Prospecting can be a chore especially when you don’t know where to start. It’s not as simple as merely asking your network ‘Hey, can you hook me up with these people?’ This is true even if you have a great network. 

Prospects are found through a variety of channels, including online sources, business directories, and the phone book. But it can be tough to determine which prospecting methods will be most effective for your specific needs. Luckily, there are a few different ways to find prospects that are most likely to help you reach your goals if you’re feeling a bit lost.


Link up on LinkedIn

We put LinkedIn first because according to some surveys, top sellers use LinkedIn thrice as much as everybody else for building highly targeted, quality prospect lists. On top of LinkedIn’s popularity with successful sellers, you also can’t ignore the staggering number of LinkedIn users — 750 million people to be exact. That’s how much fish is in the ocean waiting for you.

So, how do you get started? One of the first things that you need to do is to make sure that your profile is optimised for your target leads. You need to stand out to get noticed by your prospects and when you’re competing with nearly a billion other users from all over the world, you’ll need to put your best foot forward.

If you want to take a more active step instead of just waiting for prospects to find you, People Search is one of your go-to tools. Find your target audience by clicking the “Filter people by” option. When you click this option, it will immediately generate filters that can help you narrow down your search criteria. You may then start to filter your searches based on geography / location, industries, etc. This is one of the easiest tools to use in LinkedIn and the best part about this is it’s free!

If you’re willing to spend some money to improve your leads, the paid LinkedIn Sales Navigator will let you generate better leads for a price. The Sales Navigator is tailored to salespeople and businesses. As such, you can expect superior targeting options, finer searches, more filters, and view leads similar to your existing target audience and particular clients. These features make the Sales Navigator comparably more powerful than People Search as it allows for greater personalisation, greater engagement, and useful lead recommendations.


Take advantage of email marketing tools

Email marketing tools can also boost your prospecting strategy and make it a little easier.  What you’re doing with email prospecting is finding, researching, and qualifying prospects for an eventual email campaign. This is important for two reasons: it saves you the trouble of reaching out to unqualified ‘prospects’ and it helps you keep track of information that you can use to personalise your emails and increase conversions.

In case you’re wondering how to go about it, here’s a quick tip: make sure your prospecting email has a strong subject line that can convince a reader to open the email, an engaging email body, and a compelling call to action. 

An email with a strong subject line gives readers a good reason to read on and the best way to do this is to be conversational instead of sounding spammy. Next, make sure your email body lives up to the hype of your subject line. Prospects respond best to short and succinct emails that tell them what’s in it for them. Finally, make people do something.

Don’t leave them hanging at the end of your email copy. Give them something actionable to do. Remember, your main goal in email prospecting is to get recipients to respond so you can start building a relationship.


Build an Ideal Customer Profile and refine it

It’s common wisdom: you can’t target everyone. Targeting everybody means you’re targeting no one at all. For this reason, you’ll need to build an ideal customer profile to help you zero in on prospects that are a fit to what you’re offering and prospects that are most likely to become paying advocates of your business or brand. Having an ideal customer profile can also ensure that you’re not wasting time, effort, and resources on the wrong people. 

If you’re targeting other businesses, you should include the company’s size and their location as well as key contacts in the organization as part of your ICP. Then there are the typical parts of an ICP  such as demographics, the challenges your prospects may be facing, their goals and aspirations, and their attitudes and behaviour.


Nurture your network

Prospecting is all about networking and building connections. 

Guided by your customer profile, it’s time to figure out who to get in touch with. Think of other ways you might be able to start a conversation with them. In the event that you’re able to engage, what important points should you touch to sustain the conversation? Your lead’s responses — whether it’s a cold shoulder or warm reception — will tell you how to proceed and give you an idea which leads are worth pursuing as you go on.


Get help 

Building a robust list requires thorough research, analysis, and thought. If you’re doing this alone, hats off to you. List building can be a difficult process and doing it alone might prove to be overwhelming for you. If that’s the case, SalesLeadGen can help you build the list of your dreams.

Prospecting. It’s not a thrilling task, but it’s something that every business needs to do. The prospecting process is usually a tedious, time-consuming endeavour.

It’s easy to get stuck, and there are days when it feels like you’ll never reach the end of the list. But it doesn’t have to be that way. If you’re struggling to find prospects, follow the simple tips we’ve outlined here to jumpstart your data list building!

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