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    Why the telephone is still your most valuable lead generation asset

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      Posted by Emily Malone

      Towards the end of last year, we asked ourselves “How do I generate leads now?” and thought it was time for an updated post to tackle the ever-changing market. After all, things are moving so quickly for all businesses right now, and we as sales and marketing folks need to keep up.

      As the country moves out of lockdown and into the new financial year, there are lots of new questions we should be asking ourselves to make sure our efforts are focused on where they’re going to be the most effective.

      Here are a few we’ve recently been asking ourselves and encouraging our clients to think about, too:

      Gain ideas for lead generation quick wins. Download now.

      Look at new company drivers

      Every company has a sales growth target for 2021, which means there are things you should be asking relating to your target market’s company drivers to reach these targets. There are lots of moving parts in every industry right now, here are some of the important questions to be asking:

      • Are there any mergers and acquisitions happening in your target market?

      Mergers and acquisitions indicate a new beginning for companies and can prompt changes in their ways of working, which may leave room for new products and services to be investigated. It could be the perfect time to pitch your product or service to this target segment and may result in a great account-based marketing (ABM) campaign.

      • Are there any companies within your target that have received new funding?

      Like mergers and acquisitions, new funding might indicate that it’s the perfect time to approach a company with your products or services. This driver means there will be more budget allocated for improvements to the business, so it’s a good time to approach with your product or service with an ABM campaign.

      • Are there any new products being offered in the market?

      Staying updated on what’s happening in your target market’s world is key to starting conversations and sparking relationships with them. In fact, researching what’s happening in your target market right now can actually end up giving you some really quick wins.

      For example, Shortlist recently found out that due to cybersecurity being a huge talking point in a certain market at the minute, lots of companies are now starting to offer new products relating to this driver, with others within those markets trying to catch up. This allowed us to join the conversation and create a highly targeted account-based campaign around this new product.

      • Are there any companies experiencing rapid growth right now?

      Perhaps you want to be targeting companies you know will have the budget, rather than calling and emailing 10,000 companies, of which, only a handful are spending money right now.

      As mentioned in our previous blog on this topic, one of the biggest questions you need to be asking right now is “who is buying in my target market?” Because having a list of businesses to sell to is great, but if some of those businesses aren’t spending money at the minute, you’ll be wasting your campaigns.

      There are going to be businesses within your target market that are doing better now than at the start of the pandemic, so it’s worth finding who those are and targeting them with your campaigns.

      Look at new contact drivers

      Going beyond company drivers, you also need to take a magnifying glass to the individuals within the organisations you’re targeting, too.

      • Have there been any new starters & promotions in my target companies?

      With people being made redundant and starting new jobs, there have been a lot of changing job roles over the past year. With this always comes a level of disruption and new ideas, so it’s the best time to approach this new person to talk about their plans and what changes they’re looking to implement to improve the business, impress their new boss, and make their mark on the company.

      For example, if you offer a technology product to help teams improve their ways of working, your product might be exactly what a new manager’s fresh pair of eyes are looking for.

       

      Is it time for face-to-face events?

      Yep, it’s finally time to start thinking about in-person events! It’s been over a year since we were last allowed to meet our prospects in person, and though things will likely be a little different now to help attendees feel safe, salespeople are itching to get back to doing what they love.

      • What events are going ahead?

      Due to a pent-up demand to go out to meet people, there are a few UK conferences and in-person events currently scheduled between September and November time. For example, The Sales Innovation Expo is planned to go ahead in November! Fingers crossed, hey.

      • How are you going to maximise ROI?

      After you’ve decided on which in-person events to hold, attend or trade at towards the end of this year, you’ll need to ask yourself how you’re going to maximise the ROI of such an event. It’s been a while since we’ve all done this, so no one can blame you for not knowing where to begin!

      Pre and post-event marketing will be a big one this year. How are you going to drive attendees? And how are you going to follow up your event-sourced leads to maximise the ROI?

      If you need help, Shortlist can support with driving attendees to your events this year, as well as optimise the conversion rate of your leads through our integrated lead generation campaigns to fill your pipeline for 2022.

      • How are you collecting information?

      Are we over the badge scanners, now? I hope so! At every conference I go to, vendors always scan my badge after I’ve politely taken a freebie, with no intention of actually having a conversation with them.

      They then send me email after email asking for a sales conversation, which makes me feel bad for them! I’m skewing their marketing numbers, all because I accepted a branded cupcake or pen from them.

      With HubSpot, you can create your very own forms and landing pages to use at events when you’ve had your initial conversation with attendees. This means you can qualify them properly with the art of conversation prior to capturing their information for your database.

      Does your data reflect all this?

      Do you have the data for your events marketing plans?  Do you have the right data for your target companies? Do you know who the new starters are within your target companies?

      If your data is wrong, you’ll be falling at the first hurdle. At Shortlist Marketing, we understand how data impacts the success of your lead generation and direct marketing campaigns. With the right database, you’ll save time, money and effort by ensuring you only target those who are likely to buy from you.

      If you need to audit, build, or update your database around these important questions to help you generate leads right now, please get in touch! We’d love to help you.

      Quick wins

      These questions will help you figure out where your efforts are most likely to generate leads for your business right now. But if you’re looking for some quick wins, the shortlist team have put together a whole eBook of free lead generation ideas to help you improve the conversion rate of your current lead generation activities, fast. Download it by clicking below!

      Gain ideas for lead generation quick wins. Download now.

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