The more we talk to sales people, the more we realize that cold calling just isn’t cutting it anymore. And when you’re targeting large, enterprise companies, you need every edge you can get just to get your prospects’ attention — let alone land a meeting.

That’s why we’ve been implementing a video-first approach to sales here at Vidyard; video is engaging and helps cut through inbox clutter. After we started using video in our sales process, Scott Ingram, host of the Sales Success Stories Podcast took notice. He recently sat down with Reid Oliver, Business Development Rep here at Vidyard to learn about his sales strategy and how he uses video to land coveted meetings with enterprise prospects:

And in case you’d rather read some of Reid’s answers, here are a few that stood out from this awesome interview:

What kind of research do you do to ensure you consistently get meetings with prospects?

There really are a ton of tools out there to help with research, and I think you really need to pick and choose which ones are going to benefit your style most.  (Editor’s note: If you want to learn more about researching companies for prospecting with video, check out this post!)

We use Salesforce, so I will often look into accounts and run specific reports on whether we’ve had conversations with them in the past, or whether we have met with them at conferences. If we have never had any sort of interaction with them, I will go even deeper. I’ll follow the company on Sales Navigator or set up Google Alerts, so I can understand what people are interested in.

If I can understand when a company has a reason to invest in video or to invest in their digital strategy in our case, I’m going to be more likely to have that conversation. So I really try to be there with the research phase and try to understand — does it make sense to be reaching out at this point in time?

How are you using video for prospecting?

To drink my own Kool-Aid here, video has been a game changer for me in terms of cutting through the clutter. I think I see a LinkedIn post every day about how many emails executives are getting. And I often see people sharing screenshots of poor BDR or SDR prospecting emails, so I try to really think differently and a huge part of doing that is including video in my email strategy.

I’ve found just including a thumbnail of myself, or even me with a white board with the person’s name on it, increased my email click-through rates by 5 to 7x. (Of course that thumbnail links to the actual video.) Like this:

Sometimes I’ll even take that even further and I’ll put together a short demo video of the areas I see on their website where I can provide value. So I’ll do a screencast of their current video setup, and talk about how Vidyard can have a positive impact on that.

What are your favorite sales tools?

First off are a few Chrome extensions that I find that really help me out. I use an extension called Datanyze, which lets me visit a website and immediately see that company’s  revenue, what kind of funding they have, and a host of other details. If they’re a smaller company, I’ll be able to see things like what kind of technology they are using as well. A big piece of the puzzle for us is understanding what type of marketing automation system and what sort of CRM platform the company is using. That arms us with a ton of intelligence to be able to tailor our conversations, especially if they’re not a company that we currently have in Salesforce.

We also use Rapportive, which helps me find contact information from LinkedIn profiles. If it’s someone that we’re not able to find good data on, I’ll use Rapportive in addition to KiteDesk. These 3 extensions are available free as a BDR or sales rep, so I really love them.

And then a big part of my day-to-day is spent in Sales Navigator on LinkedIn. I take full advantage of following specific prospects that I’m not connected with, following full companies and getting alerts from LinkedIn on what they’re doing. I’ll often scan my newsfeed on LinkedIn for information to see what’s going on in my network, and so Sales Navigator gives me another space I can live in for all the companies I’m targeting and see updates day-after-day.

(Editor’s note: If you’re looking for free tools to accelerate your sales process, check out 11 of them in this post!)

How would you describe your sales style?

I’m pretty heads-down when I’m at the office. I’m focused on what I want to be doing today. I always take the opportunity to converse with my team, and talk about what we’re finding effective, but I really try to stay focused on the task at hand and the goals I’ve set.

When I’m focusing, a big part of that is trying to think differently and strategically to differentiate myself. I’ve received quite a few responses from people saying “Wow! This is a great email! I’ve never received anything like this in the past!” and I like to think a big part of that is my strategy. I include video in my emails, and I like to try and blend my personality with video to cut through the clutter.

Differentiation and being strategic are the two biggest sales philosophies I stick with.

What motivates you and keeps your energy level up?

To be honest, the dashboard motivates me quite a bit! When I go in, and I know I’m having a slow month, I always find myself peering at the stats. I’m the same way when I’m playing or watching sports — I’m always in the stats!

On my team, we have a lot of team activities as well. So we’ll be put into groups and have specific stats that we are measured against for the month. A huge part of that is trying to be part of that team and win it for the group that I’m in.

And last but not least, my manager is an awesome guy. I have a ton of respect for him, and I know that he’s a happy camper when the numbers are pouring in from my end as well!

Ready to practice what Reid is preaching?

Download the Video Selling Success Kit, and get tips and tricks collected from top-performing sales reps like Reid. You’ll get a free (forever!) video creation tool, a cheat sheet for creating your first prospecting video, and tips on how to make the most of video as a sales tool!

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Jon Spenceley