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How to attract as many motivated prospects as you can handle

Hitting the right prospect-rich vein in business is like being given a get-out-of-jail-free card in Monopoly or a toll-free pass at the expressway.  In other words, it’s a fast, free ride to a successful business outcome.  Just like a vein of gold, one prospect will lead to another until you’re swamped with orders, customers and profits.  The question is:  how exactly do you find such prospects?

Prospecting involves casting your net far and wide to determine where the more promising opportunities lie.  Think of it as a market reconnaissance mission.  Far from being a hit-or-miss exercise where you cannot easily anticipate how well things will go, the art of prospecting is actually a very precise way of determining the most efficient use of your marketing dollars. 

Here are some tips in prospecting:

Look before you Leap
Prospecting involves time and money.  To avoid wasting both, you need to do some research beforehand.  Read local trade magazines and newspapers.  Pinpoint the organisations, areas, churches, groups, and networks to which your target market belongs. 

Make sure that your target customers truly belong to these groups before you finalise your prospecting plans.  Furthermore, contact your friends and acquaintances to see if they can introduce you directly to your prospects.

Systematise
The goal of prospecting is to gather as much useful information using the least amount of resources possible.  Thus, you need a definite prospecting plan outlining your prospecting dates, locations, activities, and goals.  This will let you cover the widest area possible and the greatest number of prospects without spending more than the necessary amount of time and money. 

Careful planning, moreover, will let you prioritise highly productive business activities.

Generate Impact! 
Of course, prospecting won’t be very effective if you can’t create a favourable impression on your prospects.  To ensure that you are remembered or referred, briefly explain what you do and offer in the most interesting way. 

For example, if you’re in the construction business, you can provide energy-saving construction advice to people who are planning to build their own homes.  Save your sales slides in your handheld device, so you can do an impromptu presentation whenever an opportunity arises. 

Lastly, don’t forget to distribute professional-looking business cards containing pertinent information – the services your offer, your contact numbers and a website they can check for more information.

Remember one more thing.  Be creative!  Create opportunities where apparently none exists.  Turn PTA meetings, wedding receptions, grand openings, and other similar activities into prospecting opportunities.  As an alternative, you can let a professional “mine” your market for you; you can also purchase a leads list from a reputable list company.

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