Even if your industry and business are booming, it’s likely you could benefit from some prospecting tips. Often the most-loathed part of a salesperson’s job, building a pipeline is critical for continued success. For anyone who has spent time prospecting, it’s clear that making cold calls just doesn’t cut it. Indeed, effective prospecting strategies are critical to maximize a salesperson’s valuable time. So whether you focus on direct-to-consumer prospecting or a top-down approach with centers of influence, personalized messaging can make all the difference. In fact, industry trends like permission-based marketing can lead to more effective prospecting.

What is permission-based marketing

Popularized by Seth Godin, permission-based marketing is an email marketing strategy. Instead of sending unsolicited emails to a random list of potential clients, permission-based marketing prompts potential clients to ask for the marketing material. But how does this work? Who would request marketing emails? Typically, this type of strategy is paired with valuable content called content upgrades that encourage people to sign up. Once a potential client engages with a content upgrade, they’ve given you permission to connect. Indeed, not only do you have permission to reach out, but you also have someone who is expecting and looking forward to your content. Obviously, this leads to better deliverability and engagement. Permission-based marketing helps salespeople form a small group of highly engaged clients. This core group is ideal to work with for new solution offerings or enhancements. A good understanding of a core group of clients also helps create personalized communication.

Why personalized communication matters

It’s no secret that we like to talk about ourselves. Talking about ourselves and our interests is significantly more rewarding than listening to a product pitch. Therefore, it’s critical to personalize messaging in marketing materials, presentations, or emails. For example, clients who are members of a community group are likely happy to share information about upcoming initiatives. Additionally, potential referral partners likely have an area of expertise they would like to share. Consider leading off prospecting communication with a question about a current market trend to engage this group. What’s more, seemingly small things like volunteering with a local organization can not only lead to a better quality of life, but it can make a big impact on prospective clients or referral partners. Consider how you can be strategic with volunteer hours or donations.

Key steps to more effective prospecting

Start by building a strategy for content upgrades. Brainstorm current industry trends or common questions your receive on things going on in your field. Then, deliver some value. Create a blog entry, white paper, video, or webinar to help answer questions or capitalize on market trends. Add even more value by making these resources accessible in a digital engagement tool for easy access. Next, focus on working more personalized messaging into existing marketing strategies. Start with specific segments of customers or business partners and try to identify impactful messaging. Consider using a survey or informal interviews of core customers to get ideas. Then, pick what you want to measure. Be sure to identify a measurement that moves the needle. Finally, make small tweaks to emails, sales presentations, and social media campaigns to see what gets the best response.


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