30th June, 2020 • 5 min
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Perfect your sales prospecting plan & win new business
7th December, 2021 • 3 min
Find out how to perfect your sales prospecting plan and win new business using the prospecting pyramid.
To win new business, our prospecting plan is crucial. Top performers in prospecting book in nearly triple the number of new business meetings than the rest. So what do they do differently?
You guessed it – they spend time planning. Without a clear plan, prospecting can end up becoming like a tangled ball of thread. Each thread represents a potential lead. We send connection messages on LinkedIn, invite prospects to events, call leads and ask for introductions across our network. For a lot of us, this haphazard approach can feel messy and unsatisfying. We can end up putting in a lot of energy with not much of a result.
What top performers do is pull all the threads into order. To create a clear and structured plan.
The prospecting pyramid is a useful tool to help us create this plan:
The pyramid shows different types of prospecting activity and puts them in order depending on:
Volume – how much activity we need to do and conversion – how likely we are to convert them to a new client.
This allows us to:n1. Review where we are now n2. Look ahead at where to focus going forward
Why are existing clients at the top of the pyramid?
Research shows that trust and conversion go hand in hand. With existing clients, we have already spent time building a relationship and they have trusted you enough to invest in your product. It is likely they will again. For this reason, it can be hugely beneficial to look to your existing clients for new opportunities.
What do we stand to gain from also focusing on the bottom of the pyramid?
Spending time on email and social media is important as this activity generates new leads and prospects in the first place. These leads then become the clients at the top of the pyramid.
So if you are in the early stages of building your network, or entering a new space, a great way to grow your network is to focus on the bottom of the prospecting pyramid.
What is the benefit of doing a range of prospecting activities across the pyramid?
Relying on one method can be a risk as it means we miss out on other opportunities. We are putting all our eggs in one basket. Diversifying allows us to benefit from all the opportunities the prospecting pyramid has to offer.
Two key takeaways from the prospecting pyramid:
- Do a range of these activities
- Prioritise activity based on conversion and your goal
How to use the prospecting pyramid to make a plan
Stage one: your current activity
Write each of the levels of the prospecting pyramid down. Then write down the activity you are currently doing at each of these levels.
Stage two: your future activity
Think of new activities you can do at each of the levels and set yourself specific goals. The word specific is crucial – write down actual names of people you will contact and the number of times you will contact them. You will be far more likely to follow through if you go into this level of detail. For example if you are not currently doing much on social media then you could set actions to update your profile and share valuable content on Linkedin.
Stage three: make it happen
Book into your calendar when you will do the activity you have planned. For example, send an email to a new intermediary, or book in a catch up with a current client, or perhaps it is time to do a market deep dive or write a piece of thought leadership to share.
Use the prospecting pyramid to make a clear and diverse activity plan. Get in touch if you or your team could benefit from any support or training on developing your prospecting plan and growing your network.
Key takeaways on perfecting your prospecting plan
- Use the prospecting pyramid to make a clear plan to organise your activity
- Do a diverse range of prospecting activities to maximise your opportunities
- Prioritise your activity based on conversion and your prospecting goal
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