In April 2018, I joined Akkroo as the first full-time sales development representative (SDR). In this article I’ll be talking about the SDR role in general, and what it’s like specifically here at Akkroo. Let’s start with what an SDR is, how the role has changed since I joined Akkroo, and how a sales development representative is different to a sales representative.
What is a Sales Development Representative?
When I first saw this role advertised, my perception was that the SDR role was a very junior one, often associated with endless cold-calling and never-ending call targets and KPIs.
That’s not what it is here.
At Akkroo, the role of the SDR team is to prospect into target accounts, nurture the leads with content supplied by the marketing team and, finally, qualify the leads (making sure the prospect would benefit from using Akkroo). Once qualified, the lead is passed over to the Account Executive team who demo Akkroo to the prospect and, ultimately, close the deals!
Being an SDR at Akkroo
From what I’ve seen, this is a fairly standard process in the world of an SDR but it’s the freedom at Akkroo that makes it such an interesting role; the SDR team can target whoever they want and however they want.
As such, there’s no micromanagement. We’re not targeted on things like number of calls or call times. Instead, we’re measured on what really matters: the number of qualified leads we pass across to the sales team. That’s not to say you’re in for an easy ride; at Akkroo, targets are expected to be hit but you’re given the freedom to choose how to go about that.
To some, this might suggest a lack of defined structure but, due to the world-class training, the range of sales enablement tools that the SDR’s use & the emphasis on personal development, it only ever feels exciting.
Training and Personal Development
From your first day at Akkroo, you’re enrolled in a comprehensive onboarding process where you will get a chance to meet the different teams and learn about what they do. At the same time, you will have a ‘sales mastercourse’ from our Head of Sales which is based upon the world-class Winning By Design training that the rest of the team completed in 2018.
After a couple of weeks, tools such as Salesloft and Sales Navigator will be added to your repertoire – I use these everyday, to help me more effectively prospect into target accounts and to design targeted content-based cadences around these accounts.
The idea of ‘never stop learning’ is very important to us at Akkroo with a big emphasis but on your personal development. Aside from the £50 book voucher we get each quarter to keep us reading & researching areas that we’re interested in, we have the opportunity to attend conferences & seminars throughout the year.
Working in the SDR team
We’re often described as the ‘bridge’ between sales & marketing, internally, and this is because of how closely we work with each team. Marketing provide the SDR team with regular blogs, videos and whitepapers and we use these to design specific content-based outbound cadences.
Aside from this, the marketing team regularly pass over leads that they have generated for us to further qualify (A.K.A Inbound SDR-ing). Once qualified, we write detailed notes & brief the sales team, prior to their demonstration of Akkroo to the prospect.
Another large aspect of the role involves attending various trade shows and events around the globe (with our most recent event being MarTech West in San Jose, California). The opportunity to travel and represent Akkroo all over the world is ramping up further with the recent hire of events manager, Rosie Day, who ensures our events calendar is kept busy.
Ultimately, working in the SDR team for Akkroo is about helping B2B marketers to solve their event lead capture problems in a consultative & helpful way. It’s a place where Marketing and Sales actually get along and share common goals. Everything Marketing does contributes to the success of Sales team – and the SDR team is right in the heart of that success. If this sounds like the sort of role that would suit you, you can apply on our jobs page here or reach out to me directly on LinkedIn.