My partner's 26 year old son stayed with us for a night this weekend.
It's always amazing to hear his view on the world, he's off to work in Portugal. Why? Because he can work there just as much as he can work in London. The weather will probably be better in Portugal. His plan will be to go back to Barcelona in Spain, when the Covid situation gets better. Why do I mention this?
Some of you may know I still use physical music, CDs and I collect vinyl records. When I was in my teens, there was nothing better than to go down to the record shop and buying the latest release with the money I had earned at the pub where I worked.
We talked with my partner's 26 year old and he has never used physical music, not one CD. His 29 year old brother did have CDs, but he does not use them anymore.
This is the speed that digital is changing the world and while it is often deemed (by Baby Boomers I suspect) that digital is about people of a child's age. Here we have people that are nearly 30, who see the world is digital. It's the same for your prospects and customers.
What does "being digital" mean?
The article states...
"Merrill on Monday rolled out a revamped adviser-training program that prohibits participants from cold calling and directs would-be brokers to use internal referrals or LinkedIn messages to land clients instead. The decision comes after the program’s 3,000 trainees were told to stop outbound recruiting efforts to find new customers last year after problematic phone calls."
"The revamped program is intended to bring the firm’s prospecting techniques into the digital era and boost completion rates."
No shit sherlock!
"They will also be encouraged to contact prospects over LinkedIn, which has a higher hit rate than cold calling"
This isn't me saying that social selling has a better response rate, which our research shows, this is Merrill Lynch saying it. Merrill Lynch the multinational sales organization.
Can social selling create value for my clients?
Of course. In our social selling program, we teach you how to have a great social media profile, some call it a personal brand. The important thing is that your social media profiles reflects what your buyers are looking for, somebody that helps them, somebody that reflects the same values.
We also teach you how to create a wide and varied network. Not in a spammy way, where you send sales pitches to people, this isn't social selling, this is cold calling on a social network.
We then teach you how to create your own content. This is how you can create value for your clients.
How do we differentiate ourselves? How do we stop being beaten on price?
As a salesperson you are talking to prospects and clients every day, you therefore know the business issues that are impacting your prospects and clients.
You also know you need to differentiate yourself and you also know you need to sell "value" as at some point the price question will be raised. What do you do?
Write about your clients, write about the business issues they face now and in the future, write about the vertical market challenges they face. This is a great way to show you are different from the other suppliers.
One of my clients was telling me they work in a very crowded market and their team write about the vertical market issues that impact their clients.
If you sell to further education clients, write about their business issues, sell to financial services, write about their business issues, sell to manufacturing, write about their business issues.
Businesses (your prospects and clients) are always looking for good ideas. They won't to learn from people's mistakes, they want to learn from people's successes.
Write about them, share them on social media .... this will pay back in droves as people see you as the "helpful sales people that has got our back" and not the "shark salesperson that will rip us off".
This is the competitive advantage that Merrill Lynch is buying into.
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