When Guardian Angel first heard of Foresight, they were growing quickly and eager to capitalize on the momentum. Balancing a quickly growing client base, a growing team, and ever-increasing targets, they knew that additional support was needed to continue scaling the business as they knew was possible. We spoke with Dylan Burke, Head of Charity Partnerships to dive deeper into how Foresight is used and the impact it is making.
“Before we started working with Foresight all of our growth was really a classic startup hold-on-tight-everyone-clinging-on-for-their-dear-lives kind of effort to try and get out to as many potential new clients, improve the product as best we can and sort out everything else that comes with hectic early stage growth. We realized pretty quickly that to reach our goals we need a better way to standardize the sales process – not only in terms of how to engage a prospect from cold with expected pain points and identify how we might be a good fit for them – but also capturing as much data along away as possible to help with conversations going forward” says Dylan Burke, Head of Partnerships. “Once we learned how Foresight could help tackle these challenges, the decision was a no-brainer.”
How it’s Used
Dealing with charities and their legacy giving program, time and attention were incredibly important: education on the value of their offering was critical, there were numerous stakeholders in each decision-making process, and resources were always stretched thin.
“One of the most difficult things about selling into the third sector is that charities move very, very slowly – they are famously highly risk-averse and keen to preserve and protect their reputation. So when it comes to new ventures, it can take months and months to get projects over the line – so as a seller, you have to assume that the first intro call is going to be your one and only meeting. Of course, from a seller’s perspective you want to get into as much detail as possible in terms of their pains and priorities to try and work out where we will be the best fit and overlap – so of course the more information we have on that before going into that first meeting is essential. Given that then it could be ages between meetings, we wanted to make sure that we’re following up with useful, impactful resources that would help them to drive a bit more urgency – which is something they certainly lack – ultimately cutting down the buying cycle as much as possible.” Says Burke.
Leveraging Foresight, Guardian Angel has made standard practice of distributing a Value Assessment to every prospect as soon as a meeting gets scheduled.
“Being a tech startup means that we’re not averse ourselves to testing different things out. What has been really incredible is to see the reception of the Value Assessments before an intro or discovery call. We’ll send them out at the start of the week – along with a reminder to confirm or reschedule – and we get over 50% response rate on forms filled out. This not only improves the quality of the initial calls but prospects seem to genuinely appreciate us first taking the time to find out more about them and then to keep the conversation as relevant to them as possible.
Speaking to a potential new client the other week, I asked them for a bit more detail around the VAs. They said it’s a good opportunity to think about things they often don’t have much time to review – but it’s also useful to do it now and then again in 12 months, to look back at their progress. Their biggest issue is TIME and if we can help with things like proposal documents with personalized business cases, it’s super helpful from there to get things signed off with the DMs.” Says Burke.
So what does all this lead to? According to Dylan:
Previously, we’d have to spend the first 5, 10, 15 minutes of a discovery call digging into where they are at the start – now we get a lot of that info through the Value Assessment in advance. Of course, we still spend a bit of time going into their main issues and priorities and see if there’s any more information we can dig up that isn’t on the assessments – but it certainly helps frame the conversation much quicker and allows us to start adding value immediately.
The impact of Foresight – not only in terms of qualifying for intro calls, but also how we steer those crucial first conversations, how we help drive those deals forward faster, and also continue to do something that nobody else is – has been really encouraging and not a total surprise given the completely different approach. I can guarantee none of our competitors are working with Foresight (yet!) and it’s been a real differentiator for us. In a world full of sales noise, it truly allows us to offer something completely unique and a tailored Business Impact Report that goes to the key decision makers can only help form the case for investment. It puts us head and shoulders above the rest in terms of our professional, value-focused, consultative approach.”
Want to learn more about how Foresight supports Guardian Angel and others to get a head start in every sales opportunity? Get in touch, subscribe to our newsletter, or take our own Value Assessment to understand exactly how Foresight can support your company!