November 30, 2016 Comments Closed

Attract High Quality Prospects: a simple 5-step process

Posted by:admin onNovember 30, 2016

Abstract business background.

How are your marketing efforts working for you? Filled with good intentions, but delivering few tangible results?

I speak to financial services leaders and professionals every day. I know that attracting, and acquiring, new business is one of the toughest challenges they face. Even experienced professionals, who have grown their business organically, via referrals, word of mouth, and personal contacts, find it difficult to develop new business in today’s competitive environment.

You might be facing increased competition from new players in the market; perhaps even some of your suppliers are now competing for the same business. Buyers are also better informed, and have a range of alternative ways to purchase the products and services that you offer.

One thing is clear. Doing nothing is not an option.

What would you say to a five-step, easy-to-follow process that will attract more and better clients, with less effort?

Here it is:

  1. Focus on a niche market
  2. Build a list of high-quality prospects
  3. Create a buzz piece
  4. Employ high-impact prospecting strategies
  5. Automate your follow up process

Step 1: Focus on a niche market

This is one of the most important strategic decisions you can make as you grow your business.

Top performers understand that specialty, or niche, business is more profitable, and easier to retain. It provides leads and referrals to a stream of potential new business.

It also allows you to leverage your knowledge, contacts, and resources.

You can specialise by:

  • Product line
  • Geographic location
  • Market or industry

Of course you can have the best of both worlds,  remain a generalist, and also select a niche market(s) to diversify your business.

 Step 2: Build a list of high-quality prospects

Create a target list of prospects that fit your ideal client profile. When building your list, remember that quality always trumps quantity. A list of 50 good names that you’ve sourced, is far better than a random list of 10,000 names.

Start by identifying relevant businesses, and specific individuals, and then collect their contact details. Useful resources are:

  • Trade association – join up, to access the members’ directory.
  • Industry journals and publications – read widely
  • Local papers
  • Local library
  • LinkedIn

 Step 3: Create a buzz piece

A buzz piece is an effective tool that acts like a magnet, drawing high-value prospective clients to your business. It should focus on your prospects’ problems and challenges – and offer opportunities and solutions. It’s often referred to as a guide, or special report, but you can use a variety of formats, including:

  • Workbook
  • Checklist
  • How-to guide
  • Series of related articles
  • List of tips
  • Explanation of best practices

If your buzz piece is well written, it will whet your prospects’ appetite for the products and services you provide. They will be keen to learn more about who you are, and what you do.

Step 4: Employ high-impact prospecting strategies

You can’t acquire a client until you have a lead. Prospecting is not just about generating the maximum number of possible leads; it’s about creating quality leads.

There is no single method, or combination of prospecting tactics, that works ideally for everyone. Many top professionals employ one or more of the following strategies:

  • Tap into your personal network. Tell family, friends, and acquaintances about what you do, and the value you provide for your clients. Ask them for referrals and introductions.
  •  Use direct mail. Contact high-potential prospects by mail, and either send them a special report or direct them to your website so they can download a copy.
  • Network, network. Join an organisation of target niche markets. Offer to send prospective and existing clients your free special report.
  • Create a website. Use it to encourage prospects to request your free special report, and to opt in to your mailing list, so that you can continue to build a relationship with them.

Regardless of the prospecting strategies you choose, stay (more or less) within your comfort zone, and make prospecting something you enjoy.

 Step 5: Automate Your Follow up Process

It can take some time before prospects are converted to clients. You need to stay on their radar screens and remind them of your value, using a variety of methods.

When you’re busy servicing existing clients, it’s so easy to forget that all-important follow up of prospective clients, who’ve shown an interest in your services but are not yet ready to do business with you. Why not automate your follow up process? It will allow you to send communications – newsletters, letters, and email messages – to prospective clients in a timely manner.

Building a successful marketing system might seem complex, but it isn’t. If what you have currently isn’t working for you, try this process. If you work to implement one of these five steps each week, you will soon have in place a marketing system that will bring you the concrete results you want.

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