How to target businesses?


Assume that my company provides services (IT related). I want to offer those services to some companies. Probably those companies already have a provider, but I want to tell them why they need to switch.

So, the question is, how to reach businesses? from small to large. Should I write a letter with my proposal? or an email? In a big company, where do I find a right person to send inquiries to?


asked Feb 17 '12 at 08:43
157 points
  • Why minus two? Consider commenting – User194076 12 years ago
  • You have probably been downvoted because this question is so general. If you are willing to give actual details, you will get much better quality answers. – Susan Jones 12 years ago
  • TELEMARKETING. 1 person makes 200 calls per day or 4,000 calls per month. Pick up the phone and start dialing; you'll figure out as you go which adjustments you'll need to make. – Frenchie 12 years ago

7 Answers


"but I want to tell them why they need to switch."

Why not focus on the ones that already want to switch but don't know how easy it is? This sounds like a reconnaissance challenge. You need to know who's providing what to what and who sucks at it.

So one way is networking ... you get your people to meet these customers and act as a customer - you're a startup looking for IT, can you recommend anyone.

Find out the biggest complaint (I think it's highly likely about response time - 99% of the time they call it's an emergency to them so unless someone answers in three rings, even at 2 am, they don't like it)

Then you approach these customers with an essay, video essay would be best, telling them first hand that IT is kinda worthless when you're not confident you can't reach who you need, when you need and you want to give your customers a 'three ring response' time so good that Zappos would be jealous.

I can personally tell you how critical time is and I'm only a web designer. When I get an email inquiry I literally reply in about 30 seconds and if they comment about that I even apologize, jokingly, that I took so long to reply. Most every time, unless we're just not a fit, that's a new customer.

answered May 19 '12 at 20:52
Randy Zeitman
41 points


Your question is quite interesting. Doing telemarketing or reaching out directly to your target businesses might be taken a little Direct. These campaigns work somehow but most of the serious businesses take it non-seriously and consider it as a spamming tactic. BTW, I will proceed to execute this plan in a more natural-looking way like I've shared below if I were you.

  • Social Engagement: If I have a list of targeted business to whom I want to reach out; I will try to fetch out the information of their top managers who have the authority to take purchase decisions or consider to buy some new product/service. I will note down their social networks (Twitter, FB, LinkedIn); start following them and will try to logically participate in the micro/major discussions that they have started. Put simply; I will try to get myself engaged up to a level where they start knowing me. At that stage; I can ethically introduce my product/services and ask them to have them evaluated in the real-time. If your product is robust and provides an ultimate solution of their business needs; then you are near to convert them becoming your customer.
This strategy is time-taking, for sure but success ratio is maximal. When you have a social relationship and trust built with your targeted businesses; the product/service recommendations are never taken as promotions but something to be considered seriously.
answered May 20 '12 at 07:22
Usman Sarfraz
1,326 points


Sending a letter of proposal is not a bad idea, you can also call them up. You definitely need to give them a budget price and prove to them that you can render quality services by showing them a successful track of what you have done before.

answered Mar 20 '12 at 13:47
Seo Service Melbourne
11 points


Identify your target, if you're confident that all you need to do is get their attention, and you're message is strong. Then, I would recommend fed-ex proposals - (assuming you're alligned costs vs. revenues) for example; send 10 at a time for 10 weeks and figure $1700 more into your start up costs.
But direct target marketing; i.e. Fed-ex delivery will get opened and read 100% of the time!-
Not a long term plan but it'll be good out of the gate.

answered Feb 17 '12 at 09:03
11 points
  • This sounds like a great idea. Any suggestions on "Identify your target"? I mean where to find the exact person, or can I just send to Business name? – User194076 12 years ago
  • @user194076 - LinkedIn can help you identify the person of interest/target. – Pradeep 12 years ago


All businesses are run by people, who need their problems and frustrations to be solved. Identify those issues in your target company, then find the person who is facing that issue. It may be someone on the lower level also, not only on the higher level. If their problem is being solved by the solution you provide they will recommend that solution be implemented.

Craft your pitch (email or snail mail) with the intent to identify their problem (make sure you hit the nail on the head, with your research) and give them a solution that would be suitable for them. Make sure your marketing includes those words that would turn on a light bulb in their head.

answered Mar 20 '12 at 14:10
Gurpal Singh Kalra
1 point


I would compile a list of (a handfull) of businesses that might be interested in your offering. Then, indentify by inquiry, the decission maker in each place. he/she is your target.

answered Feb 19 '12 at 03:11
1 point


The easy part: Define a list of target companies. Find the responsible person.

If you do this, and then start pushing your product, you're probably going to have a low conversion rate - you're doing what everyone else does.

Instead, engage them, ask them about the problems they are facing (in your general arena). Listen to those problems, until you understand them as your own. Only then should you start discussing solutions - by which time, you'll have a much better credibility and higher chance of converting them.

answered Feb 19 '12 at 09:18
Nick Stevens
4,436 points
  • Nick, but I do not understand, if I send them a leeter, it should be a proposal, right? I cannot just send them a letter asking what problems they are facing, etc. – User194076 12 years ago
  • How can you possibly send them a proposal if you don't know a) what their problems are and b) how your product/service solves those problems? – Nick Stevens 12 years ago

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