When trying to reach your perfect client, you first need to define what a perfect client looks like to you. After all, if you don’t have a target to aim for, you can’t hit it.
If your definition isn’t tight enough, then your partners and business development directors may reach out to the wrong people at the wrong time. But if it’s too strict, then not enough of the right leads will fall into your sales pipeline.
Diving Into The Data
It’s an expensive fallacy to believe that a prospective client must show demand or interest before you contact them to discuss arranging a meeting.
It is undoubtedly true that you will get a higher rate of return if the person you want to meet has previously visited your website, attended your webinar, become a first-degree connection with you on LinkedIn, or engaged with you in some other way. However, if you have correctly outlined your criteria for your perfect client, then you can buy a dataset full of people who your message will connect with.
Such datasets can come from sources such as bought lists of contact details, your extended network of second and third-degree LinkedIn connections, an internal CRM, and more.
In fact, if you only target those who have made themselves known to you previously, then you’re in danger of making the costly mistake of missing out on a large part of the market.
Dial The Magic Numbers
For larger SMEs and corporate targets, the phone is king. So once you have your dataset ready to go, call every person on your list, then perhaps back this up by sending them an email or LinkedIn message/connection request.
If, however, you’re targeting smaller businesses, then you may find other methods will yield greater success.
Rules For Making Your Initial Call
When reaching out to someone via phone, know your prospect and bear in mind that a corporate decision-maker, CEO, business owner, or wealthy individual, expects to talk to people like them.
Make sure to get to the point quickly – for example, explain that you would like to discuss something which you believe is of value to them. And if it is of interest, you’d then like to arrange a meeting where you can discuss things in detail. Try to resonate with the person and explain how what you offer will benefit them.
Next, be sure to listen to them so you can understand what type of person they are. Are they a people person, a goal-orientated person, a technically minded person, a time-conscious person, or something else entirely?
Then, adapt your conversation accordingly and prepare for the hurdles.
Breaking Through The Barriers
One of the reasons that professional phone calls are more valuable than emails or LinkedIn introductions is because they uncover obstacles and give you the chance to react to them.
Some obstacles – such as your prospect saying: “I don’t have time right now,” – can be easy to overcome, while others can be based on misinformation or misunderstandings.
For example, a General Counsel for a Fortune 500 firm once said to one of our telemarketing team that, ‘artificial intelligence won’t be able to reduce the cost of my legal team’.
Our caller then discussed this statement with the prospect, and after another 20 minutes of talking we managed to arrange our client a meeting with the General Counsel.
The fact is, many such meetings are arranged as a result of effectively overcoming an obstacle.
Look After Your Leads
Studies show that well-managed leads tend to convert into clients at a higher rate than underdeveloped leads, and what’s more, these well-managed, high-converting leads also tend to make higher-value purchases.
By configuring a well-constructed ‘lead pipeline’ you can nurture leads until they are ready to buy from you, and keep track of where your most valuable leads are coming from.
A basic lead pipeline will contain the prospects’ contact details, details of the conversations you’ve had with them to date, notes on how to begin your next conversation, a suggested medium for your next interaction, and most importantly, the source of the lead.
In terms of deciding what to talk about with the lead during your next conversation, and working out what your next interaction with them should be, here are some of our notes for a previous lead we were working on:
Paul’s key concern is the global mobility of the top 200 executives. Before our next call, email him an article on the future of executive mobility. His company’s main push for 2021/22 is the ESG Fund. In our next call, focus on discretionary fund managers at last coming off the fence about ESG returns.
Perfect Pipeline Management
Progressing leads through the stages of your sales process requires time and resources, while each lead should be scored depending on where they are in your pipeline and how likely they are to convert at a particular time. Oversight from senior management here is necessary.
To conclude, our experience shows that consistently well-constructed lead generation can have a huge impact on client acquisition, and that it is a skill which can be learned, worked on, and improved like any other.