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10 Fast Sales Prospecting Strategies for 2017

We’re three weeks into 2017. It’s time to double-check your goals and sales meters. Already falling behind just a little? You need strategies that can help you put new opportunities in the funnel, and set you up to for a stellar year. These 10 fast prospecting strategies will jump-start your prospecting efforts:

1. Set monthly sales activity targets. This should go without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway: set monthly sales activity targets for yourself and hold yourself to them. Don’t stop with a revenue target. Consider how many prospects you want to talk with in a week, how much time you’ll devote to prospects, the number of proposals you want to present. No matter what your skill level, activities lead to results.

2. Examine your value proposition. It’s a new year and for some, potentially a new world with the political changes occurring. Don’t assume that your current value proposition is a fit. If your prospects are faced with new challenges or priorities this year, your value proposition needs to reflect that. Take a hard look and see what adjustments you need to make to grab their attention.

3. Write better sales prospecting emails. Prospects receive over 100 emails per day and you need yours to cut through the chatter. Let’s fix that. As you refine your value proposition, improve your emails. Sign up now for my recent Prospecting Email Makeovers webinar.

4. Make a list of the top 10 companies you want to win this year. This is the list of prospects you absolutely want as customers. They’re the prospects to focus on with your sales prospecting efforts. Focus on the top 10 for four weeks, assess where you’re at, then revise your list and push on.

5. Identify four partners to share the load. Reach out to four alliance partners to set up some joint lead generation activities. Think of people who sell complementary services within your target market, as well as traditional business partners like ShoreTel or Microsoft. It could be a commercial real estate agent or even a customer.

6. Follow up on what you didn’t close in Q4. Q4 just ended last week. Not everything closed. Revisit those proposals and see if they’re ready to move forward now. Companies operating on a calendar year now have new budget with a set of fresh initiatives for the new year.

7. Call customers for referrals. This is one of my favorite quick prospecting strategies and yet it’s often overlooked. Who might your customers have overheard lamenting at a holiday party about the challenges they’re having at work? These make ideal referrals for you.

8. Set appointments with top clients. Dig in and find out what strategic initiatives your clients have for 2017 then position yourself to help them make those initiatives reality. Your clients are setting their own goals for the new year and that often brings new opportunities if you’re around to ask.

9. Connect your efforts to marketing campaigns. Lighten your load by working with your marketing team to provide input into upcoming marketing campaign content and target market lists. Be sure your target contacts are included, then align your prospecting activities with the marketing campaigns.

10. Assess your funnel. Review your sales funnel and see what the gap is for Q1. You should maintain a minimum of three times your quota in your funnel at all times. Assess your gap, then set aside prospecting time to fill it. The larger the gap, the more time to schedule for prospecting.

Goals without a tactical plan are difficult to achieve. They’re more dreams than goals. Start the year off with these fresh prospecting ideas to kick start your year – then take action. Let’s make this year a stellar year!

What prospecting strategies do you plan to use to kick-start the year? Share your ideas in the comments below. I can’t wait to hear them!


kendra-leeKendra Lee is president of KLA Group, which works with companies to break in and exceed revenue objectives in the Small and Midmarket Business (SMB) segment. Read more blogs from Kendra here.

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2 Comments

Comments

    Raj Khera:

    Great ideas, Kendra!

    Joe, please consider adding a button to tweet your articles with one click. We have 4,000 followers who would find this article useful.

      Joe Panettieri:

      Hey Raj: Social buttons are left of page. We are enlarging them in site update later this quarter. Sorry they aren’t more prominent in the meantime. If you had something else in mind let me know. Joe@AfterNines.com. Thanks.
      -jp

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