Mar 18th, 2024

Love at first sale: top takeaways from Anthony Natoli [VIDEO]

Signals don’t close deals—people do.

We talked to Anthony Natoli, Senior Account Executive at LinkedIn, about taking a person-first approach to signal-based selling as part of our recent event: Love at first sale: the power of human-first GTM strategies.

Here are three of the top takeaways from that conversation (check out the full recording above).

1. TAM isn’t the same as intent or fit

It’s only natural to want to book every meeting and win every deal.

But there are only so many hours in a day. Sales reps have to separate high-intent, high-fit prospects from a product’s total addressable market (TAM).

And that’s where buying signals come in.

“Just because someone falls within your total addressable market doesn't necessarily make them a good fit right now,” Anthony said. “I'm a firm believer [in] signal-led prospecting. Because if you don't know who's actually interested and showing signs of engagement or intent or interest, you're going to just kind of throw things at the wall and hope they stick.”

Job changes, recent funding announcements, community interactions—these are all signals you can use to decipher where buyers are in their journey and craft relevant messaging.

🔦 Product spotlight: Person360™
Common Room’s Person360 feature allows you to automatically collect, deanonymize, enrich, and match all signals to a unified profile for individuals and organizations. This makes it easy to connect with the people and companies behind buying signals with full context.

Many sales teams turn to third-party intent tools to help take the guesswork out of prioritization, but these tools only reveal a sliver of buyer insights, not the full picture.

“You could use a tool like 6sense, Demandbase, or ZoomInfo that gives you some kind of intent, but that's just one piece of the puzzle,” Anthony said. “That's why it's important to take all of these different signals and put them together and serve up the relevant accounts and contacts like Common Room does.”
💡 Takeaway: Don’t settle for a snapshot
Signal-based sales strategies are only as good as the signals they’re based on. TAMs and ideal customer profiles are helpful as starting points, but they won’t tell you which prospects are primed to buy. Reps need visibility into intent and fit to qualify and prioritize opportunities.

2. Act on signals intelligently

Spotlighting signals is only step one. Reps have to use those signals to personalize outreach.

Some charge in and try to skip straight to booking a meeting. The smart ones double down on value-adding based on buyer context.

“You need to have some level of [emotional intelligence] when you're reaching out to prospects,” Anthony said. “Some are ready for a meeting, some are not, but it doesn't mean that you shouldn't reach out to them. It just means you should reach out to them in a more thoughtful way. And these signals should drive your messaging. They shouldn't be a sign of, ‘Okay, I'm going to go try to book a meeting automatically.’”

🔦 Product spotlight: Team alerts
Common Room’s team alerts feature allows you to automate alerts based on any combination of triggers and filters so you can see real-time activity from the people and accounts you care about. This makes it easy to always stay updated on specific individuals and organizations.

Technology helps you speed up signal-based selling, but it’s important to balance automation and human touch. Concentrate on improving efficiency without sacrificing quality control, such as by using tools that help you accelerate prospect research and prioritization.

“Ultimately, the biggest time suck for prospecting is figuring out who you're reaching out to and why you're reaching out to them,” Anthony said. “Because if you don't have those two things, especially the why, then you shouldn't be reaching out in the first place.”
💡 Takeaway: Let context lead the way
Signals tell you who to reach out to—context tells you how. It’s important to understand why buyers are in market in the first place and which problems they’re trying to solve in order to tailor outreach. Personalized value-adding always wins out over a generic sales spiel.

3. Fight tab fatigue

While signal-based selling sounds simple on the surface, it can very quickly turn into a maze of context-switching.

“There are so many disparate tools out there that give you information,” Anthony said. “And then you have to try to cobble those together and say, ‘Hey, what's actually going on with this account?’ I have one tool telling me this and another tool telling me this. Which one do I listen to? How do I combine the two? And then what ends up happening is you feel overwhelmed and then you're not able to do it for every account and you just default to automated messaging that [...] feels transactional and it's not using the signals to your advantage.”
🔦 Product spotlight: Segments
Common Room’s segments feature allows you to combine activity data from across 30-plus channels with customer fit criteria, such as organization size and role. This makes it easy to quickly surface, monitor, and engage specific people and companies at scale.

Getting your hands on the data you need is only half the battle. The magic happens when you’re able to combine it and centralize it in one sales-friendly place.

“The mandatory tabs that I have open are usually Common Room, I'll have LinkedIn open, I'll have my Google News open,” Anthony said. “And really my goal is trying to spend 10 minutes or less per account to find one reason why I should reach out.”

💡 Takeaway: Limit how often you’re changing interfaces
It doesn’t matter how many signals sales teams uncover if they’re unable to make sense of them or act on them quickly. Tooling that provides complete visibility into buyers and their actions across channels—and that allows reps to take action fast—makes all the difference.

Signals light the way, but it’s how you use them that counts.

These are just a few of the takeaways from our conversation with Anthony Natoli.

Watch the recording for the full story.

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