At my last "corporate role" we had 66 salespeople and it was 7 of them that always made their number in fact over achieved.

We did some research at what was it that they did and more importantly did differently to the sales people that didn't make their number.

I've written before about what we discovered, one such difference was the people that over achieved their number all had a network of 200 people, plus in their accounts.

If we take Eric as an example, (Eric is one of the team here at DLA Ignite).

If he wanted to sell to Sage, it's highly unlikely he will sell to them as he isn't connect to anybody in the account.  Not being connected means that it's highly unlikely that somebody from Sage will see his content and decide that Eric is a person to talk to about the business issues they have.  In other words he is unlikely to get inbound from Sage.

This is the same for any of your sales people, if they are not connected with their target accounts, we can assume there is no relationship ... which would place any forecasted sale at risk.  Well it would in my book. 

Where as, in Wood Group, Eric has nearly 500 connections.  In fact the whole of the Board and the CEO is connected to Eric.  The likelihood people in that account will see Eric's content and engage with it is high.

But Tim, "this takes a lot of time" I hear you say.  It took Eric, 3 days to get this level of contacts within Wood group.  We ran an experiment and see, how long it would take. 

Obviously up to you, if a salespeople forecast a deal from Wood Group, I would be more comfortable in forecasting it. 

We Have Transformed In Work and Play on Social Through The Pandemic

In this report by Simon Kemp he outlines the extent that social media has become part of our lives.

But what does this mean for your sales and marketing? 

Simon Kemp research states

4.57 billion people around the world now use the internet, accounting for close to 60 percent of the world’s total population. 

The internet and Social media isn't a fad and it's not going away, in fact usage is accelerating, and now a tipping point has been reached. 

Fact: Social Media Has Reached a Tipping Point

Simon points out that there are now more people on social media than not on social media.  

What Can You Do as a Salesperson To Start Making a Success Of Social?

First you can buy my first book "Social Selling - Techniques to Influence Buyers and Changemakers" which is available on Amazon worldwide.

You can also do the following things:-

1.  Get a buyer centric profile - This is about your buyers not you.

Buyers are looking for somebody to help them buy, they have business issues which you can solve, so why not demonstrate you can solve them on your profile?  Not in a salesly way, but in a helpful way.

Nobody goes to a second hand car dealer for kicks, we go there because we have to.  Why? Because we all hate being sold to.

It sounds disingenuous, but you will sell more by not selling. 

2. Grow Your Network - Most people on Linkedin are connected to x colleagues and recruiters.  You need to lift your territory online.  Connect to your existing accounts, connect to your prospects, connect to your target accounts, connect to influencers of those accounts.

Now, when I mean connect, this is not about having a "connection" this is about building a network.  Each connection request, is you chance at having a conversations.  Remember, conversations create sales.

But as we said in 1. above, don't sell, don't pitch ..... there will be plenty of time for that, but not now. 

3. Stand out

Did you know there are

20,181,711 - Business Development Managers on LinkedIn?

8,552,815 - Sales Directors on LinkedIn?

9,725,042 - Marketing Directors on LinkedIn?

The number one rule of sales and marketing is to differentiate and what have all of these people done, they all look the same.

Your profile needs look different.

Have a look at mine, my summary title makes me stand out.  I've closed business off the back of it.

Have a look at Eric's, Vanessa's, Lenwood's, Priscilla's, great examples. Buyer centric, they are human, they pull you in, you want to read them, you want to meet them .....

The big issue in sales right now is that nobody wants to talk to salespeople as we know they will start to pitch at us.  What about if you had a sales team that people want to talk to and meet.  Now that would be transformational for your business.

4. Engage

How do you engage? 

We see too many people posting for no apparent reason. A Sales VP will post and all the directs will like the post, but really does that buy a business anything?

We have created a methodology that sits behind our digital selling process. 

What do I mean?

Eric Doyle, you met him above.  He posted a piece of content, it currently has 165 likes and 37 comments and has been viewed 18,292 times.

It's created for him 124 leads.

28 outbound connections.

13 new inbound connections.

6 meetings (1 CEO, 1 COO, 2 MDs, 2 FDs)

1 Proposal

All from 10 minutes of work, all for free!

5. Content

Content proves your credibility, it sets you apart from all the other companies out there.  It means you are NOT just another salesperson.

It means you are not going to pitch to somebody .... we may even, know - like and trust you ...... people buy from people they trust.  

Content is there forever, I still get inbound from blogs I wrote 5 years ago, so start building your eight of expertise today.

If you are interesting in any of the points I raise in this blog, then get in touch or contact any of the DLA Ignite team mentioned above.