A text message here, a call there… maybe you switch it up and send a quick LinkedIn Inmail message — that should do it, right? Sigh. Oh, so very wrong, sales rep. It’s all about the sales cadence.

Not having a sales cadence, or sales sequence, is where you’re going wrong. Why? Because it provides a systematic framework to make sure each prospect gets contacted at the right time. 

It doesn’t matter if they’re hot, cold, or lukewarm — how do you expect to solve your leads’ pain points if you’re not nudging them at the right times and at each stage of the sales process? 

If you don’t, your deal is going nowhere fast. Like, 100 miles per hour fast. 

Why you need a sales cadence (no matter what!)

Do you manage a sales team? You need a sales cadence. Do you run a one-(wo)man sales show? You need a sales cadence. Are you a living, breathing sales rep? You know where this is going. 

Cadences are systematic sequences of engagements or follow-ups to engage with prospects and maximize deal flow. It’s also a path for you or your sales team to follow — like the yellow brick road you have to take to nurture your leads and turn them into customers. A well-rounded cadence:

  • Combines email, phone (yup, cold calling!), and social engagement
  • Uses a strong content strategy
  • Strikes a balance between persistence and annoyance

But don’t forget to adjust your sales cadence based on your audience! This choreography of touchpoints includes emails, phone calls, text messages, social engagement, and more, so always tailor your engagement. 

So what does an effective sales cadence look like? Freshsales’ Nivedita Bharathi recommends you consider these seven key elements to create a jackpot of a sales cadence for your business:

  1. Identifying the ideal customer profile
  2. The medium for communication
  3. The number of contact attempts
  4. The time gap between each attempt
  5. Duration of the cadence
  6. The message
  7. Test and optimize

Different sales cadences for different outcomes 

A sales cadence is a powerful tool — but only when used correctly. RingDNA says to keep this in mind: The right cadence “depends on your lead sources, sales cycle length, the persona(s) involved, and their communication preferences,” plus whether it’s for inbound or outbound prospecting.

One last thing: As you consider which cadence works best for your market, organization, and buyer preferences, do your due diligence and split-test your prospecting strategy.

For gaining 10+ meetings 

This banger of a sales cadence landed 11 meetings for the CEO and co-founder of a digital marketing consulting firm. 

Here’s the sales cadence Carlos A. Monteiro used over the course of 22 days to book meetings with some of the largest eCommerce players in the world. 

Day 1 Prospect ResearchDay 2 LinkedIn InMailDay 3Follow-up InMailDay 4 EmailDay 5 Follow-up Email
Day 6 CallDay 7Social Media (share an article and tag the prospect)Day 8 Video EmailDay 9Social Media (engage prospect on LinkedIn) Day 10 Voicemail
Day 11EmailDay 12Call or Email

For a methodical approach

This four-week sales cadence works best for long sales cycles and large deal value. Sales reps doing outbound prospecting to pursue mid-market organizations, this one’s all you. Nivedita Bharathi says the ideal duration of your sales cadence should be about two to four weeks — but that largely depends on your prospect’s engagement with your contact attempts.  

Check it out.

Day 1 EmailDay 3LinkedIn InMail Day 7EmailDay 10 CallTextDay 15 EmailLinkedIn InMail 
Day 17 CallVoicemailEmailDay 20LinkedIn InMailText CallDay 25 CallVoicemailEmailDay 30CallEmail 

For warming up your inbound leads

Inbound leads are warmer than cold leads who are contacted via outbound prospecting — that means you can afford to reach out more often per week. Inbound leads are notorious for having a short shelf life, but not with this simple inbound lead response.

Day 1 Call VoicemailEmailDay 2Call VoicemailFollow-up emailDay 3CallText Day 5 CallFollow-up emailDay 7 Call
Day 8 CallLinkedIn InmailDay 10CallEmail Day 14 EmailDay 18CallEmail Day 21Breakup email Call Voicemail

The stats that matter to your sales cadence

I hate to break it to you, but having a good sales cadence is half the battle — one of the most critical elements of a winning sales cadence is your “speed to lead,” which is all about the timing of your responses to customers. 

But I’ve blabbed enough — and data doesn’t lie:

  • Following up fast is critical to making a successful engagement. Calls within 10 minutes have a 38% engagement rate. Plus, the odds of qualifying a recently-generated lead decrease by more than 10 times after the first hour (!).
  • Wait 24 hours to respond and you’ll probably only engage with 5% of your leads.
  • 10% of sales are closed after four follow-up contacts, while 80% are closed after five to 12 follow-up contacts
  • Think text messages are lame? Twilio’s Julie Hsu says 99% of text messages are opened and read within the first 90 seconds of receiving them — that means a higher engagement rate than other channels + an easy way to send a clickable link to sales assets that will help close the sale. Win-win. 
  • Leads contacted within the first five days of being identified have a 20% better chance of purchase than those contacted later.

The proof is in the pudding: Cadence + speed to lead = A skyrocketing closing ratio. 
Ready for more deal-closing strategies? Check out this free resource to help you create the right sales cadence for you or your sales team.

Get Your Free Copy: Sales Cadence Guide