“We have decided to venture forth into a sector where we have had some good recent success, Glenn, but with some trepidation” “Why, David”. I asked the obvious question. “Well, it’s so heterogeneous – the players come in all shapes, sizes and forms. There are segments within segments. In many cases, we cannot readily know at the go-get whether they have a need for our products. But when we can find out, sometimes we are pleasantly surprised.”

This scenario is not overly uncommon in many complex multi-channel, multi segments B2B sales environs. And many Heads of Sales, like David, in my example, grapple with how to progress and sales team model the best resource combination. Good news is that like most aspects of sales team optimisation, the power of good data and process come to the fore.

Start by consolidating the identities of players in that sector(s). Include every player you know of……….customers and prospects. Access a reputable companies “who’s who” type directory/database. Get the broker to run an industry code match. This will leverage the identities of your knowns to find your unknowns, using a transparent and credible database washing process. By all means, set filters if you wish – locality, size, revenue bands et al. Work with your broker again to determine whether you wish to buy or rent these company names. In most B2B new sector harvesting scenarios, renting (the cheaper of the two alternatives) will be viable.

Now you have done half the job. Come back again after New Year to check the other half of the job – the sales team modelling to harvest the opportunity. Season’s Greetings!