Hey Joe,

I’m about to start a new role as a sales development rep – and if all goes well, there’s a good chance I can move into an account executive position down the road.

What specific tools in my company’s tech stack will be most relevant to me as I embark on this journey?

I want the whole picture now, so I can prepare myself and start off on the right foot.


Revitalized Renata

Pink seperator line

Hi Renata, thank you for the question, and congratulations on your new role as an SDR!

Gaining a holistic view of the tech at your disposal is essential in sales and will certainly set you up for success over the long term.

So how can we identify and prioritize the tools that are most relevant to you?


The 4 sales tech pillars

I like to break down the Sales tech stack into 4 major pillars. Let’s get into them:

1. CRM (Customer Relationship Management)

This is one of the more obvious, but important, aspects of your company’s tech stack.

Whether it’s Salesforce, HubSpot, or anything else, chances are your company will have a dedicated CRM.

Ideally, your CRM will contain information on leads, contacts, and sales opportunities informed by activity, contract history, and so on.

A well-managed and comprehensive CRM is a must-have for effective Sales and Marketing reporting.


2. Sales Engagement Platform

Next is to figure out what Sales Engagement Platform your company uses. A few examples include Salesloft and Outreach.

These tools allow you to be as efficient and effective as possible, particularly when it comes to setting up your outreach cadence.

As an SDR, you will also be using this tool often for prospecting, forecasting, reporting, and so on.


3. Sales Intel Platform

This tool will be highly relevant to your role as an SDR.

The sales intel platform could be something like LinkedIn Sales Navigator or ZoomInfo.

This tool provides valuable information on leads and opportunities so you can pursue relevant prospects and build relationships.


4. Contact Information Platform

The fourth and final pillar of the Sales tech stack is a contact information platform like ZoomInfo.

This will provide phone numbers, emails, and LinkedIn profiles of clients, prospects, and other important contacts.


Many tools have overlap

It’s important to understand that many of these platforms will have overlapping use cases and functionalities.

For example, ZoomInfo offers certain modules that provide “intent” information on contacts, classifying them as potential prospects or sales opportunities based on their search history, activity, and so on.

Then, you might have LinkedIn Sales Navigator, which can provide similar benefits, such as alerting you when a growing company has just raised funding or had a change in leadership.

In short: Not only do you need to identify the tools that are relevant to your role, but you also need to understand how they can work together optimally. Read our post ‘How Do I Evaluate New Pieces of Technology‘ for more information.


Your role in all of this

As an SDR, you exist at the top of the sales funnel. You’ll fill the pipeline with leads and get the conversation going, which means you’ll likely be using your company’s sales engagement and sales intel platforms more than anyone else.

Conversely, as an account executive, you will be spending most of your time in the CRM as you strive to develop relationships and ultimately close deals.

But these rules aren’t set in stone!

Many account executives, especially ones who do their own prospecting, may be utilizing your sales engagement and intel platforms as well. This is where it depends on your company’s structure, size, and interpretation of the account executive’s responsibilities. Read our post ‘How Can Sales Succeed With Limited Resources?‘ for more on this.

The important part is to work with leadership to make sure the responsibilities of your role are clearly defined.

Then you can start putting relevant pieces of the tech stack together to fulfill those responsibilities and reach your goals.

You’ve got this,