Our biggest customer is listed on the NASDAQ and runs a monthly prospecting day. We asked them for some tips on how they make their prospecting days a success.
But let’s start with the basics.
What is prospecting?
Prospecting is the act of searching for gold deposits. It started during the Gold Rush and is often carried out with gold pans. The use of gold pans is centuries old, but is still common among prospectors with little financial backing. Prospecting is usually a prelude to more extensive drilling and then mining.
The term prospecting is also used to describe the first step in the sales process. Whether you are mining for gold or selling a product, your goal is to extract value. In both cases you being with prospecting.
The goal of sales prospecting is to develop a list of likely customers and then systematically contact them in the hopes of converting them from prospects to paying customers.
What is a prospecting day?
A prospecting day is an all-day event where a sales team focuses on prospecting. It is usually gamifed in some way and is all about creating energy and enthusiasm. Not only do events like this top up the sales pipeline, they are also a very effective way of building cameradie in a team.
Without further ado, here are 10 things that you can do to make your prospecting day a success.
1. Commit to a date
The day has to be blocked well in advance — it’s reserved for prospecting and nothing else. This is a day where you have no other commitments, no demos, no meetings, nothing.
Aim to repeat the day once a month.
2. Choose a theme
This is totally optional but it will greatly increase the fun had by all. It’ll also make it easier to pick the games or activities.
Some theme ideas are:
- March Madness
- Game of Thrones
- Disney’s Frozen
- Xmas, Easter, Thanksgiving
- Murder mystery
- … you get the idea.
3. Prepare a list of prospects
Preparation is key. Having a list of who you are going to call on during your prospecting day helps make the most of your time. You absolutely do not want to be creating this list on the day itself.
Make sure you’re prepped with what kinds of prospects you need to call:
- Do they need to be in a certain market?
- Do they need to be completely new to the company?
4. Use activities / games and have prizes
This will not only make the whole day much more fun, but will additionally motivate your team. We previously wrote about games and acitivies here. Go to that post to get an idea of games and activities you could try.
5. Have a structure to the day
A day filled with phone calls can be pretty intense, so make sure you have a structure that includes breaks, breakfast, lunch and ideally some team drinks at the end.
Here’s how you could do it.
- 8.30-9am: Breakfast. This is essential and allows you to give some pep talks beforehand.
- 9-10am: Activity 1
- 10.30-12pm: Activity 2
- 12-1pm: Lunch
- 1-2pm: Activity 3
- 2.30-3.30pm: Activity 4
- 4-5pm: Activity 5
6. Have a script
Make sure you’re prepared with the content that you need to speak on. Think about the goals you want to achieve. Are you looking to book meetings? Are you focussing on a particular product in your portolio? This all needs to be worked out in advance.
You should also have a script ready for how to respond to multiple different “no” responses you may hear.
7. Touch base beforehand
Consider making an initial touch with your list of prospects before you call them. This will “soften” them up and get your product or company on their radar.
Maybe send an email introducing the company and product so when you call, they have a bit of familiarity.
8. Know who makes the decisions
Do you know who the “decision maker” at the prospect company is? If so, try to schedule your meeting with them.
9. Be prepared to hear “can you send me info in an email?”
A lot of companies have trained receptionists to screen for calls from sales people. You may want to consider having scripts ready for how to break through to the person you actually want to speak with.
10. Keep score
Finally, you need to make sure you’re keeping score. The easiest way to do this is by using Post-Its or a whiteboard. If your event it remote then you might consider using some kind of online dashboard.
You could consider using our product: Keepthescore.co. It is super quick to set up and comes with a bunch of features and themes to make your leaderboard look attractive. It’s free to try and costs under 10 USD.
The customer that gave us these tips had a customized dashboard made for them. You can find more information on that here.
If you have questions or feedback, then please comment below.