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How to keep your staffing sales team talking to more client prospects

Posted by
Diana Mitchell
on
December 16, 2022

Teams across the board are being tasked with working leaner and delivering more. This is particularly true for sales teams, where delivering more is literally the lifeblood of your organization.


We all know the old phrase “sales is a numbers game.” That statement has some merit, but the reality is a bit more nuanced. Having more conversations is important. But having better conversations is critical. Combine the two, and that’s where the real magic happens.

What does it take to help staffing sales teams have more, better conversations?

It is possible for sales teams to not only survive but thrive, in any economy. And while there are no “tricks” or “hacks” to keep your staffing sales team talking to more client prospects, there ARE some strategic, powerful ways to facilitate growth with a staffing sales team of any size.

Automate

If you’ve read this blog and know Sense, you knew this was coming 😉 But it’s with good reason. When I led marketing for an IT and engineering staffing firm, the sales team candidly admitted that they just didn’t have the time to follow up with all their prospects.

And while we’d all love if every prospect leapt at the chance to hire us at the first touchpoint, we also live in reality 🤣

Follow-ups are where results are found. But with pressure to add more leads into the pipeline and a lack of knowing what to say when following up, follow-ups are easy to forget. For staffing sales teams in particular, staying top of mind is critical. You may or may not know when a prospect is reviewing their vendor list and open to change, or what it will take to get an opportunity.

When they are ready, though, you want to be top of mind - for the right reasons.

When well executed, automated sales follow-ups are a powerful way to check a bunch of boxes. Let’s drill down a bit into how successful staffing sales teams are leveraging automation to fill and engage their pipeline.

Master “patient yet persistent”  

Digging deeper into automation for staffing sales teams, I want to talk about not just the “how” (automation) but the “what.” When the pressure is on, it can be extremely tempting to be “that” salesperson, blasting prospects on every medium, connecting with and immediately sending a pitch to new connections on LinkedIn (aka “pitch slapping”), and otherwise just blasting everyone, treating them all like they’re bottom of the funnel, and driving your prospects insane while you struggle to keep up.

It’s the “churn and burn” method of sales, and you will blow through your prospects quickly this way. Sure, you’ll get the occasional win, but how many prospects are you burning through to get it? Prospects who, when approached differently, could move down the funnel and end up clients, but because they were “burned,” will take someone else’s call instead?

Patience, Young Jedi. Patience.

Automating follow ups and leveraging automated sequences after activities like trade shows, events, webinars, etcetera - and using carefully-crafted messaging (see the next point) can help you not only stay top of mind, but stay memorable for the right reasons. Abandoning “spray and pray”, “churn and burn,” and other more-traditional sales methods is a powerful way to improve sales numbers.


Especially for staffing firms, where the entire industry is about people and relationships, yet, we so often fall into the old sales traps for fear of not hitting numbers. Traps that treat prospective customers and clients as signatures and checks rather than actual people.

Offer value besides talking about why your staffing firm is the best

We’ve checked some important boxes already. Leverage automation. Avoid “pitch slapping” and focus on value to stay top of mind and move prospects down the funnel.

Now it’s time to talk about what goes into your messaging.

Introductions and some follow ups should absolutely touch upon how your staffing firm provides value. But let’s be honest - there is very little true differentiation between staffing firms.

Gasp. Yes, I said it.

To the client, there are several criteria that are most important. I’ve conducted hundreds of interviews with staffing clients over the past 10+ years while working in the staffing industry, and these themes are universal. Most clients want:

  • Great talent. (Um, yeah)
  • Honest salespeople/recruiters (This should go without saying but nearly every client I’ve spoken to had been burned in the past)
  • Timely communication (!)

These are the most important things your prospective clients want. So, how can you stand out when everyone (literally everyone) makes promises on those pillars?

Show that you understand all the challenges they’re facing. And offer them advice to make their lives easier in those other ways.

Spoiler alert: I’m going to suggest that you work extremely closely with your marketing department on this one. That’s because the marketing team will be supplying you with content and recommendations to show that you understand those challenges and can offer solutions (beyond just what your staffing firm provides).

The marketing team can and should help you craft blog posts, eBooks, and even your automated emails, to craft the most-effective communications. Sharing insights from your prospect conversations is essential so that your marketing team can craft content that helps “solve” their challenges and headaches, making you the hero and ensuring that when prospects are ready, they think of you.

The marketing team can also help you create LinkedIn posts that showcase your expertise. That’s right, no one wants to read LinkedIn content talking about how your company can solve their problems, they want to read content that helps them solve their problems. See the difference? It’s subtle, but powerful.

You’re going to encounter recurring themes/problems/pain points for your prospects, which makes the process of following up even simpler. Using Sense, for example, you can create custom journeys for sales prospects based on a specific pain point/challenge. Then, you can automatically send out a sequence of messages with resources that help your prospects solve that problem.

You become the hero. Contracts and celebrations ensue. The end.

Okay, it’s not that simple. But, it can be pretty close to it. And leveraging automation and content (together with your marketing team) successfully is a powerful combination that frees you up to do more prospecting, because the automation is nurturing your current pipeline for you until 1:1 communication is needed (AND, it’s automating the “boring” stuff so that you get to spend more time on calls, getting to know prospects and build deeper relationships).

And when your staffing firm leverages Sense for recruiting and sales, you’ve increased your ROI tremendously while simplifying your tech stack. There is incredible potential for sales teams within our platform (something that I was excited about back when I was a Sense customer and not an employee!).

Want to see what this all looks like from within the Sense platform? Our team is happy to walk you through it and show you how Sense fits seamlessly into your sales processes (while supercharging results). Schedule a demo with our team to hop on a call and see our technology in action while asking any and all questions you might have.

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