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From Impossible To Inevitable by Jason Lemkin, Aaron Ross

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Chapter 7Spears—Outbound Prospecting

Spears are one-to-one campaigns, such as targeted outbound prospecting or business development initiatives for getting appointments with anyone who's not coming to you—whether customers or partners.

Line diagram of shapless concentric circles. The outermost circle is shaded white, the fourth circle is shaded black, the third and second circles are shaded gray, and the inner most circle shaded white. The outlines of the circles is black.

Figure 7.1 Careful targeting is the key to outbound success.

In addition to Salesforce.com, Zenefits and Responsys (now part of Oracle) are examples of companies who've created $100 million-plus revenue machines with Spears.

The original Predictable Revenue book outlined the “Cold Calling 2.0” outbound prospecting model, which:

  • Proposed that “salespeople shouldn't prospect”—that to create an outbound system that works, companies need to specialize sales roles, with prospectors who only prospect and closers who only close. Salespeople who do everything (prospecting and responding to inbound leads and closing and managing accounts) end up doing lots of things poorly instead of one thing really well.
  • Created a friendly alternative to high-volume cold calling, replacing it with sending cold referral emails as a way to make first contact.
  • Systematized the entire process into a step-by-step funnel, creating a predictable way to generate qualified leads on-demand from companies who have never heard of your business.

Outbound prospecting was in the doghouse for years as inbound marketing took off. Now it's hot again because all kinds of companies ...

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