Tags: Brand, Entrepreneurs, Networking, Sports Marketing
The other night, I presented to a group of Vancouver entrepreneurs on the topic of social media – specifically on how non-sports brands can leverage the passion of sports marketing for their own brands.
It’s a topic that had been on my mind recently and I was happy to take advantage of the opportunity to speak at the event. I used to do presentations to entrepreneurs back when I lived in Toronto. When I started my business in 2005, I benefited from a great program that supported entrepreneurs so I’ve always been happy to give back.
The carry over to my blog is this – give back. The sports business is a niche to say the least. It’s tough to break into, and there are a lot of challenges despite its high-profile perception. I’ve always gone out of my way to support people I’ve worked with and recommend individuals for positions with teams. Like any business, sports is about people and networking is critical.
In addition, I always admire entrepreneurs and those people who go about building their own business. Building a career in sports or building a business requires tireless efforts, bouncing back from mistakes/rejection, adapting and growing. It’s about people and networking – so thank you for being a reader and let me know how I can help you.
Tags: Networking, RSS, Sales Tips, Sales2.0
Your network used to be the people you knew, the people who referred you, the people you had some degree of trust with. Then there was the rest of the world – your customers, your prospects and the people who will or would buy from you. These are the people you “followed up” with.
Communicating with the people you know = networking
Communicating with the people you don’t know = selling
This is old school thinking.
If there is one thing that most sellers are genuinely poor at – it is following up. Most follow up opening statements go something like this:
“Hi, it’s Carson from Direct Contact calling – it’s been a few months since we last spoke so I thought I would give you a call today.”
This kind of follow up has absolutely no value for the buyer. It is simply asking/stating that “It has been at least 3 months since you bought something or last said no to me – are you ready to buy something now?” All this kind of salesy talk does is reinforce stigmas and frustrate buyers.
In the paradigm of Sales2.0, this kind of separation no longer exists. Effective sellers do not follow up with but network with their prospects and customers. Who exactly is in your network today? Everybody is. Your customers, your prospects, your friends, your contacts… etc… Sellers are connecting with business people daily – surely there are referral opportunities between prospects and customers in your pipeline right now.
So how do you do that exactly?
Give people something they value – information.
There are a couple of very easy ways to do this. RSS feeds are a great example.If you don’t know what an RSS feed is – click here – and then come back to this post.
Using RSS (or Google Alerts) to collect information to share with your market is an effective way of staying in touch and providing value at the same time. Include the article link in an email with a brief statement such as:
“I came across this and thought of you today – hope things are going well. Let me know if there is anything I can do for you and keep in touch.”
Pretty simple. To the point, No selling allowed.
Stop following up and start networking.
Tags: Bookmarking, Delicious, Networking, Social Media
I often review my blog stats to see what visitors are clicking on.
While I get frequent views of my linkedin profile, or twitter feed – I’ve noticed that I rarely get any action on my delicious.com bookmarks. This leads me to believe there are 2 possible reasons why:
- No one cares about my bookmarks
- People are not really aware of what delicious is
Reason #1 is very possible, but I won’t be changing what I bookmark based on popularity (or lack there of). It seems to me that delicious is a pretty interesting and valuable social media tool that is often overlooked compared to Twitter or Facebook. So here is my quick and dirty on delicious…
Delicious is a Simple Concept
It’s a social network and visibility tool focused on sharing your favorite bookmarks. Old school bookmarking used to be a time saving idea – an easy way to remember your favorite websites. Delicous brings a network to bookmarks – when you save a bookmark on delicious, you can also see how many other people have saved that bookmark as well, their profile and who they are, as well as all the other bookmarks they have.
Why You Might Care About Delicious
I view delicious kind of like reading between the lines. By taking time to review my bookmarks, you can get an idea of what influences me and get an idea of resources that I think are worth sharing. There is plenty of information out there to share – while I use my blog to share my own ideas, I like the convenience and sharing of things that I think are interesting via delicious.
Delicious integrates with other platforms like Facebook, so my bookmarks are publicized much like a status update to my Facebook friends in real time. There’s also a handy tool bar you can integrate into your browser that makes bookmarking with delicous very simple to do.
If you haven’t yet, give delicious a try – start by checking out my bookmarks.
Tags: Marketing, Networking, ROI, Social Media
Don’t get me wrong, I’m kind of into hype…
After some time of rampant evangelicalism, there is a sober reality taking root as more and more organizations embrace what these new(ish) platforms of engagement can do for them.
I really liked this post from Zygote. It talks about ROI, and campaign measurement, and it is visually great as well.
Like anything new, there needs to be some demystification surrounding social media – and I think the easiest way to describe this, or focus this point is that – All social media really is… is us.
Using the tools available to access, introduce and collaborate with us is the trick – this is where the how’s and what’s are applied. But the why seems quite simple – because social media is where your market already is.
And we’re not so bad are we?
Tags: Networking, Sales, Sales Force, Soc, Social Media
There is much discussion about ROI and social media.
Everyone loves marketing but no one loves sales (aww…). Marketing is sexy, but sales does the dirty work. Sales is the bottom line – what good is any marketing unless it is transitioned into real sales? (Answer: none)
The big “I” in ROI is the investment in time – not dollars – as far as social media is concerned.
If you are spending your resources’ time on social media – how can the results be measured? Just like any marketing initiative, there must be a path to sales. In B2B sales, social media can be leveraged as a networking tool by both the sales force as well as at the organizational level.
Social Media and the Sales Force
Social media can allow sellers to engage their market(s) in order to be involved and participate in conversations. For the purposes of this post – I am sticking with social media at the rep level – but there are exciting things happening at the organizational level through social media that allows the conversation to shift to brand (another time…).
A contact of mine recently brought up a great point – there are 2 types of technology that that no sales person ever has to be taught to use… the phone and the car. Why? Because the rep sees a direct correlation from using the technology to getting them closer to the conversation. But these 2 types of technology have something else in common – they were invented over 100 years ago!
That doesn’t mean old is bad – it means that new can be good too. Some where, right now, through social media… your industry is discussing goals and challenges. Maybe even your brand is being discussed – these are places where sellers need to be. Measuring the “I” – the investment of their time is the same as any other business development activity. How many hours did you or your sales team cold call last week and what were the results? Spend the same amount of time on a focused social media engagement strategy. Now you will have something to measure.
Coming up next post… how and where sellers can do this.
Digital wing man and social media consultant.
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