Trigger events are what we all use in outbound prospecting as well as inbound prospecting – even if we do not realise it. Every inbound lead has engaged with your brand in some way, whatever piece of content they signed up for could be classified as a trigger event for your outreach.

If a decision maker changes company and you have a good relationship with them, that could be a trigger event to leverage in reaching out to them.

This is pretty simple stuff, but when you start making sure EVERY time you reach out to a prospect, it is using and referencing a trigger event you will start to become far more successful.

Reasonless Outreach

We’ve all had emails and voicemails from a sales rep who “came across your LinkedIn profile”. They obviously did not stumble across you, they found you by searching out a persona on LinkedIn and reached out.

We’ve all had emails and voicemails from a sales rep who “just wanted to reach out and say…”. Fine, you can reach out to anyone at any time but it still begs the question. Why? Why are you reaching out? The prospect will auto-populate the answer, you are trying to get a meeting.

So, how are we going to stop a buyer from rejecting us every single time because we are merely a Sales person? You HAVE to have a reason to reach out, so they do not fall back onto the defaulted “just a sales person wanting my time” response.

Which Trigger Events matter?

There are buckets for these Trigger Events to fall under.

1 – Inbound

This is 1st party intent data. Interactions that occur on your content, your website and your landing pages are extremely important to track. So, if you reach out to somebody who has downloaded any of your content, you’d obviously reference this. Here’s the common and most important Trigger Events to mention in your outreach to Inbound leads:

  • Lead downloaded your eBook
  • Lead downloaded your cheat sheet
    • Whitepaper
    • Report
    • Infographic
  • Target account visits your website and fills out a form
  • Lead requests a call from your team for expertise
  • Shares of your content

2 – The Trigger Events You Don’t Have

We’ve written about this before in a lot of detail, but here’s a short rundown of what the Trigger Events you can’t see are:

  • Decision maker changes company (current customer, good connection you have, target account hires new decision maker)
  • Company wins funding
  • Company wins award
  • Decision maker engages with competitor
  • Lead attends industry event
  • Decision maker engages with industry influencer or content on industry buzzword

All of these Trigger Events would be good things to reference when reaching out to a decision maker, but here’s more on how and why.

How To Get Ignored

Forget about booking meetings for a second, if we were just interested in getting replies from outbound prospecting (on whatever medium we conducted our outreach) you would have to leverage a Trigger Event.

Saying you noticed somebody’s LinkedIn profile and thought it would be good to connect and share best practices would leave your buyer confused. Best practices about what? Why would we connect? Why and how did you find my profile? What were you doing and what happens when we connect?

The Trigger Event lays the foundation for the conversation. It cements your validity for reaching out, eliminating the automatic rejection so many sales reps experience simply because they said they “noticed your LinkedIn profile”.

Or simply because they said they “wanted to reach out”.

“Wondered if you had time to discuss…”.

“Wondered if X was a priority right now”.

How To Get Listened To

The Trigger Event is like the thing you have in common with a friend you haven’t seen in a long time. That school you both went to, mutual friend, shared place you both worked at, city you lived in.

The best conversations start when you reference some of these memories, because you can both resonate and remember them.

Starting off the first hour of your catch-up with a High School buddy talking about your boss and the report you worked on last week is one super quick way to bore people. So why would you reach out to a prospect without giving them a reason to switch on and pay any attention.

It’s our job in Sales to engage the buyer. They’re harassed by Sales people all day, every day. Inbox, phone, social, reps are around the corner at every turn. So let’s give prospects a reason to carry on reading or listening.

You’re reaching out because they won an award – I’d open that email. Everyone likes to bask in their glory for a moment or two.

Reaching out because they hired a new decision maker – how kind of you to congratulate us, thanks!

Emailing because they won an award – Thanks! We worked so hard for it.

Calling because they downloaded your eBook – That’s right. I was really looking forward to reading it and I’m halfway through it now.

You’re reaching out because they signed up for your webinar – It was great. I learned a lot about X strategy you mentioned.

Speaking of Trigger Events and learning a lot on webinars, sign up for this webinar with Richard Harris on how top Sales reps leverage them every day!