I work with a great team at DLA Ignite, we are across the Globe working with a wide range of industry sectors: Oil and Gas, Telecoms, Energy, Retail, IT, Technology, Hospitality and Professional Services and more. 

We work with Boards, Management teams and individuals to develop Social Media strategies and train teams. This has allowed us to build data and experience over the years. We see repeat patterns of behaviour, activity and outcome, particularly in the areas of Sales and Marketing. 

One of the biggest and most common challenges for organisations (regardless of location or sector) is how they prospect and generate leads and get meetings.

Clearly the Marketing Department has a major role to play in this, but anyone in Marketing in 2020 will know that the entire industry has changed and is in decline.

It might be advertising, email or telemarketing – as the output drops the natural response is to increase the input. The more you do, the more it costs – Therein lies the problem - We revert to what we know.

You have a limited range of response to the problem so you throw more money and time at it, thinking that ‘more’ will turn it around…it wont. If your Marketing / Communication lead is suggesting that you need to spend more on Advertising and run more email campaigns, call ‘halt’ and get everyone into a meeting, it’s time for a rethink.

Some organisations have turned to Martech Stacks, the suite of Marketing Technology Software and Tech Tools designed to plan, execute, and measure Marketing Campaigns. These tools have helped to slow the decline somewhat but, it’s a sticking plaster. The decline is real, clear and evident. Ask your Marketing lead to show the ROI graph on you Martech stack today, can you see a directly link to increased revenue?

The answer is not simply to scrap the Marketing budget, it is to refocus the effort, think and behave differently to come in line with the evolution of the industry. When an organisation strategically employs Social Media, by training the team and developing a formal strategy and plan, the focus shifts to ‘earned’ rather bought or automated connections. This is repeatable and sustainable.

This shift in focus enables the Marketing team to deliver a higher value and longer lasting turn-around against the growing trend of reduced engagement and return on your investment.

It doesn’t matter what you sell: Pumps, Tools, Fuel, PPE, Engineering, Software, Chemicals or Services….a Purchase Order is rarely received without a person making a connection with a person at some point in the process. This connection was a challenge before Covid 19, now even more so.

With Social Maturity everything gets ‘live’. Management teams involved and active. Marketing working hand in hand with Sales and Business Development. Sales Directors creating more of their own leads, enabling the Sales team with a greater number of opportunities and therefore a much greater chance of delivering their numbers.

Right now, there is great pressure on the Sales team to deliver numbers, to convert MQL to SQL and increasing targets, often with prescriptive KPIs pointed at input rather than output. When we can’t see the pipeline, we tend to do what we know and simply do more of it. 

Embracing and enabling Social Media in your organisation, specifically activating Social Selling, give the Sales team all the tools and support they need to take control of their own credibility. Making connections they could never make and having conversations they could never have by other means.

The only way we can do this is by getting them on Social. Your product / service range maybe suited to a range of platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Tik Tok.. Each needs a specific strategy for business but, take another platform and look at the data, LinkedIn:

92% of LinkedIn users actively search for information, advice and recommendations - 1% of users regularly publish content to address this need.

As an example, let’s compare this to how people engage with advertising:

60% of consumers actively distrust adverts

Telesales (cold calling, “that annoying call you block”), has great difficulty in breaking through.  If you are too busy to take a call from someone trying to sell you something, how do you think your clients feel?

If we do take the call, research shows that in 97% of cases, that call will arrive at a time when we aren’t in a position to buy, again think client.

Becoming Socially Mature overcomes all these issues and more.

When we make a connection on Social media we give each other permission to communicate. If managed correctly, that communication grows into a relationship, we begin to trust each other and we have deeper conversations. 

Social Media for business is by definition a social space - a space for connection, giving and receiving assistance and education. For your business its a space to help keep us front of mind with prospects on a platform where they have consciously chosen to opt in. If you connect with someone on Social Media, they have given you permission to ‘know each other’. They have not given permission to be flooded with Corporate Sales messages, they have shown interest in you, you as a person. Make it worth their while.

At DLA Ignite we are the world’s leading Social Media Strategy and Training team; we help you cross the Digital and Social divide with a guide.

Get in touch to talk about Sales and Marketing or any other Social Media for Business topic:  www.linkedin.com/in/ericdoylecrux

Eric Doyle

Crux / DLA Ignite