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VOL. 43 | NO. 5 | Friday, February 1, 2019

Build a foundation for better outbound leads

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There’s a statistic from InsideView that tells us 90 percent of CEOs say they never return cold calls or cold emails. Ouch. Why bother? Because we have no doubt companies need qualified leads, from both outbound and inbound, to contribute to the health and well-being of the sales pipeline.

That being said, pursuing outbound leads can be intimidating. Maybe it’s the from-scratch relationship building or the fear of the unknown with cold calls and cold emails.

There is a way to take some of the sting out of outbound lead pursuit for your sales team. Beyond coaching and training and before you make that first call or email blast, lay the foundation for your sales team’s success in lead generation.

Set goals and metrics early. Determine your key performance indicators (KPIs) for your outbound sales goals and how to measure them. CRM platforms like Pipedrive or Salesforce, among others, can help you track and measure how your process is working.

Identify your customer profile. Whom are you trying to reach with your product or service? Are there revenue criteria to consider or perhaps industry and location targeting? What are your customers’ pain points, or what problem do they have that your company can solve? Seventy percent of purchasing decisions are made to solve a specific problem. Discover early how your company can offer value that will attract the customer you want.

Build a quality lead list by researching and verifying leads. Use lead intelligence platforms to help determine targeted initial lists using the criteria from your customer profile. Let your team mine the lead list further by searching free data sources such as LinkedIn to find out more about the person targeted as the lead. Make sure to determine who the decision makers are and direct your outbound efforts there.

Develop a strategy and plan for your target audience. It’s important to craft your message and find ways to personalize it so that each prospect feels special. Align your sales and marketing team in the creation of outbound collateral that speaks to the pain points identified and the message you’re conveying.

Decide what your sales cadence will be, including the steps or touchpoints. Building credibility and trust is key in your process, so consider including content or an offer of value – a white paper or a free tool/resource – that the customer can use and you’re on the way to building a beautiful relationship. Remember, 71 percent of the people base their buying decisions on trust and believability.

Closing the sale will always be about people connecting with people, and nothing tops a great foundation to set your team up for success.

Tricia Warren is a marketing strategist at RedRover Sales & Marketing Strategy. She can be reached at www.redrovercompany.

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