We all know we need to kick off 2022 and make it a big year.
While many of us have calendar financial years (FY) starting on the 1st January, many other companies will start mid year. Either way, we need to face the realities of the shift to digital and while we can hope that things will go back, I think the majority of us know it will never go back to the ways things were back in 2019.
We know the pendulum will swing back, but it won't swing back all the way.
Regardless we must enable our salesforce to meet this digital customer, some people call it social selling, some call it digital selling, some call it virtual selling, some call it modern selling, some call it remote selling. Either way we know we must do something different.
The output from cold calling and sending spam emails is getting less and less and at some point we need to jump before the response is zero. The other problem with cold calling and spam email is the fact it destroys brand value and makes the company look old and arkaic.
The answer isn't digital hope
This is where sales leaders "hope" that somehow the sales team will figure digital out or put the blame on sales enablement to come up with an answer.
What about a hints and tips session?
As a client just said to me on a call "this is not about hints and tricks, this is about having a robust process, a methodology. Our salespeople have to be part of the conversation and the salespeople need to understand how to engage and what to do when they get engagement on social media."
How very true, we can all give people knowledge, the difficult bit is getting people to turn that into knowledge. Hints and tips sessions do not drive change in habit or change in mindset.
Social selling is a methodology
Any company you talk to about social selling, they should present to you a robust methodology, not how to use social as yet another interrupt platform, but how to meet buyers in their digital world. How to build relationships and how to have conversations, again in the digital world.
After all, it's conversation that drive sales.
2022 start today
We all know that 2022 doesn't start on the 1st January. It starts now. If you want to hit the ground running in 2022, you need to be training your teams over the next 4 months.
So who's social selling?
In case you missed it, the Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch have banned cold calling and have moved all their people to social selling. This isn't some trendy tech company that might have decided to do this on a whim, this is a very conservative financial services company that has made a decision based on data.
But surely cold calling has a better ROI than social selling? Not according to Merrill Lynch.
"They will also be encouraged to contact prospects over LinkedIn, which has a higher hit rate than cold calling"
The CRO (chief revenue officer), Richard Eltham of Namos Solutions, of one of clients posted a comment on LinkedIn about social selling. See here.
“Social selling is not an option now it is the way of the world and you either learn and execute it or fear getting left behind”
Kevin Murray who is the Head of Sales at MacArtney Underwater Technology recently posted about his success with social selling here and wrote an article about the transformation that has happened in sales here.
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