Tag Archives: google

Google alerts – using them to source hot new prospects


Whatever industry you’re selling in, chances are you’ll spending a fair amount of your working time contacting “cold” prospects to hopefully interest them in whatever product or service you’re offering.   This can clearly prove fruitful but can be extremely time consuming.   Regardless of how good a salesperson you are, unless there’s a huge demand for your product/service the likelihood is that you’ll speaking to countless prospects who either have no need for what you’re offering, aren’t in the market for what you’re offering at the moment or, the dreaded phrase of salespeople across the land are “happy with our current supplier” (we all know that means that they’re probably not all that happy but can’t be bothered to put time into researching potential improvements – I’ll cover that in a separate blog).

So, how do find companies that have a need for your offering and just happen to call them at exactly the right time?  Ladies and gentlemen I present the marvellous FREE tool that is Google Alerts

For those not in the know, Google alerts is a (did I mention FREE) tool that Google offers whereby you can set up alerts to receive either emails or notifications into your RSS feed  to inform you of any new mentions of that term across the internet.

The key is ensuring you use relevant search terms – and this, unfortunately is where you’re going to have to use your brain a little bit (exhausting I know).   Grab a piece of paper and a pen and run through as many relevant search terms as you can related to whatever product or service you’re selling.   The list can be as long or as short as  you like and you can always whittle it down later should you find that the alert is not providing you with relevant results.   Main thing at this stage is to think of as many different angles as possible.

To give you some examples – we’re currently working for a company that supplies and installs security systems.  Putting some thought behind why a company may look at investing in a new security system:

  • Because they’re moving into new premises
  • Because they’re closing an old premises
  • Because they’ve recently had a break in
  • Because they’re developing their existing premises
  • Because the former security manager has left
  • Because they’ve changed their line of business and might be stocking higher value items

Are a few examples – this is by no means an exhaustive list but should hopefully get your grey matter fizzing and give you some starting points.

You may wish to try various different terms, possibly even break it down into regions – ie “new premises midlands”/”new premises bristol” – this will further expand the likelihood of google generating relevant results for you.

Once you’ve got your list, go onto google alerts (you’ll have to set up a google account to be able to save the terms) and begin the process of setting up an alert for that term.     Rather than give you a detailed explanation of how to use google alerts, there’s a great guide here – only a small change to note that they’ve changed the result type from “everything” to “automatic” – that will ensure that the alerts cover the whole web rather than, for example news or blogs alone.

Now, as I mentioned you can set it up to email you the results – this is fine but for me I prefer to use the RSS feed – there’s numerous RSS readers out there which I suggest researching, personally I have a chrome plugin called feeder which you can get here but that’s just a personal preference.

As we work on behalf of various different clients I’ve set up folders within feeder so I can separate the various alerts to suit each client – if you’re only selling on behalf of one business that may not be necessary for you but just a thought which you might want to consider to enable you to work more effectively.

So, rather than adopting a scattergun approach, use google alerts to help you identify needs and to call those prospects at exactly the right time!  Bit stalky and a bit ambulance chasey I know but, we’re in the business of creating business, why not use this free, highly effective tool to help you get there!

Happy googling!



Dan Smith 
Inspired Business Development
Unit K9 Cradley Enterprise Centre
Maypole Fields
B63 2QB
T:01384 566 078
W: www.inspired-bd.com

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Don’t accept a no from someone not authorised to give a yes



If you’re selling over the phone, be it for your business or on behalf of a client it’s essential that you get to talk to the right person.  Receptionists aren’t always willing to give out details of staff members; they’re usually bombarded with calls from salespeople flogging this, that and the other but if you’ve got the name of the person you need to talk to and you ask for them with an air of professionalism and purpose you’re far more likely to get put through.

So, how do you get their name?  If you’ve been lucky enough to obtain quality data you may well have their name already and there’s probably not much point in reading any further – on this occasion.

But, without that – utilise our old friend Google (other search engines are available!)

Type in the company name, copy their domain name in the search results, paste that back into google and add the job title of the person you’re looking for.  If it’s listed on their website, google will pick it up and will – if they’re social media savvy – list their name on Linkedin and possibly twitter and various less used websites – pinterest and all that google + business

You can also try going onto linkedin and use their advanced search tool.  You can narrow it down by company, name, location, sector, company size and a variety of other options of varying levels of usefulness.   Depending on your subscription to Linkedin the search results will bring up different levels of information – most notably with the free and cheaper versions of it, just their First name and initial of surname

Quick Linkedin tip to get round this – click on their name then go to the right lower side of the page where’s there’s a “people that viewed this profile also viewed….” section and click on the top person on that list.  When you get to their profile, click on the “people that viewed this profile, blah blah blah” section on their page and you often see the full name of the person you were originally looking for.   If not, repeat the exercise with one of the other contacts on there – I’d suggest a maximum of 3 other contacts.  If you don’t find their full name that way, have a look at their recommendations on their profile page, click through those.  Often you’ll find their full name listed on other peoples reciprocal recommendations.

Finally – have a look at the groups they’re a member of – if they’ve added to discussions, their full name will be on there.

I’d also highly recommend Jigsaw.Com – essentially it’s an editable directory of contacts, built up by salespeople.  You receive points for adding contacts that you’ve sourced yourself and can spend those points on buying contacts that you need.   There’s also an option to purchase credits which you can buy data with although personally I like the community spirit of everyone contributing.   You can also receive points for updating contacts so if, for example you call a company and find the person has left or changed roles, pop that in jigsaw and they’ll reward you with a shiny new decision maker.

As a Telemarketer I have to utilise every tool I have at my disposal and whilst there’s a tremendous amount that can be done over the phone on it’s own, it’s essential I increase my chances of success by using google and social media to get the information I need to succeed!

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