How Does My Team Stack Up? Lead Generation Team Benchmarks in OpenView’s Portfolio

Devon-McDonald by

Over the years, OpenView Labs has helped launch numerous outbound prospecting lead generation teams within our portfolio companies, including four in 2012 alone.

If you’ve followed my blog, you can probably see the this is the core of my expertise here in the Labs — my passion — and each week I strive to share best practices that I’ve gathered/learned in all of my experiences working with different teams within our portfolio on building this type of top-of-funnel engine.

Getting teams like this up and running and fully productive is no small feat. It entails recruiting, segmentation analysis, content/asset package creation, CRM configuration, training, and coaching just to name a few of the elements of our typical eight-week project work plan.

Our Sales and Marketing Support team is there every step of the way to provide frameworks, best practices, and hands-on support. And it really doesn’t stop there — we will continue to engage with the different teams indefinitely, as there are always areas for improvement, no matter how amazingly the group is performing!

This year in particular, many of the lead gen managers and heads of sales who we’ve worked with came to me asking how their team stacks up against the other companies in the portfolio, and quite frankly, I felt as though I could only provide some basic comparison points — nothing that was thorough and all encompassing.

This prompted my team, with a LOT of the work done by Ori Yankelev (who you should absolutely follow @orisfa — he produces and shares great sales operations content!), to launch a survey to collect and aggregate data from the portfolio’s lead gen managers using Instant.ly, the best free survey tool out there.

The intent was not only to give our portfolio companies a better sense of where they stand relative to similar companies, but also to assess where the portfolio teams are now so we can track their success going forward.

This won’t be a one-time thing. The Labs’ goal is to continue to survey the teams again next year to see if conversions have improved. That, of course, should always be the objective. With that in mind, here are a few of the lead generation team benchmark data points that OpenView Labs looked at:

Outbound Prospecting Team Prevalence within the Portfolio

  • Eleven out of 18 companies have an outbound prospecting team.
  • Of the seven companies that don’t have an outbound prospecting team, one was in the process of building one.

Outbound Team Activity Blend within the Portfolio

  • 18% have a bifurcated team with some reps dedicated only to outbound activity and some reps dedicated only to inbound activity.
  • 27% have a blend of inbound and outbound activity (of these companies the blend of activity is heavily weighted towards outbound).
  • For companies with outbound prospecting teams, the majority (55%) are focused on outbound activity only.

Key Conversion Rates by Average Sales Price (ASP) within the Portfolio

  • Call-to-conversation conversion rates were slightly lower for companies with lower Average Sales Prices (ASPs).
  • More advanced conversion rates (conversation-to-appointment, and from-appointment-to-opportunity) were lower for companies with higher ASPs.

What additional information would you like to see OpenView collect from portfolio lead gen teams to gather benchmarks in 2013?