Remember the “good ‘ole days” of clawing and scratching for every single business card you could get your hands on and manually entering them into a spreadsheet? We knew then the power of a business network, and the necessity of building a strong database. The good news was that there was a high probability that the information you just acquired was 100% accurate.
So what about today? We have more opportunities to “find” prospective clients and candidates than ever before, which can lead to a little data overload. Not only that, there is a great deal of outdated contact information that lives perpetually on the Internet. The good news is that technology has grown with us and we no longer need to feed our CRM dead or decaying information.
It seems everyone is jumping on the Big Data bandwagon and stuffing their CRM with as many data points as possible. This is a great start, but in order to capitalize on this data you need to follow 4 simple steps.
1. Identify the best prospecting sources
This should be a recurring activity. You can’t rely upon LinkedIn alone if you want to be the best and rise above your competition. Trade associations, social networks, and industry forums can be great resources. You can find less obvious sources by performing web searches for questions your prospects might search for. You never know where the Bing, Yahoo, or Google trail might lead you.
2. Capture your prospect’s data
This step sounds a little simple and boring, but it is important to efficiently capture the freshest data possible. Thankfully the old days of manually typing or copy/paste are gone. Today we have amazing tools at our disposal. One of the best on the market is Account Researcher. This technological gem gives you the ability to quickly identify your target prospect’s most accurate contact information available. This way when you upload to your CRM or ATS you can skip the authentication step in the process saving you time to begin your outreach.
3. Authenticate your data
If you’re not capturing your data with a real time tool such as Account Researcher, this is an important step. Having another contact in your CRM is worthless if you have inactive email addresses and phone numbers. Many CRMs have social integrations that can help you authenticate information after it has been uploaded.
4. Set up automated marketing steps
Since we all practice permission-based marketing, it all starts there. Once in place, you’ll want to have a concise set of actions to convert that prospect into a warm lead. (There’s an entire article on this step that you’ll want to stay tuned for.)
Essentially every marketer, sales pro, and recruiter lives and dies by their database. It’s no surprise that the biggest prospect funnels yield the greatest results.
Business has changed quite a lot with the advances in technology we’ve seen over the last few years. The one thing that remains the same is the power of our business relationships. After all, 259 million LinkedIn users can’t be wrong.