Ensuring Social Selling Adoption: Sales Management Edition

Jamie Shanks
Jamie Shanks

 Social Selling Adoption

In a previous post, I’ve written about how sales professionals can ensure Social Selling adoption through practical efforts. I examined some core principles in making you and your team successful.

This week, I wanted to turn the focus on ways to ensure success with management’s help. Backing and support from management is absolutely necessary to ensure that this new belief system – this new culture of Social – doesn’t land DOA on your doorstep.

Do You Believe?

Do you believe in Social Selling? I mean, really believe in it? If your level of support and enthusiasm can best be described as “half-hearted”, then it’s time evaluate why you’re going Social in the first place. I remember we signed on a client whose VP of Sales didn’t buy into the idea that his customers and prospects were online. What a waste of opportunity!

Having your sales team go through the motions of learning Social for the sake of it won’t do you or them any good. If you haven’t bought in to the concept fundamentally, how can your team? In my honest (and blunt) opinion, I believe that this VP of Sales was simply trying to keep his job and show his superiors that he was at least willing to try something different.

Action and belief, though, have to go hand in hand. Both are part of the same coin.

Does The Sales Team Believe?

Fine; your belief is there. I trust you. But now (just as you thought you were safe) are you prepared to contend with the sleeping giant of status quo in your sales reps? Listen, don’t blame your sales reps entirely. The status quo is something that most company cultures drill into their employees. It’s a part of most corporate cultures (sorry to offend you). So now we’ve got to figure out what levers to pull to engage and inspire your sales team.

In our experience, we’ve seen first-hand how sales reps are driven and motivated when someone just like them share stories of success. If you’re an AE and doubt the power of Social, imagine hearing documented case studies of how reps just like you are succeeding in building pipeline and business. It’s powerful stuff.

Be armed with this. It’s a required tool to ensure your team’s morale and success.

Does Marketing Believe?

Inevitably, you’ll want to ensure that the marketing team is supporting and leveraging your sales team. As an example, marketing is constantly looking for new ways of distributing content. With the sales team now embracing Social, it opens up the floodgates of opportunity never seen before.

On the flipside, it’s important to ensure that marketing is creating content that’s meaningful, valuable and helpful. Glossy e-brochures that tout features should be kept to a bare minimum.

Create Value

Marketing has to believe that the focus has to be on value creation. The “feeds and speeds” collateral has to be there, but only when someone is qualified properly. There’s no sense in presenting them solution-based information if the mindset for need and/or potential problem hasn’t been planted properly.

Creating content that opens up thinking about problems, needs, pains, and ways this can be solved needs to be the focus. Because frankly, in the realm of social, if the intent to help isn’t there, it will be blatantly obvious. And this will prove deadly.

The Bottom Line

If you’re bringing in a Social Selling plan to help boost the revenue possibilities, it’s important that you’ve got the belief system necessary to make the project successful. Far too often we see sales executives get behind Social like a cookie-cutter process. It’s far from this. The proper belief system is required from you, your sales reps and also from your marketing team.

While Social Selling may seem mysterious, it’s not. The only thing difficult about it is the change in mindset that’s required. Let me show you how you can get started today in building a belief system based on successful data.

To learn more about Social Selling check out 10 Steps to Becoming a Social Selling Machine or 9 Steps to a Winning LinkedIn Profile for Sales Professionals. For tips, tricks and more rants, we could always set-up a time to chat using my below schedule …

Amar Sheth


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The Ultimate Guide to Social Selling