Many BDRs subscribe to a spray and pray methodology. I don’t care who I’m calling, making a ton of calls will get me to my next “yes”.
While in theory that might be true, it’s not a very efficient use of your time over the long term. Rather than building a pipeline you’re just trying to catch lightning in a bottle.
Instead, you should focus your time on developing and building out a hit list.
A “hit list” is a defined set of high value target accounts that fall directly within your organizations ideal customer profile. Think industry leaders or companies with great reputations.
While these aren’t the only organizations you’re prospecting, they are the ones you know more intimately. This is especially helpful if you’re focused on a specific industry or geographic location.
Why a Hit List?
A hit list is useful for a few different reasons.
Timing. Not every organization is ready to buy when you reach out. Having a hit list will mean you’re continually learning about your target organizations buying cycle, budgets, decision makers, etc – all the information you need to time your future follow ups for when they’re ready.
Reinforces account based selling. These days a purchasing decision takes longer and involves more people. By switching our perspective from “prospect” to “prospective organization” the optics of how we reach out changes. Rather than targeting a specific individual we are targeting a specific organization that contains many, many prospects. All of these prospects are now individuals you can add to your call/email outreach and increase your chance of setting an appointment.
In Depth Knowledge. Over time prospecting into an account will help you learn more about the inner workings of that organization. What tools do they use? Current initiatives? Current challenges/pain points? Future goals? All of this information is extremely valuable and can help you position your product as the best possible solution for their needs.
Building a Network. Last but not least, you get to develop your own network in your industry. Many BDRs focus on the short time horizon (read: how do i set a demo now?) but taking a long time horizon and developing your name in the industry is far more valuable. Focus on pipeline and relationships rather than catching lightning in a bottle.
How to Start Your Hit List?
So how do we start building out our hit list?
Well the easiest method would be to go through your CRM and take a look at who’s downloading marketing content and interacting with your website. If they’re not a customer yet, add that organization to your hit list.
Another method is to look at lists that are created by different online publications for the industry or ideal customer profiles you’re selling into.
Here are a few examples:
To find lists relevant to your buyers, just go to Google and type in some variation of “top 100 companies <industry>” and you’ll get tons of results.
These 100 or so companies can make up your initial hit list. Over time you can keep an eye out for new companies and add them one by one.
Pro Tip: Go through your CRM and look up activity history for each company prior to adding it to your hit list. Last thing you want to do is waste time on an organization that is already talking to someone else on the team or, even worse, is already a customer.