When you have a lot on your plate, getting distracted is fairly easy. It happens all the time, really.

There are so many platforms trying to capture our attention. Facebook, Instagram, Netflix, you name it. Sometimes I even catch myself scrolling automatically without paying an ounce of attention. At times, it’s like I’m unable to get out of the social media vortex. It just keeps pulling me in.

Don’t get me wrong. Social media, and media in general, can be extremely useful and convenient. Especially in the pandemic social distancing times. Though being it hard nowadays, being social is what keeps us sane.  But if not used wisely, it can easily become the beginning of our downfall.

Social media is the neediest of girlfriends. It constantly seeks our attention. And how can one say no to such an attractive lady?! And man, she does have some expert tools in achieving this goal. Hence, the constant scrolling.

But being a part of the social media world equals being absent from the real world. Sometimes that’s just what we need. But in the long run, we know it’s bad for our physical and mental health, don’t we?

I mean, it’s so much easier to get lured into the dark side with all the likes, funny videos, memes and the constant chatting than to go into the light, putting on some workout clothes on, right? You’ll never see the end of the tunnel let alone the light with those jogging shoes on. 

If you are bad at prioritising and putting yourself, your health, and your family first, it’s pretty easy to spiral out. Focus on all the distractions, and forget about the core.

The latter applies to managing a business as well.

Social media is just one aspect. But when you’re focused on growth, as I am, there is always the shiny object syndrome. It’s not a contagious disease, don’t worry, it’s a tendency for someone to chase something new. Sounds fancy, right?

Well, being the fancy guy that I am, I like to chase new ideas, new trends, new tools, new projects, new goals, you name it. And having the super-power of being a growth-focused entrepreneur, the distractions are endless. And more often than not, it’s easier to get excited and motivated by something brand new than to stay focused on what I am currently up to. As you’re probably assuming, it’s called shiny object syndrome because it’s the entrepreneurial equivalent of a small child continually chasing after shiny objects. And as it happens with children, once we get there and see what the object is, we lose interest and start the chase for something shinier.

If I’m being honest, most of the time, I’m guilty as charged. Luckily, when it comes to BizzBee and our services’ maintenance, I have my employees to back me up. And I am proud to say that the apprentices are slowly outshining their master. And that’s not an easy task, believe me.  Being the humble teacher that I am, I am happy seeing them highly motivated and eager to analyse and learn with each and every project. So from time to time, I sit down with them and do an ethical exchange. I tell them about all the shiny new things that I’ve encountered and what I am planning to do with them. They fill me in on all the core tasks and projects. Together, we are maintaining the perfect balance.

That’s why we thought that you’d also like to hear a bit more from our Outbound Growth Specialist – Filip Ilievski. After all, he has all the insights and deals with all kinds of obstacles when it comes to outbound growth. So I prepared a couple of questions that I believe will be of mutual interest. Dim the lights and give a round of applause to him!

Tell us a bit more about yourself.

– Ok, so the first question already seems to be my favourite… It’s hard to speak about yourself, right? But I can say that, as a person, I’m always trying to adapt to a certain situation. I won’t hide the fact that I’m quite competitive, always trying to be a step ahead of others. Whatever I do, I love focusing on the details, and I think that’s what makes the world more than a breathing-in and breathing-out. Many people say that I can be funny, and so I like to believe them.  And for the ‘what you do in your free time’ section, I have to say that I enjoy taking my brain to imaginary places as well as forcing it to solve logical problems. I enjoy gaming and watching sports rather than playing (because it requires running). 🙂 And chilling around, of course. Chilling is my outbound growth specialist cardio.

What does a typical day for an Outbound Growth Specialist look like?

– Well, you have to get up early. That’s not my type of beer, but I really enjoy what I do, so that kinda evens it out.
Talking to complete strangers all day long requires a lot of caffeine, so it’s a must for the start of the day. The next thing I do is wish myself luck and start doing what I do best. After work, I tend to be in a silence mode at least for an hour. Then I cook dinner, relax a bit and go to bed. The weekends are another story, though.

How many campaigns have you handled so far?

– Well, I actually started as a Data Analyst at Bizzbee, and I spent my days building databases at first. But my role grew and transformed into Outbound Growth Specialist. It’s been quite a journey this year and a half at BizzBee. And I must say, I’ve learned a lot. So far, I’ve handled more than 10 campaigns, some of which being still active.

What are the key things you are considering when running an outreach campaign?

– That’s a tough one… A lot of things are in the game, but what I do first is trying to understand the client,  feel their needs and meet their expectations. Then, I go on a quest to catch the perfect target for his product or solution, and after shaking hands and reach an agreement, it’s all down to the execution. That’s the part where I like to experiment a lot. At the end of the day, a different client requires a different focus, a brand new approach. That’s why it’s rather hard for me to give a straight answer to this question.

Can you give us a short overview of the process of running a successful outreach campaign?

– As I said in the previous question, understanding the client’s needs and expectations is crucial. Then comes the deciding about the best target group, the research on the prospects you’re talking to and finally,  writing your best possible message and hope they’ll engage in a conversation. Besides that, I think that active communication with your client is essential. Getting all the information about their service and about the industry they’re working in. And last but not least, the help you get from your colleagues is always precious and welcome.

Filip Ilievski - Outbound Growth Specialist at BizzBee Solutions

What’s the most important part of an outreach campaign?

– Communication is the key. Communication is always the key. You can’t hide the problems nor you can hide the solutions. If you don’t present your client’s knowledge and experience the right way, then you must pray hard and pray that prayers work.

Tell us a story when you found something unexpected while running a campaign.

– I’m not sure what is the right answer here. I don’t tend to expect that things will always happen in a certain way. But I had a situation where a technically ‘lost’ lead wrote back to me after a couple of months and wanted a call. That’s the one thing you never expect will happen.

Tell us a story of an outreach campaign that made you proud.

Great question! I love going down the happy memory lane.  I had a client with whom nothing seemed to work in the first month. The acceptance rate hit rock- bottom, so I decided to change a couple of words in the headline. The acceptance rate went up to 40%. The business started blooming. I had 12 meetings scheduled in the second month. My oh my, how a few words had the tables turned.

What advice would you give to companies that are trying to figure out their outreach?

Be patient, success doesn’t happen overnight. Rome was not built in a day, nor was the COVID vaccine.

What are the most common misunderstandings and mistakes with outreach campaigns?

Managing the client’s expectations, and outreach expectations in general, is the hardest part. They often want magnificent results with no effort from their side. You have to engage the client in the process as well. Prepare yourself mentally for the challenge, and the rest is pretty much based on your experience.

Is there anything that you would like to add?

Not much. I’m happy that I shared my experience as an Outbound Growth Specialist with you once more. I do hope it was insightful to the readers. Thank you for giving me this opportunity.

The pleasure was really mine, as always. And I forgot to tell you, but you’ve probably seen for yourselves that having Filip on the team as an Outbound Growth Specialist is a blast to every single one of us.

It’s a pleasure to hear and see that BizzBee’s processes are running smoothly and that relationships are always in our focus.

I want Filip to have the last word when it comes to outreach.

But I wanted to share one more thought with you.

Keep prioritising. You know what’s best for you. But never forget your core activities, and always take some time for yourself. And remember, you can’t do it all yourself businesswise, so choose some quality people and have some trust in them. You won’t be disappointed. You’ll have more time to spend doing the things you enjoy. And those are the times you never regret. Whether it’s spending time with your family or simply taking the dog for a walk and catching some fresh air. Or having a beer. Cheers!

In case you missed: A Day with Senior ICP Researcher