SECTION 1: GETTING STARTED
1. Read the entire AP once – Read through this entire AP, watch any videos and download the resources. Don’t execute on the steps until you have finished reading the entire AP. This will help you understand the progression of the steps and put them into context.
2.Complete the steps – This Action Plan is a checklist. Each step builds upon the next. Complete each step in order. Please post all questions in the Linked University VIP Club.
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What is this plan you might be wondering? Watch the video below to find out!
SECTION 2: HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR TARGETS
Here’s the playbook to keep yourself organized about who you reach out to, when to follow-up and how to track your list of prospects.
I recommend starting with 10-20 IDEAL prospects whom you are connected to on LinkedIn.
We’ve seen these campaigns bring in anywhere from 22-50%+ of those entered into this sequence. And you want to keep in mind your time / availability to tailor the questions in this process necessary to create the blog post or article you’ll end up with.
You’ll want to MAKE A COPY of the spreadsheet found here. You can download is an Excel sheet if that is your preferred choice.
Export your connections from LinkedIn or enter the contact information for your contact’s in the following fields: First Name, Last Name, Email, Job Title, Company Name, Selected.
The last field will place an ‘X’ in the column to signify they’ve been chosen for your campaign.
Review your prospect profile.
Maybe you already have 15 ideal prospects in mind that would be a good fit. It could be people you’ve spoken with in the past OR brand-new prospects you’re connected with.
If you don’t have anyone in mind, make a search on LinkedIn among your 1st degree connections of the people who fit your Prospect Profile.
From the results open the profiles of potential prospects and add their information into the Spreadsheet from the previous step.
Just choose 10-20 that fit your Prospect Profile and are connected with you on LinkedIn.
The focus of your outreach should be on what your prospects deal with on a day-to-day basis.
If the people you want to talk to are CEOs of manufacturing companies, asking them a question about their current sales strategy because you are a corporate sales consultant isn’t the best starting point.
You’ll want to include a sales question or two to open the door to your solution. But you don’t want to lead to heavy with your emphasis.
Ask them about what’s important in their world.
So…who are your prospects?
What do they care about?
Get some ideas from what others similar to your prospects have been asked in interviews and check out the example templates below in The Messaging Strategy.
People love to talk about their business. It’s a promotion opportunity for them so start there.
SECTION 3: THE MESSAGING STRATEGY
We recommend for this messaging campaign – sending an initial message and then 1 follow-up a week later.
For a typical messaging campaign this is more often than we’d recommend, but since in this messaging campaign we are looking to provide press for our prospects we can send these in a quicker timeframe as it’s a softer request than a sales call.
I currently produce an interview series and was wondering if you would be interested in participating. The series features top marketing leaders in Australia, and is featured in the Marketing Leaders of Australia group on LinkedIn.
Would you be interested in participating? With your background, I’m sure that we’d have plenty to talk about that other marketing professionals would love to hear.
The format is really simple. It would be a written interview. I’d send you the questions, and your written response would be used for the series.
>> INCLUDE THE NEXT LINE IF YOU HAVE AN EXAMPLE<<
Here’s an example of a previous interview:
Let me know if you have any questions, or would like to participate!
FOLLOW-UP (if you need more participants)
I reached out a week or so back to see if you’d be interested in being featured in one of our upcoming blog posts.
I really think you’d add a ton of insight for our readers and think you’d be a great subject to profile.
Anyways, let me know if you have any interest and I’d be happy to send across the questions – shouldn’t take more than 10-15 minutes for you to complete.
1. Can you tell us a bit about the TCP Group, your role with them, and how long have you been with the company?
2. Your company runs both Tourism and Training websites. How important is content marketing in both these fields? And how do the plans differ as far as the avenues used to reach the audiences for the tourism sites vs. the training sites? (potential intro to Aaron’s services question**)
3. You have a background with a lot of digital marketing experience, but also some time spent in sales especially at the start of your career. What skills did you refine in those sales positions that have helped you most in your current role?
4. What are some of the key metrics you measure that give you the clearest story on the success of your work in the digital world of marketing?
5. Which social media investments have had the greatest return for TCP Group, and where do you see the company expanding social efforts in the future?
6. What area of marketing has generated the best results for your company (seo, social media, direct mail, tv, email etc.) and why?
7. At the end of the day, how does TCP define “ROI” in the digital space?
8. How is your company’s marketing organization structured? Are you involved in the day-to-day activities of each website that is part of the group?
9. It looks like you have done a lot of work with the SEO and PPC on the TCP websites. How big an emphasis does the company put on these initiatives, and what are the main issues and obstacles you run into in with TCP’s SEO campaigns? (potential intro to Aaron’s services question**)
10. What do you see as the biggest opportunities and challenges for marketers in the digital world in the next several years?
SECTION 4: THE DELIVERY
Where are your manners?
Thank the dang person for participating!
Here’s a script we recommend right after they respond with their answers.
“Thanks for participating, >>NAME<<!
We should be ready to publish and promote this out within a week or two. As soon as it goes live, I’ll be sure to reach out so you can take a look and share it if you’d like.
Thanks again and talk soon!
We’ve handled our manners and our mothers would be proud AND we’ve set the timeline for the next time we’ll reach out.
Setting the next step is key to this plan if we are going to move this prospect down the funnel.
Now put together the post, share it out to your list, in your group, on Twitter, shout it from the mountaintops, spray paint it on your dog’s fur, or do whatever else it is you do to get the word out.
Then let your featured prospect know about it.
And use your follow-up to…
In your next email, you should:
- Thank them again for the interview.
- Provide a link to the published post.
- Make reference to the pain point / opening their shared in their interview that you might be able to solve.
- Move them to the next stage.
EXAMPLE SCRIPT –
The post is live!
Thanks again for participating, >>NAME<<. I’m sure our audience will get a lot out of learning from your experience.
I couldn’t help but notice you mentioned that you’ve struggled in the past to generate leads and sales with your content marketing initiatives.
As a thank you for being a part of this interview series, I’d love to line up some time to toss a couple ideas your way on what might work for your business.
Gary on my team works on this specific issue with companies like yours all the time and I think he could provide a couple interesting tactics that you could start using today. Let me know how your schedule looks this coming week and I can help get something on the books.”
SECTION 5: FINAL THOUGHTS
We’ve helped clients land 6-7 figure deals utilizing this relationship building approach.
AND extraordinarily high response rates for a one-message campaign.
Make it your own, but keep the emphasis on your prospects with the questions you include.
Here’s your list of the Action Steps to get started with this playbook:
- 1. Create a list of 10-20 ideal prospects to target.
- 2. Reach out to these prospects with Message 1 to gauge their interest.
- 3. Tailor the templated questions to fit your prospects and leave 1-2 questions with the intention to get your foot in the door and introduce your solution.