Social Selling Reduces the Sales Cycle

Jamie Shanks
Jamie Shanks

Sales Cycle

One of the most common pet peeves of sales professionals is how long it takes to “close the deal”. I’m sure we’ve all heard stories about how potential buyers move at a snail’s pace once they’ve got what they need from you. When you’ve added no value, what do you expect?

The Dead Zone

After weeks/months of wining and dining, why isn’t your prospect still taking the action? It may be because you’re in the Dead Zone.

The Dead Zone is simply that place that lies in between your last demo/proposal/meeting/RFP presentation/etc. and getting your prospect to pull the trigger. This is one of the worst places to be and we’ve all been there and had varying degrees of success in it.

Calling every week to say “Have you seen my quote?” really doesn’t help either. Because the buyer sees no value in this, your calls will get ignored.

The Biggest Problem with Traditional Selling

Think about it. You started off on the wrong foot. Your persistent efforts of cold calling and begging them to come to your company’s next “road show” event (with bribery of food and drink) worked, but psychologically you and your company came out as the real losers… Right from the get go.

How? It’s because you’ve placed so much importance in the prospect’s mind that he/she feels they’re doing you a favor being there; that you should be running around after them. It’s the difference between a guy who sells Ford cars and one that sells Mercedes. You’d almost be hard pressed to find the latter begging for your business. Why? Because he’s got value and he knows it. You need him more than he needs you.

Think for a moment how the sales cycle would be radically different if both you and buyer came into a potential transaction as equals. Social Selling achieves this.

Social Selling Bridges the Gap

In the world of social selling, your ability to differentiate yourself from the rest of the pack through timely information and understanding is the key to success.

Try these easy tips for next time:

  • Send your prospects thought provoking pieces of content that inspire them.
  • Engage your prospect with similar client success stories and socially surround them with this information.
  • Write an informative blog (or three) that explains your deep level of understanding about why they need your solution and what the ROI could be.

These are just three suggestions. But the goal is to do something over and above your “what did you think of my demo?” call.

They may not be ready, so just nurture them with sharp, relevant content and let them declare their own cards.

The Bottom Line

Social Selling isn’t difficult. It’s different. Try understanding your buyer and why they’re doing the bulk of their research online these days. Prepare for this new reality and start to equip yourself with the necessary know-how on being able to capitalize on this. You can check out our 10 Steps to Building a Social Selling Machine or our 42 LinkedIn Sales Tips to help get you started or feel free to connect with me to discuss using my below calendar link.

Amar Sheth

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The Ultimate Guide to Social Selling