Social Selling – Strategy for Success in the Digital World
Social Selling Training | Digital Sales for the New B2B Sales Reality
In the first decade of the 21st century, B2C companies learned that consumers had taken charge. They demanded less hype and more information. Tellingly, consumers started completing more than 70% of their shopping process before allowing a salesperson to even speak to them.
Today, the sales revolution that began with B2C is changing the way B2B buyers make decisions. After all, B2B buyers are consumers, too. And they are demanding more value and less hype in their B2B purchase relationships.
B2B sales teams now have a stark choice. Learn to reach the modern B2B buyer the way they want to be reached or stick with what you’ve been doing. It’s a choice as basic as success or stagnation.
Understanding the modern B2B decision-maker
A 2017 survey of 5,470 global professionals from LinkedIn paints a vivid portrait of today’s B2B buyer.
- Consider personalized communication critical: 78% of younger Millennials (19-25), 73% of older Millennials (25-35) and 68% of Gen Xers (35-50)
- Open to trying new brands, with a strong preference for using social media to learn more about the brand
- View insight-driven social selling behavior as critical: 59% of younger Millennials, 50% of older Millennials and 42% of Gen Xers
Is it any wonder that in The State of Sales 2017, it was reported that more than 62% of top salespeople “strongly attribute” incorporating social networks to closing more deals? The figure among all salespeople is 42%. Where do you want your sales team to rank?
Other key findings of this report include:
- Salespeople report that the most important factor in closing a deal is trust in the relationship. Here’s a complete breakdown of the importance of closing factors.
- 39% – Trust in our relationship
- 33% – Return on investment
- 13% – Price
- 8% – Strategic counsel
- 7% – Other
- A third (32%) of B2B decision makers respond to a cold call less than ten percent of the time. They are more likely to respond to someone that was introduced through their professional network.
Clearly, to make buying easy for decision-makers and produce top results, sales teams need to employ social selling. And they need to practice digital sales the right way.
The new digital sales dialogue
For organizations to practice digital sales well and move from being just another anonymous vendor to a trusted advisor, the sales dialogue needs to shift from “What can I sell you?” to “How can I help you?”
“What can I sell you?” says:
- I care about your money.
- What else can I sell you?
- Thank you for your business.
“How can I help you?” says:
- I care about you and your business.
- How else can I add value?
- Thank you for helping us do business better.
At first glance, that might seem like an easy change, but the reality is that a strategic shift is necessary to make it work.
Shift to align sales and marketing
Social selling is a highly-specialized branch of digital sales that requires a well-crafted strategy in which sales and marketing align to meet customers at their digital touch points. Most companies aren’t set up that way. Sales and marketing often exist in competing silos. Training helps organizations break through the silos and develop their own unique and successful social selling strategy. Successful social selling training requires full cooperation between:
The end goal will always be a seamless buying experience for your customers. The beginning is our proprietary Social Selling Framework.