Dan Beaulieu, president of D.B. Management and an I-Connect007 columnist, spoke with Nolan Johnson on the importance of continuing to generate leads and new customers.
Beaulieu addressed concerns about market uncertainty, shared some real-world examples of mistakes, and made a strong case that sales and marketing is a process that must be constantly ongoing to keep a full funnel of customers and business. He also detailed that lead generation is much easier to do now than ever before. Having more leads is important, even when you’re doing well.
- To download the audio (mp3) file for this interview, click here.
- Listen to Dan Beaulieu’s Part 2 interview on marketing in uncertain times
Nolan Johnson: Hi, Nolan Johnson here with I-Connect007. Today, I’m speaking with Dan Beaulieu. He is president of D.B. Management and an IConnect007 columnist. Dan, welcome.
Dan Beaulieu: Thanks for having me, Nolan. I always like to talk with you.
Johnson: The pleasure is mutual. Today, our topic is the importance of having more leads even when you’re doing well. At I-Connect007, we’re in the media, but we also talk with people who are in sales and marketing, and we do our own sales and marketing. It’s interesting to hear the sentiment right about now that goes something like, “We’re scaling back under current market conditions because we’re just not sure.” Dan, what are your thoughts on that?
Beaulieu: I think you always need to be going after new business, no matter what, whether you’re in a pandemic or your business is up or down; it doesn’t matter. I remember a company that was just loaded and full, and they stopped all sales efforts until they could catch up. And that’s what they did. They caught up. And then they were behind in bookings because sales is not a faucet, and you don’t turn it off and on. It’s a process that you have to go through.
One of the examples I use is a farmer has or uses three fields. One is aerating and resting. In the other one, the farmer is sowing seeds, and in the third, they’re picking the crop. That’s exactly what sales and marketing are. While you’re picking that ripe crop, stuff can go wrong. If you only take care of the customers you have in hand, stuff is going to happen. Whether you can perform perfectly doesn’t matter. Stuff is going to happen. Your customers are going to be sold. They’re going to be bought. They’re going to move to Asia. They’re going to go bankrupt. Things are going to happen.
You must always have your pipeline filled, and to stop lead generation is ludicrous, especially in this day and age, where it’s so easy to do. It used to be you used a Thomas Register or some kind of directory. You found phone numbers, dealt with the code, and called people. Now, you can seek them out on LinkedIn. You can use social media. You can get to the right people in various ways, from newsletters to doing content marketing—“magnetic marketing,” as my friend Barry [Matties] calls it. You can do all of those things to always be getting leads. Always be getting the fish to jump in your boat.
I think that’s really important. It’s a terrible mistake to stop that effort. If you do that, you’re just asking for trouble. It might not be today. You might be overloaded today, but you’re going to pay for it tomorrow. I remember one company I worked with years ago, they gleefully went out and told people—their customers who were below a certain financial level—that they were done with them because they were only dealing with the big guys now. And then six months later, they were in deep trouble. Customers don’t like hearing that, first of all. You never burn any bridges—big, small, etc.
So, no, I think you continue with all your marketing efforts at all times. It’s part of the process of sales. You don’t stop drilling. You don’t stop creating new technologies. You don’t stop quality and marketing. People have to realize that sales and marketing is an important part of the operations. It’s probably the most important part of all the operations, and you just never stop.
Johnson: Dan, thank you for the insights there. As always, I appreciate the time with you.
Beaulieu: Not a problem.
Johnson: I’ve been talking with Dan Beaulieu, president of D.B. Management and an I-Connect007 columnist. Thanks for listening.