Information is Free

May 20, 2009 at 12:12 pm | Posted in Blogging, Business Tips, Facebook, Linkedin, Networking, Sales Tips, Social Media, Twitter | 6 Comments
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FreeBeware of sales resources that charge for information on social media.

Tools like Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook are free and hardly new. There is a great deal of information about their use and value for sellers available on the Internet. Charging hundreds of dollars for seminars and using terms like…

By this time next year, the gold rush to social media marketing will be near complete.”

… are misleading and false.

In addition, announcements like this one (eNewsletter focused on sales and social media) use sales techniques that are just plain cheesy and a turn off for many buyers. It just rubs me the wrong way and reinforces the sales stigma that I try to combat in my own training.

My Method

I freely share information to sellers, marketers or interested persons on what social media tools can do for them through this blog. My way is to share information that people may value and continue to follow. I appreciate this and their ideas/comments. Sometimes, those conversations turn into opportunities or projects – things that I do charge for, but only when it is for my direct services – not for information that is free to all.

Charging for such info flies in the face of what social media marketing is all about.

The Core of Direct Contact: Sales Direction

May 4, 2009 at 10:32 am | Posted in Blogging, Business Tips, Facebook, Linkedin, Marketing, Sales Methodologies, Sales Tips, Social Media, Sports Marketing, Twitter | 4 Comments
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DollarSome poeple know me as a sales trainer.

Some know me as a social media consultant.

Some think of me as a sports marketer.

I blog about Facebook, Twiter, Linkedin, sports marketing, selling skills, sales theory… a range of different topics – that have one common point at the core. Sales.

My perspective always comes back to the $. These are tools to help find, establish, listen to and reinforce customers/clients and keep the dollars following. Is this cold? No – this is business. And (most) businesses are about generating revenue and profit – it is that simple.

As it has been just over a year since I started this blog, I felt it was important to talk about my focus – why I write what I do. I have appreciated all the comments and emails that I received and I look forward to many more.

Thank you for being a reader – thank you for your interest. Now, what are we going to do next?

The Impact of Social Media on Sports Marketing

April 15, 2009 at 10:23 am | Posted in Business Development, Linkedin, Marketing, Networking, Sales Methodologies, Sponsorship, Sports Marketing | 61 Comments
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sports-marketing-20Social media and sports marketing are a perfect fit.

I was very pleased to read Pat Coyle’s article from the Sports Business Journal about social networking and fans (SBJ is subscription based, so the article link is on Pat’s Sports Marketing 2.0 site).

Over the past several months, I’ve been reading a lot of Pat’s blog and info posted on his Linkedin Group – and it was great to see the similar content and thinking we have in why sports teams/leagues should care about social media and social networks.

Definitely take a minute a read Pat’s article, but here’s the high level take-aways:

  • Social media isn’t about technology, it’s about fans
  • Build online fan communities to allow them to connect with one another, and in turn – to the team
  • Leverage community #’s to make $ via e-commerce
  • Sponsorship opportunities present themselves by increasing visits to team sites
    • And I’d like to personally add – through social media sites themselves

This is all relatively new for many teams – and building/managing fan generated content and opening up sponsorship opportunitiesĀ  is the task that many teams are uncertain about how to proceed with…

The other part of the story that I like to bring to this topic is integrating social networks into sales training. When it comes to ticket sales or sponsorships, the consistency of use in social media platforms not only goes a long way from a sales methodology perspective, but the simple fact that social networking tools get results for sellers is key.

Sales Training and Social Media

April 2, 2009 at 7:03 pm | Posted in Business Development, Getting Started, Networking, Sales Methodologies, Sales Tips, Social Media | 1 Comment
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How has social media changed my approach to sales training?

I consider social networks an essential sales tool. Many sales people wish that social media will make cold calling go away – it won’t, but effective social networking skills are increasingly important. Here is why…

Reason #1: Voicemail

  • Sellers have made the telephone a tough way to accomplish business development efforts. Too many calls from too many sellers.
  • Buyers have turned their phones off (more or less) and allowed voicemail to act as their gatekeeper. Many sellers have not adapted to this yet – and continue to pound the phones looking for the needle in the haystack.
  • Sellers need to incorporate a voicemail marketing strategy. Embrace vm, it is not going away and will not be overcome by endless calling.

Reason #2: The Internet

The role of the seller has changed because buyers can leverage the Internet to find out much of what they need about a vendor, product or service without speaking to a rep. Therefore…

  • Sellers who focus on product will struggle vs. sellers who focus on business requirements.
  • Product knowlege is important, but consulting skills are what is needed to get the job done nowadays.
  • Sellers are valued by buyers when they help find better, unanticipated answers to challenges – better than buyers would have arrived at on their own.

Sellers Need Social Networks

The phones won’t get the job done like they used to and your market initiates buying cycles through information available via the internet – so sellers need to be online too. Sellers need to be available and able to respond when a buyer reaches out.

Your market is already there online – this is the point I reiterate with brands as well. Just like any brand, sellers need to be participating, observing and engaging in these communities. The role of the Seller has changed – from product focus to business analyst. Similarly, sellers need to change their business development activities – from prospecting to networking.

Here’s How:

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