In my first book "social selling - techniques to influence buyers and changemakers" I explained the need to share content.  Why?

Buyers are looking to you for insight

Because buyers are looking for insight, they are looking to be told something they don't know, they are looking to be entertained.  Now hold that thought for a second. 

In "social selling - techniques to influence buyers and changemakers" I describe that sharing content requires you to use the 4-1-1 technique.

That's four pieces of content about your vertical, or the types of business issues your business is facing.  It's very easy, to find this content and find the time to "flip" it.

One piece of content, about yourself.

One piece of content about your company or products.

Where can I get content to flip?

I use Flipboard app, it's a free app, there are plenty of other content curation apps, I happen to use this one

Where can I find time to flip content?

Now I need to be a little personal and sensitive.  Everyday, you go into a small room and sit down and contemplate, do you understand what I mean?  When you are sitting on the toilet, you have plenty of time to search Flipboard and find a piece of content.  How long do you spend on the toilet, plenty of time to find an article and flip it.  So no more excuses! 

Critical is you explain why you are are sharing it, don't just flip it.  Why?  because your audience (your contacts) are not interested.  Remember, your contact, love you, not your company or your products, don't patronise them.  Tell them why you think it would be interesting to them.

If you think the article is crap or boring, don't post it.  You must be authentic.

This is fine when you are starting out, but, your audience will grow tired of it.

Also don't forget that 1,000s of people may be sharing that Harvard Business report, flipping content is not original, that's why you need to learn how to write your own content. 

Don't forget this is about engagement / conversations

Every Piece of engagement on content is an opportunity to have a conversation, and it's conversations that drive sales.  Flipping content from Flipboard is nice, it will make you front of mind with your clients, but it won't bring you engagement and conversations.

What do buyers want in terms of content?

In a recent survey of business leaders, they said they wanted 

Buyers want you to stop selling

"B2B decision-makers say the biggest shortcomings of thought leadership content are that pieces are overly focused on selling and that they have unoriginal thinking/a lack of new ideas."

In other words, cut the brochures and brochureware, stop saying "buy my product because it's great" 

That's not my opinion saying that, the last thing we need is another opinion, this is the data telling you stop the selling.  I'm not being anti-sales, it's simple psychology. 

Buyers want content that is human

"Some 64% of respondents say they prefer leadership content with a human, less formal tone over content that is even toned and intellectual."

Buyers want content that has an opinion, that is insightful 

"Some 67% of respondents say they prefer thought leadership content that prominently features the POV (point of view) of an identifiable author over content that doesn't identify the author."

"Most B2B decision-makers say they prefer thought leadership content that is provocative, features subject matter experts, utilizes third-party data, and focuses on analyzing current trends."

Things on social move on

There was a time when flipping content was fine, I got 35,000 followers on Twitter, just by sharing other people's content.  It's fine when you are starting out, but at some point you will need to switch and start creating your own content.  The 4-1-1 rule still holds, but your audience will expect more from you.

Let's not forget that your audience wanting more from you is a good thing, well I assume a biggest network, more conversations and more sales is a good thing.

At some point you need to move from flipping to writing your own content.  On our "social selling and influence" course we teach and coach sales teams, in fact people across the whole business, how to flip content and write your own content. 

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.