If you are a regular LinkedIn user, you might have noticed an invite to connect your account to myOpportunity. The basic idea of this is that you can cut straight to the chase and contact prospective clients directly and, since they can see your LinkedIn profile right away, this should make it easy for them to size you up and do business with you. Sounds like a recipe for lots of qualified leads and more sales, right?
Well, it would be, if people didn’t default to old methods. In today’s world, where big data and personalisation are the new normal, old-style “mass mailings” just don’t work. They work even less on a platform that gives you access to everything you need to know about a prospect in a single click.
Instead of taking five minutes to craft a personalised pitch, the vast majority of the messages I get through opportunity are like this one (name removed to protect the guilty):
Hey, How are you?
Without leads you can’t close sales, and without closing sales you can’t win new customers. If your business needs warm sales leads, we can definitely help you out. Let me know your best contact.
Random Guy, Random Company
In the early days of emailing, this kind of approach would work fine but now, it simply puts people off. The writer obviously did zero research on the services I offer or the kinds of leads I would want. How does he even know he can generate leads in my target markets?
But this is more than a rant about MyOpportunity unexpectedly leading to another growth phase in business spam. As I have written before, I am learning marketing from everywhere right now, even airports. And MyOpportunity, or rather how some people misuse it, has taught me a simple lesson.
If you want to win new business, personalise.
Oh sure, I hear you say, I have the time to research every one of hundreds of potential clients. You might not but I am sure you can find the time to spend ten minutes researching high-value ones. If you knew a client would add 25% to your income, wouldn’t you put in the legwork to get to know them a bit first?
I am no marketing expert. I am a conference interpreter working in Edinburgh. But I can tell you from personal experience that the people who personalise their approach will get a better response from me and from their potential clients than those who just revert to blind mass mailing. So, the next time you are trying to land new business, pick a smaller number of potential clients and craft a personalised approach to each of them.
What do they seem to need right now? What benefits can you bring them? Why would they use your services? What have they done recently that you think is worth praising?
Start doing that little bit of research and you will have a far better chance of landing the work.