May 19, 2011 Michael Bickerton
Forbes published an article by Brian Fetherstonhaugh, this past December “The Future of Selling: It’s Social.”
The article basically talks about how Social Media (Facebook, Twitter and noted Yelp which I found interesting) has a great deal of impact on current sales trends. In fact, the article suggests Sales Professionals indicate that social media is an influential part of the sales process and important to their success, while at the same noting companies are not adapting.
Companies claim to have a social presence, yet only 9% of the US sales professional believe they are educated and trained by their companies in social media strategies. Funny, according to the article, Brazil and China are far more progressive in the training sphere.
We’ve been dealing with a client recently, that I have a great deal of respect for, yet at the same time it was clear from the outset that embracing social media and emarketing strategies was not real. We were brought in and it was clear that the client was only paying lip service to this strategy. Interestingly enough, social media and emarketing were NOT considered seriously in the advertising mix, not in the budget and not in areas of discussion. As you can imagine, ignoring the issue and not providing appropriate budgets or support, the emarketing strategy was deemed to be a failure. You always get what you put into things and social media and emarketing are no different.
What is astounding to me, is that social media and emarketing were the only things that would have improved the results in a timely fashion had the appropriate budgets and programs being implemented. The reason, it’s a new world out there; there’s been a wholesale change in the way we communicate. Proof you ask? How about the fact that the newspaper business is selling ad space at one tenth of rate card pricing.
Enough about this, there is no discussion point here, it’s real. Social media and emarketing are here and my advice is simple. Get involved, see, touch and feel the space. Social media has changed the selling and buying relationship, and you would read about it in the newspaper, but as we all know, you don’t get home delivery anymore. Although, you might be able to find something about the subject on your iPad.
Michael Bickerton, Raven5 Ltd, Toronto, May 2011