Aak! “I stumbled upon your profile, so I wanted to reach out and connect.” How many of you are getting these types of LinkedIn invites? Some clever “LinkedIn Guru” must have included that gem in their master class recently because it’s become the invitation du jour. Now, if you are searching for prospects just like me, that’s fine. I expect you to find and look at my profile. But you didn’t stumble on it. Or if you did, then I am probably not your prospect. Another prospector (likely a bot) scraped my title and inserted it into their invitation to invest my future with them. If you’ve read my LinkedIn Profile headline then you know it’s not exactly conducive to “dear [insert headline here]”. So that must have been a not-so-well trained bot.
I am not saying to avoid social selling. I highly encourage it. There is NO question that Social Selling works when done right. Check out these stats from HubSpot’s blog post 73 Mind-Blowing Sales Statistics.
65% of salespeople who use social selling fill their pipeline, compared to 47% of reps who do not.
Four in 10 repshave recently closed two to five deals directly thanks to social media.
Half of revenue is influenced by social selling in 14 common industries, including computer software, healthcare, and marketing and advertising.
Using social selling tools can increase win rates and deal size by 5% and 35%, respectively.
Nor am I against AI or chatbots when applied properly. Bots are doing some pretty amazing things. So what’s my beef? It’s when prospecting, whether using social media or not, becomes pushy or spammy, you lose credibility and it’s a big turn off. In fact, Tamara Schenk said it better: Prospecting done wrong hurts your brand.
“Prospecting is about the BUYER, THEIR role, THEIR industry, and THEIR potential business problems – it is not about YOUR products!”
Tamara Schenk, CSO Insights
I’ve personally seen that, selling done right, using technology and social media, can actually help you sell more, not just because you can do it better and faster, but because you can stand apart from spammy competitors. Don’t sink to the level of your tech feature pushing competitors. Be authentic, be personal and you’ll get results.
To sell better, leverage sales enablement to educate and reinforce how your team engages all along the buyers journey, providing them the appropriate tools and content to support their efforts. You’ll be rewarded with more customers. And if your inside sales or account exec sales teams could use some Social Selling guidance, give us at call.
Here’s to a Prosperous New Year!
Kathleen Glass is a strategic advisor for WyeComm, a Stagwell Company, and founder and CEO of Oinkodomeo, a B2B sales and digital marketing agency. Follow on Twitter @KathleenGlass or connect on LinkedIn.