9 Lists you can call today to grow your Business!
Discover the gold before you ever make your first call.
This is an excerpt from my coming book — “The Sales Engine” — Grab the first three chapters free by clicking below:
Prospecting is the foundation for Selling and Marketing, you have to be able to determine who it is you’re going to contact and how you’re going to contact them! For Sales Professionals and anyone who owns a sales organization (if you’re in Business, you’re in sales). Your ability to prospect will determine your whether or not you’re going to make or break it in the Business world!
For most of us however, if we aren’t given a list, we’re stuck holding our hands in the air wondering where on earth we should even start, who we should be calling, and how you we should be calling them.
I’m going to get into the “how-to” later on in my book “The Sales Engine” but for now, I want to give you the foundation, the true beginnings of where your prospecting efforts should begin! For most that I begin training, they’re a little surprised to find out that it’s not actually by picking up the phone and dialing whoever they can think of!
It’s time to build your list —
Targeting your Market:
The first thing you’re going to need to do before you ever even build your lists, is determine where your clients are going to be coming from and more importantly how you’re going to reach them!
For Business to Business Sales Professionals, Consultants, etc. thinking about who you are primarily looking to service is paramount. You can get REALLY technical into the niche aspect of it, and that’s not what this article is primarily about, but creating a list of what kind of Businesses you would like to pursue is ideal.
Don’t get too technical with this either, if you’re a Marketing firm that specializes in helping restaurants market their companies you’re probably not going to be reaching out to roofing companies — duh, but this is a place to start.
If you’re selling to consumers and/ or working for someone else, this is a little more complex as that can serve a wider demographic. This is where some clever digging is going to come into play and what I’ve created for you in the sections below:
Lists potentially already available to you:
Now, if you’re working for someone else instead of just yourself, this is going to be an absolute goldmine for you! If you’re starting out, and working only for yourself, then skip over to “Lists you can start building now” portion of this article. But having some tools at your disposal is going to be incredible to your overall success, and Sales is about working Smart AND Hard, here are some ways you can do exactly that and boost your prospecting efforts to kick your new career off perfectly!
Orphan Adoption —
The first thing I always ask when I was working for a new employer was whether or not they had the accounts of old employee’s. People who no longer worked for the company and if their accounts were being maintained by someone else.
Now, for a few industries, this is relevant and every major company that is concerned about client maintenance should be practicing handing over the accounts to other reps. However many companies couldn’t be bothered; Specifically Car Sales, Furniture Sales, Cellular/ Network Sales, and many other retail locations are absolutely NOTORIOUS for not maintaining previous Sales Professionals books of Business!
This mean incredible opportunities for any newcomers who might want to pick up an extra client or two.
Primarily because the accounts might need maintaining and care, which should be obvious but for the strangest reason often isn’t. But these are solid contacts whom have already had SOME point of contact with your Business — take advantage of it!
This is called “Orphan Adoption” because you are essentially adopting the old client accounts!
Dig through your systems, see if you can find previous employee’s old contacts and start calling! No need to bother with your own market when you can work through everyone else’s! Just make sure your company is on board with this, pitch them the benefits of selling new and untouched customers, smile and dial, set the appointment, rake in the money!
Previous Clients —
This is much like orphan adoption, only the accounts do not belong to the previous employees so much as the entire Business itself! Again, many companies do not have a problem with you calling up their old customers, asking them how their experience has been so far? Don’t get too emotional over this, you’re going to get a lot of mixed reactions — work with them, find a way to make upset customers happy, and move on. This is also a really great way to find out some company policies, procedures, and practices and a way for you to form responses to common objections in your marketplace.
However, going through a list of already sold clients is a fast way of getting some new appointments. Especially if you’re in an industry where upgrades and repeat purchases (Lifetime Value of a customer) is something that happens quite frequently!
Call them with the intention of seeing how you can make their experience better, introduce yourself, ask them how their current product is treating them, attempt for an up-sell or a trade, and close the appointment to the sale.
Service Accounts —
This is an especially handy trick for Car Dealerships. Going along the same lines of previous customers, what about the list of customers that your company may service on a regular basis. You see, not everyone is going to purchase your main product, but someone might like the fact that you service their like or similar products for them!
The service departments of Car dealerships, the “minor repair” database of any trade based company like roofing, have HUGE opportunities within their databases for new Business! Take advantage of it!
I personally know of 5 Auto Dealerships off of the top of my head right now that aren’t taking the time to use this, aren’t using the database to grow their Business, and ultimately, aren’t working the list to its maximum potential because the mechanics oftentimes, aren’t trained Sales Professionals, they just don’t know how to persuade and influence people into a new product!
Existing Accounts —
For the Businesses that hand over accounts of previous representatives to their new hires (good job), however, many of my teams Sales oppotunities and a HUGE area of unsold territory is the accounts that already exist and are currently active.
Not every Sales Professional is built equally and some don’t know how to properly maximize every sale. This is where the opportunity lies!
You see, most Business have either an option to up-sell existing clients, they have options for further warranty, or they have options to be sold something entirely different that you company works with!
I remember a consulting client I was working with, and it was funny, because half of her existing customer base didn’t even know she offered a protection service against bankruptcy insolvency that she had as an option to add on to her core offering.
I asked “Did you talk to every client you possibly could have about this? It’s amazing!” She had admitted that she had sometimes, and other time she had not!
We re-geared her pitch a little bit, re-introduced it to her existing client base and THAT DAY she had another $4700 in revenues come in with HUGE profit margins! Not bad for selling to clients that you already have in your database!
If you have something that you can add-on, take your time to call up your customers before a 1–800 number calls them before you and sells the same service on your products. I know I personally would rather speak to the person or the company rep who helped me with the original purchase long before I dealt with a different company! It’s about loyalty to the company and the representative, and more importantly, it’s about growing your Business!
Lists given to you —
Finally, this is the easiest route. Check and see if there are any lists that are given to you. In some industries, they will purchase leads to call in order to grow the Business!
This seems obvious, but maximizing every list is fundemental to the growth of the Business. If the company has paid for a targeted lead list, call every person on the list (duh..) but where most Sales Professionals miss out, is calling back the people that they did not get in touch with!
It’s surprising how many Sales Professionals do a once over on the list and call it good! They miss out on the fact that until they get in touch with the person on the list, the list is not complete!
Smile and dial!
Lists you can start building and how:
If you are starting out in Business, have just begun a new career path, or the company you are working for does not have a strong customer history basis, then building your own lists are going to be fundamental, and necessary to the growth of your personal Business!
It goes without saying that there are many people you can be reaching out to, but you’re going to have to figure out who you can reach out to in the first place!
I’ve given you some lists as well as some search tools, and templates in order to start doing exactly that:
Warm Market —
This is typically the FIRST list of ever great marketer and Sales Professional! It’s your friends and family. Back in a time when Social Media did not exist, this was something of a challenge because thinking of all of the people you have come into contact with over the years can be tricky Business!
However, with the “Friends” option on Facebook, you don’t have to worry about that anymore!
One of my favorite templates when I’m starting out is sending everyone on your friends list ONE BY ONE this:
“Hey __________ . Listen, this is a little bit of a marketing message, I’m just going poke the big purple elephant in the room right away and not be shy about it! But I was hoping you could check out my page and see if there might be something useful for you on there! I’ve just started out in this Business and would appreciate any feedback you might have so far!
I also figured it would be a good time to catch up, the last time you and I spoke you were in the middle of ________________________________ how is that going?
Anyways, it would be a really big help if you could spread the word and share anything that you might find relevant. Thanks again for you help! Also, if you’re in the market for (insert product and service here) don’t hesitate to let me know! (Insert link of your page/ website/ etc.)
All the best,
It’s simple, it gets the obvious out of the way, it gives you a chance to genuinely catch up! It’s always good to get in touch with an old friend after all and you never know, they may have gone into a completely different field and have something that could dramatically help your Business in the end!
With a little tweaking, I have also used this script to call my friends and family! Again, “point out the purple elephant in the room”, if you do this, you’re up front, and you’re honest, most people are going to respond in kind very easily to your marketing offers!
Keep the conversation open, this one is about friendliness, and awareness! You can always set the tone for the appointment later on down the line! Just asking for support is going to be plenty for now, and if you properly re-direct them to a website with optimal lead capture or a Business page on one of the many social media platforms, you now have an advertising medium that you can successfully work with!
The list already exists in your Facebook account, use it and don’t let the emotional reaction of some people get to you. If people remove you from the friends list, guess what, you’re a little better off as you’re no longer spending precious marketing dollars on advertising to them later on down the line!
Cold Market Prospecting —
Now, for my company and many other companies I have worked with, effective cold calling, when the training is done right, you execute it properly, and it’s well researched and timed, can be one of the most effective ways on the planet to grow your Business HANDS DOWN!
I’m a little shocked when I hear things like “Cold calling is dead!” OR “Cold calling just doesn’t work in this Business…” to which my internal response is “No, no one has ever shown you how to do it, and you’re too lazy to actually execute on a productivity plan that could launch you Business into the next dimension.”
There is no pretty picture to this, for most companies I have worked with the statistics are as follows:
- 500 calls made
- 12 appointments set
- 1–3 deals closed
That is A LOT of Cold calling if you really think about it, but the truth is, IT WORKS! You just have to put in the work! Most people can’t close 1–3 deals a month because they just didn’t know that cold calling does work, and it can work exceptionally well if you’re doing it right!
So how do you build the list then?
American Companies — http://www.usbizs.com/ is a great place to start when it comes to picking up the phone and dialing. Simply narrow your choices down by state and city, and begin calling the companies that appear in the directory.
Canadian Companies — https://www.canpages.ca/ is also a great place to start. There is a little backdoor secret to canpages.ca that I’m going to show you
Step 1: Visit the webpage www.canpages.ca
Step 2: Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Business Directory” (It’s tiny and at the VERY bottom of the page, but it’s there.)
Step 3: Narrow your selection by Province and City.
Step 4: Smile and dial
Social Media Prospecting (Outbound) —
Most people miss out on the opportunity that is right in front of them that social media presents but you can build lists and start generating leads through your online efforts via this methodology as well. I’m going to go into greater depth in this, however, the simplest way I’ve found to grow your Marketing efforts online is simply reaching out to people, utilising what your competition already has.
What do I mean by that?
Let’s take a look at a roofing company for example —
I’m going to pull up GAF roofing and facebook as they seem to have an incredibly strong following — if you’re in the roofing field and you’re looking to your own media fan pages or reach out to clients who are in need of roofing services, consider taking them right from an already well established competitors page!
Step 1: Go to the page
Step 2: Find a popular link/post/blog article
Step 3: Click on who has liked the article
Step 4: Reach out to them and begin marketing.
Step 5: Don’t get emotional over negative responses.
Again, you’re going to get a WHOLE variety of responses to this, some good, some not so good, this is cold prospecting however and you can’t get emotional over the reactions, especially the bad ones that you might receive.
What oftentimes does happen however, with a clever message and a little bit of link building (inserting your link into your message). You end up getting fans through Social Media that you otherwise would not have had before and ultimately, you get to advertise to those clients at little to no charge as they are now fans to your Facebook page!
This works exceptionally well on a local level as well and something I would actively encourage you to do on a regular basis. Smart Marketers create, incredible marketers also steal! So stay on top of what your competition is doing on a regular basis!
Advertisement Prospecting —
Now, much like the list above, advertisement prospecting is also another way to grow your Business and collect clients off of competitors spent money. Have you ever noticed that there are likes and comments scrolled ALL OVER competitions advertising.
What about comments of pissed off customers?
This is one opportunity for you to catch a customer of your competition who is otherwise unhappy, turn them into a thrilled prospect and customer and otherwise solve their problems for them at a faster, and higher quality pace than your competition can, I promise you, you’ll earn a customer for life!
It’s advised that your Business systems better be in place because if you promise them something that you cannot uphold, your world is going to be turned upside down far worse than what could have ever happened to you competition in the first place!
What are some areas that I might have missed? Do you think there might be a better way to create leads from Social Media for FREE that I haven’t gone over! Let me know!
Here are your top nine lists and a brief strategy on how to grow your Business from them —
- Orphan Adoption — Adopt client accounts from Sales Professionals no longer with the Business you’re now working for.
- Previous Clients — Going through the client database and calling old clients that haven’t been helped in a long time is a great place to prospect for new Business.
- Service Accounts — Go into your service database and pull out clients from there. Many of these people don’t own your core product, but are receiving service from your company nontheless.
- Existing Accounts — Upsell existing accounts. Chances are good that there is an unfilled need of a secondary product that wasn’t sold.
- Lists given to you — If you’re given a list, propsect the hell out of it! There is no “One and done”. Call again if you didn’t get a hold of them.
- Warm Market — Reaching out to friends and family can be great if you know how to do it in a way that points out the obvious and asks for support!
- Cold Market — Grab a phone book, fortunately there are also online directories. Use them. Smile and dial.
- Social Media — Utilize your competitions fan pages and begin reaching out to those people. Don’t get emotional over negative responses.
- Advertisement Prospecting — Look for clients that are unhappy with your competitions level of service, and service the hell out of them. You’ll gain a customer for life.
If you found this article useful, please share with the first person that comes to your mind! I’m sure they would appreciate it as well!
My name is Matthew Gourley, I’m the founder of www.salestraininc.com. A company that specialises in showing you how to generate, and sell more customers!
If you want more info a great freebie grab the first three chapters of my book “The Sales Engine” free of charge!