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The Sales Review

Learn about emerging best practices, strategies and insights on B2B sales today dedicated for the modern sales organization.

It’s About 3-4 Great Digital Sales Plays, Not “Social for Social's Sake ”

Posted by Jamie Shanks on Feb 14, 2018 9:00:00 AM

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“What about if we learn more about Tweeting?”

“I see other social selling training companies talking about Facebook and Snapchat?”

Welcome to the social selling charlatan trap! Don’t get caught in FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), and make sure your sellers are social media proficient. That does absolutely nothing to highly influence your sales objectives. All that you’ve done is turn your sellers into branding machines.

World-class enablement leaders and marketers realize that social/digital platforms & tools are only mediums for accelerating/contextualizing sales conversations.

These same great leaders are basically roadmappers, who connect the dots between sales objectives and the most efficient digital activities to yield results against those sales objectives.

You sell HCM software to VPs of HR… so let’s show the sales team Twitter hashtags? Are you daft? You sell cloud migration to $100M IT Infrastructure teams… so let’s master Snapchat? You might actually reduce sales quota attainment with that distraction!

Here’s what a great digital seller is: Someone who maps 3-4 GREAT digital sales plays to COMPLEMENT their existing sales cadence/motion/sequence to impact their sales objectives.

Let’s actually map a real example. You’re an account-based seller, expected to manage 30 named accounts at any time, within your territory – Ohio, USA. You have the autonomy to select which accounts you focus on within your territory. Your buyer's industry is Information Technology, and your company has great success with >$50,000,000 manufacturing and freight & logistics companies.

Sales Objective: You need to deliver 1x new sales qualified opportunity into the pipeline each week, to align to sales quota attainment.

Digital Activity Play #1 – Find new accounts within the “Sphere of Influence” of existing customers

Your company has great success with the above verticals. You have strong case studies and relationships to leverage.

Within this play, begin using LinkedIn to reverse-engineer the social networks of every IT manager, director, VP and C-level within your customer base. What IT leaders in Ohio do they know? Who can introduce you to new accounts? Find 5 accounts each week, as you’ll assume a 20% referral-to-new lead creation conversion.

Also using LinkedIn, how many IT leaders in Ohio (specifically past employees of your customer base) have moved onto other manufacturing accounts in Ohio that you can approach. Use the social proximity of your past working relationship to strike up a conversation. Also find 5 prospective contacts that you can reach out to each week to talk about their advocacy experience with your company. You assume a 20% advocate conversation-to-new lead creation conversion.

Digital Activity Play #2 – Engage each account in a way that’s Bold & Different from your competition

Your competition is blasting IT leaders with email, and dialing for dollars. You’re going to add value, and humanize yourself.

You make 10 personal videos each week for each of your newly found prospective accounts (see Play #1) using Vidyard GoVideo, and you embed this video into a LinkedIn PointDrive and share upcoming IT networking events in Ohio this summer. You include a link with a free ticket to one of the events in the PointDrive.

Not only can you start segmenting account engagement, you can start mapping IT leaders (outside of who you originally sent the PointDrive too) that were engaged in your information – helping you understand the extended buying committee.

Digital Activity Pay #3 – Push the Ohio IT market off their status quo

Subsequently after an account engages in your digital assets to attend upcoming IT events, you put these accounts on a “DRIP” cadence/motion/sequence of 1x new IT best practice article, webinar, podcast each week (for 4 weeks). You gather these from  a content aggregator like Feed.ly, Scoop.it, or your internal systems like TrapIT or EveryoneSocial.

You become the local IT consultant and trusted advisor. Each weekly digital asset you share with the buyer, you’re complementing these actions with “extending the olive branch” by calling to elaborate on these best practices. You can absolutely top-of-mind for the account when/if a trigger sparks the customer off their status quo.

These are digital sales plays a seller can execute “every deal, every day,” as Jill Rowley says. These digital sales play move the needle! New Call-to-action

Jamie Shanks

Jamie Shanks

About the Author

Jamie Shanks is a world-leading Social Selling expert and author of the book, "Social Selling Mastery - Scaling Up Your Sales And Marketing Machine For The Digital Buyer". A true pioneer in the space of digital sales transformation, Jamie Shanks has trained over 10,000's of sales professionals and leaders all around the world.

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