Kickstarting your sales process? Here's how to automate sales prospecting

Prospecting is seldom the favorite part of the sales process. It’s often considered hard and time consuming. In fact, prospecting it’s often identified as the hardest part of the sales process. Don’t fret! Thanks to technology, it shouldn't be too difficult to find good prospect and actionable leads.

By using a dynamic company database to filter through millions of companies, you can find the best companies for your business to focus on now through a simple search. Even better, you can automate some of the hardest parts of the process.

Why spend hours going through long company lists manually when smart technology can help you do this more efficiently in only a couple of seconds?

The internet has shifted the balance of power, and well-read consumers are more selective with accepting meetings with sales reps than before. As a result, sales people have to be able to deliver a clear value proposition, with excellent timing, to convince their prospect to agree to a meeting. This makes the sales prospecting phase in the sales process more important than ever before. We’ve collected six tried-and-tested prospecting tips that help you as a B2B sales professional find the right companies to focus on now.

Set your sales prospecting on autopilot

The quickest way to dramatically reduce the time you spend on sales prospecting is well, stop prospecting together. And no, I don’t mean by that, I don’t mean hiring a bunch of sales development representatives to free up time. Instead, you should let sales intelligence technology do the grunt work. Let’s see how. 👇

Companies are in flux. They constantly fall in and out of your ideal customer profile description. For example, if you target SaaS companies in Sweden, any SaaS company that enters the Swedish market should automatically be in your target list. Easy, right?

With a tool like Vainu, you can get notified every time a new company matches your ICP. It only takes three steps:

1. Define your ICP.

2. Set the company characteristics you want to track, such as revenue, employee count, location, or new hires. Theoretically, this list of characteristics will mirror your ICP description.

3. Get notified every time a company change occurs.

With such a process in place, you won’t have to spend any more time reading the internet and trying to find companies that match your ICP. Instead, a smart aggregator like Vainu that indexes millions of websites every day to keep track of the most relevant changes in your target companies. You don’t have to lift a finger.

introducing-workflow-triggers
With Workflow Triggers you can monitor any relevant change in your target accounts.

5 sales prospecting that save time

1. Find out what a qualified prospect is for you

Take a look at your happiest existing customers and find what their common characteristics are. Use these insights to define your ideal customer profile. This is one of the most important things you as a sales professional can do to make sure you focus your efforts on the right type of business. Hint: use the Vainu method for lead qualification to uncover best prospects.

2. Use insights from open data

Use a smart account identification tool like Vainu to quickly filter companies that match your ideal customer profile. With insights from open data, you can find less obvious characteristics for your prospects and existing customers, such as web technologies.

3. Block off time to prospect

To quote Mike Weinberg: “No one defaults to prospecting mode.” Prospecting, like any other part of the sales process, deserves to get your full attention for periods of time. Make sure to block off an hour or two during your day for prospecting.

The Ultimate Guide to Sales Prospecting

4. Stay ahead of the curve with predictive analytics

Predictive analytics in B2B sales is about increasing the likelihood of your sales team to engage with customers who are having a need that you can solve. Use insights from both open data and your internal data to find patterns in a company’s characteristics and need to predict what companies will need your solution soon.

5. Don’t be afraid to disqualify

Many salespeople hate to disqualify prospects and shrink their pipelines. As a salesperson, your most precious asset is your time, and it’s far better to spend it on a handful of your best prospects than spreading yourself thin across dozens of leads. The quality of your leads matters more than the quantity.

Disqualify a prospect when a company doesn’t have the budget to purchase what you’re selling now, if the decision makers feel no pain from the problem your solution is created to solve or if the prospect is a complete departure from your company’s buying persona.

Topics: Sales Prospecting, Sales Process

Eduardo Alonso

Scribbler at Vainu’s Marketing team. Taco enthusiast and obsessive record collector. Straight outta Madrid.