26/01/2015

By Henry Schuck, CEO and Co-Founder, DiscoverOrg


Like the song and dance of a bird seeking a mate, content marketing strategies provide companies with the opportunity to be found by prospects. These inbound sales strategies allow potential suitors to evaluate options and make educated choices at their own pace. But even the most beautiful, exotic bird still needs to eat. And that is where highly targeted outbound strategies come into action. By taking the plunge and reaching out to your identified targets, you take control of your own successes instead of waiting for them to come to you. To make important use of outbound strategies, you should employ the following three key tactics:

1. Fish in the right lake
Targeted prospecting is crucial in having successful sales teams. No one should be wasting their days calling hundreds of numbers only to come up empty. Sales intelligence tools allow you to segment in a wide variety of ways and identify specific targets that will have both the highest likelihood to convert and also the ones that will turn into long-term customers and high value accounts. With insight into all prospects that use a specific technology, you can select for those whose budgets are big enough to merit a strategic account approach. A sales intelligence solution’s organisational chart will make it possible for you to target the correct people within the organisation but not limit you to a single contact. Having full visibility into the IT organisation gives you the power to employ multi-stakeholder selling. This tactic will give you higher visibility in the organisation and tighten your sales cycle as you control when the relevant decision makers are invited to the table.

2. Be picky
With the implementation of effective sales intelligence tools sales teams can identify and contact the prospects with current needs and reach out only to the prospects with the highest likelihood of purchasing. This eliminates the wasted time and effort of old-style outbound sales. Today’s sales and marketing teams are no longer looking for the most leads at the lowest cost, but identifying the right targets and approaching them informed with solutions designed to address their current issues. Making use of tools like Real Time Triggers gives you actionable data about prospects’ open initiatives and leadership changes so that you can be the one who knocks when they are ready to open the door.

3. Follow the bubbles
Make sure that quality inbound leads are engaged in a strategic manner by outbound sales efforts. Using both inbound and outbound tactics jointly will put you in front of good-fit prospects quicker. Prospects who download, read and subscribe to your content are self-selecting to know more about your solutions. Supplement the information entered by inbound leads to access content with the complete profile data from your sales intelligence solution. Knowing that the prospect was interested in a cloud storage whitepaper, for example, is a good start, but when supplemented with the profile information, your sales team can know before reaching out that the organisation is currently evaluating cloud storage solutions and identify who on the team is responsible for that project as well as have at hand the direct contact information needed to reach them directly and discuss your offering. Being the most prepared vendor when you make the call is likely to move your solution to the top of the list.

Outbound strategies give you control of the sale. By engaging with prospects early in the decision making process you can establish and develop relationships, provide more tailored solutions and close more sales. And that’s what it’s all about, right?