We talk to businesses everyday that have had revenue and pipeline impacted over the last 12 months.
When you ask these companies what have you done differently over the last year due to the pandemic, they talk about furloughing staff, maybe cutting staff, pivoting, refocusing, cutting product lines, creating new services. These are challenging time and as leaders we have been challenged.
When you ask them, what are you doing differently in sales and marketing you get blank looks.
It's the same old, same old analogue sales and marketing. Maybe they have got a "Linkedin trainer" in to do "hints and tips" or maybe a day "masterclass". But it's the same old adverts, email lists and cold calling. These activities had limited use before the pandemic and with clients shifting online, the results just get worse (see research below).
At a sales kick off recently we heard that a CEO stood up and said to his sales force "we all need to be social selling". He asked the sales team if they know what social selling meant. They did not. The sales team pushed back (quite rightly) and said, so Mr. CEO what does social selling mean? He didn't know either.
Then somebody put up their hand and said they know us and now we are in touch with them.
Being digital in sales is not difficult, especially when there is help at hand. If you are looking for support to get digital, read on. If you are looking for digital strategies to help you create pipeline and support your KPIs, then read on.
B2B Buyers Hate The Tactics From Sellers and Marketers
Why analogue sales and marketing methods are no longer fit for purpose.
"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
In fact all of the research that comes out during lock down and during the pandemic say the same.
How To Crush Your Target In The Digital World
People hate being sold to, so what is a salesperson to do? We have targets? and in the current climate there is less business around.
Spend some time doing this, you will reap the rewards, guaranteed.
1. First you need a great Linkedin 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.
Don't forget, people don't like being sold to, so this isn't about your company or your products, that pushes people away.
Check out these examples
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.
There are many reasons for this, but one is that 1 to 1 relationships, phone calls for example, don't scale.
Let me get mathematical for a second
What do I mean? If I phone you, then I spend twenty minutes getting my message across. I have some 20,000 contacts on Linkedin, I will spend 20 minutes creating this blog and 20,000 people can see it. There is also the possibility that 20,000 (my network) and 903 (my networks network) so 20,000 x 903 = 20 million people could see this blog. That's a more efficient and effective way of spending your time. That's what I mean by scale.
3. Finally you need content. When somebody comes to your Linkedin profile, you need content to show people what you stand for. Please don't share boring corporate content, nobody is interested. Also let's not forget that "people buy people" so why not share humanised content about yourself, here is an example.
How Do I Create Content As A Salesperson, To Get C-Level Meetings?
He knows why he is posting something, better still he has the DLA Ignite social selling methodology behind it that enables him to strategically get meetings off the back of it.
Next time you see people post on Linkedin, (your marketing department, your sales VP, your colleagues) ask them how many C-Level meetings they get off the back of it?
There you have it, how to get so many C-Level meetings your biggest issue is how are you going to fit them all in.
Just think about if you scaled this across your sales team, the difference that would make across your pipeline?
For Many Sales People This Means Change and Change is Scary
For many people this means change and nobody likes change. It's comfortable doing what we have always done. We understand that and we know when we get up in the morning, what we are going to do.
Steve Jobs used to wear the same outfit every day, because it was one less thing to think about.
But not understanding social media is fine, in fact you are the same as everybody else. Also not understanding the business opportunity and not understanding what you need to do is also totally understandable and similar to everybody else in business.
Breaking The Barriers to Change and Crushing Your Number
But being scared of the unknown is your barrier to change.
This venn diagram often does the rounds on social media and it is very true. Our fears are the thing that often holds us back.
How many times in life have you thought "if only I had done x".
You Are Not Alone
All companies are going through this right now, it's scary times, CEO after CEO are saying to us right now "I know that we need to change, but I don't know what to, or how we do it". I totally get that, CEOs are also saying to us "we came into this Pandemic analogue and we have to come out digital".
We Are Here To Work With You
First thing that surprises most people is that we have been doing this for 4 years. There's been no pivot, we haven't just started doing this. This helps you, not just the fact that we have "been there and done it" but we have data to back up our methodology.
Let's not forget, this is how we sell as a business. We have never spent one single $ on advertising, email marketing or cold calling. You don't need to and still you can crush your number.
Which comes to our methodology, (similar to Steve Jobs clothing) that takes the thinking out of being social. You do "this", you do "this" and you will get results.
Nothing to be scared about. We also run coaching one to ones during the program, which means that everybody learns at their own pace. Learning in a safe environment, with people that have done this many times.
Think of it as us working with you.
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.
Last month, I had the opportunity to share thoughts on a webinar about how digital strategies contribute to organizational objectives with Michael Spinosa, President of Unleashed Technologies. As a fractional CMO, this subject is vitally important to me and my clients and should be to most companies, especially in the B2B space. There are plenty of good reasons for KPIs but in my opinion, the best reason is to align the behavior of individuals and teams to the company objectives. Properly structured, KPIs remove the ambiguity about who is responsible for what and when. They also contribute to an alignment between departments because they encourage synergy and mutual support – and this alignment is particularly important between the sales and marketing organization.