A friend of mine who works for an "B2B enterprise accounting software house" told me that they had just taken a $250,000 order for SaaS software from somebody over the phone.
The conversation, went like this
Customer: "Hi, we would like to place an order for yoru accounting system and wondered how we do this?"
Salesperson: "OK, wouldn't you want a demo first?"
Customer: "No, we have read your online materials and watched the videos on youtube and we formed a short list and then decided on your product, so how do we buy it?"
Now this isn't the best negotiation, I agree, but, this person purchased a $250,000 cloud based accounting system, purley from the content the company had put out.
Based on this Forrester research it should not surprise you, this quote
"62% of B2B buyers said they can now develop selection criteria or finalize a vendor list solely on the basis of digital content." is pretty compelling.
But if I told you this conversation happened 5 years ago, would it surprise you?
Just think what has happened in the last 5 years, just think of what has happened based on the changes that have taken place in the pandemic. With regard to the empowerment of buyers on the internet and social media.
If your not visible on social then you are invisible
So how as a business can you generate leads and meetings in the current climate?
Before we get started, I'm going to share two of Catherine's conclusions.
These are direct quotes, from her article ....
3. Traditional B2B Marketing is Screwed
Forget product centric messages. Forget gated content on social platforms. Stop broadcasting branded messages in the hope that some of it will stick. Our pilot tells us that hardly anyone is listening anymore.
The important point there is not about you, it's about the modern buyer, they are not listening anymore.
4. If you’re doing structured Employee Advocacy today, consider reviewing your scope.
Edicts to share company content without putting your people in the narrative is just another form of broadcast marketing. It is not well received on this platform. Attempting to create a single brand voice is also a mistake.
Creating pipeline in the pandemic
This is Eric, he's one of the team at DLA Ignite here is a post that he put up. We have all seen posts like this, we see them everyday, but people treat social tactically. You post, because you think you have to or somebody tells you you should and walk away. Let's talk about this post.
Eric's post of his 16 year old son, Austin, on his Birthday got 18,000 views and 165 likes, which is great.
But better still, he got 6 - C-Level meetings, two proposal and one purchase order from this post?
Let's stop and think about this for a second.
This post took 10 minutes to create and it got 6 C-Level meetings, two proposal and one purchase order, how come?
Because, all of Eric's post are strategic. He knows exactly why he is posting it and knows how to monetise it. There is no "tool" that is going to revolutionise yoru sales and marketing.
You cannot get 6 C-Level meetings from 10 minutes work from cold calling, emailing, a tool or from advertising. This is the transformation that has taken place with social.
Just one example of why you need to get your employees and sales team on social, just think of the $ impact to your business? Especially if you scaled this across your sales team and your employees?
The pandemic has shifted digital selling from being a “nice-to-have” to a “must-have”.
How can you get 6 C-Level meetings and 1 sales from a post on LinkedIn that took 10 minutes?
How does Eric do this? He builds relationships with prospects and customers and because they have a relationship with a human, not a brand, people are happy to engage. Eric is also able to cut through the myrmid of noise that brands keep putting out. If you are a buyer, where will you spend your time? Reading an advert that says "buy my product because it's great" or look for the insight and educational content that people like Eric is putting out?
“The best advice I can give about social selling is that it’s not about selling. It’s about creating meaningful and engaging content that will resonate with your audience. Approaching social selling with the intent of providing something of value will give much better results than simply pitching your company on social media,”
And finally ...
Late last year McKinsey and Co reported that its corporate clients experienced on average 7 years of digital transformation in the first six months of 2020 as they hustled to adjust to the global economic COVID disruption.
Another way to think of that statistic is that if you didn't start transforming your business in those months you are now 7 years behind your competitors!
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 in the form of case studies, what we are doing for other businesses to transform them to digital. No hard sell, just practical examples.
DLA Ignite is a global business and we understand that a "cookie cutter" approach to digital does not work, we have to take into account local language and cultural sensitivities. Which is why we have built teams across the globe, that can support you by country and industry sector.
62% of B2B buyers said they can now develop selection criteria or finalize a vendor list solely on the basis of digital content.