My name is Erin and I am a Customer Success Manager at Technology Advisors. We partner with multiple software solutions and, as of the fall of 2019, we added HubSpot to that list.

I’ve received numerous certifications in the HubSpot platform and have now become the in-house HubSpot expert. However, being that I am brand new to the world of sales as well as the software industry, that just wasn’t enough for me. That’s why I decided to do the Pipeline Generation Boot Camp.  I needed the structured boot camp experience to realize that I have the desire, drive, and passion to help companies #growbetter.

The bootcamp was run by the most charismatic and inspiring man, Dan Tyre, and oh baby did I learn a lot! Dan taught us the importance of the Connect Call. Some call it prospecting, but Dan calls it reaching out to HELP. Over the course of eight weeks, he provided us with incredible insights on how to connect better, find the humanity in the connect call, HELP companies #growbetter, and adopt a philosophy of inbound marketing and sales.

I was also given the tool of confidence by discovering how to lean into my natural gifts and apply them to creating relationships. In this post, I will share the top five prospecting strategies I learned from HubSpot's Pipeline Generation Bootcamp in the hopes they will help you, too.

My Top 5 Prospecting Strategy Takeaways

1. The Sound of Silence and the importance of the PAUSE

I am starting with the hardest one. The PAUSE. When you call someone, you want to say “hello Bill, (state your name) Erin Hennessy here, (your company) with Technology Advisors…. And pause for at least 8 seconds. Doesn’t sound that hard right? Well it can be, but it’s so incredibly helpful. It gives your prospect time search their brain to see if they know you. Ask questions to dig deeper into the needs of the prospect, and pause. Give them time to think. HubSpot makes these very good points: 

  • Silence allows time for your prospects to comprehend your offer.
  • Silence communicates genuine interest. "What marketing  strategies does your company use that you don't think are working for you?"....... and PAUSE. That is a question that asks the prospect to dig deep. Give them time to think. 
  • Silence helps Sales People stand their ground. I know in my experience I want to make sure people are as comfortable as possible. Pausing and silence is hard for me but it is crucial to getting your prospect to open up and to understand that you take the call/offer very seriously. 
  • Silence encourages prospects to lead the conversation and pulls disengaged prospects back. 

Check out more tips in this blog from HubSpot on the power of PAUSE. 

2. Know Your Prospect

If you are in sales, you already understand the importance of this prospecting strategy. You check out your prospect’s LinkedIn profile to get an idea of their vibe, and of course study their website for ways that you can help them.

But, there are other aspects of your prospect’s persona you may be missing. HubSpot suggested using additional tools to take your research a step further. For instance, Crystal. Crystal analyzes millions of data points to decipher a person’s personality. It is a Web extension that assesses the person’s LinkedIn profile to tell you if that person has more dominant, conscientious, steady, or influential traits.

It can be incredibly helpful to know, for example, that John is a dominant personality. You know going in that speaking to him directly and with purpose is probably the most effective communication strategy for that interaction If John’s traits were more introverted, you would adjust your approach. The goal is to connect to your prospects in a way that makes them comfortable and receptive to your message. To do that, you must understand who they are.

Data enrichment tools built into your CRM are also helpful for filling in these gaps. They gather information from social media profiles, news articles, and other relevant sources to help you create a complete picture of your prospect without hours of manual research. 

3. Make the Initial Call Short and Sweet, Like Dolly Parton

The first prospecting call is just to connect. Most likely, if you are calling someone out of the blue, they are probably busy doing something. So just introduce yourself, PAUSE, and tell them that you saw (example A) on their website after reading XYZ blog which you loved, and have some ideas on how you can help them. Do you have 15 minutes for me in the next couple days to chat? Now schedule your follow up meeting at a time that’s more convenient for your prospect.

4. Sequence and Follow Up Timeline

Once you’ve made the first connect call, you’ll want to plan out your next steps. If you left a voicemail, you should follow up within three days. If they don’t answer again, follow up with an email. It’s important to put a lot of thought into planning your sequencing and use best practices. There’s a delicate balance between the rate and timing of your follow-ups, and it could make or break your sales potential. To maximize your prospecting strategy, HubSpot suggests

  • Every company that you reach out to is different. Some require more touchpoints and some require less. Your company has to decide what the right amount of touchpoints is for you and no matter what, keep it consistent. 
  • Reaching out multiple times won't work unless you vary your messaging. Every time you contact a prospect, provide value in a new way. For instance, you might send a short tip in one email and link to a helpful ebook in the second.
  • Connect rates rise as the day, week, and month advances. According to this maxim, here are the ideal times to reach out:
    • Time: 3 p.m. and later local time (call), five minutes before and after the hour (email)
    • Day of week: Thursday and Friday
    • Date: 28th -- 31st
  • Social media is a great place to find triggers or events you can use to capture your prospect's attention. Since your aim is to get them to read your email, and you'll most likely have to send more than one email before that happens, you have to find varying topics of conversation to catch your prospect's attention.

5. Lights, Camera, Action...Video Emailing. You’re a star baby!

I don’t know about you, but I much prefer to watch a video than to read a lengthy email. So, I saved my favorite prospecting strategy for last: video emailing. With tools like Vidyard or Wystia, you can create custom videos to embed in your prospecting emails. You can choose to create a video of yourself speaking to the prospect, or position yourself in the corner of the video as a thumbnail while you show the prospect something that may help them.

The video should be no more than 60 seconds. It works as a unique and fun format that will get the attention of your prospect — and it's effective too. Video emailing can improve click-through rates by up to 300%, a boost that can vastly improve the outcomes of your prospecting efforts.

I cannot say enough about how much I enjoyed and grew professionally from HubSpot’s Pipeline Generation Bootcamp. Understanding your prospects is the key to connecting with them effectively. And, as Dan said, the conversation should always be about helping, not selling. With these prospecting strategies in my pocket, I can not only be more effective in my communication, but I can create stronger relationships in the long term. Those relationships are where the true value lies.

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