Despite all the talk of difficult tech buyers in 2013, an essential component of any successful marketing communications plan for a smaller business must be a direct marketing effort. While sales and marketing personnel wait for the telephone to ring, or for an email to pop up expressing product interest or pricing, they must be engaged doing something productive. Why not a direct marketing effort?
VisualVisitor (http://www NULL.visualvisitor NULL.com), or netFactor (http://www NULL.netfactor NULL.com) provide the rationale to directly engage with businesses with the potential to become sales prospects. A timely combination of careful use of social media (for example, LinkedIn (http://www NULL.linkedin NULL.com)), telemarketing, and outbound email messaging should be used to follow up on at least the businesses that appear to have the most potential.
Careful use of social media means respecting the privacy of other members. A feature of membership in a group, for LinkedIn, includes an option to send messages to other members. Any message sent to a recipient who will interpret the engagement as unsolicited must include an apology for intrusion. The phraseology needn’t be especially formal. Merely a “Sorry to bother you, but . . . ” can work wonders. LinkedIn monitors messaging very closely. A very limited number of “LinkedIn Messages” are included with paid subscriptions. Even one or two complaints about messages can be damaging, not to mention the basis of restrictions on one’s ability to send messages in the future.
Placing a call to a business to solicit an email address for an appropriate contact makes sense and is worth the effort. Where possible, approximately 80% of outbound email messaging should be sent directly to business email addresses, with no more than 20% sent through LinkedIn, or another social media.
Sales and marketing personnel should be trained to skip over website visitors from businesses either unlikely to move forward with genuine product interest. or simply too complex to penetrate. Verizon, AT&T, Bank of America all fall into the “too complex to penetrate” category.
Ira Michael Blonder (https://plus NULL.google NULL.com/108970003169613491972/posts?tab=XX?rel=author)
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