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Word on the Street: Prospect Cold Case

January 7, 2020 Karen Meier

Prospect Cold Case: How to Reopen the Case File

You had a great meeting. The prospect checked all the right boxes and you could close your eyes and see them with an operation in your region. You came back from the meeting with a long list of follow-up items and spent time dutifully putting everything together to send out the perfect package to the perfect prospect.

You hit send … AND WAIT. And wait some more.

As business prospectors, we too share the frustration economic developers experience when you have great prospect conversations, send all the requested follow-up and then feel like you are chasing a ghost to get a response. You’re busy, they’re busy, time passes…

In this scenario, it’s easy to assume the project is dead. Yet, in many cases, simply reaching out again by phone can revive projects that have gone cold. For example, we just finished a reconnect project of 50 companies, and were able to gain an updated status for 70% of list, with 10% resulting in a second conference call with our client.

Why the ghosting?

We found in many cases that the prospect’s plans had not moved forward from original conversations – other more pressing projects came up and plans got put on the back burner – but they indicated they were still interested in the region and wanted a follow-up at a later date (those dates ranged from 3 months to two years). In other cases, we identified that the person the client originally spoke with is no longer with the company and their replacement was not interested in discussing expansion plans. Or the prospect did move forward with their plans – just not in the client’s region.

Whatever the case may be, one theme was prominent – follow-up is key.

In a few cases where prospects had decided on other locations they told us they never received timely follow-up from the economic development rep they originally met with. Others that hadn’t yet moved forward with their plans appreciated our persistence in connecting with them to reengage and offered call back dates for when they would be ready to discuss.

If you’re strapped for time and in need of assistance re-connecting with past projects, consider our reconnection service. Our team will reach out to prior leads to gain a status of the discussed project and feed you all of the information you need to reopen the case.

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