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Prospecting Effectively - Offline and Online

 

Guest articles > Prospecting Effectively - Offline and Online

 

by: Dean Horn

 

Newspapers, magazines, articles, newsletters and press releases can provide a rich source of information when prospecting for new customers. Local or National press articles can tell you what a suspect is engaged in ‘right now’.

Reading between the lines of business articles can uncover the size of the Company, market conditions, success, competitor activity and even what they need or what problem may need solving now or over the coming months.

It can be daunting to subscribe to many hard copy publications as well as all the brilliant content available on the internet as to where your new customers could be found. Therefore the Sales Expert should be skilled in dealing with such a workload to explore as much content as possible in the most efficient way.

If you are not up to speed in this area then there are steps you can take quickly to address this and have a rich and fresh pipeline of suspects flowing into your sales funnel.

Pre-work

Set aside a working day to find out which publications (off and on-line) may contain the type of customers that you can help with their problems. Sign up, subscribe, research websites, do whatever it takes to have that information flowing to you.

Don’t be afraid of the quantity, the more content you have, the more prospects ready to uncover! Once you are familiar with the copies you are engaging with it becomes easier. You know the layouts of the publications, where value lies on websites or newsletters and when they update.

Stage One - Making your Sales Bed

This should be a fast task, focussed on extracting QUANTITY of suspects. This is a great exercise to do to shift the day, break things up or to motivate with all the wonderful new customers you are about to find.
For hard copy content you are now receiving, scan the contents page and go to the articles that are of interest with a clear opportunity - DON’T READ THEM FULLY - rip them out and compile them in a paper file. Scan each page quickly in a quiet environment ripping each page as you go. TOSS any irrelevant materials.
For on-line content (blogs, websites), bookmark, home screen, snap-shot your favourite pages ready for access - DON’T READ THEM FULLY.
For e-mails (newsletters usually), file them in a folder dated and named appropriately. DELETE or UNSUBSCRIBE any irrelevant materials.

Stage Two - It’s all about Time Management

It is debatable as to the benefits of making this exercise a two stage process. However Companies, writers, designers and advertisers are constantly trying to seduce us with their own propositions. Before you know it you’ve been prospecting half the day and have lost all sense of focus and direction on what you are trying to achieve.

You should be looking to clear a full magazine in a couple of minutes of the articles you need and tossing the rest away.

Working in two stages you should avoid seduction pitfalls and can know you have always got a folder full of contacts ready to block your calendar for the coming weeks.
Pull out your file(s) on-line and off-line at times you have scheduled in your week - it’s time to get serious about reading these articles and contacting the people you are reading about!
Read between the lines. What is the suspect saying? Why are they in the article? How could you help them? Who are the main players?
Call them! ‘Good morning, it’s John calling from ABC Ltd. I’ve seen the article this week in the Gazette, it’s great to see your moving offices and I’d love to meet with you to discuss how we can help with that’.

 


Dean Horn is Director of Sell Ideas


Contributor: Dean Horn

Published here on: 30-Jun-13

Classification: Sales

Website: http://sellideas.tumblr.com/

 

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