This is the second in our ad agency list-building blog series around our latest eBook, The Prospecting List, Turbocharged: How To Pump The Right Fuel Into Your New Business Engine.
(See the first here: The Case For Ad Agency List Building Delegation)
Written by RSW Operations team member, Cory Esselman, Cory delves into the ingredients that make up your ideal prospect snapshot.
If you’re not familiar with what that is, Cory shares the RSW list building secret sauce, and why it’s so critical to your agency new business effort.
The Importance of the Prospect Snapshot for your Agency
Designing a targeted outreach list may seem simple on the surface.
To the untrained eye, it’s as simple as copying down company names anytime you see an ad pop up on Google or read an article about a trendy new consumer good or retailer.
If you can do this over and over again for days/weeks/months, then boom – you’ve developed quite a large database.
You certainly look the part of someone trying to develop new business for your agency since you have a plethora of leads and can spend hours each day emailing, calling, and connecting on social media with them.
But Is it really that simple?
Obviously, no – or I wouldn’t have a job as an Account Executive at RSW/US.
What you really end up with are just companies and names of contacts – basically just random letters and numbers on a spreadsheet.
None of the information you have makes sense unless you have qualified them as an ideal target for your agency.
Anyone can say ‘I want to bring on ____ as a client’ but without understanding how their business fits into your agency’s past work and present capabilities, how are you going to land that big fish?
What are you going to talk to them about if they answer the phone or what can you put into an email to make them open it?
You’re just a dog chasing a car at this point. Not knowing what you would do if you caught one!
Enter – The Snapshot
Our ‘Secret Sauce’ in developing targeted outreach lists for clients.
Good thing for you is, we don’t keep our recipe under wraps like the Chick-fil-A sauce or McDonald’s Big Mac sauce (ok the Big Mac sauce is a bad example as we all know what’s in it).
So, lets give you the ingredients (last pun, I swear) to a successful snapshot.
1. Industry – The space you are wanting to work in/the space you have worked in the past that you can speak to.
Break it down even further if the industry isn’t as cut-and-dry as restaurants or insurance.
You may find yourself breaking out Consumer Goods or Retailers into 20 different sub-segments by the time you are done… which is a good thing!
2. Title – This is how you will open the door, not necessarily who you will have the final meeting/sign the contract with.
Who is going to have enough time to answer the phone/read an email while also having enough seniority to move you up the ladder?
3. Revenue – You know who you have worked with and who is in the same ballpark.
Aim just above the size of your past clients.
There are many sources out there that report revenue but take them with a grain of salt – if it seems wrong, it probably is.
Start-ups are usually overlooked as they are late to the game in reporting accurate data, throw some in just in case.
4, Geo – Some industries operate in specific regions while others aren’t geo-specific.
With that said, one sound strategy is keeping it close to home.
Being in the know about local happenings and using local dialect is certainly helpful with smaller targeted companies.
Doesn’t mean you can’t/shouldn’t reach out nationally, as so many agencies have clients all over the country, but the local/regional play can provide advantages if you haven’t already saturated “your backyard”.
5. What doesn’t fit/hasn’t worked – Keep a list of competitors of your current clients.
Don’t lose a current client for a new client unless you are certain they are going to be a better fit for your agency in the long run.
Also noting past fails in outreach along with who you don’t want to target is helpful to note.
Good luck out there and remember that ingredients are always listed in decreasing order. Enjoy…