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It's not uncommon for a business to get excited about a new lead and to spend time on what will eventually turn out to be a waste of time and resources. Identifying the right B2B leads at an early stage of your sales funnel can skyrocket your entire company's performance.
On the one hand, it is crucial not to waste time on clearly irrelevant B2B prospects, and on the other, it’s important not to fall in this trap of ignoring them - some leads may appear irrelevant because they are being approached wrongly.
In this post, we'll cover the core actions you should take in order to boost the performance of your sales in order to attract the right leads for your business.
Define your ideal buyer profile
Inbound sales are buyer-centric. Instead of using outdated methods such as pitching and cold calling, you can attract potential customers with great content and interact with your prospects with context and personalization.
Newsflash – no matter who you are, not "all companies" are your ideal buyers. If you haven't already done so, it's time to figure out who you are selling to and what their needs.
Image source: RyanSetter.com
Here are some key elements to consider:
- company verticals or industries
- geographic locations
- company size (no of employees, revenue, number of customers)
- other attributes that describe your ideal buyer profile
- buyer personas: who are the various roles involved in the buying decision at those companies
Monitor and be on the lookout for active buyers
- be sure to respond in real time to social media for mentions of:
- your company
- your competitor’s company
- keywords or hashtags aligned with your value proposition
- Monitor press releases of relevant leads and prospects (i.e. earning results, change of offices, etc.)
Bonus pro tip: Be on the lookout for job offers published by your ideal customers. If those offers are relevant to your solution area, it could be worth suggesting that they reconsider their strategy and outsource some of their needs to you.
- Join LinkedIn groups where your ideal buyers are active and engage in them
- Use Linkedin search filters to search for the relevant attributes of your ideal buyer profiles
- Be on the lookout for mutual contacts who can introduce you to prospects you identify (make sure to add the contact/ company to your CRM and make note to yourself re the mutual contact)
Context and timing are crucial
Timing is key - configure your website so that you're notified of inbound leads and they immediately appear in your CRM. Then make sure you do a bit of research on those leads, in order to not waste time on leads that do not match the profiles of your ideal buyers.
Needless to say, you shouldn't ignore irrelevant leads - that would be unprofessional and impolite. Simply keep your eyes on the target and remember that your time is limited so allocate it smartly discerning politeness from calculated efforts.
Once you have screened irrelevant leads, use the time you've saved to nurture relevant leads and to communicate with them in a productive and personalized way.
You can read more about how to nurture your leads in this post.
It's easy to get carried away and focusing on the leads that are not a good fit for your business. As professionals, just because a business is taking an interest in working with you, does not mean that it's a good idea to proceed. Be sure to know who your ideal buyer personas are and to focus your efforts on them. Long term win-win relationships will be what sets you apart from competitors who are unclear to themselves.
If you found this helpful, let's pick up the pace, learn how to rectify your sales pipeline and grow your business in our FREE 14 B2B Marketing Best Practices that every CMO must know eBook!