Businesses are obsessed with all of the different types of cold outreach – cold calling, cold email, cold social outreach, and others. But what do we really want as marketers?

We want warm leads. That’s why we run webinars, produce content and develop detailed marketing funnels. Warm leads always outperform cold leads for one reason: familiarity with your business.

How do you find those warm leads you already know? One of the easiest ways is to track the movement of contacts both inside and outside your customer base.

By targeting these buyers, we got the following outbound marketing statistics:

  • 35-60% open rates
  • 10-30% click rate
  • 3X + meeting rates compared to cold outreach

For example, let’s say your company sells compliance software and one of your largest customers is Starbucks. If you looked back on the last three years, how many people would you find who started at Starbucks in compliance and then left for someone else? And how many of these people are still in compliance in their new company and could shop with you again?

If you have no clue, it’s because you’re not tracking buyer movement inside and outside of your customer organizations. You likely have hundreds, if not thousands, of such people if your company has been in business for over 3 years.

More people are changing jobs than ever before

There is now a higher percentage of job-to-job buyer movement than ever before. Therefore, you need to put in place a systematic plan to find and track buyers who know and love your brand.

In July 2020, more than 5,000 C-Suite executives took on new jobs in companies with more than 1,000 employees, according to our tracking at (We use a combination of custom emails, phone calls, and the LinkedIn contacts program.)

Why are these lines particularly warm?

If you have a sales team doing cold outreach, tracking buyer movement should always be a priority.

Why? Because your sales team will be much more successful when it comes to reaching the warm leads with the right job title and company than when it comes to cold leads with the right job title in the right company.

Here’s what we saw at OutboundView in tracking down and reaching leads for buyer moves:

  • Buyers who have moved in the last year are most likely to hang out with your sales team.
  • For outbound sales campaigns, these buyers are three times more likely to have conversations.
  • These shoppers open emails with twice the rate of cold emails and click emails with three times the rate of cold emails.
  • These buyers are 2-3 times more likely to move into the next phase of your sales process as a cold lead.
  • These leads don’t even have to be familiar with your job to show interest. The fact that you mention your previous employer is enough to start the conversation.

How do you find these clues?

Fortunately, there are systematic ways to track down buyers who have left your existing customers. Unfortunately, most of these methods are manual and require a lot of research.

For example, you can use LinkedIn’s Sales Navigator. Here is an example search that you could use, assuming your customer was Salesforce and your target people were sales managers in companies with more than 200 employees in the US / Canada.

You need to do a similar search for all of your current and past customers.

The tedious part is identifying the people who have recently moved, for example last year. They are warmer and more relevant than the ones your customers left 10 years ago.

The easiest and most sensible way to speed up the research process is to hire an external team, i.e. outside the US. You can easily find research teams overseas who can take on this type of project for $ 8-15 an hour.

Aside from LinkedIn, there are a few other sources you might want to connect with:

  • Your CRM: You want to track down all contacts / leads assigned to your existing customers.
  • Marketing automation: Are you getting put on your marketing automation lists? This is likely because they no longer have the work email they originally provided.
  • User lists: In some companies, end users can be the buyers. If someone deactivates it is a good sign that that person has left the company.

We have been tracking buyers for a recent sales training company. The results are shown below. As you can see, it’s been doing a lot of research, but the company is now targeting 9,200 warm leads.

Once you find these clues, the approach is straightforward: use a combination of emails, phone calls, and LinkedIn contact tactics. OutboundView has developed a detailed step-by-step guide on how you can carry out this process yourself. Contact us if you have any questions about the process.

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Every organization is different, but you will always be looking for the warmest leads possible. Contacts who have worked for your customers and are now at other companies that they could buy from you again always outperform the cold leads.