Are You Altitude AwareAre You Altitude Aware – with Steve Eror

Steve Eror


Steve Eror is the Sales Director at ChatFunnels. He attended the University of Utah and Western Governors University. Steve is an expert leader in sales and business development.


“Your whole goal is to get your sales team talking to more people. Accounts that are triggering these signals should be added into a cadence or a play in tools… Their behavior instead is telling you that they want to talk. And so you’re getting your sales team engaged with the right people, at the right time.” 

Key Points

  • Your tools should get you enough firmographic data to qualify leads from site visitors.  
  • Segment your qualified leads to enroll them in unique marketing campaigns.  
  • ABM campaigns should be automated with follow up’s to keep target accounts active.  
  • Sales reps should be notified when their target accounts are active on your site.  
  • Data needs to be uploaded into your CRM, or else it will be lost.  


So last summer I started kind of a cool new adventure on my mom’s 70th birthday. My mom two sisters, brother in law, and my son all decided to jump out of an airplane.

We went. We did the tandem. And needless to say, I was absolutely hooked. My son and I signed up for ground school and we spent a day out of the drop zone learning how to jump out of an airplane at 13,000 feet. We learned how to fly the canopy. We learned how to be aware of the altitude. We learned to lock on your altimeter at 6000 feet, wave off and pull your chute by 5500 feet.

No matter what, you pull by 4500 feet. We learned that the number one thing you do on every single jump, no matter what else happens, is pull the chute. So we had a few training.

Jumps after grad school. Each jump built on the previous jump made.It a little bit more difficult. Eventually, it got to the point where my instructors are going to let go of me.

On my freefall and I was going to fly on my own. It was the fourth or fifth jump and I was feeling pretty confident. I wanted to be cool. I saw the more experienced skydivers, the wing shooters, the swoopers. And they were all wearing the altimeter. Not where the students wore them on their wrist, but they wore them on their forearm.

So I moved my altimeter to where they wore them. We lined up, got in the plane, got to 13,000 feet, and I jumped. The instructors let go and I tried to adjust.

Started to steer myself for the first time on my own. And I went into a spin. And I panicked a little. It took all the focus that I had to to straighten myself out and keep a straight heading.

I took a breath, relaxed. And when I recovered from the spin, all of a sudden I realized I completely forgot about my altitude. I was falling at a rate of 100 feet per second by the time I realized I needed to be aware of my altitude.

I looked at my altimeter and it wasn’t where I normally put it. Instead, when I looked at my forearm, it’s new spot and I realized I was flying right past 4500 feet. One of my instructors, he reached across my back and he pulled the chute for me. I flew the canopy home and I landed without a further incident.

I failed that jump and I knew I had to redo it.

One of the most important parts of skydiving is being altitude aware. Often, skydivers wear three altitude detection devices – the altimeter, they wear in the forearm, an audible altimeter that beeps when they reach.

Certain altitudes in their helmet and something called an AAD or an automated activation device. I wore one altimeter in the wrong place and I ignored it. I was so flustered with trying to fly right and fly stable that I lost altitude awareness completely. Fortunately, my experience Coach Recce was aware and took action. When skydiving, there are few signals that you’re watching for.

You’re watching if you’re heading, what direction am I going in? What’s my altitude? It’s relatively simple, but what signals are we watching for in demand generation, and the sales follow up? Are you watching for what companies are on your site? What pages they’re hitting? What about where they’re located? Do they meet your ICP? What is your ICP? What’s their tech stack? How many employees are there? Are they a customer, a prospect, a targeted account? Are they part of an ABM program?

If you’re using DemandBase or 6Sense, what sort of intent are they showing? Do they come to your site from a specific Google ad campaign? Do they come from a specific landing page? How often is that data available, and is it available in real time? How often do we ignore it when we don’t ignore it? Are we acting on it in the correct in the correct manner? At a previous company we had loads of intent data. It came to us in a weekly report and we had all this really good data and the sales team generally took a look at.

It, thought ‘that’s interesting,’ and ignored it. Some thought it’s black box voodoo stuff. ‘I’m not going to pay attention to it.’ Some said it’s a waste of their time. They know their territory.

They knew who they should be engaged with and going after others actually engaged with the signal data. But they did it wrong. They were overly pushy. They said, ‘Hey, I know you’re looking for our solution.’ Or they waited until the signal said ‘They’re absolutely ready to buy.’ There were just too many ways to use this great data incorrectly and rarely, if ever, take it used.

Well, your altimeter, no matter how good or how expensive, does you know good if you ignore it like I did. It’s not enough to get the signals. You’ve got to act on it. I didn’t know my altitude, but even if I did, just knowing it is not good enough.

I’ve got to pull my chute on time to make it work. The sales team needs to act on the data appropriately. Do they even know how to do that? Your reps might be too junior to know what to do.
Now, or your reps might be old school enterprise veterans where this isn’t a part of the process they’ve been doing for the last 35 years. So why start something new? So you need to train your team to follow up. Train the SDR as the ease. Better yet, put automation.

In place to engage for them. So what can this automation look like? We call it marketing orchestration. First thing that you want to go ahead and do, in terms of automation, is identify the accounts. So make sure you have a tool in place that automatically identifies who is on your site. The tool should give you photographic data.

Not just who the company is, but enough information to determine if it’s a good company that you want to go after and follow up on. Once you have a good list of accounts and you know, who are, you know, hitting your your website, put these into different groups segment the accounts. All these accounts are different, but they can be grouped together.

Based off of commonalities. Put these in these different buckets -they might be customers, open opportunities, ICP accounts, target accounts, accounts part of an ABM campaigner accounts with specific technology accounts that are in a particular geography or vertical.

Get creative with it. Once the accounts are segmented, you can then direct, specific actions to happen to those account buckets. Several years ago, I was managing SDR teams. The number one time suck for my SDR teams was quote research. We got a list of companies who.

Visited the site and my team would scour their online resources to find the right people to talk to. A lot of times they overthought the research process, succumbing to paralysis by analysis. Sometimes they started going after the wrong titles. So you need to automate that process. You do that by identifying the title levels in the title functions that you want to have your sales.

Team engage with. Once the segmented account reaches a predetermined threshold, automation should go out and get those titles that you want to talk to and and put it into motion. So at this point, you know, the accounts you grouped in together even know who you want to talk to at those specific accounts.

Now it’s time for action and automation. Here is key. This is where most hard work dies. Right here, it’s in the follow up. How many of your ABM campaigns in the past have died because people just aren’t following up like they should? What types of actions can be automated? Well, number one, are you alerting your sales team.

That the targeted account that they’re going after is on the website? Do they know that an ICP account in their territory is poking around your high intent pages? You should be should meet those sales team where they’re at. If they’re in Slack messaging, in Slack or email sent them a text message. If they’re a field rep let them know that they have someone that they’re interested in speaking to poking around your site right now? Not last week. Not last month, but right now.

The next thing you want to do is get this data into CRM. I’ve always told my teams if it’s not in CRM, it’s not in Salesforce or HubSpot, it just doesn’t exist. This is amazing data that you’re gathering. Hold on to it.

You’re going to want it now and you’re going to want it later. Add these contacts and accounts to two campaigns. Focus on these with an ABM effort. Another automation action to consider is adding these accounts to targeted campaigns. These companies know who you are, at least a little bit.

So how much more powerful would an ad campaign be to these accounts? What about sending off emails? Now that you’ve got this data, these contacts, these emails. Email them email on behalf of your sales team so they don’t even have to think about it. Use your existing marketing automation platform, HubSpot or or Marketo. If you don’t have one, find a single marketing platform that will do it. And the platform itself.

We do one other thing I want to mention with emails is personalization. I hear a lot about all. Emails need to be personalized. And I would argue that in some ways we’ve gone overboard with that. Not every email needs to reference the prospects high school mascot. By segmenting the accounts appropriately. You can automate specific emails.

If you’ve identified the title levels and the title functions that you want to go to, you can iterate those messages for the various members of your buying committee. The next area to automate is with your cadence tools. Your whole goal is to get your sales team talking to more people. Accounts that are triggering these signals should be added into a cadence or a play in tools, like outreach or salesloft or proof.

Get your sales team more engaged with these people and automate that process. So at this point, look what you’ve done. You are actively watching for accounts on your website. You’re grouping those accounts together based off of their commonalities into segments. And those segments allow you to automate things like looking up contacts, adding ad campaigns, sending out emails, and having your sales team follow up automatically through cadences. You’ve plugged the gaps in your demand generation process and you’ve ensured that the marketing team is filtering out the noise. And so they’re passing on leads of accounts they’re most interested.

You’re not waiting for them to necessarily fill out a form and raise their hand, but their behavior instead is telling you that they want to talk. And so you’re getting your sales team engaged with the right people, at the right time. You’ve added a killer tool to increase your website’s conversion rates. So look at your process. Stay altitude aware, make sure that your team is pulling your chute at the right time. If you’re not altitude aware.

I’d love to show you what we’re doing here at Signals to automate the process for ourselves. And if you’ve got a way to automate that, I didn’t mention. Reach out to me on LinkedIn. I’d love to see your ideas. Good luck. Or as you see in skydiving, blue skies follow.