Part from my new book:
B2B marketing – Cookbook for beginners
Basic strategies of hunting for B2Bs
A strategy is a long-term vision or plan; usually between five and ten years. It includes where you want to get to, how you are going to get there, and what the main tools are that you will put into action.
On the following pages, I will introduce you to four ways, methods, and structures that work well in a lot of places while hunting. These are not methods that can be worked out fast but they have paid off for several businesses. Additionally, they can be combined well. Thus, everyone can work out their strategy which can then be polished for many years to come.
A good strategy like this is a fantastic tool, the most valuable treasure, and the secret of a successful business! Below are the strategies you can use to hunt for B2Bs.
Let me start with my favorite. This is not only an effective strategy, but it is also quite motivating too. It also works well with start-up businesses or businesses working in quite small B2B markets.
As a first step, let’s daydream and calculate! Consider these questions… What is your desire? How many, what sort of, and how big a customer do you need to live happily?
If you wish to sell to large businesses, then you should learn from large businesses. I have mentioned that several corporations strive for the 10% rule: not a single customer should bring more than 10% of turnover. Let’s think about how many businesses you should sell to, in order to be continuously satisfied? If you want stability, set standards high. You want ten right away! Should one of them fall out, it is not a big problem.
However, you may need even more if you can sell relatively small value to some of the companies. You have to have a number – this will be the dream number, the number of ideal customers.
As a next step, you should estimate the effectiveness of your marketing and business transactions. How many businesses should you target to get the dream number of customers? A lot of people say that if you try seriously at ten companies, sooner or later you can turn one into your customer.
Based on these, the dream list method is the following…
Draw up your dream list from the market. Make a list of the companies, any companies, that would make you happy if they were your customer. You should put down the quantity, out of which, with effective marketing, you can achieve the dream amount.
For instance, if you need ten dream customers, and you need to visit ten potential companies, then 10 x 10 = 100 companies, which must be on our dream list.
You should be very careful when choosing the businesses to be put on your list. Geographically they should be located at a place which you are glad to visit. Their sizes and trade should be appropriate for you to serve them properly. And you should be proud to have them as your customer. You should be able to make them happy and excellently serve them.
Obviously, it is quite practical to have a list of businesses from your market. Also, you can use lists set up by associations of the industry as well. On rough markets, where it is difficult to get access to information, drawing up this list takes weeks to months. But it is worth it.
When you have drawn up your dream list very carefully, the next step is to get all the information about them: what they do, who is in charge, to whom you will belong, where they are, how you can reach them, etc. When you have done these, do everything to get in touch with them, to meet them, and to show how brilliantly you could serve them.
I will later go into details about drawing up the list, the investigation, and the method of getting in.
Why is this strategy good? Because it is effective. People work with really low effectiveness if they just have to go out and do business. Simply, they get paralyzed and do not know what to do. With the help of the dream list, everyone will immediately know what to do; what, and who to focus on. The list is long enough to be a challenge but these purposes are realistic. As a result, surprisingly large energy is released in everyone.
If I had to recommend an exclusive method to a company working in B2B trade, it would be drawing up the dream list.