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Outbound and inbound lead generation are among the most respected practices when it comes to generating sales.
Just like Ying and Yang (the popular and most documented notion used alongside Taoism), Inbound and Outbound lead generation are two halves brought together to create completeness.
Inbound marketing attracts potential customers to your company whereas outbound lead generation involves you reaching out to potential Customers in areas they cannot find your company on their own.
Used together wisely, these two practices can result in endless benefits. That said, kindly note this blog post is intended to educate you on how you can make outbound lead generation work for your business.
However, also remember that generating outbound sales leads is not an easy task. Even worse you cannot tie this down to daydreaming or empty words. To make it work, you’ll need to work smart; and a bit harder. The best lead generation practices start with three things; a plan, a process, and a workflow.
Create a strategy that you can measure, test, and tweak toward perfection.
Without further delay, let us jump to the main section of the post.
How can you make lead generation work for your company?
The key here is making sure your lead generation team pays attention to the primary skills that lead to successful outbound lead generation campaigns. These skills include Email skills, building rapport, understanding gatekeepers, asking for referrals, and doing research.
1. Email skills
In the last couple of years, Email prospecting has become a popular outbound lead generation practice for most companies. Here are numerous tactics you can use and make yours a success.
- Your emails should be straight to the point, casual, and most importantly, use a friendly tone.
- Find out what potential clients are posting on their social media platforms and their shared interests. Consequently, use your findings to start a conversation with them; they are more likely to engage with you this way.
- Point your target audience in the direction you would like them to take. If you want them to take action, such as reply to your email, point that out in your message.
- Optimize your emails for mobile phones. Most individuals open their emails on their phones. You need to make sure your emails are responsive in mobiles for better results.
- Reach out to unresponsive potential customers and let them know that you will be closing their files if they do not respond to your emails.
Obviously, clients will not reply to your emails if they do not open them. This is why you’ll also need to pay attention to email “open rates.” It is the most important phase. Your team did not spend its valuable time and effort formulating emails that prospects won’t read.
Here are numerous things you can do to improve open rates:
- Keep your emails’ subjects short and simple.
- Pay attention to the pre-header (the first sentence seen in the message) and make sure it is engaging.
- It goes without saying that you should consider using the recipients’ real name.
- Make sure the font you are using is readable on all types of devices.
- Last but not least, find the time of the day that best works for your emails.
Use these tips and transform your outbound emails into something powerful and viable.
2. Building rapport
It goes without saying that excellent phone skills should be the bread and butter of every outbound lead generation representative. However, this does not mean they cannot learn a thing or two along the way.
First of all, your outbound lead generation team should be able to connect with potential customers and come up with a report: all this just over the phone. Secondly, the same team should be able to analyze and understand what prospects desire and how they think. This is to the team’s advantage because they can change the script and tweak their approach to keep the clients engaged.
For example, you can employ storytelling as your means of engagement to grasp your prospect’s attention from the beginning, but this will not work for everyone. Ask your team to assess your target audience and find out things such as; their likes and dislikes and how they operate altogether.
Even though most people think that the ability to effectively communicate with prospects and close sales is a “born with” gift, any person can master this skill; as long as they put in the work and effort.
Every marketing expert can confirm that gatekeepers are among the most difficult and annoying barriers in the world of marketing. We can define a Gatekeeper as anything standing in between you and a potential customer. They can be any person from receptionists to secretaries for Business to Business Marketing programs.
Even though most marketers think gatekeepers are an annoyance to get through or get around, the best alternative is to work with them for the best results. This means you should try establishing a relationship with them. Make them see why you deserve to interact with the prospect.
Even better, gatekeepers are normally a great source of information about the potential customer. By establishing a mutually beneficial relationship with the gatekeepers, you can learn everything you need to know about the prospect including, but not limited to; their schedule, things they do during their free times, their likes and dislikes, and so much more.
Here are numerous ideas on how you can strike a relationship with any gatekeeper.
What you’re trying to do here is separate yourself from the crappy salesperson who the prospect does not want to talk with. So,
- You can try connecting with the gatekeeper on social media platforms such as Facebook.
- Be nice, humble, and even funny from time to time.
- Frame your points and ensure they sound like you are asking for their help.
- If you are marketing a product or service, do not point that out to the gatekeepers at first. Just say that you need to speak to the key person.
- Be confident as you speak to them
One or two of this tips can help your lead generation teamwork with every gatekeeper.
4. Asking for referrals
Another effective lead generation practice is making the most out of your already existing customers. How can you accomplish this? By asking them to refer your company to their friends.
Have your outbound team get in touch with your customers from time to time to check in and ask if they can recommend your company’s products and services to the people they know. Even better you can call them.
Even if one of the new potential clients (the ones acting on the recommendation of your already existing clients) is not a good fit for your products or services, do not hesitate to ask them if they know someone who would be interested in your products and services. Chances are, others are generous enough to share.
The main reason most new representatives hit walls after walls of no’s is because they did not take their time to perform enough research before reaching out to the prospect.
I know what you might be thinking, and Yes! This will delay the overall process. But trust me, setting aside five to 10 minutes for research before calling your potential clients will result in a huge positive conversion rate difference.
Here are numerous tips on what you should research on.
- Check out your prospect’s social media platforms and determine whether their likes align with your company’s products or services.
- If your prospect is a company, Google and check if there are any new press releases on the company.
- Visit your prospect’s linked in profile and see whether you two have any common connections or groups.
- You can even Google your prospect’s name, in quotes, to check whether any of their information might have slipped into the internet. E.g., the best high school sportsman 2005, best trumpet player, etc. you could find something of interest to your company.
Doing these things can give you the upper hand with the prospects compared to your competitors.
The last, but by no means the least, practice you can use to make outbound lead generation work is, unite all five practices and come up with a strong, reliable outbound lead generation strategy. Executing a successful outbound lead generation campaign is not an easy task. It requires hard work and attention to the slightest details.
On your next outbound campaign, observe the mentioned tips and practices, and watch your lead generation team increase qualified leads by up to 900 percent.