In the beginning, building a Prospecting list can be intimidating. But, here we are to tell you that it can also be…(dare we say it) fun!
We all know that sales is the lifeblood of your business. And it is. But it’s also the byproduct of your prospect list. Your list is truly the single most important component of your business. It’s a living, breathing thing that you should be updating and tweaking daily. Depending on where you are on your business journey your prospecting list probably sits under one of these three categories:
- No List
- Master List
- Active Prospecting List
You can probably relate to one of three stages of where you are with your prospects and the way of managing existing and potential customers. (In this article prospects both future and existing customers as prospects - after all, customers that have placed the order once have the highest potential to order again!) So here are the typical states:
It never gets written or properly organized. Names swirl around in your brain and across your many devices and social networks. You’re constantly thinking I should reach out to ‘So and So’ write it down on a note and then promptly forget only to remember when you’re in the cereal aisle at the store. You are yet to develop the system that works for you and find that this lack of organization is stressing you out.
A list of literally everyone you have ever come into contact with in your entire life… This is a great start. You’re great at capturing contact information, but need to take it a step further to organize the list and identify the best potential prospects for your business. This list is usually created when you first start your business. Either downloading contacts from your phone, writing names down from Facebook, Instagram, maybe even LinkedIn and organizing everyone into a huge excel spreadsheet or list. Unfortunately, this list gets outdated as soon as you meet someone new or gain an Instagram follower. You’re either always having to update it manually or you’re left with an outdated list.
Active Prospecting List
The ultimate list. A list that is carefully crafted, constantly updated and creates a funnel of potential new customers and team members for your business.
In an ideal world, your Master List and Active Prospecting List will be working side by side, using the Master List to select the next people to move onto your Active Prospecting List. What is the difference between these two lists? When you are building relationships with your prospects, you don’t blast 100 people at a time. You craft every message specific to their unique life circumstances. Your Master List is representative of all the people you could connect with at some point on your Network Marketing journey. Your Active Prospecting List is who you’re actively reaching out to and building a connection with now.
Here’s a good overview of Prospecting basics and some useful techniques: Beginners Guide to Prospecting.
Alright, so how do you create this list? (Besides writing down everyone that you know!)
Penny Tip: Import your contact list and social media accounts into Penny. Then let Penny use the smart prospecting feature to help identify the people to add to your Active Prospecting List. You can even label people such as ‘Hot Prospect’ to further sort your list.
Write down 10 names for each category and add them to your Master List:
(If you have Penny, you can still create this list and cross-reference on Penny to double-check all of these people were imported from your social channels.)
Category 1 - Family and Friends
- Children's friends' parents
- Friends of friends
- Family friends
- Spouse/partner's friends
Category 2 - Work/activity connections
- Hobby friends
- Colleagues past and present
- Friends colleagues
Category 3 - Extended Network
- Neighbours past and present
- Old School friends
- Regular service providers - hairdresser, plumber, etc.
- Current or former teachers and/or mentors
Category 4 - Community
- Guests you met at parties and events
- Local business groups
- The person you say hi to every day at the coffee shop
- Community groups
You may be thinking — this is a lot of work! That’s because it is but when you complete this task you'll already have 40 people listed! What's great about this activity is it helps you think about the different groups of people you're already connected with.
After creating this list it’s time to select people (or let Penny select them!) you are going to actively prospect and add them to your Active Prospecting List. This creates a much more manageable list of people to reach out to.
For example in Penny you can choose to have 5 prospects suggested to you each day based on your list of contacts and whether you’ve labelled them as a Hot Prospect. Penny does this by analyzing the user profile of your contacts and seeing if any of them are similar to current customers you have as they are more likely to be interested in your products and services.
By thinking about your Active Prospecting List as different from your Master List it will make prospecting a lot easier for your brain. This way you know exactly who you’ve reached out to and can leave notes about when you’ve reached out to them and what their response is.
If it’s a successful conversation you can update your Master List to reflect if they’re now a Customer or in your downline as well. If it was a lukewarm conversation you could bench them and make a note to reach out in a month or so. If it was a cold conversation either remove them from your list OR make a note that you contacted them and not to reach out again.
Whether this is the first time you’re building a prospecting list or you’re looking to add new contacts to your existing list we hope the above brainstorming activity will help you expand your list and help you continue to grow your business.
Good luck with building out your lists! Happy Prospecting! If you need a break from prospecting check out the 5 Memes of Prospecting!