How to Ace the Interview for Sales Appointment Setter

We published a blog about a month ago about advancing your career and how to get promoted  from Appointment Setter to Closer. Well, at our annual Sales Kickoff last week, our investors asked us to triple our team by next year. The BDR Manager and I looked at each other a little wide-eyed and wondered aloud where we’d find our next batch of top recruits. Looks like this time the blog needs to teach the applicant pool how to get hired as an appointment setter in the first place.

The job isn’t glamorous. It’s long hours and can feel like a thankless role. You do the research, you make the calls, escape(evade?) the gatekeepers, drive interest in our product, and then you pass the hot lead off to a closer. He closes the deal and gets all the credit. Where’s your cookie?

Unfortunately, your cookie is reserved for about a year in, when you finally ascend to the closer role (see previous blog for instructions here). In the meantime, you’ve got to start somewhere. And if you want that somewhere to be sales, especially software sales, then you’re a BDR. You’re going to get out there and drive traffic to the site, generate interest in the product, and create an outbound buzz over the phone. Interested? Do these five things:

Pre-interview: Do your research

Don’t show up and not know what you’re interviewing for. We don’t want to spend the first ten minutes explaining the company value prop. You can find it on the website. Read a case study, research the competition. Have questions prepared ahead of time.

On-site: Be outgoing

You’re interviewing for a job where you’ll reach out and try to talk to a hundred strangers every day, right? Act like you could possibly enjoy that. If the phone screen mentioned a particular book or books that we like here, read them. Bring them with you. Differentiate yourself.

Resumé & talk track: Prove your work ethic

Have you won an award? Played a sport? Did you start a club? If you’ve worked hard, talk about it. The interview is the one social setting where it’s acceptable to brag. And guess what: in a sales environment, you’re borderline required to brag! Bring it.

At all times: Be professional

Can’t believe this even has to be included, but I suppose it does. I get that you’re probably new in your career. You still know which spots still serve cheap pitchers and pizza. That’s all well and good, but please have a clean copy of your resume, comb your hair, and dress like your mom made you when your Aunt Mabel died.

Post-interview: Be resourceful

Aside from the cliché follow up emails, there are some smart ways to stand out. Connect on LinkedIn. Email every person you met with. If you bonded over something unique in the interview, include a link to a relevant article or website in your thank you note. And most of all, you’re interviewing for an outbound sales job, pick up the phone!

If you can wrap your mind around these five ideas, you might just be on your way. And if you really want to join the hottest tech company in Boston, with a backing from Atlas, Bessemar, and DFJ, then just email our hiring manager and tell him you found him on the blog.

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