Artificial intelligence (AI) has transformed many industries, even those previously reliant on humans and people skills—and sales is no exception. AI sales automation tools are revolutionizing the way companies prospect, qualify leads, and close deals. In this article, we’ll explore how you can use AI to boost sales productivity, effectiveness, and seller happiness.
How Can AI Be Used for Sales Planning? Let Us Count the (5) Ways
Yes, sales is highly reliant on humans, but lots of those activities are repetitive, boring, and not actually driving sales. Just ask a salesperson or think about your own day. Scrolling through people’s profiles online to see where they work, saving that information in the CRM, logging notes, and updating deal statuses after each call—and so much else is unfun and not a great use of your talents.
And there’s a correlation between activities human sellers don’t like doing and the ones AI tools like Kindo excel at. AI is particularly good at automating repetitive, high-volume sales tasks (aka, the boring stuff).
Here are some ideas for applying AI in sales—and while it doesn’t handle all of these tasks completely yet—it can save you vast amounts of time:
One of the most time-consuming aspects of sales is finding and sourcing new leads. AI automation tools like machine learning algorithms can identify potential customers based on multiple data points. You can find these types of lead-generating AI in lots of different sales enablement tools.
And then, there’s the trouble of sorting those leads to find qualified ones to reach out to. And for that, you can use Kindo, which can ingest a prospect’s social media posts, website traffic, previous purchases, or other publicly available data to determine whether someone would be a promising lead. This allows you to spend less time prospecting and more time reaching out to the right people.
Once you’ve identified a lead, you need to qualify them to determine if they’re worth selling to. What seems like a great lead can often not be, because they’ve changed jobs, lost budget, lost team members, or any number of factors you can’t know until you ask. AI tools can automatically analyze your call notes plus the lead’s demographics, behaviors, and past interactions. Ask it to score leads on criteria like relevance, influence, and budget to prioritize which one. You can then start with the highest-scored (or highest-likelihood) leads.
AI excels at gathering customer data from various sources, analyzing it to identify preferences and pain points, and then suggesting ways to personalize written content. Some enterprise chatbots can have personalized conversations at scale to learn about prospects’ needs, and you can do something similar in Kindo. AI content creation tools can make best guesses to customize collateral, emails, and messaging.
AI conversation intelligence tools can listen in on sales calls and analyze the dialogue. (With Kindo, just give it your transcript.) The machine learning algorithm can detect key phrases, topics, objections, and questions. This gives sales reps real-time cues on how to steer the discussion. Conversation intelligence also informs reps on best practices by examining past call outcomes.
With huge volumes of customer data, sales needs AI to spot insightful trends and patterns. An AI analytics engine can combine information from marketing automation platforms, CRM systems, email systems, and other sources, to help you make sense of them. It can predict ups and downs in pipeline and forecast future pipeline and revenue. These data-driven insights can thus inform how many outbound activities you should be getting in, help you avoid feast-and-famine syndrome, and improve your sales productivity.
5 Uses Cases for AI in Sales Automation
In addition to planning activities, AI can help automate some of that drudgery we talked about in the introduction. AI can unleash powerful automation capabilities that make sales processes more efficient and consistent. Here are some examples:
Following up with every new lead is essential, and you have to do so quickly. But manually contacting all those prospects daily is hugely time-consuming and fractures your attention. AI tools like Kindo can generate emails for your team while AI sales engagement solutions can automatically send initial outreach emails or texts within seconds or minutes of capturing a lead. Quick personalized follow-up at scale boosts connections.
Back-and-forth emails negotiating meeting times are themselves a waste of time. AI scheduling assistants can integrate with your calendar and automatically suggest optimal times to meet. By factoring in the lead’s preferences and availability, AI scheduling cuts the coordination workload.
Reviewing contracts is a manual slog. AI can instantly scan agreements to check for errors, omissions, and red flags. For recurring contracts, AI can learn to flag unusual clauses. Used right, AI contract review tools catch issues early and reduce revenue leakage from suboptimal terms.
Entering customer, product, deal, and other data from sales activities into CRM software is repetitive and cuts into selling time. AI data capture solutions can digest details from emails, forms, presentations, and documents and automatically log relevant info into sales systems like your CRM.
You probably send hundreds of emails daily coordinating with prospects, colleagues, and partners—and that’s being conservative. AI helps prioritize the most important emails and can even generate intelligent email responses or meeting summaries. By handling mundane email tasks, AI email assistants boost productivity.
How Can AI Be Used in Marketing and Sales? Call it “AI-alignment”
AI also supercharges sales and marketing alignment for companies. AI enables tight cross-team integration in four areas:
Misalignment tends to arise from marketing and sales looking at different numbers. AI can crunch the data on past campaigns to uncover the triggers that convert prospects at each stage and provide a fact base both teams can agree upon. Knowing which ads, emails, content, and sales tactics worked best helps continuously improve funnel conversion.
To coordinate sales and marketing messages, AI can serve up hyper-relevant content for each prospect at every touchpoint. AI analyzes behavior and activity to create customized web pages, emails, ads, and more tailored to each person. And that dynamic content is more likely to get results.
Structuring and writing compelling proposals is time-intensive, and wouldn’t you know it, past proposals are highly structured data that AI like Kindo excels at reading. An AI proposal workflow in Kindo can ingest that and ask a few questions about the prospect and opportunity and then instantly generates the proposal framework. The AI will even write whole sections based on examples of past winning proposals, ensuring consistency and best practices, though you’ll undoubtedly have to edit that based on all you know about the prospect.
If AI can help you and your fellow sellers automatically log information, that cleans up the CRM and provides marketing much better data to work with. It’s not a fully unified CRM, but it’s the next best thing, and fast. AI can then help marketing refine its targeting and coordination across channels.
Can You Really Afford Not to Use AI in Sales?
AI can be transformative in sales. It can automate activities, generate leads, qualify prospects, develop messaging, and ensure you’re most productive when coordinating with marketing. An AI solution like Kindo can automate manual processes at scale to boost efficiency and consistency. To stay competitive, embrace AI sales automation. The rewards are faster growth, reduced costs, and happier customers.