In sales training, prospecting is often a very important component. Without new prospects, a salesperson cannot generate new sales. And consistency mining quality new prospects is a big part of obtaining success.
So, what needs to be learned in sales training about prospecting? Well, certain strategies to excel at specific prospecting activities like cold and sales calls, referrals, networking, and other avenues. But there are strategies to how you big picture approach prospecting in the first place, that can make all of the difference.
The most important goal in prospecting is to focus on increasing your close or hit ratio. This means that your approach should be based on seeking the prospects in which you will close at a higher percentage rate. For instance, one targeted niche group of prospects might close at a 20% close ratio, and another group at 50%. In this simple example, all prospecting time should be focused on the group that closes at 50%. So how do we do this?
Niche Prospecting Approach
All sales training should teach the concept of niche selling and or prospecting. Some niche prospecting strategies might include:
1. Client Size: Identify the size of company revenue or employee count (or other) that you tend to close more often.
2. Price Competitive: Recognize what types of prospects where you tend to be more price-competitive than others.
3. Geographical: Identify the regional cities, states, or other areas in which you tend to be most successful.
4. Industries: What are the industries and subgroups within the industries where you tend to shine?
There are some other potential niche options to consider. The key is to identify the niche areas where you can gain a competitive advantage. Focus your prospecting efforts there. You will then be much more likely to close those that you contact and your prospecting will be fruitful. Our sales training programs go into much more depth here, but the big picture strategy is equally important to learn the different avenues in which we prospect.