Mar 21, 2018
I was in Melbourne, Australia, speaking to Cisco’s Channel
Partner Marketing Managers at Cisco Live. I love working with
channel partners. They usually don’t have a big marketing budget
and every dollar they spend has to count. After the keynote, I did
8 1:1 whiteboarding sessions with their channel partners. They
asked me any questions and I answered on the spot, as simple as
that. One of the questions: “Pam, I have 30,000 names in my
database. How can I find warm leads?”
I love that question. I offered three suggestions.
- Use e-mail and content marketing: For this case, don’t just
send out e-mail for the sake of sending out e-mail. Since you want
to find warm leads in your database, the title of the e-mail and
the content you include in your e-mail campaign needs to be
designed to find out which prospects are addressing targeted
challenges that could benefit from your products or company
offerings. The title also needs to show urgency, like now. So, your
title should be something like “if you are looking for solving
[challenges] now, here are 5 steps… or Are you evaluating
[tools or platforms], you may find this useful. This e-mail is very
specific and well-designed. If they open your e-mail and check out
content, you know there may be interest. This will enable you to
narrow down the list of 30,000 to a quantifiable subset that is
more likely to buy. You can then follow up on a smaller number of
higher quality leads.
- Write your own code: Pawan Deshpande, CEO of Curata, share his
way of finding a list of warm leads. Their product integrates
with Marketo, Eloqua and Pardot among other systems to measure the
performance of content marketing. Based on their
understanding of their Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), they made a
hypothesis that companies that use Marketo, Eloqua and Pardot, and
that create a large volume of marketing content on a regular basis,
would be very interested in their product. To find companies that
fit this criteria, their engineering team wrote an application to
crawl and analyze marketing automation systems used by over 200,000
company websites. From that analysis, they compiled a long list of
companies. Then, they narrowed down that list by analyzing the
blogs and resource pages on these companies’ to gauge the size of
their content marketing efforts. The companies with lots of content
tend to have a higher propensity to use Curata tools. Therefore,
they further narrowed down the list with that criteria. With that
revised list, they cross-referenced over 100,000 leads in their CRM
database and LinkedIn to identify potential prospects with digital
marketing or content related titles. Viola, they have their list of
warm leads that the sales team can go after.
- Use artificial intelligence and content marketing: This
approached was shared with me by Lead Crunch, a demand gen company
who works closely with their sales and marketing team to discover
relevant leads using AI-based platforms. Basically, you share your
top 25 best customer profiles and the information is fed into an
AI-based predictive modeling to create an Ideal Customer Profile
(ICP). Then, you use that profile to find highly relevant and
look-alike matches, which becomes a hit list of key target
companies for the sales team to target. With additional
cross-referencing of their database, Lead Crunch can also include
buyers at each company to help the sales team engage and approach
To summarize the three approaches I just spoke about:
Use e-mail with content designed to elicit leads of potential
customers that are currently evaluating similar products or
addressing relevant challenges.
Write your own code based on propensity-to-buy hypotheses, like
Pawan did. Identify an initial list, then cross-reference with your
own existing database.
Hire an AI-based demand gen company. Let the AI model identify
the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) based on your best top 25
customers. Then, use AI to find look-alike target leads and create
a contact list for the sales team.
Everything I talk about sounds cool, but it takes time and
effort and multiple rounds of optimization and modification to get
a good list.
Finding warm leads is no longer just marketing or inside sales’
job. It requires marketing, IT, as well as inside sales and outside
sales to work together to determine ICP, external and internal
customer data correlation, propensity-to-buy criteria setting and
more. There is no shortcut.
Do you have innovative ways of finding warm leads in your own
database? Please share with me.
Again, send me your marketing questions via Twitter
Be well. Until next time.