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If Sales Prospecting Takes Hours out of Your Day You're Doing It Wrong

Every Sales Manager has seen the two sales prospecting extremes: those that spend way too much time really understanding a prospect (her favorite football team is probably not relevant to qualifying the meeting), and those who cold call with no research, spraying and praying without a purpose. Depending on your company’s approach and past experience, you’ll probably hate one more than the other — however, both are equally harmful to your bottom line.

The thing is this: quality and activity are not on two factors that rule each other out. If you’re in outbound sales, you’ll never know as much as you’d like when going into a cold call. But you do need to know what level of knowledge is “good enough” for you to avoid being irrelevant and wasting everyone’s time.

The trick is to find your “good enough” and leverage that throughout the outbound sales process. Here’s a quick guide to how.

Identify “good enough” for your outbound sales efforts

Start by evaluating past satisfied customers and strong cases to pinpoint your ideal customer profile (ICP). Are the customer’s size, location and vertical relevant? Or the technologies they use? How about the composition of their staff, their growth trajectory, or their likeliness to invest in certain areas of business? If you’re not sure, upload your customers into a company analysis tool to identify the key characteristics.

After identifying the who, figure out the when. Unless your product has the ability to blow all alternatives out of the water in the initial value proposition, odds are there is a certain time your prospect will be more likely to evaluate you. Whether it’s a recent round of funding, a recent merger or acquisition, a change in upper management, a new open position, an expansion to a new market or any other transition, identify the triggers you should put in place as a time to reach out.

Use modern technology to identify quality prospects at scale

There is more data out there than ever before, and modern B2B sales technology is equipped to understand it. Use a sales prospecting platform like Vainu to identify companies within your ideal customer profile from all of the companies in the market. Then, get notified on changes within the target group for the right time to be in touch.

When the right moment hits, push the prospect into your CRM or Sales Engagement Software to get ready for your outreach.

The Ultimate Guide to Sales Prospecting

Reach out to your prospects with tailored pitches

By leveraging the power of the Internet and modern technology in your prospecting, you should now be able to create tailored outreach campaigns at scale. That said, make sure you use the research and put it into your pitches — just because your prospecting process suggests they’re a great fit doesn’t mean that the prospect will agree.

Make sure you’re communicating your understanding of the prospect’s situation and how you’ll help in their specific challenges. At Vainu, we’ve created tailored cadences for different ICPs and different moments of transition the company may be going through to, and we tailor our pitches accordingly.

Analyze, tweak, and repeat

Assuming that you’re executing this data-driven method of prospecting successfully, it should provide the same number of relevant prospects as before, but with a higher conversion rate to qualified meetings (and higher conversion rates down the sales funnel). Analyze your campaigns constantly, tweaking and testing your ICPs, sales triggers and pitches to reach those improved metrics.

Topics: Sales Prospecting

Mikko Luhtava

Mikko is Head of Communications at Vainu, interested in brand communication, football and New England Patriots.