In the world of competitive selling, the secret to success often lies in a professional’s ability to prospect, or to find potential customers so they can get more business.
Even after you close one big sale; it is time to start finding more business and more prospects so you can continue to find success in your career.
However, there are many sales professionals today who find themselves wondering; “where are the prospects?” and how do I find this new business?
Here are five easy steps to follow that can help you find those prospects and bring in more business.
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1. Get in the Right Mindset
You will never find the prospects you are looking for or start getting more business if you are not in the right mindset. Do not stress yourself out too much or convince yourself that if you don’t find prospects right away that your career is over.
View the prospecting process as a fun way to get to know people and start building professional credit and a good network. Building a sturdy network that you can rely on will be one of the strongest tools in your sales toolbox as your career grows. Be ready to get rejected a great deal as well, but remember it's not the end of the world and it is a step in the right direction.
Be ready to get rejected a great deal as well, but remember it's not the end of the world and it is a step in the right direction.
2. Do Your Homework
Make sure you know who your target market is and that you have researched your target market, who they are and how they behave so you can get a better view of who it is that you are trying to sell to. Never start prospecting without doing your homework in this way.
When you research and prepare you become more confident and your conversation with your prospect will be more authentic while improving your credibility. When it comes to research and homework, as with most things in life, you get what you put in. If you put in a little effort you will get little results, if you put in a lot of effort and truly know your prospects and how your service/product can improve their business/lives, you will get much better results.
If you put in a little effort you will get little results, if you put in a lot of effort and truly know your prospects and how your service/product can improve their business/lives, you will get much better results.
3. Creating Your Plan
You will not want to start prospecting for new clients until you have created a plan of attack. Get creative and take the time to think of ways to approach the art of prospecting in a new way or to put your same prospecting approach in new packaging. This will help you stand out from the competition.
Learn how your leads prefer to be contacted, whether it is through text, email, video conference or direct phone calls. Planning how you will reach out to your prospects will give you an edge and help ensure that you follow through with your efforts.
4. Set Up Meetings With the Prospects You Find
Once you have started to find new prospects; this is only half the battle; you need to turn these prospects into new business. To do this, you need to start setting up meetings. However, you will want to make sure that you are sending the right messages to the right places.
Try new and inventive meeting spaces instead of just meeting in your office so that you stand out from the competition. Try having a walking meeting, this is sure to set you apart and will change the mindset of your prospect. It will increase your ability to express yourself and help information flow freely as you are out of the office setting.
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Make sure you stay in touch with the prospects that you meet with so that you can start turning these prospects into business. To keep things fresh and to stand out from the crowd; try communicating with new tools and abandon the traditional phone call.
Try a video message or a video conference. Send actual postcards in the mail rather than emails. Always reach out to your customer when you say you will and make sure to keep track on a calendar. However, be careful not to reach out to your customer too often. This can make you sound desperate or annoying to the prospect.