Manage episode 239083757 series 1337811
Prospecting in the modern sales environment is about much more than finding contacts and making cold calls. In fact, it’s more complicated than ever to reach out to a potential buyer in an effective manner. This episode of #SellingWithSocial features me - on my friend, Will Barron’s podcast - The Salesman. We spoke at length about how social selling has a very specific purpose: to warm up prospects before connecting with them personally. We also discussed what the data tells us about modern prospecting, how you can personalize your outreach for greater effectiveness, how to know your outreach efforts are working, and much more!
If you are having trouble with the transition from traditional prospecting methodologies to the new approaches that digital selling has thrust upon us, I suggest you listen carefully to this episode. And if you are already a pro at modern prospecting, you’re sure to learn some new approaches that can increase your success even more. Take notes and apply what you learn.Social Is About Warming Up Prospects Before The Phone Call
We all know the uncomfortable feeling of reaching out to a prospect entirely cold. It’s no fun and it’s not very effective either. Statistics show us that only 3% of cold calls result in a sale. What about the other 97%? Doesn’t it make sense that we figure out how to reach them with our message in a way that resonates with them?
I believe that cold calling is not dead, but that it is dying - at least in the form we’ve practiced for so long. It’s still part of a good prospecting cadence, but we have to use it differently these days. It’s only effective when social has already been utilized to warm up the prospect. That includes social media, personalized video, text messaging, AI, and other tools. Here is an example of a good cadence that demonstrates where cold calling can fit in for maximum impact:
- Follow the prospect on LinkedIn
- Pay attention to when they look at your profile
- Engage with their posts in a meaningful way
- Next, request to connect with them via LinkedIn
- Continue to engage with their content, share their content, tag them
- Send an email
- Send a personalized video
- THEN make the phone call
And what do you do if none of that gets a response? Listen to this episode to find out how you can modify the approach and get a response.Data Tells Us Exactly What We Should Do And Should Not Do When Prospecting
One of the many things I appreciated about the questions Will asked me in this conversation, was that he is interested in the data behind my assertions, not just the anecdotes That’s because he’s a smart seller who knows that data trumps gut feelings every time. So I shared the following data with him about the typical prospecting attempts sellers make:
- The average response rate on cold email outreach is less than 3%
- The average response rate on cold calling via the telephone is less than 3%
- 62% of buyers look at a salesperson’s LinkedIn profile after they reach out initially
- When a company’s sales force has at least a 25% social selling adoption rate, their win rate increases to 41%
- When a company’s sales force has at least a 75% social selling adoption rate, that win rate goes up to 61%
Why is that data important in the modern sales environment? Because it reveals to us that much of what we’ve done successfully in the past isn’t working with the same level of effectiveness - AND that new approaches, like social selling, are gaining traction. Listen to learn how your sales team can improve its win rate and start more sales conversations.How You Can Know If Your Social Selling Efforts Are Working?
It’s easy to say that digital selling techniques are what every seller should adopt, but where’s the proof? How do you know if the things you’re practicing are truly gaining ground? Before we get to the answer, let me point out something vital to understand...
The digital network you build is a long-term resource. In other words, the people you connect with now may become buyers in the future. A “No” today doesn’t always mean “No” forever. For that reason, you need to continue publishing content that maps to your specific buyer’s journey and trust that the value you are providing will get you into more sales conversations over time.
Now back to the question - how do you know if your social prospecting approach is working? There is one simple question to answer: Did your efforts create more conversations? If so, you’re probably doing the right things. Listen to understand how you can refine your approach and gain even more opportunities.What Is Keeping You From Converting Connections Into Conversations?
So if the number of sales conversations you’re scheduling is the main barometer of success, what can you do if you’re not booking those calls? Evaluate - examine each step of your sales cadence (discussed in this episode) and adjust your approach one cadence-step at a time. That way you can discover which methods are not touching your prospects in an ideal way, and make adjustments.
Listen to this episode to learn more about how modern sellers are establishing a basic sales cadence and using it effectively to reach more buyers.Outline of This Episode
- [1:16] My appearance on Will Barron’s podcast, “The Salesman Podcast”
- [2:10] A better way to carry out sales calls in the internet age
- [9:09] Data-based best practices for outreach and prospecting
- [15:28] Is the issue reaching or getting a response from individuals?
- [20:56] How do you know if you’re doing a good job at modern sales prospecting?
- [27:08] The right way to use social profiles to set yourself up as the expert in your field
- [34:12] How long does it take to leverage social cadences properly for modern sales?
- [39:58] The next trend for sellers to get their heads around: AI
- [43:16] Mario’s advice to his younger self to enable him to sell more
- Will Barron’s “The Salesman Podcast”
- LinkedIn State Of Sales Report
- CSO Insights “Sales Performance Report 2019”
- LinkedIn’s SSI Score: www.YourSSIScore.com
- Time Trade
- Viveka von Rosen
- Soapbox by Wistia (free tool)
- Crystal Knows (free and paid)
- Modern Marketing Engine Podcast - Bernie Borges