The Great Big Social Media Party…Or, How I Lost My Way in the Land of Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter

May 9, 2011 at 10:30 am | Posted in Adrian Miller Sales Training, New York Sales Trainer, Sales Training | 4 Comments
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Now, don’t get me wrong. I like social media with the best of them, appreciate it’s power and reach and can certainly see how and why it should play an important and integral role in a organization’s marketing and sales endeavors.

I mean, social media is good, right? It has leveled the playing field for small businesses and helps build visibility and credibility at little or no cost. All that can’t be bad.

But here’s where things begin to go a bit awry.

The small to mid-sized firms that are deploying social media with amazing zeal and enthusiasm are doing so with one major—and ultimate—goal in mind. They want, no need, this new found visibility and credibility to lead to NEW BUSINESS. Nothing else will do.

And this is exactly where I believe that many of them might be sorely disappointed.
You see increased visibility and credibility are awesome but they don’t…close…business. Repeat after me, they don’t close business. People do.

Prospects can get wooed into your sales world but then a carefully deployed process must ensue. What’s required? Well, screening and qualifying, presenting value, probing for wants and needs and ultimately leading that prospect to see you and your business as a solution, an improvement, to their situation. Specific steps that DO lead to that ultimate goal of new business.

Social media doesn’t do any of that. Even social media “conversations.”

Then why is it that so many companies are positively gleeful when jumping into the social media swimming pool? I’ll tell you why. It’s because they believe that social media is going to turn their business around. And it’s going to do it all by itself. And sure it can open the floodgates to new prospects and opportunities but unless there are sales reps that are adept at taking prospects through the buying process and internal processes in place to manage the relationships, well, social media isn’t going to yield the desired long-term results.

So jump in and add social media to your marketing mix. But don’t forget about sales processes, follow-up and follow-through and good old-fashioned customer service to turn the fun and games into revenue.

4 Comments »

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  1. Even smart businesspeople forget, when caught up in the frenzy of new platforms for opportunity, that there’s no universal panacea for developing new business. Not only do you have to work at it, you have to do it intelligently and strategically. One aspect of that is coming at it from all angles. As you point out, Adrian, it’s not enough to reel them in with social media; you also need to net the fish and land them in the boat, and it’s the sales closer (a/k/a human) who for most businesses does that.

  2. No truer words have ever been expressed. Way to go.

  3. Perfectly articulated Adrian. This is why I continue to do what I do, and why I am a “people person & talent connector”. Social media can never replace the personal touch and the essential client-customer connection. Detailed customized assessments of clients’ needs and how any prospective vendor can meet them, yields results through personal connections, conversations, and trust that is built through time and quality service. In my industry no resume data-base can determine the intangible qualities that make the end result work. Knowledge of customers and industries is still required to yield income; social media is merely another link to the prospect pipeline. Doing the work, and joy in that work, remains the key.

  4. You’re right Adrian, social media is just a tool, like the telephone. If you don’t know how to use it to generate a lead, and most importantly, close a lead, then it will be a giant waste of time. You should start a service called “social media sales training”.


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