Score More Prospect Meetings in 2023
Getting new prospect meetings is the most pressing challenge so far in 2023 is what Lisa Scotto, founder of LMS Growth Consulting, learned when she put that question forward to her LinkedIn Network. Being the B2B sales leaders that we are, Lisa and I put our heads together to come up with some tips for you on how to get those important meetings on the calendar.
Tip #1: Leverage ALL of the networking resources at your fingertips.
Often, organizations have networking apps (think Slack, google groups or proprietary platforms) to help connect members and drive engagement. Lisa and I have had success with using these tools to warm up cold leads, develop relationships and get prospect meetings. Are you a part of the industry association for your industry? If not, now is a great time to join! Member of @Chief? @Serial Marketers? @Product Marketing Association? Lisa recently joined the National Organization of Italian American Women and the first thing they asked for was a bio and website to add to their directory.
This is just a small sample of the organizations that Lisa and I belong to and have used to get prospect meetings and ultimately close deals. Research ones that make sense for your business: join→get engaged→get more meetings.
Tip #2: Go to conferences with a plan.
Now that the world has figured out how to live with COVID, conferences are back, baby! Conferences exist to get people together, so whenever you are going to one, you should make sure that you are getting the maximum benefit out of your investment of time and money.
Some quick conference tips are below:
Who: figure out who you want to meet at the event and scour the agenda, attendee lists, your CRM, any networking groups you belong to and create a list of people you want to meet with.
Data mining: track down email addresses via your CRM, LinkedIn, company websites, and tools like Apollo.io.
Outreach: Send email outreach at least a week in advance and invite people to meet with you onsite. I tend to queue up a series of three emails with the first email going out about two weeks before the conference. In your emails, make sure you explain why they should meet with you (ie, What’s in it for them? What do you have that they might want?). Segmenting your email list, especially if you’re using an email sequencing tool, can be helpful for this since people in different roles or organizations will have different needs and interests.
Onsite: take advantage of any networking that is built into the program and also RSVP for parties. Even if you don’t end up going to a party, you might get lucky and have access to an attendee list that you can use to follow up afterward.
Net net, take some time to build a strategy for your conference participation. If you just show up and wing it, you are certainly missing opportunities.
Tip #3: Be a voracious consumer of industry specific/prospect content.
Read what your prospects are reading. Follow who they follow. Use everything at your fingertips to better understand a specific prospect. Google alerts, social media, industry news, even job postings. All of this allows you to make connections and customize your outreach to prospects for a better chance of scoring a meeting.
Lisa makes great use of checking out job listings to get an understanding of a company’s needs, leading to landing meetings. Here’s her secret, “Armed with this intel, I was able to research the hiring leader, who happened to be the ideal prospect, and make the business case that my opportunity was something that could help the soon-to-be hired employee be successful. You can also use job postings to create a list of future prospects. One of my clients knows that newly minted CIOs are a great prospect, so they created a Google alert to let them know when new CIOs are installed. This client has a keen understanding of their ideal persona and has created a unique way to leverage this data to shorten the delta between outreach to business deals done.”
Although some things have become more difficult this year, some things have remained the same: creativity, ingenuity and preparation continue to go a long way when working in sales. We invite you to try some these ideas. Or maybe you’ll be inspired to come up with your own creative approach that helps you fill your schedule with prospect meetings. Let us know what works for you!