When sales meets social media on the football field

When sales meets social media on the football field

This blog started off life on LinkedIn as a discussion around whether cold calling was dead. (Killed by social media) It’s a discussion that has generated a lot of interest and debate with supporters for both yes and no.

Then there’s me and those like me who believe in a combined approach – cold calling and social media development combining to create the most powerful business development solution.

I chipped in with my thoughts and there was a degree of approval and support and then I explained my position using the following analogue and there was a loud chorus of approval including people sending me private messages saying they loved it.

So always being willing to be responsive to what works I thought I’d share my thoughts with the Edenchanges blog readers – I hope you enjoy it as much as the LinkedIn crowd did.

Sales and Social Media – one way to think of it is…

The whole sales vs social media debate can be thought of as planning to win a football match (I take a slight risk here as I’m no football fan!)

In that analogue social media is the equivalent of training your team, picking good players and getting them on the pitch in the right formation. 

If it’s really good social media activity then it might even be like taking a few pot shots at the goal or passing the ball around a little. 

Business development calls (cold calls if you want to call them) are the equivalent of actually playing with intent, working your formation, tackling and dodging the opposing team and hammering the ball in the back of the net. 

So…it seems to me that you do your social media bits and bobs and then play full out on the phone to get the ball in the back of the net! 

As I said at the beginning I’m no football fan but surely playing like that is the right way to play to win?

A challenge was then raised when I posted the above on LinkedIn (and a fair one I must say) when a person asked

Like the analogy Stephen – but for most, don’t the shots constantly hit the corner flag?!

To which I replied

That’s okay – if I remember my football correctly a corner can be developed in to a winning position to have another shot at goal – if done properly a score will follow!

The point was well taken by the other gentleman and several other people also commented positively.

The whole discussion indeed was very interesting and I think the consensus was clearly in favour of a mixed approach. The only challenge to ‘cold calling’ was really the difference in perception between making a traditional ‘blind call’ and a modern ‘researched call’.

As one person put it

If you are a specialist in your market, have done extensive research on a company, got key intelligence they are hiring, leveraged contacts to name drop, genuinely have a network that can add value and pick up the phone to proactively reach out to this decision maker and make contact for current or future needs – is it still a cold call? If so then YES cold calling lives on.

So blend your approaches, take a modern, intelligent route to market and boot the ball into the back of the net!

Until next time; good luck scoring!

Stephen