A Twilio study of 2,569 companies published this summer found that, on average, COVID-19 accelerated their digital communication strategy by six years.
An article by McKinsey shared data that showed that in three months of 2020, US ecommerce penetration grew as much as it had in the past ten years.
In Microsoft’s Q3 2020 earnings call, CEO Satya Nadella said, “We have seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months.”
Here in the UK, The Arcadia Group, which is a retail group has gone into administration, putting 13,000 jobs at risk. For people in the UK this will come as no surprise, The Arcadia Group is an analogue business run by an analogue management team. They are not the only business that are run in an analogue way, who are hoping that they get through the next few weeks.
Digital Disruption In the Past
In the past we were told that digital disruption would come from start-ups or large, adjacent competitors that might someday threaten our business. Look at Fintech, this was going to and has disrupted Financial Services. Even before Covid, Fintech was disrupting banking.
The Covid hit.
This year has taught us how disruption can come at us quickly. It’s not just risk, disruption can happen instantaneously. The global pandemic shut down critical elements of marketing and sales, such as retail channels and in-person events, in a matter of days. Regardless how fast any vaccine is rolled out it is going to take a brave person to hold a conference, in case they become a super spreader event.
(We have a Sales Kickoff (SKO) proposition with our online training partner, Intrepid, which can offer $$$ savings from having an in person event. In many ways, it can offer a "better" experience)
Digital Disruption In the Current
According to this research from Twilio "COVID-19 accelerated companies’ digital communications strategy by an average of 6 years while 97% of enterprise decision makers believe the pandemic sped up their company’s digital transformation."
The report also states "95% of all companies are seeking new ways of engaging customers as a result of COVID-19.
92% say transforming digital communications is extremely or very critical to address current business challenges."
If you ask any business what digital transformation means and it means taking analogue culture and processes and putting them on digital.
B2B Buyers Hate The Tactics From Sellers and Marketers
In this report by TrustRadius
"When asked what their marketing pet peeves were, buyers’ number one and two responses were marketing emails and sales cold calls. While this isn’t exactly surprising (who loves cold calls?), it highlights the growing disconnect between tech marketers and their buyers."
"Digging deeper, we asked buyers how likely they would be to respond to these tactics. Unsurprisingly, over 90% of buyers say they are “not likely at all” to respond to non-personalized messages and cold calls."
This is pretty damning indictment on current sales and marketing
95% of people ignore emails
93 % of people ignore cold calls
90% of people ignore chatbots
81% of people ignore targeted ads
57% of people ignore notices about online events
A summary of where are so far is that the vast majority of people that are buying today are Millennials, they are searching online and "everybody" ignores current marketing tactics.
Covid19 Has Changed The Buyer Process
"The pandemic has changed how much time buyers devote to different parts of the buying journey. We found that:
33% of buyers spend more time researching products now than before the pandemic.
35% of buyers spend more time clearly defining ROI than they did before the pandemic.
25% of buyers spend less time talking with vendor representatives than they did before the pandemic."
Selling The Way People Buy
From this research, it is clear that people are not selling or marketing the way people buy. In fact it would seem that things are polar opposite.
It would also seem that we have many, many, unconscious sellers and marketers who are doing the "same old thing". Why? Probably because they don't know any different.
What Do You Need To Do
From this research, your business needs to make a change as the cold calling, the advertising and the email marketing isn't working.
The Businesses That Are Winning Have Switched to Social Media
Even before the pandemic there was a switch to working online, but Covid19 has accelerated that.
Worldwide social media users: 4.14 billion - 53% of the world's population use social media in other words, more people use social media than don't use it.
Simon says that two thirds of the working population in the world is now active on social media.
You Need a Strategic Approach to Social
Everything you do on social, needs a strategic approach and needs a methodology.
Your profile(s), are a shop window to the world. Your Linkedin profile needs to work hard for you.
You need to be connected to the people and accounts you want to influence.
You need to be able to create content that is relevant and resonants with your clients.
But Tim We Need Results Quick
I totally get that you need results quick and anybody that says "social selling takes a long time" does not know what they are talking about.
So what do I mean by a "strategic" approach to social and what do I mean by a "methodology"?
Selling on Social Case Study
This usually shocks people.
How can a post about Eric's 16 year old son get 18,000 views and 165 likes?
But better still, how can a post like this get 6 - C-Level meetings?
Because, all of Eric's post are strategic. He knows exactly why he is posting it and knows how to monetise it.
A Quick Look at Our Content Pyramid
Based on our research, we have created this pyramid of content. Advertising is of course at the bottom, with humanised content at the top.
How As a Sales Person Do I get 6 C-Level Meetings From Post a Piece Of Content?
1. First you need a great profile. Think about the needs of your audience and work back from there. Your prospects and clients do not need the world's best salesperson they need somebody to help them. Your Linkedin profile is your shop window and should show case you 24 hours a day. The days that Linkedin was a CV have long gone.
2. You need a network (not contacts). The average person on Linkedin has 903 contacts and they will be x colleagues and recruitment consultants. You need to be connected to the people you want to influence. Your prospects, your target accounts, your customers, the people influential in your markets. Remember that in B2B the trick is to be memorable.
3. Finally you need content. When somebody comes to your Linkedin profile, you need content to show people what you stand for. That does not mean you need humanised content all the time. You need to have content that educates that provides insight, tell me something I don't know!
That said, humanised content will get you the most engagement and it is that engagement that having a methodology will enable you to monetize that engagement.
This is how Eric got 6 x C-Level meetings from that post ..... that only took him 10 minutes to create.
Everytime we run this program, we get 30% increase in revenue and a 40% reduction in the sales cycle.
There are also some softer benefits, you and your team get a new life skill and as a leader you are providing the business with a digital legacy. Supporting the transformation to digital for the business.
Where Do We Go From Here?
Just give me, or one of the DLA Ignite team and hour of your time and we can walk you through what we are doing for other companies. No hard sell, just take you through what other companies are doing to transform.
For the last twenty years, companies have been gradually transforming themselves with digital technologies to adapt to new realities of the Internet and mobile. You’ll often hear brands discussing their "digital transformation" initiative. Digital transformation roadmaps could be anywhere from a year to ten years. Then COVID-19 hit.