Isn’t that the question of all questions - how do you get sales meetings with new prospects in your niche market? It’s strange being on the fence between a marketer and salesperson. (I’m a salesperson turned marketer).
On the one hand, as a marketer, I know that the best leads will come from the awesome content I create and promote. On the other hand, as a salesperson, I need business - today. I don’t have time to wait 6 months for my company’s brand new blog to start generating leads. I don’t have time to wait for my marketing team (if I have one) to start creating gated premium content. I’ll get fired - or go broke - if I don’t set meetings right away.
Read on to find out how to get sales meetings from a marketing perspective vs. sales.
From a Marketing Perspective
1. Start blogging right away: Get as many articles published as you can as quickly as possible. Build up a process for a steady flow articles that are ultra relevant to your target audience.
2. Create landing pages ASAP: Get as many lead generation landing pages up on your website as you can. Too often I see companies pussy foot around because it can be hard to figure out what to write about and put it all together. Just jump in and do it. The first few might not be the best, but you’ll get better the more you create.
And FYI - I see this all too often - one or two landing pages isn’t going to cut it. Shoot for 10, go for 20. The more you have, the more leads you’ll generate.
3. Engage in social media: Get your profiles done and promote your blog articles and landing pages on different social media channels. Also share other people’s good content so you start developing a reputation as a helpful thought leader in your industry. This should be a daily activity.
4. Co-market: Find other companies that share your target audience and partner up with them. Have them send an email to their list to promote one of your landing pages, or do a joint webinar. This is one of the most effective ways to grow your email list.
5. Enhance your website: A bad website makes it hard to sell, there is no doubt about it. It diminishes your credibility. A website project can take up a LOT of time and energy. Don’t let it distract you from your marketing activities. Get - and keep - the content machine rolling, and work on your website in between.
So, the catch 22 is that it takes as lot of hard work to create all that content. And, it takes time for this whole process to come together and start generating leads. But, the longer you put it off, the longer it will be before the leads start rolling in. Don’t wait, get started now.
From a Sales Perspective
1. All of the above: You are as important to the lead generation process as the marketer. Get involved in the content creation process. Use the content that is being created to nurture your target prospects. Use social media to help the company expand their following, and to showcase your own thought leadership. People buy from people, not companies. Your own online presence is as important, if not more so, than the company’s.
2. Create a list of companies you want to do business with: While it would be great to be able to wait for the leads to start rolling in, you might not have that luxury. In the meantime, you need to set clear goals about how many customers you want to get, and who those customers will be.
3. Create account entry campaigns: It usually takes 7-12 touches before you actually can talk to someone. Be prepared to end up sending emails that get ignored or leaving messages that are left un-listened to. But don’t let that discourage you - you’d be surprised at what a little persistence can do.
If you do your due diligence and understand what the issues those target prospects face, and speak directly to their business concerns either via emails, blogs, or landing pages, they’ll start to recognize and listen to you.
Another way to quickly get in front of your target prospects - and this is the fastest way too - is to work your business network really hard to get referrals.
All of this content creation can seem like a real drag when all you want is a few sales meetings. “Gimme, gimme, gimme” may have worked for Bob Wiley, but you won’t win over the hearts of your prospects that way. You have to "give give give" first. Start giving, and you will receive.