Account-Based Prospecting or Sales Development is all the rage right now because it aligns demand generation activities with seller priorities. The process is different than a mass communication effort but it shouldn’t paralyze execution by trying to write the perfect pitch. There is no such thing. Account-Based Prospecting is finding the right person at the right time with the right message.
1. Choose a Strategy – Understanding the technologies a company uses allows a seller to craft the appropriate pursuit strategy. A replacement strategy identifies a competitor’s weaknesses while emphasizing your strengths. An evangelistic strategy educates the buyer on the importance of purchasing a new type of software not currently in their stack. A complementary strategy showcases how your software or service works well with the investment in technology already made.
2. Start High – Prospecting obeys the laws of gravity, it is a lot easier to get sponsored from on high and be referred down than it is to have someone lower on the org chart try to champion your idea upwards. When prospecting a target account, start with the C-suite, then move to the V-suite, then on to the functional areas of the organization.
3. Tailor your message – Your message can be tailored by external or internal references and if you can use both you are better off than most. An external source is a trigger event (Here is a list from Brian Carroll) that a company shares with the public usually through a Press Release. Use your solution to help with whatever your targeted account is promoting for better response. An internal source is a use case based on a current customer. 90% of B2B buyers want a relevant use case to help them make a decision.
Put into Action – Getting a response from your prospecting requires the proper expectation. Your prospects are busy and are being solicited by hundreds of people just like you with a product that does the same thing yours does. With that in mind, I recommend you focus your efforts on short controlled bursts for optimal results. I call it a 5×5 plan. A multi-media, multi-touch, multi-message blitz over the course of one business week.
- Email 1 – Intro email referencing External Source and how you can help
- Call 1 – Follow up phone call referencing External Source and how you can help
- Email 2 – Email referencing relevant Use Case based on Industry, Size, or Location
- Call 2 – Follow up phone call referencing relevant Use Case based on Industry, Size, or Location
- Email 3 – Dear John email, stating that the Internal and External references were not a priority or either it wasn’t good timing.
RampedUp is an Account-Based Selling solution inside of Saleforce.com that helps sellers execute upon these three points. If you want to learn more – contact us here!