Blog Post

Define “Qualified” as in “Qualified Prospects”

What does this mean? How should a company decide what makes a prospect qualified?

If clients and money are coming in, this is a secondary problem, right? Why does it matter? For an organization that is looking to scale their business, having a well-thought-out and preferably data-proven definition of ‘qualified’ is Paramount. ScaleUpOnDemand’s client, Indigo Energy, desperately needed this definition.

After three months of implementing new standardized methods, messaging and ongoing training, Indigo developed and secured over 80 qualified, NEW accounts. This was over TWICE as many new clients that the company had seen for the entire previous fiscal year WITH the same number of sales reps. Let that sink in. The majority of ScaleUp’s success was based on simply understanding the PARAMOUNT value of truly defining what “Qualified” is to your organization.

Founded in 2008, Indigo came on the scene as a small player in a massive industry, delivery of wholesale petroleum products and renewable fuels. Price drove all fuel-buying decisions, and Indigo thrived for several years being a leaner and faster alternative to oil and gas giants. In time, Indigo saw an increase in similar wholesale delivery competitors that replicated their quick-delivery, multi-option model. To stay ahead of their new competition, they needed to operationalize their view on customer acquisition and that began with understanding who their ideal customer was. But they hadn’t done this before and weren’t sure how to begin.

ScaleUp, with a Revenue Operations Analyst and Bus Dev Manager, recognized that Indigo couldn’t consistently answer the question, “who is your ideal client?”. The result was obviously varied and sporadic prospecting efforts and poor top of the funnel metrics. What makes the “best” the “best”? Was it how much fuel they buy at a time, how often, where they were located or was it their potential to increase volume or types of fuels they purchased in the near future? After every person contributed to defining this important definition, we had clarity AND agreement (from finance to operations to marketing and sales) on who the team should be contacting to generate new business.

The existing, antiquated sales techniques, approaches, and follow-up processes wouldn’t allow the company to best leverage this newly-gained knowledge. All the things you would expect were implemented (salesforce automation tool, messaging strategy with email and voicemail templates, standardized objection-handling, campaign calendar with targeted sub-industries, time management guidelines, etc.). The key was looking back at the definition of a qualified prospect during every step of this process (e.g. when building messaging or role-playing with the team).

With all of the material and messaging in place, having lengthy conversations were expected to be the norm and everyone needed to elevate their level of comfort and confidence on the phone. The sales team had become accustomed to speaking with existing customers to the point that they had no idea how to describe their product or differentiator to a new prospect. To build confidence, we had to practice. So, we did just that by sitting in a room altogether, with one phone, and individually cold-called prospects to hear what worked, what didn’t and to again quickly build individual confidence.

“They [ScaleUp] updated our sales approach in a significant way. I admit, I was hesitant to some of the ideas, but the team walked me through the positive impacts that we would see and it turned me into a believer.”

-John Mansfield, CEO of Indigo Energy

ScaleUp’s success relies on our clients’ success and those who are open to and understand growth strategies, just as Indigo did. Let us help maximize your upcoming business growth plans, reduce your spend and minimize risks with our team of on-hand, experienced operators and business development professionals today.