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9-1 Developing and Qualifying a


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  • 1. Developing and Qualifying a Prospect Base 9 Selling Today 10 th Edition CHAPTER Manning and Reece
  • 2. Learning Objectives
    • Discuss the importance of developing a prospect base
    • Identify and assess important sources of prospects
    • Describe criteria for qualifying prospects
    • Explain common methods of organizing prospect information
  • 3. Learning Objectives
    • Name some characteristics that are important to learn about customers as individuals and business representatives
    • Describe the steps in developing a prospecting and sales forecasting plan
  • 4. Prospect, Prospecting, and Prospect Base Defined
    • Prospect: a potential customer that meets the qualification criteria established by your company
    • Prospecting: identifying potential customers
    • Prospect base: is made up of current customers and potential customers
  • 5. Importance of Prospecting
    • Every salesperson must cope with customer attrition
      • Customers move, firms go out of business, sales lost to competition
      • Average company may lose 15 to 20% of customer base every year
  • 6. Girard’s Ferris Wheel—Supply FIGURE 9.1
  • 7. Girard’s Ferris Wheel—Loss FIGURE 9.1 CONTINUED
  • 8. Prospecting Requires Planning
    • Increase number of people who board the Ferris wheel
    • Improve the quality of prospects
    • Shorten sales cycle by determining which prospects are “qualified”
    • Prospecting plans must be monitored continuously for effectiveness
  • 9. Referrals
    • Prospect recommended: by current satisfied customer or one familiar with product or service
    • Endless chain: ask contact who else could benefit from product
    • Referral organizations: facilitate networking
    • Friends, family members, centers of influence: a person may not make decision but has influence on those who do . . . opinion leaders
  • 10. Hancock’s Lead Generation
  • 11. Business Network International
    • Visit the world’s largest referral organization
  • 12. Directories
    • Hundreds of business and industrial directories available
    • Many major trade associations publish directories
    • Be sure to use current copy or edition as prospects shift firms; track people and companies
  • 13. Thomas Register
  • 14. Trade Shows/Publications
    • Trade shows and conventions: your company may have a booth at key trade shows/expositions
    • Trade publications: each industry has trade publications that sales professionals need to read
    • Join trade associations: many salespersons join trade associations to gain access to potential buyers
  • 15. Telemarketing
    • Telemarketing: the practice of marketing goods and services through telephone contact
      • To identify buyers and generate contact lists for sales staff
      • To qualify prospects
      • To verify sales leads generated by other methods
      • To conduct follow-ups
  • 16. Direct Response and Sales Letters
    • Direct response advertising: often features inquiry cards or information requests via mail or telephone
    • Sales letters: send sales letters to decision makers, then follow up
  • 17. Website
    • Websites provide cost-effective way for sales professionals to:
      • Project personal image
      • Provide additional information
      • Generate leads from visitors to site
      • Present product information
      • Establish e-mail lists
  • 18. Computerized Databases
    • In-house databases: your firm may already have a comprehensive database; sometimes referred to as the “house list” with details on customers, purchase patterns, and so forth
    • List sources: wide range of precise lists available from variety of sources
    • See
  • 19. Computerized Databases
    • Purchasing databases or lists can be costly; price usually set on cost-per-thousand names
    • Not all relevant databases are equal; some “pull” better than others
    • Pull is the percentage of the list resulting in qualified prospects or actual sales
  • 20. Cold Calling
    • Simply calling prospects without referrals
      • New salespeople rely on these as they haven’t built referral base
      • Must be strategically planned
      • Prelude to in-person appointment
      • A way to introduce yourself and your company to a prospect
  • 21. Networking
    • Making and profiting from personal connections
    • Networking guidelines
      • Meet as many people as you can
      • Tell them what you do
      • Do not do business while networking
      • Offer business card
      • Edit contacts and conduct follow-ups
  • 22. Three Types of Networks FIGURE 9.2
  • 23. Educational Seminars
    • Provide opportunity to showcase product without pressuring to buy
    • Require extensive preparation
    • Start value-added process
    • Can attend or present at industry sponsored seminars or offer your own
  • 24. Non-Sales Employees
    • Non-sales personnel can be valued source of leads
    • Prospecting not necessarily exclusive task of sales force
    • Non-sales personnel often need training and incentives
  • 25. Combination Approaches
    • Salespersons generally rely on combination of prospecting methods
    • Some methods have higher yield than others
    • Important to use CRM technology to help maximize efficiency
  • 26. Discussion Questions
    • If you were selling ACT! contact management software, how might you develop a prospect list?
    • If you were a personal investor, how might you develop a prospect list?
    • If you worked for an international shipping company, how might you develop a prospect list?
  • 27. Qualifying Prospects
    • Key time-saving criteria:
    • Does the prospect need my product?
    • Can prospect make the buying decision?
    • Can prospect pay for the purchase?
    • Will anyone close the sale?
  • 28. Organizing Prospect Information
    • Prospect as an individual
    • Prospect as a business representative
  • 29. Prospect Information
    • Harvey Mackay suggests 66-question customer profile.
    • See it at:
  • 30. Prospecting and Sales Forecasting Plans
    • Important to balance time and organize contacts:
    • Prepare a list of prospects
    • Forecast potential sales volume for each new account, by product
    • Carefully plan the sales route to minimize time and cost