It's time for a full recruitment lifecycle audit – now. If the candidate pipeline has suddenly dried up, if you're losing talent because your processes are too slow, if the same old approaches are letting you down, it's time to examine every nut and bolt of how you recruit.
Getting to know your target market
Following on from my first blog on Starting a Sales Strategy covering the ‘what’ of your sales, this is the second in the series – all about the ‘who’.
This is all based around what I consider to be the four fundamental pillars of good sales growth:
- What are you selling?
- Who are you selling to?
- How are you going to sell the product?
- How do you create Fame for you, your business or your product
I have worked with many companies over the last 14 years who have gained most of their business from pure reputation – they are the lucky ones, in some sense. But that reputation usually comes from performance, service and a strong word of mouth. Understanding who you are selling to is key to any sales performance or growth; you have to have targets or word-of-mouth brilliance.
Start off with your network. This is the low-hanging fruit. Do they know what you do? Do they have need for your service? These should include ex-colleagues, old clients, current clients, your social networks, friends and people who will become Brand fans for you (remember being able to tell them what you do in 30 seconds). It’s all about creating word of mouth, noise and potentially fame. And it shouldn’t be a one-way street: you’re not just broadcasting information at them, but interacting and engaging with them. So always find out and offer if you can help them in any way.
Then you need to think about whom you would like to work with. Make a list of clients that you think might be winnable. They have to be winnable; you’re not going to win RBS straight away. In all cases, you need to seek out the best contact. Is there a connection of a connection – someone you know who might know them? Can you find an email address? Are they on LinkedIn? – link in with them!
Once you’ve established a connection, don’t go in for the kill straight away. You need to build up your knowledge and standing with any new potential contacts. Are they prolific on social media? Are they speaking at an event? Have they written any opinion pieces or blogs? In other words, find out what makes them tick. Most business wins come from your closest network, so the more engaged people you have in that network the better.
#Helpful note 2
We all have lots of LinkedIn connections, go into your privacy settings and download your contacts – LinkedIn will give you them on excel. Then go through them and if you have time label them – Contact, Bespoke, Industry, General message whatever suits and then re-engage with your network say hello!
By increasing your word of mouth potential and giving a clear message and description of what you do, you will start to see growth of your fame and start some momentum into your process