When you’re trying to strike high-value deals, prospecting can seem like hard work. In order to turn contacts into leads, you need to deliver the perfect pitch to the right decision makers. To make this happen consistently, many top companies rely on sales targeting.
Also known as targeted selling, this approach is about turning your sales process into a laser-guided machine. While it requires some significant time input up front, the stats show that this technique can massively boost your sales figures in the long run.
Want to learn more about sales targeting? You have come to the right place. In this guide, we’re going to take a closer look at the benefits and discover how you can implement targeted selling within your own sales strategy.
Sales targeting is a strategy that involves identifying high-quality prospects through research, and reaching out to these key decision makers through highly personalized outreach campaigns.
Most commonly used in B2B industries, sales targeting is most efficient when deals are worth four figures or more. However, it can lift sales of any product or service where personal attention from sales reps is expected. That means anything from luxury cars to swimming pools.
Targeted selling is loosely based on the Pareto principle, which states that 80% of results will come from 20% of possible opportunities. In this case, the opportunities are carefully chosen leads.
In B2B sales, striking a deal with the right client can be worth thousands or even millions to your company over the lifetime of that working relationship. However, winning over leads can be a time-consuming process.
The purpose of sales targeting is to reduce the amount of time your salespeople waste on chasing the wrong people, while increasing the amount of attention they give to leads who match your ideal customer profiles.
This approach has several common benefits. For a start, sales teams that apply targeted selling techniques usually see an increase in their average order value. This is because reps have the time to build trust and create packages that fit the exact needs of their leads.
At the same time, sales targeting reduces the number of poor-fit customers who make it through your sales funnel.
Because targeted selling helps to build working relationships, this strategy also leads to better retention rates and improved customer loyalty. Everyone likes to feel like a valued customer, and sales targeting helps you to deliver this experience through personalization.
Just as importantly, targeted selling can influence your bottom line. By putting your energy into only the most promising leads, you’re likely to see improved conversion rates. At the same time, your average sales cycle is likely to shrink.
As we have discovered, there are many potential benefits of embracing a sales targeting strategy. But how exactly do you implement this approach within your own sales process?
To help you get a better understanding of what sales targeting looks like in the real world, here’s a five-step walkthrough:
Before you can start identifying high-value prospects, you first need to know who you are looking for. The best way to achieve this is by building detailed buyer personas, or ideal customer profiles (ICPs).
Given that targeted selling is all about laser precision, your ICPs should be packed with data points. Along with all the usual demographics and professional status information, you should be digging down into the wants and needs of your target audience.
In general, targeted selling is based around accounts. So, it’s worth creating profiles both for client organizations, and decision makers who work for these companies.
What industry do they operate in? What are their pain points? What do they have to spend? Who is responsible for what? These are just a few of the questions you should be asking if you want to construct useful profiles.
If you’re not sure where to find answers, we would recommend analyzing your existing customers. Pick out the most lucrative deals, and see if you can spot some shared patterns. Anything you find could be a useful marker for identifying the most qualified potential customers.
You may also be able to utilize technographic and firmographic data to identify trends in the most promising leads. This is particularly likely if your business is based around online products.
Once your sales team has some buyer personas to work with, the next step is to create a list of sales targets.
This is essentially a game of matching prospects to your ICPs. When you find a company that fits the bill, you then need to look at the individuals who are most likely to be your point of contact. Both company websites and LinkedIn can provide valuable insights here.
Once you have identified these people, you need to find their contact information and add it to your CRM. While you can search for email addresses and phone numbers via Google, it’s usually much more efficient to use a tool like Datanyze.
With a couple of clicks, our Chrome extension can reveal accurate contact details for pretty much anyone on LinkedIn. It works on company websites, too.
Having locked on to your targets, the next step is to learn more about them through in-depth research.
You have two main aims here: figuring out which contacts are most likely to help you get the deal done, and really getting to know these people. You should come away from the research stage with a clear idea of how to approach outreach for every person on your list — from the channel of communication to the style of your pitch.
Dedicated sales intelligence tools can be a real help here. For instance, you may be able to gather information from recent social media posts or utilize AI to predict personality traits.
The purpose of all that research? To build the most effective sales targeting campaign for each and every one of your leads.
Your exact approach here will depend on whether you’re cold calling, cold emailing, or making contact by some other means. But whichever option you go for, the first thing to do is to create a library of template drafts and scripts.
These will serve as the starting point; you can then optimize them for your target customers. Make sure to build an offer that perfectly matches the pain points and aims of each sales prospect.
Refer to their recent wins to break the ice, reference shared contacts, and shape your entire pitch around that customer persona. We can’t stress enough the importance of hyper-personalization here. Get it right, and you will be blown away by your close rates.
After prioritizing your ideal prospects and collecting bundles of customer data, there is a fair chance that your personalized pitch should at least earn a response. But of course, this is just the first step in sales success.
To land those big deals, you need to follow up and nurture your leads with just as much care as you put into the first contact.
That said, a certain level of automation can be a help. For instance, there is no reason why you can’t have a “book a meeting” template that is customized for each customer. If you choose the right email marketing software, it should be relatively easy to build personalized nurturing campaigns.
Having implemented all the steps mentioned above, you should hopefully start winning sales at an impressive rate. But whatever your results look like, your initial attempts should provide you with loads of useful data.
You can use this information to inform your future lead generation campaigns and lead scoring rules. It can also tell you whether your approach to personalization is working, and what types of sales are best suited to this strategy.
In essence, sales targeting is about paying more attention to fewer potential clients.
But when you’re trying to reach specific sales goals, the picture is not always so straightforward. You only have so many sales professionals on your books, and they only have so much time. To help your team make the most of that precious time and energy, we would highly recommend investing in specialized tools and services.
For instance, paying for LinkedIn Premium is a must if you’re going after B2B clients. The extra filtering abilities that you gain can help with building ICPs, as well.
Once you know who you’re looking for, Datanyze can help you to find accurate contact details faster. At the same time, the extension will reveal key company information for each contact.
Bombora and Crystal bring extra layers of data, with customer behavior data and AI-powered personality insights. Then, Pipedrive and Apollo can help you build truly personalized email campaigns with minimal effort.
If you decide to embrace the strategy of sales targeting, you should definitely give Datanyze a try.
Our Chrome extension lets you easily find contact details and company information for over 120 million professionals, including email addresses and direct dial phone numbers. It’s really easy to use, and very affordable.
Sign up today for your 90-day trial to see how easy sales targeting research can be!