Building a prospecting program is hard work, and it can easily chew up many wasted hours if you put inefficient processes in place.
The same holds for managing relationships. You need the right phone and email cadence to keep prospects engaged without overloading them.
By choosing the right tools for the job, you'll maximize productivity, minimize wasted time, and never lose track of a prospect's position in your funnel.Here are some popular tools to get you started.
Tools for Building Your Prospect List
Before you look at the tools, you need to decide whether you plan to build a list, or buy one.
Purchasing a list is unreliable, and should only be a last resort. Use the right tools, and you can scrape prospect contact information, with minimal effort, from the websites and social networks your prospects use most. Backed by data science, these tools will serve you far better than a purchased list.
1. Broadlook Capture – Broadlook allows you to capture contact information from social networks, search results, documents, and any website. Captured information is then appended using Broadlook's proprietary databases and crawlers, so you get the most accurate results possible.
2. Salesloft Prospector – Salesloft’s Prospector extension for Chrome can scrape prospect contact information from social networks like LinkedIn, and Google searches.
3. Data.com – From Salesforce.com, Data.com is a database containing contact and D&B information with millions of listings.
4. Sidekick for Business – Another large database, Sidekick's offering includes information on over 16 million businesses. Filter results by industry, location, size, and revenue to hone in on the exact prospects you seek.
What key features do you need to look for?
Multiple sources - Being able to collect data from multiple sources like social networks, search engines, email signatures, and documents, expands the number of prospects you can collect data on and the quality of that data.
Data standards - Not all the prospect data you collect will be accurate so it’s important to use tools that an automatically clean the data you collect for a more accurate and complete picture of your prospects.
Tools for Managing Email Cadence
Timing is everything in email marketing. Send too many messages, and you're just asking to end up in the spam folder. Too few, and you're marketing never gets a chance to make a real impact. You want to send the right message, to the right person, at the right time.
Improve productivity by testing and continually improving your email marketing, and moving relationships through the sales cycle with a minimal investment of time from your team.
5. Outreach.io – Outreach is focused on one thing, and it does its job exceptionally well. The big-ticket items are that Outreach allows you to set touchpoints for prospects that are automatically executed, detect replies, and follow up if no reply is received. It also features analytics and A/B testing, so you can find out which messages convert, and why.
6. Sidekick for Business – In addition to its database of contact information, Sidekick allows you to schedule emails, track open and click-through rates, and receive notifications when a prospect visits your website. It also features a tool to help your team create templates and send email to prospects.
7. Salesloft Cadence – With Cadence, you set your sales process up front. Cadence provides email templates, and sends reminders to make sure you adhere to your pre-set process. When a prospect replies, they are automatically removed from the cadence.
8. Salesforce.com Enterprise Workflows – If you use Salesforce and want to limit the number of tools you use, the Enterprise plan lets you create automated workflows. While lacking the advanced features of some other tools, workflows can be used to set up an email cadence.
Automation with personalization - 100% automatic email cadences sound great. You load up your contact data and just watch as the sequence of emails is sent. The problem is, the less personalized your prospecting emails are, the less likely you are to get a response. The best tools use automation to it’s advantages while still allowing you to personalize messages before they are sent.
Testing and analytics - Sales is increasingly becoming more data driven, and prospecting should be no different. By testing multiple versions of your email cadence, you can continuously improve and find out how to best communicate with your prospects.
Tools for More Efficient Sales Calls
Emails alone are not always enough to close a deal, especially with cold leads. A single phone call can establish a relationship, close a deal, or reveal a wealth of information about a prospect. An email cadence and sales call cadence combined can help you close more deals. For that information to be useful, however, you need a phone system that integrates well with your CRM.
9. Close.io – Close is a CRM with a fully integrated phone system. If Salesforce, Zoho, and other CRM options don’t fit your team’s workflow, an all-in-one CRM like Close might be a good choice.
10. Ringio – Ringio is a CRM integrated sales telephony platform. It's built to integrate seamlessly with popular CRMs like Salesforce and Zoho to sync data, record calls, and improve productivity. With Ringio, your team can build and execute a sales call cadence more efficiently.
What key features do you need to look for?
Power dialers - Power dialers run down a list of prospects and call them one after another, allowing your reps to minimize idle time and make more calls.
Voicemail drop - A lot of the prospects your reps call won’t answer. With voicemail drop, they can automatically leave a prerecorded message for the prospect. The big thing to look for with phone and email tools is their ease of integration with your CRM, ideally with automatic transfer of data. Quality analytics should also be a requirement. When it comes to list-building tools, you want something that's capable of pulling contact information from a variety of sources.
Choosing the right tools means closing more deals, and giving your team more freedom to do what they do best.
What do you think? What tools helped you build your prospecting program?