Social Selling’s Impact on Sales and Marketing

In our last blog post, we talked about how the Enterprise Social Graph enables Social Selling.  At Reachable, we think of Social Selling as the ability for sales people to not only leverage their personal contacts, but also the contacts of others, such as fellow employees, customers, and partners, during a sales process.  Uncovering a connection within a target account can turn a cold lead into a warm introduction, which could make the difference between a win and a loss.  The ability for organizations to leverage the personal connections within their business is having an impact on how sales and marketing professionals are doing their jobs.  Here are some examples…

    • Lead Scoring – Lead scoring has evolved over the years and has become more sophisticated.  Historically, it just involved assigning a score based on the responses to sales qualifying questions.  Recently, it has incorporated the behavior of visitors on a company’s website.  Social Selling takes lead scoring to another level by taking into account the personal connections an organization has to a particular lead.  The better connections to a lead, the higher the score.

 

    • Lead Distribution – Leads are typically distributed geographically, or sometimes based on vertical segments.  Social Selling introduces the notion of distributing leads based on the personal connections sales individuals have to a lead.  The person with the better connections to a lead gets it assigned to them.  This is one of the “5 Key Sales and Marketing Trends” in 2012 according to Caitlin Roberson in a guest blog post she did for SellingPower Blog…

Geographic territories will become extinct.  If your Chicago-based sales rep has a closer social connection to your San Diego-based prospect, it doesn’t make sense to assign that lead to your San Diego-based sales rep. Social proximity beats geographic proximity, hands down.

  • Target Account Management – Social Selling changes the way target accounts can be managed.  Target accounts can be assigned based on which sales person has the best personal connections to a particular account, and they can use their connections to penetrate the account more effectively than a sales person who doesn’t know anybody within the organization.

These are just some examples of how Social Selling is impacting sales and marketing.  If your organization is using Social Selling in other ways, please let us know by adding a comment below.

– Perry Mizota, a marketing guy at Reachable

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