Lead generation can be frustrating because it is a counter-intuitive endeavor. We naturally want to tell the world about how great our solution is and the interesting things it can do.
The problem with this approach is its self-centeredness: Our messaging is all about us and our solutions. This type of me-monster messaging inundates the inboxes of decision makers, rendering it less effective. Even worse, it puts the burden of figuring out how to apply the solution to the recipient's specific circumstances on the recipient.
Jump-starting a conversation with a stranger is hard enough. If you want to make it near-impossible, focus the conversation on yourself.
Permission-first lead generation ensures you don’t annoy your prospects with me-monster correspondence. It means you first seek, implicitly or directly, the prospects permission to delve deeper into a conversation about your solution.
Permission may come in many forms, such as, “Sounds interesting; tell me more,” “What is your pricing?”, or, “Does this integrate with [xyz]?” These are all responses from a person who wants to learn more about your solution — i.e., a sales lead.
So the question is: How can you elicit these types of responses from prospects and avoid me-monster messaging? The answer, unsurprisingly, is to make your messaging is all about the prospect. To accomplish this, ensure your messaging it personalized, brief, and creative.
To truly personalize a message for a recipient, you will need to research him or her. Look for a piece of information that reveals a need for your solution. Common ways of finding this information include:
Use this information as a lead-in to the rest of your message. For example, you might open with, “Hey John, I noticed you posted a job for [xyz].” Let the prospect know that you have done your homework and you’re not sending them a generic sales email. For example, you might say, “Something that stood out to me while reading about your company was [xyz].”
Brevity is king. Business people are busy and most don’t have time to read a lengthy message. The best way to ensure a complete reading of your message is to keep it short. I try to keep my messages shorter than six sentences.
Creativity is a must. Many of us have fallen into the email marketing trap meaning we put too much emphasis on email. Using a creative medium will help you stand out. Some creative mediums include e-cards, hand written notes, origami cards, and personalized video email.
Applying these principles to your lead generation will not only give you better results but it will also make people feel like people rather than a receptacle for our marketing.
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