Written by: Shaheem Alam, Co-Founder of FiveRings Marketing
In the first part of this series, we covered the foundations of building an outbound lead generation process. Once you have your buyer personas, ideal customer profiles (ICP) and messaging sequences ready, you are ready for the next step. In this last part of building an outbound lead generation engine, we will cover where and how to reach out to your leads and industry best practices.
Building an Outbound Lead Generation Engine: Where And How To Reach Out To Leads
- Build your lead list.
We recommend using LinkedIn Sales Navigator as your tool in building lead lists. Sign up for an account and refer back to your buyer persona and ICP to guide your lead filtering. Looking back at the foundations, you can narrow down the industries, headcount, revenue ranges and job titles of your leads before reaching out to them.
If you have access to other tools such as Sales Intel, Crunchbase or Apollo, you can also consider building a list of companies as your list of accounts. Other tools can filter more attributes such as: the technology they’re using, whether they’ve recently received funding, whether they’re hiring for a specific role, if there’s buyer intent data, or more industries that LinkedIn doesn’t cover.
If you’re able to build a list of accounts on another tool, you can use LinkedIn to find leads within those companies that fit your buyer persona.
- Reach out to your leads.
There are two ways you can reach out to your leads: Manually or through automation.
With a manual approach, you would connect with each lead one by one. Once they connect, you message them and manually follow up. The messages you send in the initial outreach and each follow up thereafter will be based off of your messaging sequence. A manual approach is not what we would first recommend, as it is too easy to fall behind and miss following up with leads.
The second approach we recommend the most is using an automation tool. However, we would suggest not going for a Chrome extension tool, rather a standalone tool instead. Automating your messaging sequence is highly recommended as it enables you to stay on schedule with your sequence and not fall behind with the follow ups. Find a LinkedIn automation tool that follows LinkedIn guidelines, upload your lead list, put in your messaging sequence and hit ‘go’.
Pro tip: Once you start getting responses, it’s very important to respond immediately. We recommend responding within 2 hours. It doesn’t look professional when someone reaches out for a business offer, receives interest and makes the other person wait again.
Pro tip: Make the process as easy as can be for your prospect and never slap a calendar link. Instead, suggest two to three time slots for your prospect. You should be doing most of the legwork here, not your prospect. Secure a time slot with your prospect, get their email, and book the meeting in.
At the end of the day, there is no perfect cookie-cutter format that is effectively applicable to all industries. What matters now is looking at the numbers and stats on your LinkedIn tool, seeing where the bottlenecks are and optimizing your process. Are you getting enough connections? Are you hitting a good benchmark for your connection rate? Are you getting enough responses?
There are many factors to measure. If you’re lagging in one area, it’s a chance for you to re-examine the way you’re performing. You can check out all the important metrics to measure for your LinkedIn outreach and what benchmarks to measure against in this article where we cover it all.
In the first part of this series, we covered the foundations of defining and establishing your ideal customer profile (companies), your buyer personas (decision-makers), and your messaging sequence to build your outbound lead generation engine. In this last part of the series, we covered how to build your lead list, where to reach out to your leads and the best practices when reaching out. These are the five steps to building an outbound lead generation engine that books meetings with qualified decision makers so you can close more deals. If you’d like to save time (and headaches) of this entire process, chat with one of our team members and we can see how we can help you in your lead generation efforts.
Shaheem Alam | Co-Founder of FiveRings Marketing
Shaheem is an expert and thought leader around the topics of sales, business, go-to market and entrepreneurship in the SaaS industry. He co-founded a company, FiveRings Marketing who helps B2B tech/SaaS companies with their sales and go-to market strategies. Overall, he has 8+ years of sales experience from D2D, cold calling, SDRing, AE-ing, to managing sales teams and now running FiveRings Marketing.