Editor's note: The following blog post is excerpted from HubSpot’s free sales training.
The most common lead sources include: Inbound leads, inbound companies, trigger events, and common connections. All of these lead sources include active buyers. Active buyers are easier to connect with than the passive buyers. After identifying active buyers, it’s time to move onto the second stage in the Inbound Sales Methodology.
Inbound leads typically have the most context around the specific interests of the buyer.
For example, you may know the buyer read specific blog articles or viewed your pricing page. You may know that the buyer received five emails from your organization and opened two of them on a related topic. You may know the buyer re-tweeted certain types of content on Twitter.
All of these actions are indications of the buyer’s specific interests. Accounting for the buyers’ interests in the connect outreach is the most important and most effective form of personalization.
In order to add buyer interests to your outreach, start by defining the categories of interests that your company can help with. For example, a recruiting firm’s buyers may have the following categories of interests:
Increase quality of new hires
Increase the pace of hiring
Decrease cost per hire
Reallocate time spent by hiring managers on sourcing to higher value activities
With the interest categories defined, you can now define outreach content related to each interest category. Initially, it may be challenging to connect certain buyer actions to your interest categories. However, with time, this connection will become second nature as you gain experience with your buyers.
Outreach Content for Inbound Companies
Inbound companies are similar to inbound leads. The difference is you do not know who actually visited your website. You only know that someone from that company took that action. Identify the right person to reach out to and address your message accordingly.
Outreach Content for Trigger Event Leads
Trigger events like social media mentions or news articles can also be leveraged to connect with a buyer. In a prospecting email, you should lead with the trigger event, relate the event to an area of potential interest of the buyer, and then personalize the outreach content to that interest.
Outreach Content for Common Connections
Common connections can be detected organically through general networking or asking for referrals. LinkedIn and HubSpot Sales Prospects App are two of the many tools you can use to find common connections. Regardless of how a common connection is identified, these connections can be leveraged effectively during the Connect strategy. In order to leverage common connections, start by defining the various categories of common connections. Like interest-specific content, you should lead with common connections in your outreach sequence.
One of your customers may refer a potential buyer
One of your fellow employees knows the potential buyer
An acquaintance outside of your organization knows the potential buyer
Here are some examples of non-traditional mediums you can leverage to connect with buyers:
If the buyer’s company has a blog, subscribe, post new articles on your social media accounts, and comment on blog articles. You can mention articles written on the blog as part of your outreach to the potential buyer.
If the buyer is active in social media, send an invitation to connect in LinkedIn. Don’t send the generic auto-populated message; personalize it to the buyer and explain why you want to connect with them. Follow the buyer on Twitter and retweet relevant posts to your business and interests. If the buyer follows you back, you can choose to message the buyer on Twitter as part of an outreach sequence.
If the buyer conducts a webinar, attend the webinar and send a follow-up email to the buyer regarding the lessons you learned on the webinar.
If the buyer hosts or speaks at an event, attend the event and introduce yourself after the speech with a contextual comment around points you found interesting.
As you incorporate these non-traditional mediums into your connect sequences, be mindful of the appropriate timing for each type of outreach. For example, do not send an invitation to connect on social media until you have shared valuable content with the buyer. Make sure you have built up some trust and credibility with the buyer before attempting to strengthen the relationship.
Originally published Jul 7, 2016 6:30:00 AM, updated July 28 2017