Sales Prospecting Techniques That Still Work Today


The business of sales, at its core, hasn’t really changed much over the years. Companies sell products or services. Customers (which could be consumers or businesses) buy them. It’s a fairly straightforward transaction. And yet, it’s never really been all that straightforward. 

For starters, most customers don’t want to be “sold” anything. They want solutions. They want companies and people they can trust to help them address their pain points and resolve their concerns. For decades, companies have been trying to master that in several ways, resulting in a myriad of different sales prospecting techniques and methods. Some of them didn’t last. Others proved to stand the test of time, offering foundations that were flexible enough to adapt to the changing needs of people and businesses over time.

When it comes to creating a successful sales team, part of that comes in choosing the best sales prospecting techniques to get the job done. While no two strategies will work exactly the same, some tried-and-true techniques have proven to deliver results time and again. If you’re looking to reach new levels of success in prospecting and lead generation, add these techniques to your must-try list. 

The “Ideal Prospect” profile 

One of the foundational elements of any sales prospecting strategy is knowing your ideal buyer or prospect. This involves taking the time to consider the solutions that you offer and whom they would best suit. Then, you can use that information to build a profile of your ideal prospect, which will make it that much easier when it comes time to target your marketing campaigns. 

Remember, you can create a profile for each group of buyers that your business has. For example, an insurance company might have profiles for:

  • Consumer auto insurance buyers
  • Consumer home insurance buyers
  • Business insurance buyers
  • Commercial auto insurance buyers 

Consider all of the people (or businesses) that could benefit from your products/services and create a profile for each one so that you can target your sales efforts more effectively. 

Focus on warm leads 

While cold outreach does still have its place, it’s not nearly as effective as warm lead generation efforts. Prospects who have already shown interest in your company or the products or services that you offer will be far more likely to convert than those who may have never heard of your company. Not only that, but warm leads end up converting an impressive 15 times more often than cold leads. 

That’s a difference between 30% conversion rates (warm) and 2% rates (cold). Take advantage of social media and other engagement opportunities. Give people the opportunity to provide the maximum amount of information so that you can tailor your outreach even more effectively. That way, those 100 sales you need will only take about 300 or 400 calls, not 5,000. 

Personalize every engagement 

Personalization is a must right now. People don’t like being the recipient of a mass email that was sent to three million other subscribers by an autoresponder with little to no personal touch. They want to know that they matter to the companies they do business with. While personalized email is the most effective option for warm outreach in many instances, you should try to customize every interaction. 

The good news is that you can still automate a lot of this. Modern email marketing tools, for example, make it easy for you to add details like names, transaction histories, birthdates, and other important details. You can also use this personalized engagement to ask for a call or demo, increasing the likelihood of getting a “yes” because you’ve tailored your outreach to their specific case. 

Take advantage of partnerships and co-selling 

This is one that’s been around for a long time. A man selling mining tools in the Old West could have easily referred a miner to the local inn for a place to stay or the clothing outfitter for fresh mining clothes. As automobiles became a part of every home, many dealerships partnered with financial institutions and insurance companies to provide people with comprehensive solutions. 

Is there a brand or company that complements what you sell? Do their solutions work with yours, instead of competing against them? These are the ones you should consider for partnerships. To do this effectively:

  • Make sure it’s mutually beneficial 
  • Choose companies that have identical buyer profiles 
  • Partner with companies that you believe in

Taking on a partnership is as good as telling people that you endorse everything about this other company, so you’d better be sure about that before you agree to anything. 

Referrals and word-of-mouth 

There’s a saying that the best business you can give a company is a referral. That’s been true for as long as business has been around. While marketing can do a lot to draw in new business, there’s little that works as well as the reliable, old-fashioned word-of-mouth approach. People like to talk anyway. Why not use that to your advantage?

The first, and most obvious way to get referrals is to simply ask. You never know if people have someone in mind who might benefit from your products or services until or unless you ask. Some companies will also choose to offer incentives for referrals, such as a bonus program or reward for the referrer and the person being referred. However, this isn’t necessary if your reputation is strong—it’s merely a nice bonus. 

Inbound, outbound, and all-around leads

With these sales prospecting methods, you should find plenty of ways to boost the efforts of your sales team and generate more and better quality leads. When you do, are you ready to answer the call(s)? Partner with for a team of virtual receptionists that can serve as your 24/7 answering service. When you do, you’ll also get support for lead intake, appointment scheduling, and even your outreach campaigns to help get those leads flowing in the first place. 

To learn more, schedule a consultation or reach out to

Sales Development

Elizabeth Lockwood is the content marketing associate at She focuses specifically on writing and editing engaging articles, blog posts, and other forms of publication.

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