The modern B2B buyer has changed — what can your organization do about it?
It seems every month a new report is out showing sales teams that use social correctly see better results in terms of client relationships, pipeline gain and revenue growth. We’ve compiled the latest from including Forrester, CEB, CSO Insights and many more into an easy-to-watch videographic. Some highlights:
- 84% of B2B leaders use social in their purchasing decision
- Those who use social see 54% deeper relationships with clients compared to non-social sellers (all other respondents of the study)
- Those who use social see 27% better conversion rates than non-social sellers
Enjoy, and feel free to share.
Original Post “Sales For Life“
So, you have started your social media business, and things are going well. Business is booming, and you have plenty of customers. The trouble is, you have no time to take on anymore and your business runs the risk of becoming stale.
The answer, of course, is to seek out some help, and hiring your first employees is one of the most obvious solutions. But before you do, it’s vital to understand that as soon as you bring on full-time staff, many different problems can arise.
Well, we’re going to explore some of those issues today. And, we’ll take a look at many of the other guidelines to make sure your social business hiring process is up to scratch.
Do you need to hire full-time workers?
First of all, hiring employees is an expensive business. They will need space and systems to work in. You have to pay them, regardless of whether your business is making money in any given period. And, of course, the extra costs of insurance and security can weigh heavily. So, before hiring anyone, ask yourself if you could outsource instead. Doing this means you will only pay for the work you need, and there are no tax or National Insurance issues to contend with. Plus, you could consider using freelance workers as a trial period to see if you genuinely need more workers on board.
Are you prepared for the paperwork?
The second you take on full-time staff, you will find yourself swamped with paperwork. Contracts, sign-offs, training schedules and a lot more besides can all eat into your time. In fact, without proper organization, you might find that managing employees starts to take you away from your clients. And that can be bad news for your business. So, look into HR software, or consider hiring human resources professional to help out as your first recruit. It should take away a lot of the pain you will endure, otherwise.
Are you hiring the right people?
Building a great team relies on having an impressive hiring process. And, again, this can take a lot of time out of your busy schedule. There are solutions, of course. Finding a recruitment agency or agent can help you reduce the amount of time you spend finding the right candidates. However, you will have to ensure that you are taking in the right people that fit with your social business. The right mix of personalities is essential for success. And, taking on people that you can trust to represent your brand just as you would is critical.
One of the biggest issues you will find when hiring great talent is that unless you are appealing to their needs, they will look elsewhere. Retention is vital if you want to keep your business performing consistently. It’s not a great look for your company if your clients have to start again with a new face every month or so. So, work on your business culture and invest in personal development for your staff. Think about giving them a benefits package, too. You might not be able to match your competitor’s wages, but you can provide staff with a better environment.
I hope these ideas help you find the right people at the right time for your social business. All the best!
Let’s take a trip down memory lane and just think about how much “stuff” businesses needed to operate in the past. They required filing cabinets, full of archived folders, documents and contracts. They needed big desktop computers, and mainframes to run their business systems. They needed expensive conference rooms and theatres to entertain clients. And they needed all of the paraphernalia that goes into constructing a modern office.
Then, around fifteen years ago, we were introduced to the idea of “natural capitalism.” This was a concept championed by some of the world’s leading technology companies. The idea was to have a capitalist system that could operate sustainably and protect the environment. Companies began work, looking for ways to reduce the physical footprint of businesses. Trailblazers wanted to find the means to deliver products that customers wanted. But they wanted to do so without the usual business resource overhead.
Of course, if they had succeeded there and then, then they would have made killer profits too to sweeten the deal. But dematerializing business is a tall order. If it was so easy, practically everybody would be doing it.
But then things changed around five years ago. All of a sudden we started hearing whisperings about a new technology, enigmatically named the cloud. The cloud was a sort of wonder platform – capable of being accessed from any location using any computer. At the time, people didn’t really know how it was all that different from the internet. But as soon as they saw how it could dematerialize business operations, it began making a lot more sense.
The Cloud And Dematerialization,
In the past companies lived and died on the back of their document processing abilities. Thousands of boutique firms, like estate agents, lawyers and accountants pushed paper until the cows came home. It was an expensive and environmentally costly exercise. There was first the energy and resources that it took to get the material to their offices. And then there was the additional cost of sending it back out again in its new form. It cost a lot of money and put up prices for consumers and businesses.
But the cloud sought to change all of that. With document management software businesses didn’t have to rely on traditional means to push paper. Instead, they could digitise their paperwork and get it sent from one location to another with zero resource cost.
Dematerialization Is Even Better Than Physical
It wasn’t just that dematerialization was the same, just cheaper. It was also better. Companies found that they could turn the cloud into a new usage platform, allowing them to collaborate on documents in real time. Cloud computing enables network working in a way that just hadn’t been possible before. People could work on documents without having to be physically present. And they could use automatic sorting tools that simply weren’t available when documents were filed by hand.
The changes that dematerialization has brought to the workplace are extreme. The only barrier to getting rid of offices entirely now appears to be a cultural one. How long before the corporate world figures this out, I wonder?
Business is all about the bottom line. It’s easy to get swept up into some of the familiar rhetoric about business, all of which invites you to focus elsewhere. It’s about living your dream! Being your own boss! Doing something you love!
And those are all well and good – but they’re nothing without a good bottom line. If you’re not making money, then the business isn’t working – and it’s on you to change it. You need to engage with customers, get them through the (metaphorical) door and make sure you maximize every cent you make.
That means that no matter your personal spending habits, you need to become parsimonious. Every penny that you spend, down the most extreme of details, needs to be parted with unwillingly. You become Scrooge, eye on the costs at all times – though hopefully a bit nicer to the neighborhood kids.
With so many things to juggle, it’s unfortunately too easy to take your eye off the ball. There are a few common areas where you can end up overspending without even noticing it. So if you’re going to make this work, you need to apply the same business mind to the below areas as you do with every negotiation.
- Your Accounts
Business and merchant account deals typically have fees attached. You can sometimes find an introductory offer which is free for a set period, but eventually, it will expire. One trap you can fall into is not ruthlessly looking for the best deal available. Loyalty is worth next to nothing in the current climate; switch at will, and make it clear you’re willing to do so. Your current provider might be tempted to offer a better deal if you make it clear you’ll leave.
- Currency Conversion
If you work with overseas clients, you can find yourself a slave to international markets. You have to get your eye on the ball and transact when conditions are favorable. If you can hold off converting money or issuing an invoice until the exchange rate is in your favor, do so. Currencies are volatile in the wake of Britain’s EU vote and continuing issues in Syria, so track them every day.
Buying business insurance is easy, but getting the right deal is not. While you can grab a pre-packaged deal with a few clicks of a mouse, that doesn’t mean it’s going to be good for you. Sometimes, it’s worth going through a broker and looking for a tailor-made policy. You don’t want to be paying premiums for something you don’t need. And as with your banking, this is something you have to be willing to change at the drop of a hat.
- Printing Supplies
There is an argument for going with professional printing supplies for things such as billboards, and it’s not to be discounted. However, if you’re watching your cash flow, it can be a financial suck. In a paperless office, you won’t even need them. If you do, with a little practice, you can learn to use a graphic design program such as PhotoShop and create them for yourself. Keep the design simple, using online style guides to keep things on brand and then use a separate company to print your existing design.
The sales battle is ripe with competition. In the today’s disruptive landscape, sellers are scrambling to step ahead and be the first ally in their buyers’ journey.
That’s why we’ve created this following infographic — to arm you with valuable insights as you prepare your future sales strategy:
Social sellers realize a 66% greater quota attainment than those using traditional prospecting techniques
Sales professionals using social selling see 81% more appointments per week
90% of top salespeople use social selling tools, compared with 71% of overall sales professionals
There has been many blogs posts, discussions and debates on the value of cold calling. Many suggesting that it is a dead and dying.
My personal opinion is that the cold call is still and should be part of the sellers kit bag. It is only by blending the new required social skills and older sales tactics can a seller truly provide value and credibility.
I came across this infographic from sales for life blog site and would like to share it with you.
What are you thoughts on cold calling? Does it remain? Perhaps now referred to as a warm call?
So is the term “cold” dead but the function still exists? Drop your comments below
Infographic created by DocSend
As sales and marketing evolve, more teams are recognizing the importance of social selling. Where are we in this evolution and what trends have emerged? What practices should you be adopting today to stay ahead of the competition? Discover how your peers are embracing social selling and driving results, and how you can seize this opportunity to gain an edge.
Top performers spend 25% more time on research and preparation.
Top sales and marketing pros send 148% more connection requests and share 23% more content.
Social selling behavior leads to a 2X increase in sales performance through new clients, meetings secured and opportunities generated.
Social selling adoption is higher amongst older sales professionals: 27% are over 30 years old, 33% in 30-45yo and 34% in 45+ yo.
Watch Justin Shriber, the Head of Marketing for LinkedIn Sales Solution speak about how social selling drives massive results in 2016.
Buyers are embracing the information saturated internet, simultaneously they are getting smarter and more savvy to their requirements and needs. This has made it even harder for sales professionals to get in front of those buyers, let alone be part of the early buying process.
Today’s connected seller is emerging. they embrace tactics such as social media, CRM, analytics, and digital collaboration. Together, the modern social seller and buyer are now working together to create more value but most importantly, to create relationships, that result in a sale.
Salesforce created and awesome slideshare on The Evolution of a Salesperson, highlighting the sellers evolution as they adapt to the current best practices on engaging earlier with potential buyers, sharing content to start conversations and creating new opportunities.
As I thought it would better as a video (135 slides! Way to long ) I converted it into one for you. If you prefer to click 135 time the links is below.