Today, we are going to look at what to do once you have that huge spreadsheet in front of you!
Whilst you still have a mountain to climb, and success is by no means guaranteed, you can take some steps to improve your chances:
- Review the data thoroughly. This means going through it with a fine tooth comb to make sure that everyone on the list meets your criteria. Really annoying somebody by contacting them about something not relevant to them is a sure fire way to be accused of spamming. A recent example for me is a nursery school in Devon – I don’t have children that age, and I live miles away from Devon – why do I want to know about them? The answer, of course, is that I don’t.
- Be clear about your desired outcome. If you are contacting these people cold, meaning they have never heard from you before, they are highly unlikely to jump straight into buying something from you, or booking a meeting. So your outcome, or target, needs to be realistic. That could be agreeing to sign up to your newsletter, talking to you about their business challenges, or just confirming they have no need for your services. Either way, it makes the database you are building stronger all the time.
- Make sure your marketing materials are up to scratch. Of course, you have already decided what product or service you are going to promote, so now it is a case of ensuring you have enough material printed, and the quality really reflects your business well.
- Write a killer sales letter. We’re afraid there is no way around this, unless you just want to jump into cold calling. When you are writing your letter, don’t just launch into how wonderful your company is, or the fabulous offers on your products – that is just going to turn anybody off. Instead, think about how you would feel being contacted out of the blue and introduce yourself accordingly. Remember your reader is not interested in you or your business, they are interested in themselves – so make sure your copy reflects that.
- You cannot load these people straight onto an email system, since any good email providerdoes not allow purchased data to be added to lists. The upside is, that if you finish your sales letter telling the reader you will call them, at least you can say to the receptionist, when you ring, that the person is expecting your call!
- Appoint a great telesales company or resign yourself to cold calling. Yes, we know that sounds harsh but it is the reality, in our opinion, of how you need to handle this to get best value. You need to follow up on your sales letter and establish if there is any interest. Arguably, it is a warm lead if you have prepared them with a letter, but it is still tough going. However, going for the pushy sales call trying to bully your way into the diary of the decision maker is not going to work – far better to build a relationship slowly, which can still be done through telesales. By the way – if you are gulping – we can see why you might be questioning if this is the right approach for you now.
- Be flexible – this might not turn out the way you were planning, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Adjust your approach if the results are disappointing, but recognise that the only way to find out if it works, is to test it!
That’s it for now – plenty for you to try if you want to test out this approach. Certainly, we have achieved some great successes, but it’s definitely not the right tool for everybody.
Good luck and remember…
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