I was chatting to a good friend the other day who leads one of the leading Sandler Sales Training Practices in the US. His key takeaway from the last 5 years – sales professionals have lost the art of prospecting! I’ve blogged about the inbound marketing myth recently and this was more evidence that we are being suckered, hoodwinked, fleeced into believing it’s all about marketing content and inbound leads. Of course remarkable content is essential to drive relevant prospects into your arms. But just like the job market, only 10% of candidates that are relevant for a job are looking at any time. You need to reach out and create demand, you need to prospect. Here are 15 tips to get the ball rolling:

15 Tips to Prospect Your Way to Success
  1. Memorize your cold call scripts until you can deliver it in a relaxed conversational way.
  2. This script should have a clear assumption embedded in it on how you believe you can improve your prospect’s world (Serve first, sell second).
  3. Prepare your favorite questions to bring out the real symptoms and consequences that exist at your prospect’s site.
  4. Practice putting a cost on the type of problems that might exist in your prospect’s business.
  5. Prepare questions that  really help you understand what your prospect regards as success.
  6. Build little spreadsheets of ROI logic for each deal above $5k.
  7. Always prepare well written re-cap documents before formal proposals.
  8. Constantly seek more knowledge about the technical capabilities of all your products and services.
  9. Understand all new  products and why you launched them.
  10. Be aware of all key blog posts published by your company.
  11. Memorize key competitor key facts and be ready to explain that what they are good at is different to what you deliver!
  12. Keep a list of common issues impacting key managers within your industrial sectors.
  13. Understand all case studies within your sectors including any case studies you can recall to bring credibility to your sales conversations
  14. Memorize the top 20 companies in your sector and sub sectors.
  15. Understand the FAQs asked by your customers when implementing your products.
One of the key issues we find to be essential when scaling businesses is a repeatable set of processes and checklists within the sales process. Each sales professional needs mentoring to execute successful prospecting. If you want to review your sales process, reach out by phone 978 395 1155, by form, or by email ian.smith@portfoliopartnership.com.