Business to business sales within niche industries is hard, and marketing will only make it a little bit easier. Ultimately, to do it right, you need someone to sit down and research the living daylights out of the niche using the internet and a phone!

Let me give you an example:
Someone asked me recently how they can get hold of a list of bookkeepers that specialise on a particular industry (which I will keep confidential) in the Western Cape. They thought that a marketing campaign could magically provide a shortcut. My view: it can’t. They need someone to literally search for the contact details of the relevant people, one-by-one.

Ultimately, to find key decision makers within niche industries require manual labour and building a database from the ground up. Sure, you may get lucky and find an existing list of names from an industry association or a database company, but this information will mostly be compromised, outdated and only partially useful. There are few shortcuts!

Where marketing can help, is to add to your database in due course through a signup button on your website and a social media following. But this so called “in-bound” approach will not turn the taps on fast enough. You need someone to “work the phones”!

Often business owners in very defined B2B markets struggle to find their customers. They are scattered and hidden in office parks and behind voicemails and firewalls. The hope is then that marketing can somehow provide a silver bullet, but based on my experience, it can’t. The answer remains good old-fashioned sales prospecting. You need people on the ground to win the war!