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As a B2B service-based business, building your client list is everything. Most prospects won’t walk into your office demanding a contract on the spot—it’ll take some work to make your business competitive in their eyes. However, even before that, you’ve got to get into their field of vision.
Digital marketing is a cost-effective way of bringing new clients in. There are free methods like writing blogs (hello!) to share your knowledge, or you can actively utilize and monitor social media accounts. These methods, while effective, require your clients to be engaged or otherwise looking for services related to those you provide. What about those who don’t yet know that you provide solutions to their problems?
If there is one part of sales that an organization cannot afford to overlook, it is its lead generation strategies. These typically break into two parts—inbound and outbound. Today we’ll be talking about the latter and how an outbound lead strategy builds businesses while helping you strengthen the language of your brand, your sales vision, and your tech strategies.
To start, we’ll define these two terms—inbound lead generation and outbound lead generation. With our focus on outbound, we’ll go into some leading strategies to help you take advantage of tech innovations in the B2B service-based field.
Most people fail at outbound because they consider it as spam, they don’t have a clear ICP in mind, they don’t know what to say and how to approach prospects, they don’t dedicate enough time to it. We’ll touch on all of these and more in this article—helping you refine your vision for an outbound strategy that will drive your growth predictably and profitably.
The question of outbound lead generation as a hard-to-master technique is not without precedent. To prevent telemarketers, 72 percent of Americans have placed their phone numbers to the “do not call” list by 2007. Seven years later, a 2014 research found that 84 percent of individuals desired to skip advertisements and that 60 percent of them had downloaded or taped TV solely to do so.
So how do you get ahead without getting your number blocked? We’re here today to talk about strategies, history, tech, and more.
Outbound vs Inbound Lead Generation
What’s the difference between outbound and inbound lead generation? It comes down to how the initial conversation is directed.
Inbound lead generation is about bringing potential customers to you—whether through advertising or brand awareness like affiliate marketing. The idea is to posit your brand as a solution that fits the lives of your customers. You are attracting their attention, inviting their contact, and ultimately allowing them to find demand for your service on your own through persuasion.
An inbound strategy does not require any direct communication—it is easy and mostly runs itself. But what if we told you that the inverse could be likewise automated to gather you motivated and interested leads without any direct communication?
A robust outbound strategy offers you that very solution.
The Components of an Outbound Lead Generation Approach
Like many strategies, the elements of outbound lead generation come before the implementation. Understanding what makes outbound lead generation unique can spell the difference between a successful campaign and a one-way ticket to the junk bin.
Outbound lead generation is more than spamming inboxes with what makes you great. In fact, failing to understand the more subtle points of a lead generation strategy is why many abandon theirs altogether,
Most people fail at outbound because they consider it as spam, they don’t have a clear ICP in mind, they don’t know what to say and how to approach prospects, they don’t dedicate enough time to it.
The principles are to be personal, brief, and value-driven in your messaging. You are ultimately asking for a sliver of someone’s time—wouldn’t you want your own to be used well? Even a multi-step outbound approach could benefit from a review that seeks to put the highest value communication front and center.
To help you refine your messaging, consider bringing in an outbound lead generation specialist or outbound sales team. These individuals are experienced in crafting language, imagery, and structures of communication (email or voice) that promote value in a time-efficient manner.
In short, you’re being granted a slice of a decision-makers time. If your message is not to the point, value-backed, or followed up with in a timely manner, you run the very real risk of turning off the client permanently.
You must anticipate the kind of communication that matters to the individual you are communicating with, including the values they hold and the problems they face. Your communication must be brief and readily understood. Lastly, it must invite some type of meeting or followup-preferably through a means you include in the email like a link to your booking calendar or asking for a guided reply which could further the sales process.
Next, we’ll take a look at what outbound looks like in practice.
What Does Outbound Look Like?
Outbound can take a number of different forms as it seeks to connect new customers with your service:
Email — Template emails can be personalized and sent to emails of potential customers. This is a way of reaching a central part of their workday, as many decision-makers check their email dozens of times a day.
LinkedIn — While this is a newer avenue of communication, it is very popular for B2B businesses and younger professionals.
Call Centers / VoIP — Having a long list of potential clients to phone is a great way of putting your SDRs in front of decision-makers with a personal twist.
Social Media Marketing — While not as effective for B2B (who typically rely on “more professional” communication channels), automated social media messages are one way of connecting with brands—though perhaps not directly with the decision-makers who work there.
Customer Information Acquisition Tools
So, with all of this in mind, how do you generate outbound leads? If you’ve built your email or phone campaign, it is important to figure out who you’re trying to message with it and why.
It is crucial to reach these relevant decision-making contacts of an organization directly. After all, pitching a service to the front-desk team probably won’t see you many results. Luckily, there are a number of tools that can help you turn
To do this, you need tools that can help you generate outbound leads.
Wingmate — The Outsourced Sales Team at Wingmate uses industry-leading tools to connect you quickly and efficiently with decision-makers who can help your business grow.
Hunter.io — Hunter.io lets you and your sales team locate professional email addresses in a matter of seconds to better connect with the people that matter for your business.
Snov.io — Fill your funnel without emptying your marketing budget with Snov.io—a powerful tool with navigating aggregated buyer information.
Lemlist — Lemlist offers a comprehensive solution for automated emails, engagement, and follow-up for your expanding sales in your industry.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator — This paid app allows SDRs and salespeople to better tap into LinkedIn’s expansive network of professionals for better deals, profit, and business growth.
Behind all of these strategies lies a robust CRM—a means of connecting your sales team with contact databases, progress trackers, metric reports, and goal setting. Luckily, most leading CRMs are compatible with modern software solutions and offer cost-effective synergies when compared to scaling an in-house team of professionals!
Cold calls, sadly, don’t scale—they require individuals on your team to be consistently dialing and connecting with clients. Human and technical restraints (call blocking, changed numbers, position turnover) make the second metric impossible to overcome through brute force, and the former invites bloated salary costs. Email is your best bet for cost-effective outbound lead generation.
Should you outsource lead generation? If you cannot hire in-house (or are lacking the resources to orient your team effectively), absolutely! Like outsourcing marketing or your technological efforts, it is a great way to ensure your budget is ending up where it needs to.
By aligning your tech with your intent and team, you can achieve a great deal of meetings and qualified leads for little work. But how can you get even better while avoiding the pitfalls that hold back many other outbound strategies? It comes down to planning and capitalizing on your ideal customer profile.
Success Factors for an Outbound Lead Generation Strategy
So you have an understanding of creating a basic outbound lead generation strategy and a means of contacting your desired individual at a target company. The next step is to fully understand who you are reaching based on an ideal customer profile. Building multiple profiles and creating messages that target each of them ensure you can deliver maximum value to the recipient and scale more effectively.
What is an ideal customer profile? An ideal customer profile (ICP), also known as an ideal buyer profile, describes the ideal client for the problem that your company addresses. This is a made-up firm with all of the characteristics that make it the perfect fit for the solutions you offer. If your company uses ABM, or account-based marketing, an ICP can help you focus on selling to specific accounts that match your needs.
When you consider elements such as the target organization’s size, the number of employees they have, their budget, and their industry, an ICP may help you clarify the challenges you’re solving. Through proper messaging, you can match your product/service capabilities with consumers’ wants, set out your future road map for product/service upgrades, and implement adjustments as the feedback comes in.
The person in the organization that you message should line up with one of your ICPs and automated messaging to go along with it. This is why you should not route all leads to sales—some leads may not be a suitable fit, therefore it’s critical to figure out who can and can’t buy from you. That way, your salespeople aren’t wasting time on prospects who aren’t likely to become customers.
You may use your ICP to determine what constitutes a good match and ensure that the messaging you use can more effectively leverage their needs. Research your buyers, create a comprehensive profile and ensure the words you say and the services you advertise can match.
An outbound strategy should be an exciting part of your business and sales planning. Building one allows you to more effectively and succinctly understand and communicate your brand to yourself and others. A more cohesive brand is an easier one to market once the meeting has been made—something many salespeople forget as they trip over their words to share the value of their service
Simply put, if you are a B2B service professional, you need robust outbound strategy generation. If not for your own organization, then for the clients you hope to help through necessary services they may not yet even know they need.
With outbound being a delicate mix of speaking, listening, waiting, and engaging, it can be challenging to know where to start. Contact us today to learn more and to start taking advantage of outbound strategies that scale businesses and help share the value of what you do.
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