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(DIGITAL) Never Cold Call Strangers Again

6-24-2013

Did you know prospecting has been forever changed by social media?

You no longer have to cold call perfect strangers. Performing a client needs analysis during your first meeting with a prospect actually makes you looked unprepared. You should be using that valuable time to fill in gaps in your research. Calling a prospect after you heard or saw them advertise elsewhere demonstrates your lack of insight.

The old prospecting methods have lost much of their effectiveness. Todays radio AEs need to start practicing social prospecting. Search, monitoring, and social media tools can now help AEs accelerate the sales process by gaining insights about the marketing needs of a prospect in a way they couldnt even just a few years ago.

If you want to be the first one to get a prospect to buy advertising in your market, heres how social prospecting can help you do it.

1. Find a Personal Connection

Social media has made it so much easier to find a personal connection inside any local company. Think about how much easier youll be able to pitch a company by having someone on the inside acting as your sales advocate. They can help you quickly identify the key marketing needs and decision makers.

Before contacting any local advertiser, get in the habit of scanning your social networks first for personal connections, especially LinkedIn. Youll be surprised to find how many personal connections you already have within local businesses in your market.

2. Create Instant Personal Rapport

Forget small talk when you talk to a prospect for the first time. Creating instant personal rapport will both show the prospect you really understand their business, and that you are a person they'll like and trust. Search for information about them on Google, LinkedIn, Manta, and Yelp.

Gain insights by looking for recent quotes or interviews by someone inside the company in local publications or blogs. Scan reviews by their customers on Yelp.com to identify the primary reason people patronize them. Analyze the content they are sharing with their customers on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Visit their website to see what they are promoting.

Before you meet with an individual prospect, Google them or connect with them on LinkedIn. See if you have anything in common so you can quickly create a personal connection with them instead of talking about the weather.

3. Identify Sales Cycle of Prospect

Each year LifeHacker.com reports on The Best Time to Buy Anything During the Year. This one report can help you understand the sales cycle for almost any advertising category.

If the best time to buy furniture for a consumer is July and January, then the best time for you to call on furniture retailers is four months in advance of those best times to buy to help them maximize their marketing dollars. In this case, March and September.

Use search and social media to identify the slowest and busiest times of the year for each advertising category. Find out when they introduce new products and when they have to get rid of excess inventory. These insights will help you identify when to call on prospects well in advance of your competitors. Let them be the ones to call the prospect once their ad hits your air!

If you can get in the habits of finding personal connections, building personal rapport, and identifying optimum moments in sales cycles, you definitely close more sales than cold calling strangers asking them to buy radio advertising.

Stephen Warley is the founder of inboundarts.com, a research and training firm dedicated to helping radio broadcasters use digital tools to generate more qualified sales leads. He is also the founded of LocalBroadcastSales.com in 2008. Email him at stephen@inboundarts.com or connect with him on LinkedIn.




(10/25/2013 7:32:52 PM)
qQZlB0 Muchos Gracias for your blog article.

- NY
(9/12/2013 7:18:32 PM)
McD4tT I think this is a real great post.Really looking forward to read more. Great.

- NY
(9/5/2013 2:37:55 PM)
3cvYDD I really liked your article post.Thanks Again. Cool.

- NY

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