Top B2B Blogs

B2B Marketing

Featured Author on Business 2 Community

AG on IT Marketing World

Subscribe by Email

Your email:

Browse by Tag

Sales Prospecting Perspectives

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

Does Your Sales Team Target Prospects Or Organizations?


How many of you have prospected into a warm list of leads provided by a vendor or client?  We’re always under the impression that a warm list contains a higher accuracy rate that will ultimately result in forecasted revenue, and unfortunately, that’s not always the case.  In my experience, it’s not that often we end up passing the actual name provided on the warm list.  So it requires the expertise to gather referrals and find more, or higher up, decision makers.

It’s obviously more difficult when working a cold list, whether it was built in-house or through a list vendor.  Realistically, you’ll never see a list that’s 100% accurate in terms of contact titles, phone numbers and emails.  You might be lucky to have 80% of it filled with accurate data.  So the important thing to keep an eye on as your Business Development Reps and Inside Sales people begin calling through these lists is determining whether or not they skip over, or neglect, the accounts and companies that contained the inaccurate data.

I recently spoke with one of our clients who provided this type of example.  The client provided three contacts per target account and, to the best of their knowledge the three titles sound accurate as targets.  Once you begin dialing into the list, you find that one no longer works there, one is not the right person and the other can’t even be found in the employee directory.  What happens to this target account? Does that account get lost in the mix and pushed to the side as reps continue down their list to try and reach “good” contacts?  It’s not a proactive way to approach it, but it’s true that sales professionals can give up easily if the data doesn’t meet their expectations. 

We need to look at our lists in terms of the accounts and companies and hone in on that, rather than a list of people, prospecting from one contact down to the next until the list is exhausted.

If all your contacts at a particular company are junk don’t let it end there.  The partial duty of a sales rep is to aggressively, and resourcefully, navigate through the account to uncover the most appropriate contacts there.  Depending on your technology or solution, there may be 10 different people you could potentially speak with at a given target account who can provide valuable insight into what is in place and when they may re-evaluate.  Spend the time to find them, otherwise there’s a good chance that company gets lost in the shuffle.  With the abundance of social media outlets in our market, there are many avenues to dig up our own target contacts within a company.  Also, be sure to utilize admins or ask to be routed to generally departments where your target titles are usually located.

My director drilled this idea into my head early in my career and it has served me well ever since.  I found not one, but numerous different contacts within target accounts that I could speak with and since I wasn’t focused on contacting just one person it increased my chances of having a live conversation because I had casted a wider net.  It’s a critical approach, especially with the magnitude and diversity of some of these companies we go after.

I recommend more one-on-one call shadowing as your sales reps actively prospect into new lists.  Determine if they just run down the given list or whether they aggressively stick within the accounts until they uncover some piece of valuable information that will help them generate leads and opportunities. 


Never assume you've hit a dead end. There is always someone who acts as the gate keeper at a company. If you can get in touch with them you can usually make steps towards reaching the right person for your sales team.
Posted @ Wednesday, July 25, 2023 1:39 PM by Saurabh Khetrapal
Post Comment
Website (optional)

Allowed tags: <a> link, <b> bold, <i> italics