Last year, I read a really intriguing post by the legendary Townsend Wardlaw on Linkedin about The Death of the SDR. This is the post Wardlaw wrote.

Here was my comment, and responses to my comment:

I wanted to respond, but also give some tangible examples of how BDRs/SDRs can give and be an asset. So this blog post is about how as a prospector, you can be an asset to a prospect.

Ok…so continuing right out of the comments, here is the long outside the box answer.

Every professional can be an asset to another professional regardless of whether they are a BDR or not. A BDR/SDR should be the specialist at becoming an asset to their prospects. The best BDRs/SDRs know how to take more than give.

There are all kinds of ways to be an asset to your prospect. The biggest is giving a prospect access. That’s access to a the BDR’s company, the company’s products, services, expertise, and content.

A prospect may not care about white papers or case studies…but isn’t just that. A prospect usually is head down working on their own projects and don’t have time to keep the beat on their industry. That’s where a BDR can bridge that gap and help them out.


Back at Dyn, Dyn’s Director of Deliverability, Steve Wheeler was amazing at helping prospects understand why their emails weren’t getting delivered. He didn’t prospect, but he helped the BDR team all the time. We even evangelized his helpfulness with a quick knock off the infamous [Most Interesting Man in the World Ad Campaign.](

At LeadIQ for example, if my BDRs have someone who is struggling to figure out their sales stack, our former Director of Sales, Cole Fox tried tons of sales tools. We’d work deals together, and if I asked Cole for a good email prospecting tool, he knows 10 off the top of his head and how they are all different.

Cole (right) and I are the AA-ISP’s Leadership Summit last year.

He always had a beat on the new tools and how they are all different. If one of those things ends up being something related to LeadIQ, it makes the opportunity a slam dunk for us, and proves that our BDR can be an asset to that prospect. If that prospect isn’t ready to look at us, no big deal. The relationship has started, and when they are ready, they’ll come to us first over our competition.

As a prospector, especially at bigger companies, you have an amazing amount of untapped resources of wisdom from others at your company. Companies are just a collection of talent, and that talent has wisdom. It’s important for a BDR to network internally and know who they can go to for things occasionally, while gaining wisdom themselves. That’s another asset. Learn your industries you sell into. Read business news, and stay on the beat for your prospect.

My team for example can tell you a ton about Outreach and SalesLoft since we prospect and work with a lot Outreach and SalesLoft customers.

Another thing that a BDR/SDR can provide that adds value is entertainment. I know… I know …you are all gonna say “that’s not professional…you don’t want to waste your prospect’s time” ..but the truth is, the average employee at a company only stays at a company for 17 months.

As much as we all assume we are driving toward world domination, the truth is, many of your prospects aren’t.

That means that within two fiscal years of going after an account, the prospect you are emailing/calling likely isn’t happy with their job. They don’t care about it, or they have one foot out the door and are looking elsewhere. If you can entertain your prospect with your outreach and make them feel wanted, it can give them an escape. Booking a meeting with you because you provide them with friendship, entertainment, and also your company’s value is real, and another way you can be an asset.

How many of you read a news article today, or watched a funny on YouTube video someone shared? It’s the same thing. As much as we all assume we are driving toward world domination, the truth is, many of your prospects aren’t.

Those who follow our work know about campaigns like these that I’ve done that provided entertainment:


They provided an escape for people, and produced a crazy reply rate because of it.

The last example of being an asset that comes to my mind is the BDR/SDR’s network. Remember that job stat I dropped about people changing jobs every 17 months? If you are a BDR and you wanna give and give and give…help your prospects when they are hiring.

Many times, the hiring manager at a company is also the decision maker on products and services. Share jobs they post, check in with them and ask them if they want some help promoting anything they have going on. You likely know people that would be good on their team if you sell to those in a similar function they are hiring for.

If you sell to marketers, call them and say “Hey..any cool webinars in the horizon I can share to help you out?” …email them and offer your social currency to stand out

We are all vain creatures. BDRs/SDRs should help be the soapbox that promotes your prospects. It could potentially also offer some great content for your other prospects as well.

There are other examples too, but all these things can be done over cold email and cold calling. An account executive doesn’t have time to do all these things and still bring in new deals.

If you offer help, follow up on your help. Don’t sell out and try and take. Try and see if you can convince your prospect to come up with the idea of checking out your service or product.

If people just prospect like they are going to be in touch with the person forever, the quality of the relationships will go up. Prospects who aren’t interested now will still refer you business as well as long as you work hard to be an asset for them.

This blog post first appeared on Ryan’s Linkedin Profile.

Posted by Ryan O'Hara
Ryan O'Hara
Ryan O'Hara has been an early employee at several startups helping them with marketing and prospecting tactics, including Dyn who was acquired by Oracle for $600+ million in 2016. He's had prospecting campaigns featured in Fortune, Mashable, and TheNextWeb. Ryan specializes in branding, business development, prospecting, and coaching people on how to make good digital first impressions. He also mentors two accelerators, The Iron Yard and The Alpha Loft, and hosts The Prospecting

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