Prospecting Basics: How To Build Your Target List Of Businesses

Prospecting Basics: How To Build Your Target List Of Businesses

Over the years, content marketing strategies have gained momentum for driving sales and acquiring a loyal customer base. However, if you wish to ensure the success of this strategy, consider devising a highly targeted prospect list.

The biggest gain your sales representatives will reap from creating targeted prospect lists is time. A targeted list ensures that your reps spend most of their time pursuing valuable leads.

Tips To Build Your Targeted Prospect List

Here are some steps that you must follow to build a highly targeted prospect list and acquire valuable customers for your business -

1. Define Target Criteria

Figure out and review your best customers, who closed big deals with your business, repeatedly bought from you, or referred people to your business. Devise an inventory of target criteria and implement it to your prospect list. Some factors that you should include in your target criteria are -

  • Company size
  • Location
  • Company revenue
  • Industry/vertical

Your next step should be to use resources like LinkedIn or HubSpot Prospects to actively look up the list of businesses and fill in the information as it complies with your defined target criteria.

Figure out if the company that you are pursuing requires your solutions and why. Inspect if the problems encountered by that company are similar to that of your previous customers. Only target companies that genuinely would benefit from your solution.

If some leads on your b2b company list align with the attributes of your most loyal customers, prioritize them in the list. You can even buy targeted email lists online if you are struggling with narrowing down the list of businesses to target.

2. Know The Key Decision Makers

Once you have narrowed down your targeted marketing list to the top companies who might be interested in your solutions, identify the key decision-makers within each business according to job function and rank.

Picking the right contacts will fluctuate as per the services offered by your agency. For instance, a social media agency might want to associate with a social media director; however, this might not be the case for a branding agency.

Emphasize targeting C-suite, VP, and director-level marketing professionals, as-well-as manager-level contacts. Be sure that you only target decision-makers or influencers.

However, be sure to acquire at least five to seven contacts per business. This is because there is rarely a single decision-maker in a firm, and it is highly likely that a single contact might not respond or champion engagement with your company.

Another tip is to browse the web for financial statements, press releases, and trade articles that often mention other relevant contacts of a company. After successfully compiling the b2b sales leads database, be sure to import it to a CRM database to help you effectively track your outreach. 

3. Narrow Down On Your Current Customers

Sales representatives must always remember that it takes less time, capital, and effort to sell your solution to current customers than to a cold call or a stranger. 

Carefully inspect your prospect marketing list and figure out if your company has already closed deals with any of the businesses present on the list.

A study concluded that the effectiveness of making calls to existing clients was 51 percent, while the success rate of cold calls was 27 percent. 

If you have conducted business with a previous client, that means they have faith in your brand, prefer you over competitors, and implement your solutions. This gesture makes them exceptionally promising prospects that requires them to remain on top of the list.

4. Consider Business Growth & Funding

If a company is stagnated in terms of profit or rolling down a steep slope for several quarters, they will most likely not be interested in spending capital on your solutions.

Conversely, if a company is frequently booming with growth, they have the capital to invest and are also likely to have several growing pains to address, which might demand your products or solutions.

If your clients fall under the enterprise category, analyze your prospect list with the Fortune 500 or Fortune 1000. You can also consider Hoovers, which is a company profiling resource.

If you are targeting smaller clients, try TechCrunch, CrunchBase, or VentureDeal to track growth. Be sure to account for businesses that might also be receiving supplementary funding.

5. Target The Industries In Good Health

Targeting the industries that are in good shape financially will increase your chances of selling your solution to them. Some of the most booming sectors of today include -

  • Biotechnology
  • Computer & Software Services
  • Pharmaceuticals

Companies in these verticals will most likely be more amenable to invest in new products or solutions offered by a different business. Create targeted email marketing lists for companies that fall under these sectors.

Be sure to check out the most unstable industries before you add some of them to your targeted list -

  • Legal
  • Transportation
  • Oil & Gas

Companies that fall in these verticals might be operating under more tight budgets due to their constant fluctuation of value in the market. This statement does not imply that they are not worth selling to, but instead might be the more conservative deal.

6. Expand Your Network

A considerable part of prospecting is networking and strengthening connections. After figuring out who the decision-maker in a company is, you must now reach out to them. You can try connecting with the decision-maker through social media platforms like LinkedIn.

Besides the medium of communication, evaluate ways to initiate a conversation with your leads. Review the crucial points that you would touch upon to convert the prospects into permanent clients. 

It is imperative to devise b2b email marketing lists to reach out to the companies shortlisted by you.

According to the Lead Report , 50% of buyers choose the vendor that reached out or responded first. Reaching out is necessary for  over 85% of buyers to agree to a meeting with a sales rep. 

For instance, if you receive a cold response from one of your leads, consider crossing them out wholly from your prospect list. If someone provides you with an agreeable response, include that lead in your prospect list to urge them to convert into a paying, permanent client.

Final Words

Your prospect data list is crucial when spreading your outreach as a new business. If you have not devised a relevant and accurate prospect list, you can contact a provider like ReadyContacts to help you with the job.

Implement the steps mentioned above to devise an appropriate prospect targeted list to ensure that your sales reps approach the right companies. 

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"After piloting various data vendors, it was easy to see that ReadyContacts is a cut above."

Anna Jensen
Anna Jensen Director of Marketing, DigitalShadows
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Looking for a dataset?

Get a customized dataset for your next campaign from Ready and save yourself from expensive annual subscriptions :)


"After piloting various data vendors, it was easy to see that ReadyContacts is a cut above."

Anna Jensen
Anna Jensen Director of Marketing, DigitalShadows