How To Find Business Prospects: 12 Automated Tools

Learning how to find business prospects by leveraging automation helps you maintain healthy sales pipelines. Here are the 12 tools we recommend.

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Businesses need lead-generation strategies to find leads. Once leads are qualified, sales teams can consider them as prospects. These are the people most likely to convert.

To streamline the sales process, you want to qualify leads immediately. Instead of focusing on finding leads, your sales team is already trying to identify business prospects.

In this guide, we’ll show you the most effective strategies to help you find these prospects, the tools you need, and best practices to consider. But first, we need to learn the following:

  • Business Prospects vs Lead Opportunities
  • Best Tools for Finding Business Prospects
  • Best Practices to Follow

Business Prospect vs Lead Opportunities

If we want to find business prospects, we must define them clearly. However, most would use “lead” and “prospect” interchangeably. Here are some of the clear distinctions between the two:

What is a Business Prospect?

Business prospects are identified after conducting prospecting campaigns. This campaign aims to identify leads with buying intent through qualification strategies.

Qualification determines whether a lead can afford your product, can make a purchasing decision, or needs your solution to solve a pressing pain point.

We can use inbound sales strategies to find business prospects early. Leads that fit the criteria are tagged as prospects.

What is a Lead Opportunity?

Leads are opportunities for conversions. We get them en-masse through lead generation. Many businesses buy leads online to fill their pipelines. The issue with this is a lack of qualification.

To compensate, we use cold email outreach and other outbound sales strategies to gauge buying intent or interest in our products.

When leads don’t respond, we run follow-up campaigns. If leads are interested, we start nurturing. The goal of these nurturing campaigns is to convert leads into prospects.

Simple Strategy To Help You Find Business Prospects

Finding business prospects is all about finding the people who need your product, are able to make a purchasing decision—and identifying where these people can be found. Here’s a step-by-step strategy you can use:

Create an ICP/Buyer Persona

Your ideal customer profile and buyer personas can help you hone in on the people you want to contact. An ICP covers the firmographic aspect of qualification. This includes company size, revenue, or sales processes. A buyer persona is someone within those companies to whom you want to send a cold email.

Pre-Qualify Prospects

You can get tons of business prospects, but if they’re not qualified, they can merely show intent but can’t really make a purchasing decision. You can streamline the pre-qualification process using strategies like BANT or MEDDIC.

Use the Right Tools to Find Business Prospects

Once you’ve created your ICP/buyer persona, the next thing to do is to find your prospects. We need to use the right tools to save countless hours of prospecting.

These tools can help us automate the first two processes and help us find business prospects in bulk. There are several tools in the market we can use.

But as a rule of thumb, we want a prospecting tool with a large database, verified prospect information, and the capability to scale.

Best Tools To Find Business Prospects

Manual prospecting is always an option. You get to learn more about prospects and build hyper-personalized outreach campaigns. But going manual doesn’t allow you to scale.

With the right tools, you don’t have to worry about compromising quality over quantity. Here are the prospecting tools we recommend going into 2024:

Instantly B2B Lead Finder

how to find business prospects

Turn your lead generation into high-value prospecting campaigns with Instantly B2B Finder!

Advanced search filters allow you to zero in on qualified prospects that fit your ideal customer profile. If you’re still figuring out what your ICP is, users can search with Keywords instead.

For example, if you want to find C-Level SaaS decision makers, you can type that into the Keyword search bar. You can also find prospects similar to your clients with the Lookalikes tool.

All prospects you find are verified. You don’t need to run third-party validation tools. And you can immediately use your new prospect list in a cold outreach campaign.

Instantly currently has over 160 million leads in the database. Millions more are expected to be added soon. Try it out for free today!

SalesIntel

sales intel homepage

SalesIntel assures that your prospect list is verified personally by their team. So instead of relying on automation, they have human verification systems in place.

They have a solid technographic and firmographic database to help you local your ideal customers. Their account intelligence signals users when companies are in the market for a new solution.

With SalesIntel, you can filter by company size, revenue generated, employee size, location, funding, and more. Plus, you can secure email and phone numbers for your outreach campaigns.

LeadIQ

LeadIQ homepage

Prospecting is all about communicating with qualified leads. LeadIQ helps you do just that. Users can track buying signals, help personalize outreach, and enrich their current lists.

With their free plan, you get 20 verified weekly emails and 10 mobile numbers monthly. For $39/mo., LeadIQ provides users with 500 verified work emails and 30 monthly mobile numbers.

And, if you’re transferring from ZoomInfo, they’d even give you three months for free. The tool also has an intuitive UI. New users who haven’t tried prospecting tools won’t get overwhelmed.

All users need to do is install LeadIQ as a browser extension and open up Sales Navigator. It can validate prospects on the spot and send your collected data to a sequence immediately.

ZoomInfo

zoominfo homepage

Collecting data is hard, especially with GDPR and other privacy laws. But ZoomInfo is one of the best for compliant first-party business data.

The general consensus is ZoomInfo works great the bigger your target companies are. For example, those in enterprise or medium markets can make the most out of the tool.

If you’re starting out with prospecting, a small start-up, or just learning about cold outreach, there are better tools you can try out at a fraction of the cost.

But if you want access to prospect email and mobile numbers, ZoomInfo is arguably one of the best tools out there. You just need to make sure that the price you pay makes sense for the revenue you can generate.

Seamless.ai

seamless.ai homepage

Seamless is one of the most economical options to try if you want to scrape prospect data. Like ZoomInfo, Seamless can provide email and phone numbers for much lower costs.

Thanks to their sales intelligence, users get up-to-date with their prospects’ job changes. SDRs can use this information to make more personalized cold emails to build relationships faster.

Their tools have built-in AI writers, buyer-intent signals, and data enrichment features. In terms of data quality, Seamless offers real-time data verification. But, running their lists through third-party verification tools is still recommended.

Lusha

lusha homepage

Lusha can be a cheaper alternative to ZoomInfo. But it's one of those cases of “you get what you pay for.” It’s great as a supplement for other prospecting tools.

However, using it as your main data source might be lackluster for some users. This depends on your industry. Some numbers or email information is just hard to find.

Another issue with using Lusha as your main data source for prospecting is the lack of CRM integrations. You need to pay custom pricing for their “Scale” plan.

Pricing for Lusha starts at $29/monthly, billed annually, and includes 480 credits for email, landline, and mobile phone numbers.

Kaspr

Kaspr is getting a lot of buzz within sales communities, and rightfully so. It focuses mostly on LinkedIn contacts and can scrape prospect data automatically with a Chrome extension.

The tool is as simple as it gets. But the most impressive part is that it provides users unlimited B2B email credit—even with their free plan.

You still need an outreach tool if you want to start an email campaign. Kaspr can be integrated with Salesforce, Hubspot, Pipedrive, Lemlist, Sendinblue, Aircall, and Ringover.

You won't have this issue if you’re using a tool like Instantly B2B Finder. After creating your prospect list, you can immediately run cold email campaigns. No need to switch between apps.

Winmo

winmo homepage

Ready to Winmo sales? Puns aside, Winmo is one of the most intuitive prospecting tools if you’re targeting marketing agencies, companies, or brands.

Users also get insights on company updates thanks to Winmo’s newsfeeds and can give alerts and recommendations. It can basically map out entire marketing landscape for you.

They have a robust database of top-level managers and executives that you can export or send directly into CRMs like Salesforce.

The only downside is a lack of variety in their database. It won’t be the best solution for finding leads in industries like SaaS or decision-makers in B2B.

As a rule of thumb, always validate your list to ensure high email deliverability rates.

FindThatLead

find that lead homepage

FindThatLead is a great option if you want to fill your prospect pipelines and send outreach emails. You can look for prospects by name, company, and domain.

Like many of the tools listed, FindThatLead also has a browser extension that scrapes prospect information from LinkedIn.

Once a prospect list is ready, you can start nurturing prospects with their cold emailing tool. Unfortunately, this is capped at 400 daily emails and 2 sending accounts for their Starter Plan ($49/mo.)

Instantly.ai can send 5000 emails with unlimited sending accounts. Most importantly, Instantly users get unlimited warmups to ensure emails reach the primary inbox.

D7 Lead Finder

D7 lead finder homepage

D7 Lead Finder has a versatile database if you want to find business prospects in specific industries. You can use it to find decision-makers from local businesses or brick-and-mortar.

But before running any outreach campaign, make sure to clean your list. Tools like Neverbounce are a good option for email validation.

It's still a good option for finding emails for small to medium businesses like home service, contracting, or real estate firms. However, users have said their data might be outdated.

Pricing starts at $38.99 per month. Their Starter plan gives you 10 daily searches (lists of businesses within certain niches or industries) and 3500 daily leads.

Hunter.io

hunter.io homepage

Hunter has always been great—if you know your ideal customer profile. You can use several tools to find emails from employees of larger companies.

Let’s say you’re looking for employees at a Tim Horton’s. You can simply type in the domain (timhortons.com), and Hunter will list potential prospects using that email domain.

There are several filtering options available as well. But we recommend filtering against “personal” email types and “position.” This way, you get to see who the decision-makers are.

You can use LinkedIn for a reverse search if you can’t find your ICPs through their bulk finder tools. Using the Tim Horton’s example, we can look up the company on LinkedIn and go to the People tab. Next, we find our prospects’ first and last names and filter out the desired positions.

Next, we can use Hunter’s email finder tool and input the data using the Tim Horton’s domain. Hunter will show the results; you can verify it with their verifier tool.

Apollo

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Apollo has arguably the largest database for B2B and many other industries. You can even find people selling Apollo leads on Facebook communities, Subreddits, and the occasional LinkedIn message.

Quantity will never be an issue with Apollo if you know your buyer personas or ICPs. You can use advanced search filters, use keywords, and even filter via email validity.

Like most prospecting tools, Apollo uses credits as a currency you can spend to use their tools. To save your credits, you can set your filter only to show verified emails.

Then, you can use Apollo’s email-sending tools to create sequences. If you don’t know where to start, they also provide sales email templates as well.

Key Takeaways

If you want to find business prospects, your sales team needs a dynamic qualification process and the right tools. These tools will help you create a measurable and scalable strategy to land you more meetings with high-buying intent prospects. As a quick recap, here’s a rundown of our recommended strategies:

  • Create an ICP and Buyer Persona to help you identify the right prospects.
  • Use pre-qualification strategies like BANT or MEDDIC.
  • Leverage prospecting tools with verified lead databases and automation features.

When it comes to prospecting and outreach, Instantly has you covered! Find verified prospects today and land more deals with Instantly B2B Lead Finder. Try it out for free.