Like a lot of things in life, sales and certainly new business development is all about timing. If you called a prospect right after they signed a deal with one of your competitors, do you think they would have much appetite for discussing your offerings? Probably not.
Wouldn't it be great if we had some sort system, a beacon if you will, that could tell us salespeople not only when we should call on our prospects, but what we should be talking to them about? This is what trigger events and trigger event selling is all about.
In this blog I'm going to share with you how leveraging sales triggers in your new business development campaign can yield dramatic results.
Trigger events are events that have taken place within or around your customer or prospective customer’s business that directly impact them. Trigger events typically come in three different forms.
- Problem Indicators: Information suggesting their struggling with issues that you and/or your offering can resolve
- Opportunity Indicators: Information highlighting goals & objectives your client or prospective client is trying to achieve that you can help them achieve
- Change/Transition: Information suggesting the company is experiencing some sort of change or transition that you and your offering can assist with. This type of trigger event represents change in the company such as hiring a new CEO or executive or a recent merger and acquisition.
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The challenge with trigger events however is that most trigger events are not as obvious as a tweet or LinkedIn post announcing, "I'm looking for a new IT staffing firm!" Most times salespeople will have to "tune in" to the right channels to detect the subtle shifts that can warm up a cold outreach.
The other challenge salespeople face when leveraging trigger events is being able to link the trigger event back to their service offering. Remember, the trigger event is of no use to you unless you and your offering can help the customer either 1.) solve the issue, 2.) achieve the goal, or 3.) aid in the transition.
Take for example your prospect whose office is right down the street from you. Suppose you just read a press release indicating that they acquired a competitor. Do you know and understand how your IT staffing service offering could aid them with that acquisition? Or suppose they announced that they received funding to hire 100 additional salespeople to sell a new product. Do you understand how you could help them with that initiative? That is what I'm referring to when I say "connect the dots between your service offering and the trigger event." To do this requires some business acumen.
Despite the prerequisite of possessing business acumen, what I really like about trigger events and leveraging sales triggers in your new business development campaign is they give salespeople something to talk about with their prospects other then their service offerings. Sales triggers provide the vehicle and context for salespeople to have conversations that are highly relevant and valuable to the prospect. Sales triggers help salespeople replace"check in" calls. With a trigger event, the salesperson can take the pressure off of him or herself because they shouldn't feel like they have to "sell" something, but instead can focus the conversation on the trigger event and the client.
for additional ideas on how to leverage and incorporate sales triggers into your new business development campaign, check out out my blog, 24 Sales Triggers For Calling Your Prospects Today.