The number one objection I get from Sales People about Social Selling is “Tim, with all the other pressures I have, I just don’t have time for this.”
While I can give many arguments about changing your priorities, new ways of working, etc etc. Here are some ways you can short cut the time you spend on Social Media. Of course, don’t expect the same results, but it might get you into a Social Selling habit.
A member of my family, who is not a big reader, once asked me, what books should I read to get me into the reading habit. My advice was to start with magazines, start in small chunks then to move onto a Harry Potter or Dan Brown book. George Orwell, (as one person suggested) might not be the best place for her to start.
This blog is about how a new starter can start the Social Selling journey. If you are a purest or a long time Social Seller stop reading now this isn’t for you. In addition, thsi won’t get you thousands of followers but let’s get in to the habit first.
First things first. There are many Social Networks but unless you have a particular reason to get into YouTube, Pinterest then as a B2B sales person I would focus on LinkedIn and Twitter.
How often should I post? At least once a day. You can post the same content on LinkedIn as well as Twitter. Here are the ten things you can do to Hustle your Social Selling
1. When you get into work in the morning and you get your laptop / Mac out, post something to Twitter and LinkedIn. There must be something you read in the paper on the train on the way in or came in on email overnight.
2. Use automation. If you have read my post “Why don’t we just automate Social Media, we can then go back to doing our day jobs” you’ll know I’m not a big fan of automation but Buffer and Hootsuite can be used to help you “batch” up a bunch of tweets in advance. When you get in the office in the morning, why not batch some Tweets or LinkedIn posts?
3. Work as a Team. In all of the presentations I’ve seen on Social Selling, Social Media is positioned as a solo effort. Rather than searching for content, why not retweet others? Form a team with work colleagues and agree to retweet each other or like posts on LinkedIn. Don’t expect an explosion of followers, but you will start building a presence and (hopefully) start getting into the habit.
4. Your Marketing department should be providing you with content. Agree, in many cases this can look very “corporate”, but using tools discussed in 2. You can batch this up and schedule a number posts. Check out the 4.1.1 Rule.
5. Reuse content. Why not use meeting notes to create Points of View (POV) LinkedIn / Blog posts. “These are the top 5 issues we see in Accounting systems in Media today” for example.
6. Take corporate videos, events, areas that interest you and write a LinkedIn post. 5 lines of introduction and context and then post the video / link to the event. Not the most elegant way of working but it gets you started.
7. What is your passion? Ask anybody about their passion and their eyes light up and immediately they become positively animated. Why start blogging about serious subjects, why not start with your passion? Sailing, Photography, etc
8. Download a content curation tool like Flipboard or Klout and find content, there must be time waiting in reception at a customer or on the train where you could find something relevant to Tweet?
9. Create a list on Twitter of Influencers or subscribe to one of my lists and as mentioned in 3. retweet that content.
10. Stop being a corporate suit and be human. OK, so it’s a terrible clique but why not post a photo of your lunch / dog walk / airport lounge you are sitting in? In her book “Social Executive Dionne Lew says ….. “Why not take a photo and post it, show your human side.”
Finally I often get asked how much time should I spend on Social Media? In my view, the world has changed and this requires us to change with it. On that basis, 30 mins a day would be a good target. Yes this is a lot of time, but what worked 20 years ago might not work now. Many Sales people I talk to work out what old ways they need to drop and find time for the working practices of the 21st century.
If during your journey you come up with other ideas that can help Social Sellers out there, I would love to hear from you. Please leave any suggestions or comments below.
Tim Hughes is a Social Selling Innovator and Pioneer his blog has become a reference point for Sales People throughout the world to get hints and tips to get into Social Selling; Newbies and Influencers alike. Tim’s 27 years as a quota carrying salesperson, means he cuts the fluff and speaks in a no nonsense style. The blog is not about slogans but about how you can use Social to allow you to over achieve your quota, quicker.
Tim Hughes is a Speaker and Blogger on Social Selling and be can be contacted @Timothy_Hughes or Tim_Hughes1@hotmail.com