Most sales people today have found that using LinkedIn as a research tool to identify specific prospects has been a fantastic way to find the needle in a haystack of potential leads. However, LinkedIn doesn't always show you all the names of the individuals your search produces:
So how do you find this specific person's name? Just three more clicks according to Green Leads' BDR Mira.
Click on the Title, which brings up the full profile.
Remember the Title, and look to the right where it says Viewers of this profile also viewed... Once there, find a contact with a similar title/company -- In this case, Gerardo (hard to see).
Now while remembering the title/company of the prospect you want "Research Engineer Intern at VW Electronics Research Lab", click on the name of the person with the most similar title/company that we found above, Gerardo.
Up pops Gerardo's profile, now look to the right again, and find a contact with a similar title/company to Gerardo in the "also viewed" section -- this is most likely your prospect. So Tanya, expect my call.
If you have any LinkedIn tips, or Lead Gen Tips in general, please share them.
Last week, I was out with the team at Focus.com and enjoying "bourbon and proteins" with Craig Rosenberg (The Funnelholic) when the subject of campaigns came up from his point in a recent post to "forget campaigns, build a factory." We agreed completely that marketers that think in the world of "campaigns" are shortchanging their results.
Marketing programs need
It may be that campaigns seem normal because our needs change, strategies are modified or budgets are handed out piecemeal, but the most successful clients both Craig and I work with all treat marketing programs as ongoing efforts.
Budget for ongoing activity - Treat it like headcount. Would you hire good talent and then shut them off 60 days later?
Remain committed to the effort - Most common example here is when a marketer gets gung-ho to start blogging to boost inbound marketing and then stops publishing regularly.
Results take time - In the world of B2B, sales cycles can be long. Don't try to measure pipeline results in just months. Give it time and commitment.
Measure what you can measure - If you can't wait a year to measure revenue impact, measure tangible results: Did the introductory meeting result in a second meeting? Did the email sent result in a clickthrough?
React - Make that adjustment -- but adjust, don't start and stop. If you see something that needs a tweak, stay productive while you are tweaking or have your vendor/team work on something complementary to the project while you make that quick adjustment.
Conserve Costs - Lastly, consider the cost impact of starting, stopping and switching gears. There always are considerable startup and adjustment efforts and ramp-up costs. Optimize your budget by creating programs with power.
"One thing that’s different with my events than with other events: Every sponsor and exhibitor and speaker is someone we think has something to offer you .... We appreciate their voice in our experiences. Thus, time spent with them is also time spent learning new marketing the way we see it ... it’s a 1-day event. There’s no fluff. It’s packed with info. We can hang out."
My highlight of the week is the Hang Out part. That's all the discussion, debate, learning and putting faces to all the "social" B2B marketing community faces I've met online -- as well as meeting new ones.
Some recommendations to those of you attending, and even to those that aren't, on how to get the most out of a live event:
Live tweet or live blog from the event and include the Hashtag in all posts. Share your take-aways.
Mingle, mix, get to know some new tweeps. Don't spend the breaks in the lobby on your cell phone.
Collect business cards. If you get one without a Twitter address on it, ask for it and write it down. When you get home, or during quiet time at the event, send LinkedIn invites.
Don't cluster. You already know the people you know. Unless you are using the connection to get an introduction to someone new, move on. Meet new people.
Be there virtually. If you aren't at the event, follow it on Twitter and the live blogs (links will be on Twitter). Follow the hashtag. Or better yet, make a last minute decision and REGISTER HERE with a 50% Discount Code GREEN50.
@damphoux: So a shout out to all the attendees next week -- find my icon in the crowd and come say "hello".
Speakers List on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#/list/damphoux/ims-speakers
Someone asked me recently where the Green in Green Leads came from?
It originally was a name that sounded great for a demand gen company, and "green" had lots of connotations: Money, greenfield opportunities and of course living green, which my wife Linda and I believe in and do our best to do our part.
Introductory sales appointments are effective if done by phone, and executive level prospects are more willing to do first meetings by phone
Second meetings are more effective if done face-to-face
The conversation went from business to environmental impact when someone offered, "Besides, phone meetings are better for the environment, too."
Green Leads has been buying carbon offsets over the past year as a way to reduce our own carbon footprint. We calculate this number based on the number of employees we have as well as the square footage of our offices. We have also kept our footprint about 50% less than companies similar to ours by implementing our Virtual Hybrid Office Space concept (reduced space, commutes and other waste).
We're in the business of B2B appointment setting, and meetings can often mean travel -- travel impacts carbon footprint, be it by car or plane. Green Leads has decided to let our clients help with our green initiatives by using a portion of our meeting revenue to purchase carbon offsets:
Phone Meetings :
0.002 tons CO2
Face to Face by Car :
0.08 tons CO2
Face to Face by Flight :
0.29 tons CO2
Green Leads (Employees & Space) :
142 tons CO2
It is estimated that Green Leads and our clients will purchase estimated carbon offsets to cover between 500-600 tons of CO2 footprint in 2010. Green Leads will be making these carbon offset purchases through CarbonFund.org and will post a chart on our blog to track the impact we've made over time.
So take those first introductory appointments by phone. If we reduce face-to-face meetings by 50%, we can reduce our impact by 175-225 tons of CO2. Let's put the Green back in Green Leads.
Measuring the effectiveness of lead gen programs is always at the top of a demand gen expert's list of priorities. One of the gating factors happens to be out of their control -- what does the sales team do with a lead once they start working it?
In a previous blog article, I shared poll results showing C Level prospects being more than willing to take their first introductory appointment by phone. Of their initial meetings with vendors, 58% were by phone and of those, 69% were "effective."
In general, it is becoming more the norm to begin a relationship by phone. But what happens next? The outcome of meeting number one should be to have a follow-on sales activity. What should be the goal for meeting number two?
For myself, I made it my goal over the past six months if an introductory call was going well to ask for a face-to-face meeting. The next step in the sales process may be to present a quote or meet other decision makers, but by insisting on a face-to-face meeting, I was able to put my best foot forward and start building rapport at a level beyond what a second phone call could provide. No hard stats to back it up, however: In Q1 of 2010 we closed the same amount of business as Q3 and Q4 of 2009, and in 2009 we grew by a factor of 3X.
Questions this raises:
Should that first meeting have been face-to-face?
I think not. Of the appointments I took, roughly 4 in 10 resulted in that second meeting. A third resulted in nurturing activities, and the remaining meetings were discarded as unqualified. Making the first appointment by phone allowed me to avoid travel and time investment in the 60% that didn't result in immediate sales activity.
Should I have handled meeting number two by phone?
I've done it before; in fact, a majority of 2007 through 2009 was spent effectively selling with phone relationships. That said, I think that my best selling is when people get to meet me, in person, and can feel the integrity and passion that I bring to each project.
Should you add "meeting two should be face-to-face" to your demand gen SLA with sales in order to increase the effectiveness of the leads you generate?
If you are in a sales environment that eventually end up in face time, then I recommend it. Have a qualfied criteria that defines which opportunities move to the face time requirement, but definitely consider adding it. The Internet and increased communications tools could be holding back your conversion rate.