Thursday, June 9

Specific leads for specific needs 

How do you attract red-hot prospects who are likely buyers of your
product/service? Here's what I had to say to a writer from Sales and
Marketing Management
on the question:

No matter what methods you use to generate leads (direct mail, email,
website inquiries, trade shows, telephone inquiries, etc.) you need to keep
in mind that you can't CONVINCE anyone to buy anything. All your efforts
should go toward FILTERING and SORTING.

Make the lead generation process itself interactive. ASK people what their
specific needs are, what their timeframes are, and even whether or not they
are currently looking for solutions such as yours. If they're not in the
market - and they TELL you so - you can't force them to buy!

Focus on discovering a prospect's REAL wants and needs. How do you do that? In your lead generation process, make sure you:

1. Get a conversation going. Look for what's under the surface. On the phone, for example, you could use phrases like 'Tell me more about that' or
'Why is that so?' Look for the problem behind the problem!

2. Ask direct questions. Ask your prospects what's most important to their businesses right now. On an email survey, for example, you could ask your list 'What types of issues are you looking to solve in the next 6 months?'
Include a variety of choices, some that relate to your offerings, and some
that don't.

3. Follow up in writing. Send prospects letters or e-mails that highlight their major concerns, such as the three things they said were most important to them. This SPECIFIC kind of follow-up can make the difference between a sale and a lost opportunity.

4. Use multi-step marketing. Just like you're unlikely to get married on your first visit to a singles bar, your prospect is unlikely to buy from you on your first communication. Lay out a value-rich process in which they can
learn more, try a free sample, come to a briefing, or access some other low-risk method of getting to know your company's offerings (e-news subscription, free white paper, information kit, etc.) This is a great strategy, because THESE leads are prequalified as interested and after getting several 'samples' of your value, they are pre-sold and ready to do business!

5. Target specialized markets. These days, specialized publications,
e-zines, websites, online forums, professional associations, events, and
conferences have mushroomed up everywhere! These all appeal to specific,
targeted audiences, which increases your exposure to higher quality leads.
Occupation-specific, special interest, or industry-specific channels can
greatly increase the effectiveness of your lead generation activities. Want
to reach pizza restaurant owners? Read Pizza Today! How about chicken
farmers with over 100,000 birds? Read Poultry Tribune! Think of these
specialized venues as a geiger counter that will help you to find hot - no,
radioactive - leads!

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?