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The Best Sales Prospecting Strategy Guide For 2023

Update date : 7 Dec 2022 | 10 Min Read

Sales prospecting is one of the most important elements of any sales funnel. If you're not closing deals, you can't get any closer to your ultimate goal: revenue.

Although effective prospecting strategies can take time and effort, the results can be well worth the effort. Reaching out to the right prospects at the right time can ensure that your product pushes through the noise of competition and provides a unique solution to fit their exact needs

Every salesperson, marketer, and business owner will agree that year after year selling is getting harder and harder. Prospecting strategies that worked 10 years back have been rendered useless today.

So how do you devise a compelling sales prospecting strategy that works in 2023?

This sales strategy guide walks you through the landmark stages of sales prospecting, from identifying the perfect opportunity, to closing the deal and making the sale. These prospecting strategies will help you get better at finding opportunities that are worth pursuing.

What is Sales Prospecting?

Sales prospecting is the process of finding new customers or prospecting new clients that you can sell to. You may find leads by reaching out to people who have already shown interest in what you offer, or by reaching out to people who might be interested in your product or service and encouraging them to contact you.

A successful sales prospecting strategy depends on identifying your customer's needs and building trust across channels with the goal of converting individuals into customers.

A graphical image explaining the meaning of sales prospecting strategy

A Step-by-guide to Sales Prospecting Process

It’s important to note that unproductive prospecting comes with a high cost in both time and money which is why it's best to employ effective prospecting strategies to identify the right opportunities. In our view, the inbound prospecting strategy is one of the most accurate selling strategies. We've seen firsthand how it can help provide a better customer experience.

However, there are multiple other prospecting methods that must be given due consideration. Let’s start by going through each of them in detail.

Research your potential prospects

Research is everything. It’s the backbone of your prospecting and pitching journey. It goes without saying that you cannot imagine moving forward without knowing who your customers are, what their problems are, and the kind of solutions they are looking for.

Start by defining what your ideal customer profile looks like:

✅Where are they located?

✅What challenges do they face?

✅What solution does their business need?

✅Are they using a competitor’s product?

✅Have they interacted with your business in the past?

Being able to evaluate these needs is the only way you'll be able to provide your own business with value.

Start by prioritizing key prospects

Most salespeople give too much attention to low-value prospects and then lose out on higher-value deals by not closing fast enough. Prospecting is successful when you know where to focus your efforts. This is where prospect prioritizing takes center stage. And the best way to do that is by focusing on those prospects who have the greatest ability to become customers.

Carry out lead scoring

Lead scoring is a type of lead enrichment process that is commonly used by sales teams to improve their ability to qualify and nurture leads based on the prospects’ buying attitudes. It is a technique that involves rating a lead based on their readiness, urgency, and likelihood of purchasing from you in the future.

For example, you might use the number“1” to rate leads who fall into the category of “hot prospects.”

Prepare your sales pitch

Your sales pitch is the first impression your customer has of your product or service. You'll have a better chance of sealing the deal with an effective sales pitch. To help you nail one down, we've created this checklist. It’s best to integrate the following essential elements:

✅Open with a burning question

✅A short hook line

✅Addressing the lead’s problem

✅A description of the solution

✅Introduce your offering

✅Personalize it according to their brand

✅Explain its benefits

✅Share proof & client testimonials

✅End with a Call-To-Action (CTA)

Get the conversation started

Sales reps often battle the toughest yet the most critical stage of prospecting, i.e. making contact. Let’s face it, nobody likes an in-your-face selling approach. Being pushy and irritating. This approach will only chase your prospects farther away. A truly successful salesperson creates a connection with their prospect.

They do so by helping their prospect, listening carefully, and asking questions that reveal information about why they might be interested in what you have to say. There are a number of ways to do so and many are effective, but it’s important to remember that nothing sells like a personal connection.

Reverse engineer your process to make room for improvement

As you improve your sales process, be sure to spend time evaluating your technique. Is something that worked well for one client not going to help with your next prospects? Does the problem statement you're using not help prospects understand your offering? Address any challenges you find in your current sales process, as well as areas that were not effective.

Next, evaluate how you positioned your offering and how effective the positioning was at explaining the benefits of your product to the prospect. Last, run a check to see if you have improved on other aspects of the sales process. For example, ask yourself if you've asked enough questions to understand your leads' needs and interests before hitting them with a sales pitch. These evaluations can provide direction as you refine your sales prospecting techniques.

5 Sales Prospecting Strategies to Use in 2023

Now that you’re well-versed with sales prospecting, its importance, and the prospecting process, let’s move on to the main course of this guide. It’s time to whip out effective prospecting strategies in order to better qualify leads and close more deals.

Choose video marketing for the win

This is how trendy and 2023 it can get. There’s no doubt that video marketing is the “it” thing right now. The latest reports are proof that videos are being increasingly used as a killer sales and marketing tool across companies.

Explainer videos or how-to-videos are where we’re getting at. Prospects are fast getting warmed to the ideas of such videos to understand offerings and are welcoming the change with open arms.

These videos seem more professional and trustworthy while providing greater value to prospects and customers. A well-crafted video can do wonders and transform your sales funnel forever!

Still don’t believe us? Then let the numbers do the talking!

✅88% say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video. (Source)

✅86% of marketers say video has helped them generate leads. (Source)

✅ 93% of brands got new customers due to the videos posted on their social media accounts. (Source)

✅81% of marketers say video has helped them directly increase sales. (Source)

Leverage social media to your advantage

In today’s world of fleeting customer attention spans, social media is your savior. It’s the currency of the digital world and is not going anywhere. So why not use it to your advantage? To connect with your prospects on a personal level, provide better customer service and ultimately increase sales.

The question is how can you use social media as a sales prospecting technique? Let us help you out with some worthwhile suggestions.

✅Become an industry thought leader by answering questions and posting on sites like Quora & Reddit.

✅It’s imperative to have a Linkedin presence if you are a B2B marketer. LinkedIn is probably the best social media platform to generate leads. In fact, 40% of B2B marketers surveyed indicated LinkedIn as the most effective channel for driving high-quality leads.

✅ Create clickable content starting from swipe-up stories on Instagram to product catalogs on Facebook Shop. These platforms can do wonders in bringing people to your desired lead magnet.

Send personalized emails

Some things never go out of fashion. Email marketing is one of them. It is a timeless sales prospecting strategy and works like a charm provided you have a solid plan in place. Regardless of the way you approach emails, it’s important to focus on creating truly personalized content for each person on your list.

When done right, this personal touch will result in a high open rate, 2x higher than mass emails, and a high level of engagement from the recipient.

Remember, you can make a real difference in their decision by customizng your emails for every single prospect, and answering all the questions they may have about your product or service.

When in doubt ask for referrals

A good word goes a long way! When you ask for a referral, it's not just about furthering your relationship with that person; it's about opening the door to future business. Referral marketing is a powerful approach to kick off sales, rather than relying solely on expensive advertisements.

✅87% of B2B frontline sales personnel, 82% of sales leaders, and 78% of marketers believe that referrals are vital to sales success. (Source

✅71% of B2Bs report higher conversion rates from referrals than other customers. (Source)

✅B2B marketers said the average conversion rate (from generating leads to converting sales) was 11% for referrals. Referrals beat all the other marketing channels by large margins when it comes to conversion rates. (Source)

Don’t forget to follow up

The easiest way to increase your chances of making a sale is to follow up on leads within two days. The more quickly you are able to follow up with a lead, the more likely they are to say yes!

Follow-up can be as simple as sending an email – but remember, it takes time for your message to be received, understood, and acted upon. So think about what you want from them in terms of action: will they write back? Should I call? Can I send them something? Make sure you articulate this clearly in your follow-up message and ask your customer if there’s anything else they need from you.

Top 5 Sales Prospecting Software

The right sales prospecting tool will help you successfully achieve your goals. When starting a new business, create a prospecting plan and then test out which tools work best for your needs. Select tools from the list below to use independently and save others in case you need them again.

riyo.ai - A sales and marketing tool

💳Pricing: 30-day free trial, paid plans starting at $XX/month.

⭐Rating: 4.8/5 on G2

Discover a smarter way to prospect with riyo.ai. When you're prospecting for new clients, it's all about finding new leads, and those can be hard to come by. riyo.ai aims to make prospecting easier by supporting real time website traffic monitoring.

riyo.ai is a sales and marketing tool packed with useful features. It can help you quickly and easily track your web traffic, figure out how to connect with the right prospects, and achieve a high level of customer satisfaction

Dashboard Screenshot of Sales and Marketing Tool Traek

Hunter.io

💳Pricing: 30 day free trial; paid plans starting at $49/month.

⭐Rating: 4.4/5 on G2

Hunter is a super helpful tool for sales prospecting. Whether you can't find a specific prospect's email address or you know the domain but not their email, Hunter will come in handy to quickly discover contact details and build rapport with a large variety of prospects on any given topic.

You can skip guessing what your target’s contact details would be, because Hunter will find them for you.

Zoominfo

💳Pricing: Free trial available, reach out to them for paid plans

⭐Rating: 4.4/5 on G2

It’s hard to imagine using a lead list as part of your sales process without using ZoomInfo, the biggest database of contact information available online.  

You can use ZoomInfo to find company basics like size, location and contact info. Beyond that, you get a ton of other helpful data including employee details for every person you want to reach out to, specialized keywords for prospects in each department to help identify which people you should focus on, detailed back office information and more.

Detective

💳Pricing: 14-day free trial, paid plans starting at $15 per month.

Rating: 4.8/5 on G2

Detective takes care of the research while you take care of selling. Finding new triggers and prospects is time consuming – and a complete distraction. With Detective, you'll have time to focus on sales, instead of manually digging through your account database. Detect intel, prioritize prospects and adjust your strategy based on the intel Detective finds for you.

Rebump

💳Pricing: 14-day free trial, paid plans starting at $5 per month.

Rating: 4.9/5 on G2

The hardest part of prospecting is the follow-ups that come after. on’t let your business suffer because of a lack of follow ups! Rebump is here to solve that problem for you. In just two minutes, you can set up Rebump to send emails automatically to keep those relationships alive.

Set the number of emails you want to send and the time between each email. You can also track and monitor the progress of each email. With Rebump, all you have to do is activate within your Gmail, and it’ll automatically send follow-up emails for you.

Screenshot of Rebump website

Wrapping Up

Prospecting and identifying prospects is a vital part of your sales process, and the easier you can make it for yourself, the more likely you are to reach your sales goals.

With the right sales prospecting strategy, you can generate more leads, convert more prospects into paying customers, and get more in-depth information about each one.

FAQs

What is the importance of a sound sales prospecting strategy?

A good sales prospecting strategy can tell you what kind of people to target and where they might be found, as well as provide insight into their needs and wants. With your new knowledge of prospects' pain points, you'll have a better understanding of how your value pro

What is the difference between leads vs prospects?

Leads are a measure of the number of particular individuals who have expressed interest in what your company does using a variety of actions. Prospects are leads that appear to align with your product or offer. They have gone through the sales funnel and are ready to purchase your solution.

What is the difference between outbound vs inbound prospecting?

Outbound prospecting strategy is all about selling to people who aren’t customers yet. An inbound prospecting strategy is a method of marketing that entails targeting companies that have shown interest in you.

What are some of the sales prospecting techniques that actually work?

Prospecting can be done through various methods, including cold calling and emailing past customers, speaking with referrals, marketing collateral placements like trade shows, user groups and conferences, or creating a website that lists down these prospects' needs.

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Krunal Shah
Article by
Krunal Shah
CTO

Having worked on numerous challenging projects in the fields of social businesses, the automotive sector, and education, Krunal has over 10 years of expertise in the IT industry.

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