What I Have Learned as a CEO About Engaging Prospects
I have spent nearly all of my adult life as a top-producing salesperson, sales manager, or consultant. For years, I have taught many organizations how to find and engage prospects, and they do very well. But there is one undeniable truth that changes outcomes more than any other when it comes to new business development: having prospects who already know a thing or two about your company.
A prospect who already knows something about your company and how you do business, a prospect who already has genuine interest in buying from you, is much more profitable than the one where you work to create a need for your product. Many of us have seen the now-classic movie, Glengarry Glen Ross where the good leads were allegedly locked in the safe and created much angst among the pressured salespeople.
So are you generating good leads? The best sales organizations do. They create and share high-quality content with prospects everywhere, and by doing so, they position themselves as thought leaders to whom businesses reach out. If a prospect already has interest in what you do and respect for how you do it, that prospect is golden. Social media sites like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest provide you with a perfect opportunity to establish yourself as a good person working for a good company to do business with. And prospects find your content.
Wouldn’t it be nice to see potential customers raise their hands and ask you to engage?
Recently a prospect downloaded an eBook from our website about the secrets to setting high-quality appointments, a big need in the marketplace. We promptly followed up with him to make sure he got the piece, answer any questions, and to find out how helpful it was for him.
The call led to a good conversation about his particular needs, and within the week he became a customer.
Last month I got an email from a sales manager of a California TV station wanting to discuss and learn more about our inbound marketing services. It turns out, he had been following our posts on the topic for some time, and he raised his hand when he was ready to learn more.
These are examples of good leads because the prospect already knew a lot about our company and our capabilities, and determined for themselves that they were prospects.
If you want better leads — prospects that have raised their hands! — provide useful content that speaks to the problems they face every day in their business. People aren’t necessarily seeking to make a purchase, but they’re looking for solutions to their problems. No one wants a pitch from an IT network support company, but thousands of prospects are interested in ways to make their networks more reliable, faster, and less costly to maintain.
Are you on the dance floor with high-quality content that addresses your customers’ needs? You should be.
To learn more about getting out there on the dance floor, download our "30 Days to Inbound Marketing Success" eBook below: