Does Your Research Happen During Prospecting Time?

research before prospectingIt is easy to spend lots of time doing research on potential prospects when you actually should be prospecting. Prospecting is not research – prospecting is the action of finding more probable prospective customers for your company.

The summary of this post is: Ask yourself at the end of the day today, how much time did I spend speaking with more probable prospective customers, influencers of theirs, and strategic referrers?

Research is great – but you did not get hired to be a Librarian.

If you are a Sales Development Rep (SDR) or other person in your company, regardless of title, hired to help generate “net-new” business, you NEED to have productive conversations with potential buyers of your services.

What is a productive conversation?

It is a call, email or other means of two-way communication where you can learn more about your buyer directly from them. You are speaking with them on the phone, or having an email exchange.
It is a call, email or other means of two-way communication where you can learn more about your buyer directly from those that work with them or report to them, as in recommenders and influencers. An internal influencer, or someone that works with my buyer decision-maker can tell me really important things about the company, the culture, the people and those who are involved in actually purchasing new products and services. You don’t try to get around these folks, instead you work to align with them. Get to know them.

If you don’t believe how much insight you can gain by talking with those around your decision maker’s world, then you have never been involved in a Kids’ Carpool Conversation.

What is the Kids Carpool Conversation? Either you were the kid, or you have been the parent. Let’s start with the parent – you are driving a handful of kids to school, or after-school activities. There is NO better place to learn about your kid than from the other kids who make reference to things that have happened you may or may not be aware of. If you are not a parent yet, think about when you were one of those kids in the carpool. Ever wonder why some parents love to do those carpools? They gain important information about their own kid! They also learn about the environment and what’s going on – way better than from a kid who comes home and offers one-word answers.

Back to research:

Stop spending important call time researching prospective customers. Instead, COME to work READY to pick up the phone, fire of those In-Mails, and send ALREADY CRAFTED email messages to potential buyers.

EVERY minute counts in your selling day.

DON’T waste minutes, or even hours in some cases researching at the wrong time when you could be reaching out to those people that can help you have or actually have an important conversation that unearths valuable insight about your buyer.


Buy a 3 minute egg timer. Never research during calling hours for longer than the egg timer runs.

Work harder at creating a list of prospects. Get help from others to do this if you can.

Say to yourself, “How many minutes did I spend talking to the key people who will lead me to more revenues?”.

Don’t beat yourself up – today is a new day.

Start today.

Lori Richardson - Score More SalesLori Richardson is recognized on Forbes as one of the "Top 30 Social Sales Influencers" worldwide. Lori speaks, writes, trains, and consults with inside sales teams in mid-sized companies. Subscribe to the award-winning blog and the "Sales Ideas In A Minute" newsletter for sales strategies, tactics, and tips in selling. Increase Opportunities. Expand Your Pipeline. Close More Deals.

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