By Chris Ilcin, Account Superintendent, Sonnhalter
By now, if you have a presence on social media, and are involved in sales or marketing, you’ve seen this:
Well, bad news.
- “Fourth” isn’t spelled that way
- The National Sales Executive Association doesn’t exist
- There’s no study to be found that supports any of these statistics
There’s a great blog here that goes in to more detail. But I’d rather focus on something else:
Why do we want this to be real?
Because cold calling sucks. If it didn’t the owner of the company would do it, not the interns or new hires right out of college. Sometimes you need the motivation and validation a graphic like this gives to plow ahead and get that 3rd “no” of the day.
A potential customer is a rosy future, untapped potential and a revenue stream that will change your business. A person who said “no” is a bleak outlook, money off the books and someone who will make your competition rich instead.
I won’t add to the number of books and articles that pretend to tell you how to make that No a Yes. But, I will say that the best way to start is to be informed. The Content Marketing revolution doesn’t just apply to how a business can be successful, and the information age we live in can help you as well.
Here are a few key steps:
- Scour the internet for company (and competitor) info. How up to date is their website? Where are they winning and where could they improve. The former is as important as the later, since you want to build on those successes, not beat them up over issues they probably already know they have.
- Where do they rank on natural search for industry terms? This can be very revealing. If they’re focusing on their keywords (company name, product names and the like) rather than customer needs (process terms, solution needs and industry keywords) they’re in a silo, and need your help.
- How do they use, or not use social media, and how are you already connected to them? Have a LinkedIn connection? Attending the same trade shows? Find out, and use the “in” to make for a slightly more natural introduction.
- Most importantly, automate that initial contact as much, and as smartly as you can. Start a blog (and stick with it), create a newsletter and make sure your nurturing campaign offers up real information and motivates customers with an effective call to action.
Make sure you monitor all those efforts and add the personal touch of direct contact, even if it takes a “forth” call.