It’s easy to fall into a prospecting slump. After all, prospecting is the least desirable, most time-consuming part about sales. There are certainly times when people think they can get by without it; when normal sales are plentiful, and client retention is high. Or you might be one of those businesses that has a tendency to pause its prospecting during “slow seasons.” That said, it’s still essential to your pipeline, and stopping your efforts for any reason can be a mistake. You might not feel the negative effects on your sales immediately, but they will come. Then, as Rick Davis points out on LBM Journal, “…the moment prospecting becomes urgent, it’s already too late.”
So how do you stay disciplined? Define a plan that includes the following points:
Periodically refresh your contact data
No matter how many contacts are part of your email prospecting and lead generation right now, you need to periodically add more. Otherwise, the number you have will only continue to diminish, either from leads who have become opportunities, those who have disengaged or unsubscribed from your outreach, or those who have moved on from their job roles and companies you’ve been targeting. You may also decide to expand your geographic footprint or target additional industries, which requires more onboarding to find and verify the right people.
Automate your outreach
A lot of what you already do for prospecting can be automated. This includes the emails that you send: asking who to talk with about new business, following up to see if they’re ready for a call, and sharing content that demonstrates your authority in their market. The same applies to your social media. When done correctly, VentureBeat reports this automation could save you roughly 25 hours a week — and that’s before you even consider outsourcing your lead gen.
Prospect each day
Sales reps and marketers usually find prospecting a real chore because it requires long-term strategies in order to yield results. Leads generally don’t see one email and immediately want to buy. So, you have to make sure that you’re optimizing your time by focusing on leads who have shown the most interest. We’re referring to those who have repeatedly opened your emails, clicked on links, and visited specific pages on your website. Depending on the automation you use, these actions will be recorded as lead scores that prioritize these contacts for your review. Then you can send them a more personalized follow-up email, connect with them on LinkedIn, or give them a proactive call — all of which demonstrates that you’re a real person at a legitimate company that is actively interested in doing business.
Refresh and repurpose your content
Update your blog, website, and social media on a regular basis to show that you’re still around and active. This improves your visibility on social newsfeeds and organic keyword searches, encourages likes and comments from your leads and followers, and improves your overall search engine ranking. Sure, it might feel difficult to write about the same product or service for the hundredth time, but you’d be surprised how many different ways you can retell a compelling story when you put your mind to it. And don’t be shy about repurposing that same content across multiple platforms: a blog post can be condensed into an email, which can be further condensed into a social promo.
If you’re still finding it difficult to manage these efforts in house, we want to help. Click the link below to schedule a free lead nurturing discussion.