We are nearing 2013 and every day you will find people in sales that are examining how the social web has changed everything. The ways we can engage with customers are forever evolving and salespeople are still learning how to use online strategies to get new customers, leads, and ultimately sales.
With all the excitement going on about social media and what you can do to interact with your target audience, are we forgetting all the benefits of in person communication? Are we forgetting that in person communication can play a big role with social media marketing?
I can have a text chat with a customer on Facebook in real-time, view his skills online, have a Google+ hangout, reply to a tweet, share my calendar, we can IM each other all day. From that communication, I can find out facts about him and start to build a relationship with him because I will understand what he wants me to do and when.
But with only collaborating online, will I really know the best way to work with him that will yield positive results? Wouldn’t it be better if we met face to face, creating an energy that feeds off us with vocal conversation? What about all the ideas we can get together from an in person brainstorming session?
Social media is really amazing for many small and large businesses exploring the social web. The ability that social media provides with real-time communication with anyone anywhere in the world is still a brand new thing for many.
In the rush to get on the social media band wagon, it will really help people in sales to remember all the benefits of in person meetings, hearing the person’s voice, shaking hands, and discussing all the things that need to be done without worrying about a misunderstood email.
It’s about getting real-time, true, and face to face feedback from your customers. I know that it’s not always possible for in person meetings when you focus on social media, but a simple phone call can add a personal touch to your sales strategy.
Don’t forget the old ways
Social media is really allowing us to engage with customers in new and exciting ways, but if salespeople forget all the benefits of doing it the old school way, the technology behind social media and all the hype will really not matter at all. Customers will leave in an instant. Successful people in sales should look at social media holistically — all the social media channels, and in person meetings.
Author | Anton Koekemoer
I'm your friendly neighbourhood digital marketing specialist. I specialise in helping brands connect with targeted customers by enhancing their online presence through emerging web-based communication channels. I translate business objectives into comprehensive initiatives that focus on humanising brand identity while maximising measurable business results. More