I also work in the B2B space. In marketing. In technology. And I want to give a big "shoutout" to the premise of your post. This is a hard issue. My clients are also not on social media, and rarely attend the conferences and trade shows. You are selling into the C-level. The decision maker. These are folks who sell marketing-- so they protect themselves from it. They are paid to be on top of everything -- so they reject the thought you might have something new. They coordinate sending out hundreds of emails -- so they don't read there. Marketing execs spend all of their time justifying ROI -- so they will make sure you know yours. Oh yes, I know of the market you speak.
So -- what do we do? It is about focus -- targeted focus.
(When I am launching a new "business development" effort to recruit new clients I pull out my old Boy Scout handbook. The motto? Be prepared.)
You need to know where you are going, who you plan on seeing, and what you plan on doing when you do see them. (Think back to the camp song: Going on a Lion hunt")
To launch your company you will need a "launch campaign" -- a targeted C-level launch campaign. This will be an integration of marketing, sales and every ounce of energy, patience, tolerance and perseverance you have. You will have a pipeline and forecasts, prospects that convert to leads that convert to contacts with opportunities. It will be a numbers game -- and a game of targeted focus.
- Identify your targets: -- not just by group, but by name. (Think "I want to sell to Joseph Barisonzi of Strategic Growth Intiatives.")
- Know your targets: Who they are? What organizations and groups are they part of? Where did they go to school? What common interests do you have?
- Customize your message: Know why your product will make sense for this company. Do research. Personalize your presentation. Convert every general to a specific. I don't want to know how much it could save -- tell me how much it will save ME. You better know what the critical pain is of the buyer and how you are resolving it. If your not -- don't waste their time or yours.
- Who knows them: How will you connect with them? Who will give you the referral? Who do they share their "pain points" with? How will you end up accross the table referred by a trusted advisor?
- Be prepared to pay: There are people who charge for access, charge for the research, charge to tell you just when to call son-in-so and say that so-in-so called. Don't write these people off. Your market is about who knows who-- and if you don't -- well, you better be willing to pay the person who does.
- Assume the close: Have the contract, Have the deal, have the offer, . . . . be ready when they are no matter what.
You want leads? Well right now is when you go out and make them. Not buy them, blog them, bump into them. Make them.
Basic old fashion sales right? Exactly. Because that is what you are doing. Your selling your product. No amount of social networking, no amount of blogging, no matter how many trade shows and conferences you go to will ever replace good old fashion raw leather sales.
Sure, I know "Economy 2.0" -- just put up a website, do some SEO, and people flock to you and purchase off your website. Maybe -- in some towns. But in the world of B32B sales, selling into the C-level, selling a new product . . .well the fundamentals of business never changed. And it is all about earning each individual lonely sale.
(Until you are big and powerful with lots of money and can buy sales people with great contact databases and launch multimedia campaigns supported by social media advertising, white papers, and tradeshow presentations.)