In a world obsessed with algorithms and data-driven, we have become accustomed to expecting personal experiences tailored to our needs. This is what companies such as Netflix and Ober told us to give us what we want and when we want, often from the first attempt.
These “do as you like” experiences have changed the way the business world looks at sales. Buyers have been in the field of cooperation between two companies that are increasingly expecting the same personal treatment they receive while shopping in Amazon. They want to be told about special offers in a timely manner, not when it is appropriate for the salesperson. They are either impatient or impatient with public sales and bad timing.
In the meantime, sales professionals and companies are responding to strategies and techniques that allow them to offer personal experiences on a large scale. The best sellers are those who integrate the information they get from the social networking platforms with the latest sales techniques to deliver a warm, not cold, message that targets the target from the start. In other words, they use social selling.
Here we review the areas in which the best sales staff identify themselves:
Social platforms provide rich demographic information that is used by the most discerning sales professionals to divide “potential buyers” into “ready-to-buy” segments, thus benefiting from a dream that sales professionals have had in the past. These include work changes (people who move to a new job are more daring to move). And publications in social networking sites (indicative of questions of concern). And employment patterns (an indicator of investment). These indicators help sales professionals know when it is time to communicate. Sales professionals can also use the features of social networking sites such as sales robots and advanced filtering tools to further facilitate the process of identifying good leads.
A recent study found that 80% of buyers do not see the sales staff they deal with living their business. This is exactly what the salesperson confirms when he begins with a familiar opening question like “Can I ask you some questions?” As the best sales staff starts by saying: “I noticed you were thinking about …”, how did they know that? They followed trends in social networking sites in preparation for a direct meeting with the client long before the meeting. Part of knowing the correct questions to be understood depends on who is on the procurement committee, which is particularly challenging given that an average of 6.8 people is involved in purchasing decisions. Since buyers can not afford to ask vague questions, sales professionals who succeed in their endeavors will be those who can quickly get into the heart of the matter with every decision maker they deal with.
23% of trades fail because of failure of sales officials to make buyers interact throughout the sale. If sales professionals do not show their ability to provide a constant customer benefit, buyers will not feel compelled to keep in touch with them. On the other hand, when you create links with the customer through mutual and reliable knowledge, the buyer will feel committed to interacting for a longer time. Once communication is established, vendors use the best technology to determine the extent to which the information they share with the buyer is compromised. Tools such as email tracking and PointDrive allow sales representatives to search where buyers search, find out what they are looking for and what they ignore, providing them with a loop of calendar views. They can then use that information to design future interactions on the appropriate measurement.
In addition, the use of social sales at the level of a single sales representative has a strong impact, but its impact becomes great when it is circulated throughout the sales organization. Combining social selling with the right techniques has a measurable impact on the performance of sales professionals. A global survey of sales professionals conducted last year by LinkedIn (where I work) found that 83% of the best social sellers work in companies focused on social sales programs. When social selling is applied, the success rate doubles by 1.2 times and the transaction size increases by 1.3 times. In order for companies to achieve this kind of impact, they can do three things:
Building centers of excellence
Leading sales companies establish “centers of excellence” to identify and oversee the implementation of social sales activation practices. This investment in tools and associated management of change is essential, and 48% of vendors in companies that prioritized this investment announced that its impact was clear.
For example, when Sacramento Kings became a new administration, the club’s sales leadership adopted a social selling style, leading to a shift in trust, especially among the newer sales staff. With the support and conviction of owners, sales leaders and sales representatives themselves, the sales team has achieved a 20% increase in game attendance, a 42% increase in transaction volume and a 3.2% increase in deals reached through social platforms.
Companies measure key indicators such as meetings held through social interaction and time spent in preparing for interactions, as well as overdue indicators of social sales, such as the impact on bookings, winning rates, and average selling prices. This usually requires integration with the customer loyalty system.
Gain executive support
Success requires social leadership to be driven from top to bottom. Where executives must be active on social networking sites and use their knowledge networks to open doors for their teams. If this is not something executives like, they can get help from members of the marketing team who are usually the most socially discerning. Eighty percent of companies support their chief executive officer for this new approach.
This is how it seems to apply: When SAP expanded its ERP work into cloud solutions, it faced a major hurdle to negotiating for a newer and faster sales cycle. The internal sales team was then brought in to strengthen sales leads and help manage supply lines. It did not take time for the team to find a benefit in using social sales for higher and higher targeting. As a result, SABB’s internal sales team has achieved a 40% increase in sales lines, generated $ 4 million in proceeds in the first phase and completed several transactions worth $ 300,000.
As buyers’ demands continue to grow, sales professionals and sales companies have to evolve from their strategies to meet these expectations. Adopting new sales techniques and social sales strategies is essential to creating direct interactions on a large scale, but the strategic and thoughtful implementation is vital to that end. Only then will sales professionals in the field of collaboration between two companies be able to take advantage of the extensive personal experience and realize the extent of the conflict they can achieve.