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9 Ways to Warm Up a COLD Contact October 23, 2008

Posted by Bizzie Guye in Prospects, Relationships.

As you look at your spreadsheet filled with contacts or cycle through the database of your favorite CRM software… you will probably see that there are those PCs (potential clients) out there that you just can’t seem to get anywhere with. No returned phone call. No returned emails.  And certainly – No RFP’s.

It’s no secret that all BD-ers (business developers) have contacts that just for some reason… run a little cold from time to time.  So here is a list of 10 things that can be done to “warm” up a cold contact.

1. Offer to do a Lunch and Learn (or other informative presentation). Lunch and Learns are great tools I use to get my firm in front of PCs.  Not only does it give us a chance to inform them about a specific area of our expertise but it also starts a new dialogue for a budding relationship.  Not to mention the prospect now sees us as an expert in our field (if the presentation is truly informative).

2. Ask for the prospect’s advice. People love to give their opinion.  This is doubly-true in the business development world.  The key is to really have a legitimate question.  I don’t suggest just making up something either.  Really think about the person and their expertise and how they might be able to help you with a relevant problem.  Also, once you use their advice, be sure to let them know how it worked out – and of course, thank them for it again.

3. Offer to break bread. If you think for a moment, about all of the expensive ways to seek new work, lunches are still one of the most economical ways to engage a potential client.  It doesn’t have to be expensive – in fact from experience – you should spend more time finding the right place – based on atmosphere than price tag.  Your goal is to make sure there is sufficient and comfortable seating to allow you and your soon-to-be client to relax and really get to know each other a little better.  For example, if the restaurant’s tables are really close he or she may not feel comfortable disclosing private business matters in such an open forum.

4. Send an interesting link pertaining to something other than work. Along the way, you will have gotten to know something by way of a personal interest about your PC.  Make sure you keep conversations going along these lines by looking up information that you know he/she would enjoy and then sending it to them.  If they like a local basketball team for instance, send them a link about coupons or deals on season passes.  This is just a little way to let them know you are interested in them as a person not simply as a PC.

5. Offer to drop by and help answer any questions. Depending on the services your firm offers, there are certain times that you will know when a new client will have his or her attention on the services you provide.  Make a call and offer to drop by and answer any questions they may have during these times – free of charge.

6. Refer the contact to someone else (then let them know whom they might be hearing from). Every PC, has someone that they consider to be a PC.  For instance, I had a case where I was marketing to a developer who also happened to be a commercial real estate broker.  I look through my database and found an architect who was building a multi-level office building and who I figured (due to the current economic situation) would have a hard time leasing space once it was built.  I passed on the brokers contact information to this architect. I then received a very nice email thanking me for making the introduction.

7. Join a mutually beneficial organization. Notice here that I did not say join any organization that your PC is a member of.  While this could work, you will find more success if it is truly an organization that you are interested in and here is the key – would actually participate in.

8. Drop by next time you are in the area. If communication has lapsed for a while – then simply drop by next time you are in the area.  While you might think – wait this could be misconstrued as rude, I have found that most people are very pleasant if it’s truly a sincere unsolicited vast to drop in and see how things are going.

9. Ask for work. Not to be overlooked is the age old adage – if you want something, you have to ask for it.

photo by vieux bandit



1. Copywriting tips, on how to write sales letters, for business owners who want to know about copywriting - October 24, 2008

[…] blogger (Bizzie Guye) gives 9 suggestions on how to warm up a cold contact. Many of them tie in strongly with creating relationships – […]

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