There are a lot of ways to go out and 'get' a hold of people. There are a lot of ways to try to locate the right person to talk to. A new trend is to use 'name sourcers'. Whether or not this is a successful trend or not, the companies and people that have started working within this niche market seem to be both successful and capable.
According to a sourcers discussion group I have recently joined, they state that what they do entails "The finding of people who hold specific titles (usually) within (usually) specific organizations so that you may offer them your opportunity."
I suppose this logic makes sense. If you know WHO to talk to you can know WHAT needs to be said. Yet, at the same time, how is this any different from cold calling? A good cold call will get you to the WHO you need to talk to and you will already be prepared with WHAT to say. It seems a little backwards to me. Now adays, there are a multitude of companies out there that offer databases with names and contact information. I suppose that name sources are the core information base from this as that is what they do — gather names and contact information. It doesn't seem that those that deem themselves name sourcers do anything beyond the databases, but perhaps I'll gain more knowledge through being on this discussion group.
At this point, however, it seems that generating leads and/or cold calling companies would step through, generally, the same process as these name sourcers.