If you’ve run sales teams in both small and large companies, you know that there’s quite a significant difference between the two. Tight-knit teams get things done quickly, whereas once you get past a few dozen BDRs the bureaucracy forces everyone to slow down. Suddenly, you see your team members spending their days filling out fields in the CRM and taking things easy until it’s crunch time to close the quarter.
The key then to good management is making sure that your team’s productivity doesn’t fluctuate. You should avoid labor under-utilization (i.e. paperwork) as much as over-utilization (i.e. too many leads to handle). In other words, it’s all about not wasting time and having a consistent pipeline to work with.
Luckily, today we can offload a lot of these time-consuming problems to technology thanks to all the recent advancement in machine learning and artificial intelligence. Let’s explore some of the best sales AI tools that can rescue time and provide unique insights for your BDR team.
What Are Sales AI Tools?
Before we list specific sales AI tools that could help your organization, let’s define what they are for. Sales AI tools, as their name implies, use artificial intelligence to either make your sales process easier and faster (e.g. automating data entry) or provide some unique AI-led value (e.g. proactively identifying leads).
There are five broad work categories where AI could be especially helpful: automation, recommendations, analytics, engagement, and lead scoring. Today,, we can find plenty of great sales AI tools in each one.
Staying on top of all of your current tools with data entry and updates is crucial. However, time spent on admin tasks and manual data entry is ultimately not being spent on selling.
One of those low-value tasks you can completely automate right now, for example, is scheduling meetings. What’s better, a 100% AI-based solution can do it for you.
Clara is like your virtual assistant, only that it’s working off complex artificial intelligence algorithms. It’s infinitely scalable and can be used by your whole organization. Just CC Clara in any of your emails and it will take care of scheduling any sales meeting using naturally generated language. Clara is available 24/7 and would cost just a fraction of what you’d normally spend on a dedicated assistant.
Alternatively, if you’d like to integrate more robust email automation, take a look at PersistIQ, which features an email finder, syncs with your CRM in real time, tracks your email performance, uses personalized variables in templates, and even replies to some emails for you, saving every person on your team a few hours every day.
Going beyond simple automation, AI-based tools today are able to analyze your communication style as well as conversion goals, and offer tailored suggestions as to what you should do next.
Highspot, for example, leverages its AI-driven semantic search to help your team find the best marketing materials for specific leads, taking into account their industry, segment, and opportunity stage.
There’s no doubt that the better your BDRs can get at understanding why deals are won and lost, the more effective they’ll be. While sales-call reviews right now are largely manual and subjective, you can already significantly accelerate the process by using AI-powered analytics.
Chorus captures all of your sales team calls, meetings, and emails and applies its AI model to identify what drives successful performance and how it can be replicated. Now, instead of listening to an hour-long sales call, your BDRs can review a five-minute Chorus highlight, full of actionable feedback and recommendations.
You know that when any lead visits your website, engaging them in a conversation is critical for them to stay in your sales funnel. While contact forms are still the default option for web visitors to inquire about the solution they are looking for, the average email response time often exceeds a few days, thus missing out on connecting with leads when their interest in what you offer is at the peak.
Chatbots, such as Drift, largely solve that problem by applying AI-driven algorithms to serve your visitors with a wide range of predefined options, answering simple questions, and even pre-qualifying them for sales meetings. Besides, Drift and other chatbots frequently include the possibility to switch from automated responses to live chat for sales.
While chatbots have the potential to increase your engagement rates, they can’t effectively qualify your leads on the spot (short of going through a high-friction automated process with visitors that will likely reduce your chances of converting). This results in your team spending time with visitors who have no intention to buy and missing out on those who do.
Uncovering the buyer intent of anonymous visitors (which could be up to 98% of all visitors on your website) is possible because Lift AI uses a proprietary machine-scoring model based on 15 years of data, one billion visitor profiles, and 14 million customer interactions. As a result, every visitor gets a unique score, which determines whether they should be directed to live chat for sales with your BDR or served with a self-help chatbot first.
Using Lift AI, your sales team can convert more visitors by only engaging those with a strong intent, which also improves the productivity and happiness of your sales team. Of course, the Lift AI free trial can put to rest any doubts you may have on that front.
As you can see, sales AI tools are on the accelerating trajectory to become the staple of every sales team out there. Whether they help you automate, engage, or analyze, they are cost-effective and able to perform their job instantly, around the clock, saving your BDRs hours every day so they focus on what they do best without distractions.