How a Fishing Trip Made Me Think About Prospecting

One of the best fishing trips I’ve ever been on was in Destin, Florida. We caught so many fish, more fish than I had ever seen. I actually caught a 30-pound Amber Jack that day! There were multiple lines cast off the back of that boat, and we had all different types of rods set up to catch fish.

I’ve often thought that prospecting is a lot like fishing.

As you know, you have to go where the fish are biting. If you are prospecting over in one pond, and it’s not getting you any results, you might want to try a different pond altogether. Also, you have to catch the little fish on the way to the big fish. Little fish often help you catch the big fish.
Remember, fish with them in schools. You can get to where a lot of fish are biting if you’re getting referred to a lot of different people in that group, then you will get to a lot more fish.
A lot of you make the mistake of prospecting in the same pond over and over again. Maybe you’re comfortable calling through a lead list and you’re not really comfortable using referrals or other methods. So you just call cold leads over and over again and stick to doing what you’re comfortable doing. Maybe you stick with just talking with people you know because you’re a little afraid to approach someone that you don’t know.
In order to really maximize your results, you need to have a lot of different lines in the water. You have to fish in a lot of different ponds and you have to prospect a lot of different ways.

Here are several ways of prospecting that if you are not doing, you should start.

  • One way that you should prospect is through a leads list.
  • Another way is through your sphere of influence. Those are people that you know: your friends, your family, your coworkers, people that you go to church or play sports with. These people are in your social network.
  • Let’s not forget: referrals. Referrals are gold! Everyone should be asking for referrals.
  • You can also start calling back past customers and asking them for referrals.
  • Social media is obviously a very powerful tool for prospecting. You can post congratulations to your clients, instead of soliciting sales, and be positive and share things so that other people will see those results and want to know how they can do the same.
  • LinkedIn is a way to search contacts, and search for referrals. Go through connections and find out who is similar and who could be someone to reach out to. You can also use the advanced search to find industry connections with people that you know and reach out to them.
  • Other methods you could use are Internet searches. You can just sit down and research companies and people within those companies that you would want to get in contact with.
  • You can canvas buildings. Say you’re out prospecting: go to the directory of that building and see if there are other companies who would be potential prospects, or in the same industry that you are working with.
These are just a couple of ways to put more lines out in the water. Start with techniques and methods that you are most comfortable with, but don’t be afraid to try something new, and cast out more lines! Oh, and definitely try deep sea fishing!

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