In our line of work, we meet with industry professionals each week, across sectors, across the globe. We discuss the state of play, the most pressing issues and how we can help.

These organisations might be across diverse sectors, but they share concerns on common topics.

Notwithstanding the concern for their teams and how the future of work looks, the overriding issues are…

  • Cash Flow
  • Order Intake
  • Sales Pipeline
  • Ebitda

We are in the centre of a global economic outlook, the likes of which we have never seen in our lifetime, with predicted long-term damage to potential output and productivity growth that the analysts can’t yet fully map out.

This is not the time to be messing around, this is crucial.  Time to stop ‘organising the deck chairs on the Titanic’ and have some serious conversations.

We know the big issues and we know we must address them.

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We need Order Intake to stabilise Cash Flow - We need Sales Pipeline to feed Order Intake.

How do your team generate leads and build a sales pipeline these days if you haven’t taken your team Strategic with Social?

That is a genuine question...  

…how do you do it? 

We hear it all the time… “we need more people on the phone” – “we prefer to do things the old-fashioned way” – “

Recently, I’ve had conversations with seasoned Sales and BD veterans, people that have done this for a living for 25 years +, people that are qualified and experienced, people that were at the top of their game….and they admit that, although it sounds romantic to cling on the old ways, they categorically do not work.

In a recent conversation with a Chief Revenue Officer, they said

we still can’t travel anywhere near as much as we need to and, we don’t have a clear view on when that will ever return…so we must have another way of meeting and growing relationships with new clients…”.

So, it makes no sense when we hear people putting themselves and their own ego/politics/lack of foresight before the growth and success of a company.

As we start to pack the business cases for 2022, there are a few different types of organisations emerging:

The Analogue Company: 

Not digital, not Social. Stuck on the wrong side of the digital divide.

No share of digital voice in their specialisms.

Reliant on old fashioned outdated methods and techniques to drive business. Cold Calling, paying for adverts and spamming with email marketing campaigns.

Commonly heard saying: “We prefer to do things the old-fashioned way”, “we are old school”, “we don’t do Social Media much”, “It’s all about our black book…”.

Common issues: Increased costs, Decreased sales pipelines, Order intake down…


The Randomly Social Company:

A few people in the company post occasional material on LinkedIn, some on Facebook and other on Instagram but they don’t know why. They will tell you “its good for visibility” but they have no way of measuring that visibility or how that helps their bottom line.

Not using Social to drive business but, some think they do. Still using old fashioned outdated methods and techniques to drive business.  Still Cold Calling, paying for adverts and spamming with email marketing campaigns.

No share of digital voice in their specialisms.

Commonly heard saying: “We do some bits and pieces on LinkedIn”, “we do a bit more on Social Media these days”, “we have tried social media, but we are not sure it’s working…”.

Common issues: Increased costs, Decreased sales pipelines, Order intake down…


The Tactically Social Company:

Several people posting on Social Media Platforms, no known strategy or structure.

Not using Social to drive business but, the leadership team believe they are Social Selling. 

Still using old fashioned outdated methods and techniques to drive business with occasional inbound.  Still Cold Calling and spamming with email marketing campaigns but paying more attention to Social Media, now running paid ads on LinkedIn.

Some share of digital voice but unable to convert it to revenue.

Commonly heard saying: “We already do Social Selling”, “we are all over Social”, “we decided this year to put much more focus on Social and (insert marketing person’s name) has been doing this”

Common issues: Increased costs, Decreased sales pipelines, Order intake down.

The Socially curious company:

Some of the team are interested and curious about Social Media. There has been discussion about Social at management team meetings.

They are reading blogs and seeing what is happening with other companies in other sectors. there is interesting internal discussion and a healthy curiosity about what this could do.

We find many companies in this space have fallen for the "LinkedIn masterclass" or 30 day

Commonly heard saying: "we can see there is a place for Social Selling in our company, but we just don't know how to get started" - "we brought in a specialist for an afternoon session with the team and nothing changed...".

The Socially Mature Company:

Defined strategy and structure. This team understand that certain behaviours on   Media improve their ebitda.

The team are trained in Social Selling & Influence. 

Optimised profiles, using content strategy to best effect, connecting, and having conversations at scale.

New metrics, new language, new way of working – new gains.

Driving most or all business through Social Media.

Growing their share of digital voice in each of their areas of specialism, its something they measure. They aspire to be digitally dominant in each of their sectors.

Commonly heard saying: “We anticipate all of our deals this year will come from Social”, “We have a defined process which means we are confident in what we do”, “We measure ourselves differently, our language has changed” – “we have never been so in control of our Pipeline…”.

Common issues: Decreased costs, increased sales pipelines, Order intake up…


The Social Organisation:

This team have put Social Media at the heart of their organisation.

The whole organisation is active in their development.

Social is at the centre of how they operate and exist.

All departments use Social, all of them have their own strategy which links to the overall strategy.

They own the digital share of voice in each of their sectors.

They look back and smile when they think about how they used to use Social Media for simply generating leads…

Commonly heard saying: “Social Media changed the world, we saw that we could do the same and went all in” – “we took the share of voice from our larger competitors” -   “we are the leaders in our sectors” "For us, Social Media means a stable platform for growth" - "its not about future proofing, its about now proofing".

 Where would you say your company is on this scale..?

We find that most analogue companies are actually open to transformation. When we show what needs to be done and what will happen, they tend to go with it. 

The tougher challenge comes with Random and Tactical groups - Those that are not Social Selling, but think they are.

Someone in the organisation has convinced the leadership team that “we already do this; we are all over Social Media” the leadership team have accepted this as fact and see it as ‘Marketing’ stuff.

In this case, all the business benefits that come with well organised, Strategic Social Media management are blocked. The opportunity to have the conversation about what it really means is obstructed and clouded.

All we are concerned about is getting you and your team Strategic with Social media, so you see the benefits. This is what you would expect to see if you were “already doing this and all-over Social Media.”:

If you are "all over Social" you will see this....

  • Decreased Marketing costs: Zero-value activity stopped
  • Visibility: Recognition and understanding in the marketplace
  • Owning the ‘Share of Voice’ in your sectors: Turning your volume up and the competition down
  • Trusted advisor status: Becoming the trusted voice in what you do
  • Pipeline, growth & inbound: More conversations, more proposals, more POs…
  • Recruitment opportunities: You need people and you want them to want to work with you.
  • Employee engagement & shared sense of purpose: A new sense of ownership.

If you don’t see this, you are not ‘already doing it’ and are not ‘all

Time to look up and and examine how your company creates demand in a digital buyers world..!

There is another type of company that exists these days, it is the company that understands Social Media is the answer and wants all the benefit but, isn’t prepared to earn it...

The Silver Bullet Company:

This company want all the benefits that Social Selling & Influence brings but have been convinced that there is an easy road – Outsourcing or automation.

They have all the spamming tech and/or have outsourced their effort. They have people running email spam campaigns, people creating content, they even have people managing their accounts.

Commonly heard saying: “We are killing at Social Selling”, “we are all over Social”, “we are fully Social”...

Common issues: Massively increased costs, Decreased sales pipelines, Order intake down

Do you really want your team and your brand to be associated with spamming and bot fatigue?

Being Social is about a human connection, however you slice it. 

  • You take that human connection and you grow it
  • You build on it through influence and you strengthen the connection
  • You communicate and find common ground
  • You build trust
  • You talk and help each other
  • You work with each other

How do you do this with a bot? How do you do this with a spam email campaign? How to you do this with a paid advert? How do you do this when someone else is pretending to be you?

You can’t and you shouldn’t…

The conversation about whether this all works or not is over - dead - in the trash.

The question now is if your organisation has the culture to accept change, the mind to accept alternative perspectives and the hunger to win...


What do you need to do?

Give your people the digital skills they need to be able to network, prospect and close business that originated on Social. 

It’s important that you train them and give them the environment they need to put Social into practice for profit.

Live Social ‘21

Eric Doyle

Crux / DLA Ignite

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