In this webinar by Gartner, they talk about a buyer's journey.  In fact the world of digital buying. 

Think about your product or service and what business issues a person will have and therefore what a person will be looking for.

In a recent workshop we ran the client, ahead of the workshop said their business issues were

  • Our sales funnel has been declining and is now empty.
  • Our traditional “analogue” selling is evidentially no longer able to create the opportunity pipe needed to meet our sales targets.
  • We need new logos and organic growth to create success around the sales funnel.
  • We are increasingly engaging too late in the sales cycle and are not able to exert adequate control or influence on the outcome, resulting in poor conversion rates.
  • Doing nothing will not deliver commercial success.

Of course, yours will be different.

People undertake their search on social media now rather than Google

I've written before about how a buyer now uses social media, ahead of Google, see the article here.

It's pretty amazing when most people think the de facto way of searching is Google, when in fact it's social media. 

Buyers undertake their own individual research

When I talk to people about buyers doing research, there seems to be some assumption that this research is undertaken on mass.  Whereas, buyer are involved in their own individual buying journey. 

Think about how a purchase will take place.  There will be a meeting which will decide on the purchase and then people will go back to their desks and undertake the search themsleves.

How many people are in the buying process?

Gartner research states that on average there are 8 to 10 buyers in B2B enterprise.  We are working with a US supply chain software company and they say there are 100 people that can be party to a decision for their product. 

What we need to do as salespeople is have conversations with all these people and build relationships with them.  Of course today, we do this through social. 

Rather than a buying process often it's called their own individual learning journey. 

What are buyers doing?

They are downloading materials, they are reading materials, they are watching videos, they are joining conversations; all on social.  They are asking advice, getting in conversations; again, all on social. 

They are using search terms aligned with their own priorities. 

You don't get five people all gathered around a PC and they all say, let's look for a new system.

Buyers don't see the difference in suppliers, some more Gartner research.

So how do all of these individual buyers reach consensus?

In the past there was a salesperson that "stitched" the buying decision together, well there was probably a short list of salespeople.  Now the buyer is alone on digital.

But this is the great opportunity for salespeople using social selling, to get into a sale early and start controlling things.

How do they do that?  They are active on social.

Sharing insight, being educational, being human and being entertaining. 

Come on it's time to put your salespeople into the digital experience. 

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.

I don't believe you Tim!

If you check out this video of Chris Mason CEO at Oracle reseller Namos, fast forward to 19 minutes 55 seconds. Chris talks about a $2.6 million win from being on social, after completing the DLA Ignite social selling and influence course. 

Here at DLA Ignite we don't do "hints and tips sessions" we don't want you to waste your money. Our social selling and influence methodology will provide your sales team with the stable platform for growth. It is also the only social selling program based on 70:20:10 change management principles which gives your business the mindset change and habit change they need in this digital world.