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Sales Prospecting Perspectives

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Only 4 Months Left – Are You Going To Hit Your Sales Number?


It’s August. Soon the summer will be winding down, the leaves will begin to turn, Thanksgiving decorations will come out and Marketing and Sales VPs will begin the annual ritual of panicking if they don’t have enough pipeline. There are some very creative ideas that people come up with to create forecast in a pinch. 

“Let’s take our prospects out to expensive dinners!” – Good that way they will be full when they don’t buy.

“Here is the plan…..We’re going to drive to the prospect’s building, jump out and whip footballs at them as they leave for lunch. Here is the catch, the football has OUR LOGO ON IT!!!”  - The logo will show them who to sue for blasting them with a projectile.

On a more serious note, rather than run programs that take a long time to develop and can have a very unpredictable deliverable, I would suggest using a highly targeted teleprospecting campaign. It is proactive. a predictable and low risk method to build forecast towards the end of the year.

Your teleprospecting campaign should focus on reaching out to companies that you have identified as the “most likely to purchase”. The last 3rd of the year may not be the best time to test new markets if you need closed business. Take a look at the first 8 months of the year and identify the key characteristics of the deals that closed. Usually there are trends that can be spotted. Sometimes it is a simple as choosing a vertical that you have a strong hold in, other times you have to be a bit investigative to identify particular buying motivations that lead to shorter sales cycles. An obvious example of this would be compliance deadlines that companies need to hit to avoid federal/state penalties. Feel free to give me a dial if you are having trouble finding and calling a target group. I know a pretty good teleprospecting firm that could help!

Your target group should not be a universe of thousands of prospects. There should be enough prospects on your list to keep your inside team busy putting in a full calling effort into each prospect. Your list is too broad if the inside team can only put a couple of dials into each prospect.  Keep it to a couple hundred prospects and focus on making “intelligent” dials.

Be sure to keep your pitch very value focused. People aren’t going to buy right now because your solution is “nice to have”. I live in a condo in city with a very thin and steep staircase. My lack of coordination has me falling down the steps once a month and it’s hard to move anything wider than a freeze pop into my house past the winding part of the stairs. An elevator would be nice to have, but my stairs will have to do until I have an “elevator budget”. (Which my wife ranks just above my request for “buy a monkey budget”) However, if someone were to make a case that having an elevator would increase the value of the house upon resale and save me money in medical bills, maybe we would consider it. My point is focus on how your solution will save money, make money or mitigate risk – pitching a “nice to have” is not going to get you to your number.

Good luck closing out the year!


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