10 OUTSOURCED BDR SALES AGENCIES COMPARED

I interviewed several of the top performers according to Clutch, but this was not my exclusive source. Here’s why: some smaller companies, without as much of a reputation, have countered with creative pricing strategies and some limited performance guarantees. I hope you’ll feel I provided a nice mix.

The Business Development Representative

In the dynamic dance of B2B commerce, the rhythm is set by the Business Development Representatives (BDRs), the maestros of BDR sales. These vigilant architects, more than mere sales reps, are the virtuosos crafting the future of your enterprise, meticulously stitching together business opportunities with the precision of seasoned artists.

 

Such an Important Role

Envision your sales process as an intricate ballet. Here, BDRs don’t just generate leads; they orchestrate relationships, setting the stage for account executives to perform the grand finale. The sales pipeline, a testament to their craft, brims with qualified leads, each a potential masterpiece waiting to be realized.

 

SDRs vs. BDRs Anyone?

Amidst this symphony, a common mix-up often surfaces—the roles of BDRs and Sales Development Representatives (SDRs). Each plays a unique part in this ensemble; while BDRs are the scouts venturing into the unknown territories of outbound sales, generating and qualifying inbound leads, the SDRs are the tacticians, perfecting the sales team’s internal maneuvers. You can read more on what we have to say about this in our article BDR Meaning: Business Development Representatives.

 

The Sales Funnel

In this grand composition, every business development rep has a role. The outbound BDRs are like soloists, reaching out proactively, their pitches resonating with the tune of potential deals. Inbound BDRs, on the other hand, are the harmonizers, nurturing each lead with care, guiding them gently through the funnel.

 

Let’s not forget the strategic score behind this performance. It begins with a keen understanding of the business development landscape. Here, customer segmentation is key—like a conductor interpreting a score, the business development rep reads the market, identifying patterns and tailoring approaches to resonate with each unique segment.

 

Sales Methodologies

And then, the methodologies—each a different genre of music. From the precision of MEDDIC, a technique ensuring every note is on key, to the bold narrative of The Challenger Sale, and the insightful rhythm of SPIN Selling, each method equips your sales development reps with a unique set of instruments to create their symphony.

 

Training, Tracking and Compensating

Training these maestros, the business development representatives, is akin to composing a masterpiece. Clear objectives are the composition’s structure; alignment with sales and marketing teams, its harmony; knowledge and tools, its melody. Compensation, akin to applause, motivates and recognizes the performance of these artists.

In the ever-evolving marketplace, continuous adaptation and learning are crucial. This is where technology steps in, like a modern instrument enhancing the traditional melody, helping BDRs track their performance and fine-tune their strategies.

 

For more ideas on how to best manage this, see our article Maximizing BDR Sales: Strategies for Success.

 

For those seeking to amplify their reach, engaging a Business Development Representative Agency is like adding a choir to your solo performance, expanding your ensemble and enriching your business with a chorus of new opportunities.

 

Inbound Marketing Myth Busted

Unpopular opinion: thinking of inbound marketing as a one-size-fits-all magic pill is pretty narrow minded. I’ve seen numerous self-serving blog posts claiming that direct outreach is a thing of the past. “Push marketing” is old, evil and everything will be permission based inbound in the future, blah, blah, blah. The second oldest profession in the world (sales) is going the way of the dodo bird, right? MEDDPIC and the Sandler method is overrated. We’ll just do a bunch of content marketing and everyone will beat a path to our door.

 

Yeah, I’m not buying it either. Not 100% anyway.

 

The truth is, depending upon your business, direct sales might be one of your core customer acquisition channels. In some cases, it might be your most effective customer acquisition channel. If you have a business that can live on inbound marketing automation alone, good for you, but let’s be realistic. That just may not be the case for everybody.

 

Why Outsource Appointment Setting

If you’re trying to scale and can’t afford a full-time sales rep, an outsourced appointment setting service can be a huge help. Sure, of course, you want to automate everything you can, but sometimes you need a little help getting the flywheel going. Even if you’ve got one sales rep, outsourcing the appointment setting frees them up to spend more time closing deals.

 

$6,000 ACV Minimum

Hiring intelligent people who speak fluent English that can properly represent your product is not cheap. Neither is hiring a full-time sales rep! Most companies set a minimum average contract value (ACV) of $5K – $6K to say the service is worth it. Some are even higher.

 

Rough Outline of Process

 

Month 1: Onboarding

As a rough outline here’s what you can expect: the first month is mostly spent understanding your products / services and the best way to represent them, as well as trying to iron out your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). Getting the customer segmentation correct may be the most critical part of the process. More often than not, these companies will tell you to niche down. Then they will build out and request approval for the scripts they will use to represent your company. To my knowledge, all companies record phone calls for quality control purposes. The people making the calls are called Sales Development Reps (SDRs). SDRs obviously must be trained in understanding your company’s products and services. By the time all of this is done, you’re probably only going to get a couple of client meetings out of the first month. 

 

Month 2 and 3: Momentum Building

By month two, maybe 4 – 6 meetings? It’s not until the third month that you begin firing on all cylinders. I’m hearing anywhere from 5 to 15 meetings per month, with 10 being the average. I have been warned over and over, and they’re right to say so, this varies wildly depending upon your product and your market. 

 

Appointment Setting Only

These companies qualify the leads and move the customer through the acquisition funnel all the way to setting an appointment. However, demonstrating and selling your product in the appointment is entirely up to you.

 

Technical Considerations

Most (all?) of these companies create a new outreach domain for e-mail and utilize their own servers which improves deliverability. They aren’t going to use your personal email address as the sender. It also means with a new domain they’re not going to be able to blast out 5,000 emails a day right out of the gate. This explains some of the three month ramp-up time. For those of you that don’t know, you have to slowly, iteratively increase your email volume with a new domain or the Internet gods will blacklist you as a spammer. 

 

Example Benefits

  • They’re going to generate massive lead lists for you
  • They will help you niche down, improve your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and your customer segmentation
  • They will split test different scripts and different sequences to see which ones are the most effective
  • You can pass along the info to your full-time sales rep
  • If things go well, these outsourced appointment setters more than pay for themselves.

 

Who I Interviewed and Why

One of the easiest places to go find “lead generation” companies and outsourced sales is on clutch.co. You can easily find big names with high ratings who of course have higher prices with multi month minimums and no guarantees. They’ve sort of earned that right.

 

I interviewed several of the top performers according to clutch, but this was not my exclusive source.  Here’s why: some smaller companies, without as much of a reputation, have countered with creative pricing strategies and some limited performance guarantees. I hope you’ll feel I provided a nice mix.

 

My goal was to provide you with information you could only get by booking a meeting. Additional information such as whether they focus more on SMBs or enterprise, their industry focus and other details can be found on clutch.co and on each respective website.

  

Big Fat Disclaimer

I have curated the information from 9+ different meetings. The information provided is what the company representative claims to be true about their services, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s true (or false). I would take the stats and the numbers they claim with a certain grain of salt. That said, they all do seem to be averaging a similar number of appointments per month with a three month ramp up time.

 

Just to reiterate: the number of appointments you will get per month varies wildly depending upon your product and your market! 

 

Prices and terms on this stuff change constantly! This should give you a good idea of who you might want to call, but don’t be surprised if the numbers you receive are a little different than what you see here.

 

COMPARISONS ARE IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER.

 

Leadium

https://www.leadium.io/

This is one of the biggest most established names in the lead generation industry.  4.9 stars with 16 reviews on clutch.co.  I met with Kevin Warner, Co-Founder from Ukraine.

 

Process Details

They integrate with Salesforce. They do all data sourcing and claim they channel test prospects prior to engagement.  Sales development reps are Orlando based.  Weekly quota meetings.

 

Tech Stack

They are an Apollo shop, not Zoom Info.

 

Contact Methods

Email and phone

 

Pricing

$4,500 mo. 1

$4,500 mo. 2

$4,500 mo. 3

$5,500 mo. 4

 

Results

10 to 15 appointments per month by month three.

 

 

Belkins

https://belkins.io/

This is currently the number one rated appointment setting service on clutch.co, with 4.9 stars and 137 reviews.   I spoke to Brian Hicks. They are a Ukraine based company.

 

Process Details

SDRs personalize each message. They have a forecastable ROI model.

 

Tech Stack

They use Zoom Info, Apollo, LinkedIn and any other software they can get their hands on.

 

Proprietary in-house ESP software is called Folderly, which has a nearly 100% email deliverability rate.  FYI, you can subscribe to Folderly yourself separately, but I think it starts at $200 a month.  Ouch!

 

Contact Methods

Emails and a little LinkedIn outreach (30%?).  NO CALLS!!!

 

Pricing

There’s a three month minimum, but they boast an 85% retention rate after the third month.

 

$4,100 – 5,500 mo.

 

Results

2-3 appointments mo. 1

4-6 appointments mo. 2

6-9 appointments mo. 3+

 

 

Martal Group

https://martal.ca/

Another one of the super big names you’ll see you out there is Martal.  4.8 stars with 59 reviews on clutch.co.  I spoke to Noam Cohen.

 

Process Details

SDRs have a minimum of six years of experience.  Account based marketing. One operations person, and two reps assigned to your account. Weekly status calls.

 

Appointment setting agencies are geared toward finding potential customers with high intent, who are ready to convert.  Bottom of funnel.

 

However, what happens to all the other leads that are still in the “interest” or “consideration” part of the funnel?  Martal is one of the only companies with which I spoke that has additional pricing tiers to address a nurturing process as well as a post-sale relationship. See below.

 

Tech Stack

They are an Apollo shop and do not use Zoom Info.

 

Contact Methods

LinkedIn, Twitter, phone and email.

 

Pricing

They have a three month minimum contract, but boast a 70% retention rate after the three month pilot.  Require two weeks of notice to terminate.

 

Tier 1

$6,195 mo.

Tier 1 is where they schedule appointments for Client Demos.

I focused on Tier 1 to keep the comparisons apple to apples.

 

Tier 2

Tier 2 also provides a nurturing campaign that shepherds the lead all the way through to a signed contract.  Here they ask additionally for some commission on the sale.

 

Tier 3

Tier 3 is completely custom with ongoing account management.

 

Results

5-10 leads mo.  Maybe 5-15 mo.

 

 

SalesHive

https://saleshive.com/

Another interesting company I met with is Sales Hive. I spoke to Todd Whitcomb.

 

Process Details

According to Todd, 70% of their client base is B2B SaaS.  The first 3 to 4 weeks is dedicated onboarding.  I cannot seem to find much for customer reviews on these guys, however….they claim to have set over 48,000 appointments and have a 30-day money be back guarantee.  SDRs are from Jamaica.

 

Tech Stack

Unknown. 

 

Contact Methods

They use phone, LinkedIn and email.

 

Pricing

Two month minimum.  30 day notice before canceling (which will likely bump you into the next month).

 

$4,000 mo. – Email Only

$5,000 mo. – Email + LinkedIn (Starter Package On Website)

$6,000 mo. – Cold Calling Only

$7,000 mo. – Cold Calling + email

$8,000 mo. – All 3 Channels (email / LinkedIn / Cold Calling) (Growth Package On Website)

$12,000 mo. – All 3 Channels (Crush Package on Website adds a 2nd US Based SDR)

 

Results

The number of appointments varies by the price.  For example:

$5,000 mo. – 6-10 meetings mo.

$8,000 mo. – 13-18 meetings mo. (1 dedicated SDR)

$12,000 mo. – 20-30 meetings mo. (2 dedicated SDRs)

 

 

Conversionly

https://conversionly.io/

These guys had an interesting and different business model that may work better for some people. I met with the founder Christian Nipper.

 

Process Details

They publicize their flow chart of sequences and feel they have a proven system for building out a pipeline.

 

Tech Stack

Unknown.

 

Contact Methods

They use phone and email.

 

Pricing

Option 1

$2,000 one-time fee, where they send you the blueprints of how they do it.

 

Option 2

$9,000 one-time set up fee.

$5-10/hr. x 30-40 hours/ week for sales calls thereafter approximately $1,000+ mo.

 

Option 3

$9,000 set up fee???

$3,000-18,000 mo., but with a guarantee they will double your investment.

 

Results

They didn’t quote a number of appointments per month.

They boast 40% conversion rates.

 

 

Atlantic Growth Solutions

https://www.atlanticgrowthsolutions.com/

Atlantic Growth Solutions has 4.9 stars on clutch.co with 8 reviews.  I met with Kyle Holder.

 

Process Details

An example ICP for them would be a startup who is late series A and heading for series B.  They do not use any form of email automation.  They see themselves as more of an outbound sales agency than a lead gen firm.  They will work with you through a series of four workshops with a 20 to 30 page playbook that will help niche down your customer segments.  Kyle wanted to make a big point about the fact that they provide SQLs not MQLs.  Telecom, Fintech and SaaS are a few of their specialty industries.

 

Kyle feels they specialize at higher value, difficult to reach targets with the Average Contract Value (ACV) of $25,000 and a customer lasting typically three years (LTV $75K).

 

Tech Stack

They use primarily LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Zoom Info. Not an Apollo shop.

 

Contact Methods

Phone and manual email.

 

Pricing

Tier 1

Tier 1 is a fixed + variable rate.  A bit complicated and I didn’t take great notes, so I won’t quote it here.

 

Tier 2

Ends up costing about $70,000 over the course of 12 months and averaging roughly $1,000 lead.

 

Tier 3

Tier 3 is $8,500 per month with a five month minimum.

 

Results

They claim a 70% conversion rate:

0 appointments mo. 1

2 appointments mo. 2

2-4 appointments mo. 3

6-8 appointments mo. 4+

 

 

Convertist (convert.ai)

https://convert.ai/

I met with Chris Marin, the CEO of Convert.ai.  I’ll admit this is one of the first interviews I did, and I probably should’ve taken better notes.

 

Process Details

They provide a great free video, called the “Guide to Sequences.”  You will see from your experience on their website these guys really understand funnels.  Their follow up emails walk you through “great messaging” and the sequence methodology they use.

 

Chris feels your customers should have lifetime value of $15,000-$20,000 for their pricing structure to make sense.  Most of their customers are SaaS companies.

 

Tech Stack

Convertist is unique in that it uses AI to “keep lead costs low” and build lookalike audiences.  I know I’m not doing Convertist justice, so I’ll probably circle back and flesh this one out or later.

 

Contact Methods

Phone and email

 

Pricing

$7,000 mo.

Contract is month-to-month

 

Results

They didn’t quote a number of appointments per month.

 

 

Mojo Global

https://www.mojoglobal.com/

I met with Victor J. Fox, Senior VP at Mojo.

 

Process Details

Their SDRs are based in the Philippines.  They have over 7,000 clients including luminaries such as Cvent, Mark Cuban and Grant Cardone.

 

Tech Stack

Unknown.

 

Contact Methods

Outreach is via phone, e-mail and LinkedIn.

 

Pricing

Pricing ranges from $10,000-$30,000 a month.

 

Results

They say you will average about 10 appointments a month.

They claim that 30 to 40% of the appointments they set end up closing deals. 

 

 

SocialBloom

https://www.socialbloom.io/

Social Bloom has 4.9 stars on clutch.co with 8 reviews.  I spoke to the founder Caleb Sinn. 

 

Process Details

They specialize at B2B software and I.T.  They provide weekly reports.  SDRs are U.S. based.

 

Tech Stack

They are a Zoom Info and Apollo shop.

 

Contact Methods

Email, phone and LinkedIn depending upon your contract

 

Pricing

They charge $1,500 for onboarding.  Then here are the monthly fees:

$3,000 mo. 1,000 emails only

$8,000 mo. 1,000 emails + some phone calls

$8,500 mo. 1,000 emails + some phone calls + some LinkedIn outreach

 

Results

Typically, he feels you’ll get about 10 appointments a month.

He feels their clients see about a 20% to 30% close rate on the meetings they set up.

 

 

SalesPipe

https://salespipe.co/

This is the only one on the list I have not interviewed, but one of the better startup founders I know in the Atlanta area, Samuel Crane of https://app.tryfps.com/ is pretty fired up about them.  So, they made the list due to a personal referral.  See the pricing section!

 

Process Details

Unknown.

 

Tech Stack

Unknown.

 

Contact Methods

Unknown.

 

Pricing

$250 per appointment.  No appointments = no cost!

 

Results

Unknown.

 

Author Bio

Benjamin Arritt

Benjamin Arritt

Global B2B sales & marketing executive that loves a fast-paced, customer-centric, high tech entrepreneurial environment. We help 50+ fractional CFOs and 93+ fractional CMOs find more work. Hire someone who has already done what you are trying to do. Follow me on X: @grokketship
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