I thought I would look up what the dictionary definition of an echo chamber was
an environment in which a person encounters only beliefs or opinions that coincide with their own, so that their existing views are reinforced and alternative ideas are not considered.
If we look at social media, Facebook for example, many people over the last ten years have unfriended people or unfollowed people so that their news feed matches their belief systems.
Facebook is different to LinkedIn, as there is a more business focus, rather than the political subject of the day.
Let's look at the average person and company on LinkedIn
The average person on LinkedIn has 930 connections and most of those will be the people you work with, ex colleagues and recruitment consultants.
So when a salesperson has to sell to a company, Johnson and Johnson for example, that network is pretty useless. If you want to influence J&J you need to be connected to the people there and have relationships with them. That's easy, we cover how you do that in our social selling and influence course. That is connecting and having conversations (not spamming) at scale.
Linkedin works on the basis that I like you, you like me and we connect.
Let's be honest here, is your company, really, really doing this?
If you think about marketing's role theirs is one of visibility and lead generation, creating awareness.
They face the same problem, how do I get in front of the people I want to influence?
The problem is that they live in an echo chamber of ex colleagues, recruitment constants, etc
The first place they turn to it paid media, a company will buy their way.
1. You can buy email lists
2. You can but some ads
But none of this buys you influence
The thing about social is it's social, you cannot come to me and say, I want to connect with you and if you connect with me i will pay you $10, or $20 or $50.
I like everybody else will ignore your ads and delete you emails. Even if I looked at your ads and read your emails, you are not connecting with me, or building a relationship with me. You are still in your echo chamber.
I connect with you because I want to.
Think about, when you walk in a room, you know instinctively who you like and who you will avoid. I agree that you may get talking to a person who first of all thought you disliked, and then you think actually this person is OK.
Same on social, you know who you will like and who you want to avoid.
You cannot buy your way out of an echo chamber.
I know for a fact your company is in an echo chamber, I would love you to come and prove me wrong.
And the only way you are to get out of it are by having people that:-
1. Their social media profiles look interesting to the people you are going to network with.
2. The people understand and are trained on how to grow a network. When I say a network, this is different from just contacts.
3. Having people that know how to create authentic content that proves that they are the people that the people you want to influence, like.
It would be wrong of me if I didn't tell you, we can help you with that.
What is social selling?
Here at DLA Ignite, we define social selling as
"Using your presence and behavior on Social Media to build influence,
make connections, grow relationships and trust, which leads to
conversation and commercial interaction."
It's not witchcraft, it's enabling your salespeople to work from home, (or the office) and create conversations with prospects and customers. Conversations on social media and conversations that convert.
The problem with the name "social selling" is that people think that this is selling on social. All these pitches that you get on social are not social selling, they are spam.
The other thing you need to know about social selling is that this isn't about "putting out some videos" or "putting flowers on your profile" or "going viral" this is about revenue, EBITDA, you winning business from the competition and having a competitive advantage.
With anything you do on social there are two questions you need to ask
1. How many leads / meetings / conversations will I get from this post / blog / activity?
2. How much revenue / EBITDA am I getting as a business?
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.
Andrew Ferrier who is the CEO of Display Technology Ltd and in this article it talks about why Display Technology have adopted social selling. His team have also created a social media strategy with help from our partner, Crux.
Their social media mission statement is
“We want to position ourselves as a forward-thinking, knowledgeable team of individuals who are all experts in our own right, therefore, collectively awesome!”
Andrew also says in that post
"Adopting this (social selling) strategy has taken all of us well outside of our comfort zones but the rewards we have seen in a short period of time have created an excitement within the business development team (new term for sales team).
Because of the nature of social media, quite often you can get instant results. Even if that is just a comment left on your post, or a like, or someone taking the time to want to connect with you.
The excitement around the sales team is infectious, it’s no longer a chore to reach out to the market place because the results can be instant and are there, right in front of you."
What sort of results can you expect?
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 work with our partners such as Crux, Little Bird Marketing, Funnel Amplified, Accelery, EDPE Consultants, etc. We are the only social selling and influence company in the world to offer a certificate provided by an independent qualification body (OfQual) and sponsored by the Institute of Sales Professionals (ISP).
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