A sales lead refers to the identification of persons or entities who are interested in purchasing a product or service. It usually represents the initial stage of the sales process, without which a business cannot possibly succeed. Every business is required to actively develop a list of customers, who will be targeted in the promotion of its products and services. It is therefore important to build and maintain a sales lead list, containing both the past and potential customers. This article will prove helpful in this regard, as it provides tips for developing a sales lead list.

Start with the inner circle

One of the ways in which a person can develop a sales lead list is to consider those who are closest to him or her. This usually includes family, friends and acquaintances. In most cases, people are more likely to give business to someone they know, rather than a stranger. Further, such people will also be keen on introducing other potential customers, thus adding to the list. A person could also contact previous customers or people that one knew in preceding career positions. If a person has earned the respect of customers in the past, such customers will offer their support, even if a person is dealing with different products or services.

Create new networks

Creating a sales lead list also involves getting out and meeting new people. In this case, one can search for local events in which to network with new people while collecting business cards. A person can also give talks at local business meetings, preferably including people from the local Chamber of Commerce. It is also advisable to consider joining social clubs, in order to facilitate direct contact with potential consumers. A person can also benefit by networking with other business owners, which may lead to the formation of strategic partnerships. These partnerships involve businesses that seek similar customers, but for different products or services.

Seek information on potential customers

A sales lead list can also be cultivated by reading about the potential customers. In this case, one can read journals or books pertaining to his or her business. This enables a person to understand the preferences of potential customers, while also getting ideas on how to improve the products or services being offered. The internet is particularly helpful in this regard, being a good source of information from various sites. Through the internet, a person is also able to communicate with prospective customers or partners from different parts of the world.

Careful Consideration when Purchasing Sales Lists

Given that there are so many companies selling sales lead lists, this option requires careful consideration. It is therefore essential to identify reliable companies, whose lists are regularly updated. It is also important to note that in most cases, only 70-80% of the customer information provided in such lists is valid. Once a sales lead list has been established, it is essential to cultivate relationships with the people on the list, which are necessary for future profits. It is also important to be on the lookout for new ways to connect with potential customers, in order to sustain the business.

Written by: Ruth Wambui