We often train and coach organisations with a set of channel partners or companies who are part of a channel themselves.  

(In terms of terminology, sometimes channel is another word for  "third parties" and sometimes this is called "Alliance or reseller partners".  Sometimes you will hear the term selling "direct" and selling indirect". Either way, this blog covers all of those ways of selling.)

A "channel" usually means that there will be a company that will have created some IP (intellectual property) such as software or consulting.  Sometimes these companies will sell direct and sometimes through these channel partners.

Either way the channel have to sell, they cannot rely on the "mothership" to provide them with the leads they need.  Can social selling help?

Why channel sales works!

In my experience channel as always been an excellent way to grow the number of "feet on the street", it increases the number of conversations you can have as a business.  The channel also are often a great place to see innovation and provide agility to your business proposition.  We use a channel here at DLA Ignite.

Your coverage as a business is like the road network.  There are motorways and freeways, interstate highways, there are A roads and the numbered roads, there are the state highways.  The channels allows you to get greater coverage.  You are not just restricted to the "big accounts", as an organisation you can go wide and get maximum coverage.  Which is why, empowering the channel on social must be part of wider coverage plan.  If you just empower your direct sales force on social selling, you are missing a trick and leaving money on the table.

Can social selling help?

Where any business is selling business to business (B2B) or even where business to consumer (B2C) is a considered purchase, a BMW car for example, social selling can help.

Social selling is often seen as lead generator, of which it is, but social selling can also accelerate deals and help you close deals.

Your customers are on social

It's taken as read today that our buyers are on social.  You can get the full story in this free #Digital2021 April Global Statshot Report: https://lnkd.in/gmRByPp - Interesting enough it shows that there are 55.1% of the world's population now on social media and 16.5 new users join every second.  The days of "my customers are not on social" no longer exist.

Even more so, the Covid pandemic has accelerated this and we know that the results from cold calling and emailing keep getting less and less, so now is the time to switch to social selling.

The argument is not longer about does social selling work?  It works.

The argument is about if you and your company are willing for the procedural, the cultural, and the mindset change.  It also comes down to if you are hungry enough to move your thinking and your team into the modern world of digital.

I remember, there was many, many people that said that sending letters had always worked for them and the fact that email would never catch on.  It was a fad.  We would soon be back to sending letters.  And now, business runs on email.  The way we work has changed, so what do you need to drive this forward?  The same with social, if you are not social selling (properly) you are leaving money on the table.

What as a sales leader should you be doing to get started?

I always recommend my first book "social selling - techniques to influence buyers and change makers" which is available worldwide on Amazon.  This is NOT a book about my journey or how to use LinkedIn, it's a practical guide on what you need to know to link social media to revenue and profit. 

This will give you the background you need, then what?

You need a methodology

The mistake people make is that they think that somehow if you get a LinkedIn trainer in or you get somebody in to do "hints and tips" they hope that somehow this will move the needle.  It won't.

This is like changing a sport.  Say you are a swimmer and you decide to be a cyclist.  You don't just go down to a bike shop, buy any bike and get on a start riding it.  This is about transformation, it's about a mindset change and a cultural change.  While, there are many things about cycling you can learn from swimming, the discipline, the nutrition, etc and you can move these skills across.  There are also new skills you will need to learn.

As David Sandler said "you cannot teach a kid to ride a bike at a seminar" and he was right.  You also cannot teach a kid to ride a bike by a couple of hours hints and tips session.  

DLA Ignite will provide you with that methodology, we will also provide you with the strategy, the mindset change the habit change you need.  If you are hungry to move your team(s) into the world of modern selling and provide them with an amazing legacy, then get in touch. 

If this article has been useful and you think it would be helpful to your network or individuals then please share it.  Please also tag in the individuals.  

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