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Three Ways to Supercharge Your CRM
Published by: Monika Bergander
Published on:

Three Proven Ways to Leverage Connections and Close Deals

Published by: Monika Bergander
Published on:
Not all prospects are created equal. Finding the most impactful prospects is crucial to ensure you aren’t wasting time when you could be closing deals.

Theoretical strategy is great, but at the core of any new business development is one thing – relationships. Who you know matters more than almost anything else, regardless of which step in the sales process you are in. From prospect short-list to the deal-closing handshake, properly leveraging connections and relationships is what separates the best managers, start-up founders, and salespeople from the rest.

When you’re in the business of acquiring business, relationships are the place to focus your efforts. Here are three foolproof ways that you can leverage connections and close deals (with the data to back it up), starting today.

Identify impactful prospects

Not all prospects are created equal. Finding the most impactful prospects is crucial to ensure you aren’t wasting time when you could be winning with prospects ready to close. There are two things to remember when identifying who to spend efforts on:

  1. Who is an influential decision-maker
  2. Who do I have an “in” with

When creating short lists of prospects, any names that can check both of these boxes is a high-value prospect and worth spending some resources on.

Finding these impactful people ultimately comes from your web of first-degree and extended professional contacts. This “web” is your most powerful tool for uncovering the “who” and your “in” of your prospect strategy. Tracing those connections to discover unknown people within target companies, along with a potential connection point, is an incredibly powerful combination.

Finding the most impactful prospects is crucial to ensure you aren’t wasting time when you could be winning with prospects ready to close.

Kiss the cold goodbye

We get it. Cold calls and icy leads are a reality – but they don’t have to be the norm. If you have a personal connection to a buyer, it’s an instant 4x increase in appointment booking returns. From a prospect’s perspective, the data shows that 73% of executives prefer to work with sales professionals if they are referred by someone they know. Simply put, warm leads means more bookings and better sales.

Easier said than done, right? This is where the real power of relationship intelligence comes into play. Using your company contact data, relationship intelligence platforms can create a web with a clear path to a personal connection to a prospect. 

As reported by OpenView Labs, referral leads convert 30% better than leads generated from other marketing channels and referred customers have a 16% higher lifetime value.

Close with confidence

Once you’ve got a meeting or call booked with a high-impact prospect, the power of relationships can still help you in the final stretch. Understanding the person you are talking to is essential to making an appropriate “ask” when the time comes. Some of the key data you should know before going into any room with the possibility of a sale are:

  • A prospect’s past experience
  • A prospects connections

Having an information advantage is key to success when you finally go to close. The effort spent learning a prospect’s connections, work history, and even interests is the culmination of leveraging connections to close deals. Even more, you just added a new connection point to your web and the process is easier and more effective the next time around. You’re on your way to creating a network of professionals who continually help each other expand their networks.

Leveraging tech for better business development

Turning your wealth of relationship data into something actionable is the first step in leveraging connections to close deals. Everyone has contacts, but using them to:

  1. Identify impactful prospects
  2. Get warm leads and referrals
  3. Close with an informational advantage

… is what separates the good from the great.

RelSci is a platform that helps you turn your connections into closing handshakes. With tools like Relationship Mapping and Automatic Contact Concordance leveraging connections for new business is a lot easier. You already have relationship intelligence, it’s time to unlock it.

Ready to build connections and grow your book of business? We can help.

Monika Bergander is a Senior Account Executive at Altrata. She joined Relationship Science during the product launch in 2013 and has worked with clients across multiple industries such as professional services, corporate, NPO, and private equity. Monika has over 15 years of experience in business development and sales, and specializes in relationship mapping and executive connectivity. Prior to joining Relationship Science, Monika worked at S&P Capital IQ working across the financial services space. Monika holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Connecticut