Sales representative prospecting methods

B2B Sales Representative Prospecting Methods - Updated 2017

Discover new B2B prospecting methods and get more prospects to your sales pipeline

In theory marketing team is supposed to bring prospects to sales representatives pipeline.

However, this doesn’t mean that we should seat and wait for new prospects and do nothing. Actually many prospecting methods should be used by the sales team because this will ensure an uninterrupted experience of your future clients.

Here is a list of 8 B2B prospecting methods that every sales representative should use.

  1. Video prospecting - new prospecting method 2017
  2. Make video prospecting your competitive advantage over the rest of sales reps. Video is much more engaging and people tend better consume information in form of video much more than in form of text or cold call. You can do it two ways.

    First you can organize a video channel where you will upload videos about your company and products you are selling. This is a very common practice and you can find thousands of examples. You can host your video channel on your website or use third party services like YouTube.

    Second, you can invent something like “cold emailing”. This is something that is just starting to be popular and you can really use it as your unique competitive advantage. Cold calling has its drawbacks because your prospects may be not in a good mood or busy and you will not be able to establish a good rapport with them. Instead of this you can record a video with you describing your company and products and send them as an email.

    Remember, you should record separate video for each company, because you must make it relevant to the company and refer to you clients by name. It is very important!

    Here are several more tips of video prospecting:

    • Be open and natural.
    • Make sure the place is good for recording a video.
    • Do it regularly. Don’t be afraid of recording a video.
    • Don’t rush, but keep relevant and engaging.
    • Check and revise each video before sending it.

  3. Referrals
  4. Referral sales prospecting method

    Your existing happy customers are the most powerful and valuable source of getting more prospects in B2B environment. Your company profits from each client not only from the direct business, but also from the positive word of mouth effect. And the later factor can be even more profitable.

    B2B prospects are almost 50% more likely to accept you communicating them if you or your company was referred to them. This is true for all the B2B sales representative prospecting methods described in this article.

    Ask your clients for a referral after a sell has occurred. If the sale was successful and the client is happy this is the best moment for this request because the memories about the experience are fresh and the client has more will to share this experience.

    Even if the sale occurred some time ago send emails from time to time asking your clients about their experience with your products and services. This will fresh up their memories and increase the probability of new referrals and prospects for you.

  5. Networking and face-to-face
  6. Networking sales prospecting method

    Networking is a “must have” B2B prospecting method. First of all if you do networking you will better understand your target markets, problems they face and tasks they have. This will be very important and beneficial for your organization if you, as a B2B sales representative, give this kind of insider knowledge.

    Also, you can occasionally recommend your products and services that can solve the problems your target market has. Networking can take a lot of your time because you need to find where your your prospects meet and communicate and to show up to the meetings. However, this investments will give you many new prospects.

  7. Seminars and webinars
  8. Seminars sales prospecting method

    Webinars and seminars are similar events. The difference is that seminars bring all participants into one location while webinars are held via internet. To organize a webinar you need to get a proper software or online service for webinars. It will be great if you can share materials and show your screen during the event.

    Seminars must be organized in a different manner. You need to choose a venue, get some facilitators for help, organize food and logistics. To run your webinar or seminar you need to write and design your workshop, but if you have a presentation try not to read your own slides. The slides are needed just to control the sequence of your discussion.

    Don’t spend too much time about yourself. Let your prospects to ask questions and find out their objectives to make the event more useful for them.

    Overall, webinars are great in that you can run them more often and you can reach prospects around the world. At the same time seminars are better for the audience engagement and involvement.

  9. Trade shows
  10. Trade show sales prospecting method

    Trade shows is one of the best places to meet your target audience. However, this B2B prospecting method tends to be one of the most expensive types of sales and marketing. If you do it right trade shows will become a steady source of getting more prospects into your sales pipeline.

    First of all you should set a goal of how many prospects you are going to get.

    Then, you need to organize your space so that it is engaging and enforces your credibility. Never go to trade shows alone, because you can’t talk to everyone at once and be available all the time.

    Try to get contact details of all people who showed interest to your company and follow up after the show.

  11. Content
  12. Blog sales prospecting method

    Content is a king. Create a blog for your website and you will get much more attention from from the audience. Make your content available in different form like PDF files, slides, podcasts etc. Find the best form to reach your B2B prospects. However, if you are not an expert in creating a content you should get some help with it. If your content is not engaging enough all your efforts will be wasted and you will not get more prospects.

  13. Social media
  14. Social media sales prospecting method

    Today you have to be in social media because all of your potential prospects are in social networks. Even though we are dealing with companies in B2B markets we always communicate with people.

    Try not to limit your presence there with creating an account and posting your offers. You should try to answer questions and help your prospects to find information they are looking for. Social media can not substitute all other methods of finding prospects, but this is the best place to be closer to them.

  15. Cold calling
  16. Cold calling sales prospecting method

    Cold calling is not easy and you should be prepared to hear “no” far more often than to hear “yes”. Actually, you should be ready to that only 1-3% of your calls will be successful.

    However, cold calling still works and it can bring many new clients to your company if you do it right. To maximize your chances for success you should:

    • Prepare a script.
    • Pitch regularly.
    • Focus on the call. Do not multitask.
    • Talk about the value first. Don’t start with talking about the price.
    • Use a handset.
    • Be prepared to send more information.
    Overall, it is better to make less calls with higher success rate than making the calls unprepared and wasting your energy.

  17. Advertising
  18. Advertising sales prospecting method

    Advertising is a great B2B prospecting method, but it’s a very expensive method at the same time. If you are not budget conscious and you are sure that you will be able to have the same budget for a long time then you should use it.

    The trick is that once you roll up your advertising activities all your efforts and investments will stop working. Off course you will get clients and referrals if the clients are happy, but it’s very different from content building where your investments will work almost forever.

    However, if you decide to use this method you still need to work hard to make it successful. You need to decide on the media and place where your target prospects are and you need to design an ad that works. It is not easy and it is better to get some experts onboard.

B2B Sales Prospecting Methods from Andriy Popov
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Andrii Popov

Written by ANDRII POPOV

Andrii is passionate about business and startup intelligence. As most of the startuppers he has got experience in almost all business areas.
Andrii has MA in Marketing from the University of Queensland.

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