Nurturing leads is en vogue these days. Everybody has some type of method for making it through the long trek from lead to order that is today’s norm for selling products and solutions to large enterprise business customers.
Let’s start with what clearly does not work. Scheduled email newsletters, and unsolicited announcements do not work. Worse yet, recipients build a virtual callous and entirely ignore them. Don’t waste time dreaming up content for unsolicited periodic email. Further, forget about sending invitations to webinars to contacts who are merely tangentially connected to your product or service. These invitations will fall on the same blind eyes. Let’s not forget Tweets. Certainly Tweets are great for the “twitterdom” but what kind of referral traffic is your website getting from your Twitter account anyways? After all, who has the time to read all of those short Twitter messages anyways?
What works is to establish contacts over the telephone with parties that, at some time or other, may participate in a decision to purchase a product or service like yours, either for a present or a future employer. Once you’ve established contact through an authentic telephone conversation, then it is perfectly acceptable to gain the contact’s permission to check in on some appropriate schedule to catch up with any/all new developments that may have occurred since your last call. Certainly send this contact some collateral and/or links to your website subsequent to your conversation, but be sure to, once again, gain permission to do so before you push the send button on your email.
Where you have been able to classify a lead as an active participant in a present project that is at least peripherally related to your product or service, then it makes sense to either volunteer some supportive effort as a contribution to her efforts, or to extend an invitation to her to participate in some activity that you are sponsoring where her opinion might provide you with some useful information. LinkedIn Groups are a great attraction for this type of invitation. As well, any market initiatives that you’ve undertaken will provide a potentially attractive venue for her participation.
I noted that her project should be at least peripherally related to your product or service to sketch the opportunity to partner with prospects as they proceed through the development of clearly defined specific needs. Today’s realities are such that what looks important today may change, radically, over time into a clearer, attainable objective in the future. Be sure to make a best effort to get a seat on this ride.
© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2011 All Rights Reserved