement insights to track the effectiveness of your videos. Need more time in your day? The Loom AI add-on auto-generates video titles, summaries, and even a compelling share message that you can paste into an email. Plus, Loom’s Salesforce integration makes it easy to see which videos are converting prospects into meetings.
Make it as easy as possible for prospects to book a meeting with you. Calendly allows you to embed your availability directly into emails or on your website—sales reps can even schedule meetings through LinkedIn. Best of all, Calendly helps your sales team automate follow-up emails and reminders. That’s one less task to divert attention away from the sales process.
Get to know your audience better with SparkToro. This audience research tool provides in-depth insights into what your ideal customer talks about online, the podcasts they listen to, who they follow on social media, and much more.
Use these insights to build data-optimized personas and craft personalized messages for different sales cadence touchpoints.
Automate the parts of your sales cadence that involve email prospecting with Mixmax. This email tool includes options to automate CRM updates, team hand-offs, and more. It also includes efficient scheduling tools, similar to Calendly.
Best of all, Mixmax’s detailed reports can help you spot which email sequences get the most engagement and have the highest success rates—valuable info that helps you optimize your sales cadence.
5. Email Hunter
Need a way to get a hold of your prospect but can’t find their contact info? Email Hunter can help. Pop their business website URL, name, or company name into the search bar and this tool does the rest—including verifying that the contact info it finds is legit.
Integrations with popular sales software and CRM platforms like Salesforce, Pipedrive, and HubSpot ensure any newly discovered contact info is saved. You can even save verified contact info in a Google Sheet.
An effective sales cadence personalizes your outreach
Personalization goes a long way toward building a relationship with prospects—and a long way toward business growth. McKinsey found fast-growing companies drove 40% more revenue through personalized efforts compared to slow-growing companies.
But don’t just address your prospect by name in an email and call it a day.
Instead, add personalized messages to all touchpoints in your sales cadence. Address prospects by name and call out their recent achievements, ask questions that pinpoint their needs, and follow up with specific details about how your product can help them.
One way to achieve all of this is with Loom videos. Loom puts a face (and a smile) to your name with recordings that add a human element to your sales pitch deck, explainer video, or even your cold email. Start recording with Loom for free and find out how our recording software can improve your sales success rates.