Always run outbound prospecting campaigns

When you start building a modern sales development machine, you have a goal in mind. Often, this goal is predictable growth in your pipeline. In other words, you want to build a machine that can generate a predictable number of new opportunities every month. 

An important element here is monthly predictable growth. So not a boost once a year, but always, every month. The strategy and structure required for this is often not well thought out and is substantially different than filling your pipeline for a short period.

Another reason you want to spread your outreach, besides predictability throughout the year, is the learnings you get from the campaigns. You want to be able to incorporate these findings so that the campaign is continuously optimized. Think about the content you use, like different CTAs, tone of voice, and the different channels.

Before you start with your outbound campaigns, you need to map out several things, including your ICP (ideal customer profile) and the size of the addressable market. We use our Playbook for this. 

If your target group consists of 1500 profiles that match the ICP and you can add about 100 per week in a qualitative way to an outbound prospecting campaign, then after 15 weeks, you’re through your lead list. And then what?

In this example, I am still spreading it out over 15 weeks, but I have also seen campaigns where 1500 relevant leads are burned in 1 month with poor outreach. You cannot approach these people again the following month. We usually use a break of at least 6 months with the same kind of outreach from the same person. 

Here are 5 tips for staying in touch with those 1500 ideal prospects. 

Tip 1. Vertical specific content

Besides Account based or Persona based campaigns you can also do outreach by industry when you develop content for it. This is more focused on brand awareness where you generate an extra reason to contact your prospects with very targeted content. What works to your advantage is when you generate recurring vertical content. That way, you always have a logical reason to come back on the radar at set times. Think about industrie specific market trends, top 100 lists, top 5 quarterly trending topics etc. 

Tip 2. Approach from a different person

In advance, you devise two campaigns for the same target group, but from a different person’s perspective. In the first six months, you do a campaign that comes from yourself. You will get results from this, come into contact with people, but you will also reach many people with whom you have not come into contact. These people can be followed up after 6 months by someone else (for example Jamie, sales director at Saleslift) with a different approach. 6 months later vice versa.

Tip 3. New results in your Sales Navigator search

When you use Sales navigator in Linkedin and you make searches of your target group, you can save them. When you look at the search again after three months, you will see how many new people match the criteria you set earlier.  The list refreshes itself automatically when you save it. Please note that there are also people who only received a promotion. 

Tip 4. Always on campaign

Think of an always on campaign. Everyone you have approached intending to schedule an appointment can be kept in the loop by adding them to a campaign with far fewer contact moments, but with brand awareness content throughout the year. So it’s not about making an appointment, but about sharing knowledge, inspiration, etc. You are still on their radar for when it becomes relevant.

Tip 5. Different market

Perhaps out of the box and perhaps not within everyone’s reach, you can conquer another market. Think of another country, a new vertical, or an extra buyer persona. 

The tips I wrote above are all seen from a new business perspective. For more variety, you can also combine following up on less cold accounts or prospects such as old customers, lost deals, contacts that switched employers or you can follow up on old inbound leads.

These are a few pointers we’d like to give you to keep your outreach alive and continuously generate that flow of business meetings. Think this through in advance and not a week before your lead list is completed. 

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Good Luck.